First Assignment – Grant Proposal, Ideas and Questions – Seeking Advice

Is anyone else as apprehensive about our first project as I am?  If so, (or if not, all the better) perhaps you would not mind taking a look at my initial thoughts, and commenting on my way ahead.

After downloading and reading some of the “successful grant applications” on the NEH website, I began to get a better idea of the project scope.  The grant application begins with the project idea, but the idea acted much like an introductory paragraph to a research paper.  It draws the reader in, but it is the item that you should probably write LAST, not FIRST.

I carry this analogy of research paper to grant proposal through the rest of the blog, so please let me know if you think I am on target, off target, or somewhere in the middle.    The concept is helping to shape my thoughts about how to deconstruct the assignment.

The next few pages looked much like a literature review, or background section.  The applicants covered projects that were similar in nature, that were available online, how they related to the new idea, and then addressed how their project would be different from what had already been done.

Next, the applicants covered the scope and direction of the project.  This seemed to represent a “methodology” section in a research paper.

So, here are some of my questions.  Since I have neither knowledge nor experience in digital media/history, the “literature review” could take a bit of time, and should probably be done first.  Realizing this, I began to think of “topic areas” that might be of interest to me.  I began with oral histories, since I thought that might be a rich area for digital media (dissemination/access were my initial thoughts) and because I am very interested in oral histories.  My research area – women in the military – plays well into studying women in military history, since so much is relatively recent (since WWII) and much has been captured by individual experience.

My initial Google search found an entire website dedicated to an “Oral History in the Digital Age” research project.  What a find!

Before I get too far, and too engrossed, I wanted to see if I was on the right track.  So, thoughts?  Am I completely off base about project requirements, and proposed approach?  I would greatly appreciate ideas/recommendations.

Have a great class tonight!  I would much rather be there than my flight across the Atlantic Ocean.



  1. First of all, I hope you had a safe flight across the Atlantic!

    It sounds to me like you are off to a great start, but this is my first semester, so I might be way off base! I like your idea about using digital history to document oral history. The logic you used to find your topic is similar to mine, so I’ll be interested to hear more responses to your post.

  2. Right now I don’t know any more than you do. Prof. Leon is going to go over the requirements for the grant project on Monday 9/17. You should post again after than if you have any questions and I’d be happy to respond.

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