The Promising Scholar Award recognizes the scholarship of junior faculty and bestows upon the recipient the title “Promising Scholar” for the year following receipt of the award. The award consists of a $1,500 honorarium and a plaque to be presented, typically, at University Day.

List of Past Recipients


Nominees must meet these criteria to be eligible:

Be tenured/tenure-track or research track faculty at OSU, within 10 years of receiving an advanced degree and with at least 3 years at OSU at the time of nomination.
Achievement of a high level of accomplishment in a relatively short period of time at OSU, and who is also expected to continue his/her extraordinary work.

Award Criteria

To qualify for the title of “Promising Scholar,” an OSU faculty member must meet at least one of the following two criteria. Under each criterion are examples of evidence that could be used to demonstrate the contribution to be significant.

  • Outstanding scholarly activity that represents significant intellectual work validated and communicated through peer review, such as:
    • Published articles (e.g., peer-reviewed journal articles, technical reports, book chapters, and essays) contributing to a body of knowledge
    • Books (e.g., original works and textbooks, researched compilations, edited books)
    • Grant support (e.g., competitive, peer-reviewed research grants; foundation grants)
  • Outstanding creative activity that has been validated and communicated through peer review and scholarly critique, such as:
    • Production, exhibition, or performance of creative work (e.g., visual or performing art, or literature presented in the form of peer-reviewed publications, juried exhibits, noteworthy performances, readings or recordings; solo exhibits)
    • Commissioned or collected works (e.g., commissions for creative work; works collected by public and private museums and galleries)
    • Development of new technologies, materials, methods, or educational approaches (e.g., patents, inventions, new statistical techniques)

Nomination Process

Nominations shall include: (1) the completed nomination form; (2) the nominee's complete vita and copies of selected evidence of excellence relevant to the nomination; (3) position description indicating breakdown of FTE allocation; and (4) evidence of the candidate's achievements with specific attention to the award criteria for a promising scholar. A total of three letters of support shall provide sufficient information for the evaluation of nominees. Two letters of support shall be written by the unit heads/leaders (e.g., dean, chair, supervisor, director, unit administrator) and a third shall be from a referee who is not associated with the University, but who can comment on the nominee's qualifications with respect to the promising scholar award criteria.

To maintain objectivity in the selection process, the nominator must declare special relationships with the nominee that might create real or apparent bias in the process, including personal as well as professional relationships such as those with former advisees and collaborators. Because the nominator completes the nomination form, the nominator is not eligible to submit a letter of support.

The outside referee must not have had any direct personal and/or professional relationships with the nominee (e.g., former advisors; collaborators on degrees, projects, grants, publications).

Each letter of support shall not exceed three single-sided pages using at least 12 point font and 1" margins. Please be certain that the nomination materials, particularly the three letters, address the award criteria.

Signatures on the letters and supporting documents must be included.

The original copy of the nomination form must be submitted to the Faculty Senate Office upon submission of the electronic copy; paper clip the original only – do not staple nor place it in a folder or binder. The nomination packet for the successful recipient becomes the property of University Archives and will not be returned to the nominator.

Selection Process

Nominations will be reviewed and selected by the Faculty Recognition and Awards Committee and a member of the Research Council. Committee recommendations will be made on the basis of the information submitted; the committee does not solicit additional information.

To assist nominators in preparing nomination materials, a sample nomination form may be viewed. This version is for viewing only; information may be entered only via the below nomination form.

Do not begin entering information on this electronic form unless you are ready to submit the nomination - the form CANNOT be saved and finished at a later time. Please send a hard copy of the original nomination materials to the Faculty Senate Office (instructions below) when the nomination is submitted electronically. Nominations will not be considered unless both the electronic version and hard copy original have been received by the Faculty Senate Office.

Additional information submitted with the nomination will not be considered; please include only requested information and refer to the guidelines when organizing nomination packets.

The requested electronic information on the linked nomination form and one original of each nomination for the Promising Scholar Award must be received by March 18, 2019. It is necessary to follow the instructions completely or the nomination will not be considered. Send the original nomination to: Faculty Recognition and Awards Committee, c/o Faculty Senate Office, 107 Gilkey Hall.