College of Liberal Arts

Q&A

Please submit questions about the 2013-14 competition to lagrants@austin.utexas.edu by January 7, 2014. 

  1. Do you have an operating definition of the humanities?
  2. The HRA does not fund long term lodging, but how long is the maximum?
  3. Can the funds be used to support text translation services?
  4. What happens if the application exceeds the page limits stated in the Guidelines?
  5. What is the HRA application process for faculty members with split appointments within COLA?
  6. What is the award period for the 2013-2014 Humanities Research Award?

1. Do you have an operating definition of the humanities? 

For the purpose of this award, the focus is on the written text as a record of the human experience.  We have awarded occasional HRAs to faculty from the social sciences disciplines, but they all had the written text at the core of their work, and were interpretive/intuitive as opposed to empirical in their approach.

The NEH definition may help:

"The term 'humanities' includes, but is not limited to, the study and interpretation of the following: language, both modern and classical; linguistics; literature; history; jurisprudence; philosophy; archaeology; comparative religion; ethics; the history, criticism and theory of the arts; those aspects of social sciences which have humanistic content and employ humanistic methods; and the study and application of the humanities to the human environment with particular attention to reflecting our diverse heritage, traditions, and history and to the relevance of the humanities to the current conditions of national life."
http://www.neh.gov/about

2. The HRA does not fund long term lodging, but how long is the maximum? Say for example, a research trip to an archive that requires 12 weeks overseas. Is that too long to be funded?

The long term lodging rule prevents recipients from using HRA funds to pay for housing during a time in residence at another institution. Because archival research is at the heart of the humanities, we often approve use of funds for overseas research trips of durations of up to three months.

3. Can the funds be used to support text translation services?

We allow recipients to spend up to $1000 per year for research assistance. Examples could be: translation, transcription, payment for a graduate research assistant

4. What happens if the application exceeds the page limits stated in the Guidelines?

Pages in excess of the stated page limits will be removed from the application prior to review and scoring.  The excess material will not be considered. In keeping with the space limitations, the use of hyperlinks is not permitted.

5. What is the HRA application process for faculty members with split appointments within the College of Liberal Arts? Should they apply through both, or just one?

Faculty members with split appointments within the College of Liberal Arts should apply through their primary departments.  In the event that the appointment is split 50-50, the faculty member should apply through the department where the chair is most familiar with the applicant’s research and research trajectory.

6. What is the award period for the 2013-2014 Humanities Research Award?

The award period was incorrectly stated in an early version of the guidelines for this year's award. The correct award period for the 2013-2014 award is March 2014 through May 2017.