Division 20/RRF Student & Postdoctoral Awards: Proposed Research

This award recognizes research of students at the undergraduate, graduate, and post doctoral level and assists with funds associated with such research.

Sponsor: Division 20


The Division of Adult Development and Aging (Division 20) of the American Psychological Association is sponsoring a series of awards for student and post-doctoral research.

For the purposes of this award, the term "research" is broadly defined to include any scholarly endeavor, including but not limited to experiments, correlational studies, qualitative investigations, historical work, case studies, and evaluation research.

Funding is provided by the Retirement Research Foundation. This foundation was established by John D. McArthur in 1978 to support programs, research, and public policy studies to improve the quality of life of older Americans.

A cash award is planned at each of the following levels: undergraduate, graduate master's, doctoral, and postdoctoral.


The award competition is open to undergraduate and graduate students, as well as individuals in postdoctoral positions.

Submissions at these different levels will be judged separately. While the faculty sponsor may be a collaborator, it is expected that the student or postdoc is the senior author of the paper. Postdoctoral candidates need not be part of a formal training program to be eligible, but must have the position of "postdoctoral fellow" or "postdoctoral research associate". To be eligible for one of these awards, the student must initiate and conduct the project under the supervision of a professor or research advisor at a university in the U.S.

Only one submission per student will be reviewed each year. 

Research on any topic related to psychological issues in adult development and aging is eligible for these awards.

How to Apply

When submitting a paper please adhere to the following:

• Style must conform strictly to the instructions in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (4th edition).
• Papers must include these sections:
o Abstract (100-150 words)
o Introduction (including a brief literature review that motivates the hypotheses that were tested)
o Methods (a description of the sample, measures, and procedures
o Results
o Discussion (in which the findings are interpreted
o References
• The paper must not exceed 22 double-spaced pages, including tables, figures, and references (but excluding title page and abstract). Type size must be at least 12-point; all margins must be at least 1-inch.
• Papers should be prepared for blind review. Identifying information with respect to the name of the student or mentor, or the institution, should occur only on the title page. The title page should have nothing typed on the back of it -- the title page will be separated from the rest of the proposal for reviewing purposes.
• Papers not conforming to these specifications will not be included in the judging.

Submissions should include:
• A completed cover sheet
• Biographical sketch (not to exceed one page), that includes in list format
o schools attended with degrees attained
o relevant professional positions
o honors, (d) society memberships
o publications or paper presentations
o relevant coursework
o any other relevant information you would like to include
• Short supporting statement by the faculty sponsor verifying the nature of and the relative contribution to the research by the student submitting the proposal. This statement should be short, not to exceed one paragraph, and e-mailed directly from the advisor.

Submissions should be e-mailed to:

Avron Spiro
Boston University