College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Sociology

James F. Short, Jr. Research Award


Award: $500 cash award.

Purpose: To recognize, honor, and promote examples of high quality graduate student scholarship and to provide critical guidance to the winner or winners in preparing work for publication.

Eligibility: All graduate students in good standing in the Department of Sociology.

Application: Submission of a scholarly paper and a completed application form.

Criteria: Papers must represent original scholarship by one or more current graduate students. Papers written for classes or stemming from theses or dissertations are encouraged. Papers may have had critical review of faculty members, but cannot be co-authored by a faculty member. All papers must acknowledge any faculty assistance in order to ensure fair and equitable evaluation of papers. Papers should conform to American Sociological Association style. Papers may focus on one or more of the following:

  • Explanatory, descriptive, or exploratory research using qualitative or quantitative methods.
  • Development or refinement of existing sociological methodologies or statistical procedures.
  • Development or refinement of existing sociological theory. No particular subject matter, theoretical orientation, methodology, or procedures will be given priority over any other.


Selection Procedures: The Award's Committee will review all submitted papers. Each graduate student submitting a paper will receive formal, written comments on the strengths and weaknesses of her/his paper. These comments will be similar to constructive feedback provided to authors submitting work to professional journals. Papers will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

  • The importance and originality of the papers contribution to sociology generally, and - if applicable - to specific specialties or sub-problems of the field.
  • The conceptualization of the problems or issues.
  • Clarity in the development and presentation of the ideas identifying the problems or issues addressed.
  • Operationalization and measurement, if applicable, of variables.
  • Ability to develop the sociological implications of the paper's findings.
  • Quality and clarity of writing.

If no papers meet the above criteria in any given year, no award will be made that year.

Click on this link to obtain a PDF application for this and all graduate scholarships



Award Announcement: 

 The winner will be notified by the Department Chair and a notice of recognition will be posted in the Department's display window outside the Department Office in Wilson-Short Hall. The awardee's name will be engraved on a perpetual pladque displayed in the Sociology Department. The award winner will also be recognized at the Department's annual Spring banquet. In addition the author of the winning paper will present her/his work at the annual James Short Colloquium.


Sociology Department, PO Box 644020, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-4020, Ph: 509-335-4595, Fax: 509-335-6419, Contact Us