Selection criteria for the Robert Lee Graduate Student Research Grant at Joshua Tree National Park are based on the merit of the work being proposed. A selection committee will review and rank proposals based on scientific merit, an interpretive component, and implications for management of park resources. The selection committee will ask the following questions as they read your proposal. Ask yourself these questions as you prepare your application. Have someone not familiar with your intended topic review your application.
Criteria 1: Scientific Merit, Problem Definition, Feasibility, and Quality of Presentation (10 Points)
Does the applicant express the research question in a way that demonstrates an understanding the topic as well as the proposed methods or techniques? To what extent will this proposal make progress towards answering the research question? Is the problem well defined and adequate background information provided? Is the proposed timeframe and budget adequate for completing the scope of work? Are the hypotheses clearly stated and are the proposed methods and experimental design appropriate for use in answering the research question?
Criteria 2: Application to Resource Management (5 Points)
How will this project increase our understanding of desert resources? How will the expected results of this research inform park managers about specific resource conditions? Will this research fill an information void? Is there potential for the methods and expected results of this research to be transferable to another National Park Service unit or protected area in the desert southwest? Can the proposed research be conducted with minimal environmental compliance and/or mitigation requirements?
Criteria 3: Application to Education, and Interpretive Value and Products (5 Points)
In what way can the results or information provided by this research be used to educate the public? In what way can the Park use this information to create interpretive materials for public outreach? How might the results of your research be presented to park visitors? Are there clearly defined stories and environmental messages that can be developed from this proposed research? Does the proposal include a clear environmental message, appropriate medium for delivery, and a target audience?