Funding for Independent Work

Limited funding is available through a variety of mechanisms for students doing an experimental thesis in the Department of Psychology. The first step is to design your research project with your advisor and then consider the following sources for funding:


Advisor funding

If you are doing an experiment in a Princeton lab in the context of your advisor’s research, then the first likely source of funding will be your advisor’s lab grants. Check with your advisor before applying for the funding listed below to determine whether your work will require additional resources. 


Applying through SAFE

If needed, and in consultation with your advisor, you can apply for funding through the Student Activities Funding Engine (SAFE). To apply, you must write a brief proposal describing your project and the estimated costs. If you have further questions about SAFE, consult with the Department of Psychology Undergraduate Administrator (psyugrad@princeton.edu). As a reminder, you need IRB approval before you can conduct any research with human subjects. For questions about IRB approval, you may ask our Human Subjects Administrator, RoseMarie Stevenson (rosemari@princeton.edu).

There you will find a set of funding opportunities open to Psychology concentrators.


Please note that if you apply for ODOC funds, you will be required to apply for all departmental and programmatic funds for which you are eligible in one single application. These opportunities include the following:

Department funding

The Department of Psychology's fund for independent work is awarded based on the merit of the proposal and the need for funds. Students doing research in well-funded labs are less likely to receive departmental funding. Students can receive up to $1,000 in departmental funds toward their independent work. Please keep this limit in mind when designing your experiment. It is part of the challenge of practical science to keep the costs down. Sometimes some cleverness can help. For example, you may also be able to reduce the number of subjects by streamlining the experimental design. Discuss these options with your advisor. 

The departmental fund for independent work may be used to pay for research participant fees, equipment fees, or supplies. It cannot be used for housing, living expenses, or research that takes place off campus.

Please check the SAFE site for the time window for submitting proposals. The application period for Psychology funding opportunities closely follow the ODOC funding cycles (see When to Apply on the Office of Undergraduate Research website).


The Office of the Dean of the College (ODOC)

ODOC funding, fall break

ODOC offers some limited funding for independent work to be carried out during the fall break, on or off campus. This funding is often used for equipment costs, research participant costs, housing, or travel. Please check the SAFE site early for submission deadlines. The fall break funding typically has a submission window in late September and early October.

ODOC funding, winter/intercession

ODOC also offers some limited funding for independent work to be carried out during the spring break, on or off campus. Again, this funding is often used for equipment costs, subject costs, housing, or travel. The spring break funding typically has a submission window in late October and early November.

Summer funding between junior and senior year

Juniors wishing to apply to ODOC for summer research grants should apply in the late spring. Please check SAFE  for submission deadlines.


Other funding opportunities

There may be other opportunities applicable to your research, and you can search for any that you are eligible for through SAFE.