The TxBSPI post-baccalaureate fellowship is a full-time position for aspiring researchers in the social sciences. Post-baccalaureate fellows gain in-depth research experiences and receive structured training in preparation for applying for doctoral programs.
Most fellows work with us for two years. The fellowship is a one-year appointment with the opportunity for a one-year renewal. Fellows receive all the benefits of a full-time University of Texas at Austin employee, including healthcare and retirement benefits.
Who is this Fellowship for?
This fellowship is for college graduates who hope to gain full-time research experiences that will equip them to be successful Ph.D. applicants and world-class scholars. It is an ideal opportunity for anyone passionate about addressing social issues (for example, educational equity, homelessness, racial justice, etc.) and interested in pursuing Ph.D. programs in psychology, sociology, or related fields.
Applicants from underrepresented groups in doctoral programs are encouraged to apply, including but not limited to underrepresented minorities, first-generation college students, community college transfers, and individuals with disabilities.
How is this Fellowship structured?
Fellows first participate in a month-long intensive onboarding process, which includes a methodological boot camp to develop the basic program and analytical skills, a series of workshops related to the different kinds of research in the social and behavioral sciences, introductions to various programs and faculty participating in the program, and planning for graduate school applications and admissions. This onboarding process will end with a matching period, in which participating research teams offer plans for incorporating fellows into their projects (with clearly defined roles, activities, and outcomes) and fellows provide preferences for which of the participating research teams they will join.
The remainder of the fellowship is built around a weekly mentoring meeting and a rotation of in-depth research experiences. Fellows meet weekly with the fellowship coordinator (and occasionally with graduate students, staff, postdoctoral scholars, and faculty) to develop skills across the research pipeline, from research design and survey best practices to data analysis and research dissemination.
Many of these discussions are centered around project-based skills that fellows hope to develop and would position them to be successful Ph.D. students in the future. In our research rotations, each fellow typically collaborates on projects with 2-3 faculty or postdoctoral advisors for 3-6 months each. This allows fellows to gain a range of experiences working with different researchers, learning different methodologies, and jumping into various points of research projects. We strongly encourage fellows to present their work at professional conferences and provide travel stipends.
Fellows will also be provided opportunities to author or co-author at least one peer-reviewed article. A unique aspect of this fellowship is that we aim for fellows to devote only 80% time to in-depth research collaborations with project-based advisors. The remaining 20% (8 hrs./week) is protected as a time for applying to graduate programs and gaining other experiences that will serve them well as researchers in the future.
Past fellows have used this time to build independent projects, learn research-based skills in graduate-level courses or online training, or support university or community organizations devoted to equity and inclusion.
I’m interested in being a TxBSPI fellow. How do I apply?
We are not currently recruiting post-baccalaureate fellows. Please check back in mid-spring of 2023 for fellowships starting the following Summer or Fall.
If you are interested in working at our institute hourly, please complete an interest survey here.
I am a current faculty member. How can I work with post-baccalaureate fellows?
If you think a project would be a good fit for a postbaccalaureate fellow, please email the fellowship facilitator Eric Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will set up a brief call to discuss your research and the proposed project. If it seems like a good fit, he will ask you to complete a 2-page document with more details to provide a good match for your project.
We are primarily partnering with faculty in COLA and CNS at UT-Austin. We hope to expand to the greater UT system and other universities in future cohorts.
How was this fellowship funded?
This fellowship was made possible by initial support from the Jacobs Foundation. If you are interested in sponsoring future cohorts of world-class scholars, please contact David Yeager at email@example.com.
How can I learn more?
Please email the fellowship facilitator Eric Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.