Departmental Awards


Below are awards presented annually by the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience to faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduates. Each awards specifies who is eligible, the typical amount of the award, and the general deadline annually. Award announcements, including instructions on how to apply, are made to applicable departmental listservs. If you have a question on a specific award, please contact the point person listed for that award.

Awards for Faculty


  • Stephenson and Lindquist Award
    • Purpose: The Stephenson and Lindquist Award’s purpose is to support the research activities of our faculty, through funding basic research activities, travels, consultants, guest speakers, or the development of new experimental procedures and techniques. The funds can be used to match funds from another funding source when matching funds are required. In some cases, the funds can be used to purchase equipment for an ongoing program of research.
    • Award Amount: Approximately $15,000 is offered annually to support four or more faculty members
    • General Deadline: October
    • Contact: Dr. Deborah Jones

Awards for Graduate Students


  • Earl and Barbara Baughman Dissertation Research Award
    • Purpose: The Earl and Barbara Baughman Disseration Award is awarded annually to two of the top graduate student researchers within the department. The purpose of this award is to promote and support innovative dissertation research in our Department and to support award recipients in completion of their dissertation projects.
    • Eligibility: Advanced graduate students must have dissertations projects are underway (proposal must be defended by May 1) and who, with this award, will devote their summer to working toward completion of their dissertation project rather than accepting other employment.
    • Award Amount: Two awards of $6,000 each
    • General Deadline: February/March
    • Contact: Dr. Charlie Wiss
  • Ernest C. Davenport Award for Outstanding Psychological Research by a Student Who Enhances Diversity
    • Purpose: The purpose of the Ernest C. Davenport Award is to encourage and honor graduate students from underrepresented groups who make a contribution to the advancement of knowledge of psychological science. This award honors Dr. Davenport, who earned his B.S. in Psychology and Computer Science from Duke University and his M.A. and Ph.D. from UNC Chapel Hill. He was the first African-American to be awarded a Ph.D. at UNC’s L.L. Thurstone Psychometric Laboratory.
    • Award Amount: $250
    • General Deadline: September
    • Contact: Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone and Dr. Enrique Neblett
  • Dashiell Dissertation Startup Award
    • Purpose: The Dashiell Dissertation Startup Award honors John Frederick Dashiell, founder of the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, and is intended to support graduate student scientific work by assisting with research expenses.
    • Eligibility: Graduate students who have passed the doctoral comprehensive exam, with preference given to those in the early stages of their dissertation research
    • Award Amount: Any amount up to $1,000
    • General Deadline: September
    • Contact: Dr. Mark Hollins
  • Dashiell Student Travel Award
    • Purpose: Generous donor support to the Dashiell Research Fund allows our departmental graduate programs to support student travel to conferences. The Dashiell Student Travel Award honors John Frederick Dashiell, founder of the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience.
    • Award Amount: Each program makes several awards of $400 – $550, depending on student interest.
    • General Deadline: Fall semester
    • Contact: Doctoral Program Directors
  • Bernadette Gray-Little Award for Diversity Enhancement in Psychological Research
    • Purpose: The purpose of the Bernadette Gray-Little Award is to encourage and honor undergraduate students who make a contribution to the advancement of knowledge concerning issues that face diverse populations or are of concern to diverse populations. This award honors Dr. Gray-Little, who earned a B.A. in Psychology from Marywood University and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Saint Louis University. She joined the faculty at UNC Chapel Hill in 1971, where her research program focused on racial/ethnic membership of clients and clinicians in the treatment of psychological disorders. Since 2009, Dr. Gray-Little has been the Chancellor of the University of Kansas, the first African-American and the first woman to hold the position.
    • Award Amount: $250
    • General Deadline: September
    • Contact: Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone and Dr. Enrique Neblett
  • Positive Psychology Science Fund Award
    • Purpose: The Positive Psychology Science Fund seeks to support leading-edge basic and translational science to meet the increasing demand for evidence-based applications of positive psychology. This award recognizes innovative and methodologically rigorous research projects by social psychology doctroral students that have a potential impact for positive emotions research in the scientific community.
    • Award Amount: Varies on the amount requested in the research proposal
    • General Deadline: November
    • Contact: Dr. Barbara Fredrickson

Awards for Undergraduate Students


  • Dashiell-Thurstone Prize
    • Purpose: The Dashiell-Thurstone Prize is awarded each year for the best senior honors thesis, as judged by a faculty committee. This award is named in memory of two significant figures in the life of the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience: John Dashiell, who founded the Department in 1920, and Leon Thurstone, who founded the Psychometric Research Laboratory in 1953, which later became a significant component of the Department.
    • Award Amount: No cash award; students are honored with a plaque at Spring Commencement
    • General Deadline: No applications accepted; reviews are reviewed and the prize awarded by a faculty committee
    • Contact: Dr. Peter Ornstein
  • David Bray Peele Undergraduate Award
    • Purpose: The Peele Award honors David Bray Peele, who received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UNC Chapel Hill in 1975 and worked with Dr. Mark Waller on an Honor’s Thesis. He completed his graduate work at the American University in Washington and returned to North Carolina to work at the Neurotox Division at the Environmental Protection Agency. He used innovative behavioral methods in his research to demonstrate toxic effects in rats. Dr. Peele passed away suddenly in 1990 and, after his death, his family remembered how his Honors work at UNC had opened up so many opportunities for him and decided to establish a fund that would bear his name. The Peele Award supports our undergraduate students and their Honors projects.
    • Award Amount: Maximum of $500 per project
    • General Deadline: September
    • Contact: Dr. Beth Kurtz-Costes
  • Lindquist Undergraduate Research Award
    • Purpose: The purpose of the Lindquist Undergraduate Research Award is to support and fund undergraduate research projects or to offset the costs related to presenting and publishing research.
    • Award Amount: Maximum of $250 each, awarded to several undergraduate students
    • General Deadlines: October and February
    • Contact: Dr. Marsha Penner
  • Susan M. McHale Award for Outstanding Psychological Research by a Student Who Enhances Diversity
    • Purpose: The purpose of the Susan M. McHale Award is to encourage and honor undergraduate students from underrepresented groups who make a contribution to the advancement of knowledge of psychological science. This award honors Dr. McHale who earned her B.A. in Psychology from Bucknell University and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Psychology from UNC Chapel Hill. Dr. McHale’s research has investigated how gender, ethnicity/race, disability, and socioeconomic status impact family relationships and everyday experiences of youth.
    • Award Amount: No cash award; students are honored at Spring Commencement
    • General Deadline: April
    • Contact: Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone and Dr. Enrique Neblett
  • J. Steven Reznick Award for Diversity Enhancement in Psychological Research
    • Purpose: The purpose of the J. Steven Reznick Award is to encourage and honor undergraduate students who make a contribution to the advancement of knowledge concerning issues that face diverse populations. This award honors Dr. Reznick, who earned his B.A. in Psychology from UNC Chapel Hill, M.A. from Wake Forest University, and Ph.D. from University of Colorado. Dr. Reznick made many contributions to enriching diversity in student experiences at Carolina.
    • Award Amount: No cash award; students are honored at Spring Commencement
    • General Deadline: April
    • Contact: Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone and Dr. Enrique Neblett
  • J. Steven Reznick Diversity and Psychological Research Grant
    • Purpose: The Reznick Diversity and Psychological Research Grant honors Dr. Reznick, a close friend and colleague in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience. He was a proud alumnus of UNC Chapel Hill and served on our faculty from 1998 until his death in 2016. Dr. Reznick had a lifelong commitment to education, research, diversity, and Carolina. This Reznick Diversity Research Grant is awarded to a single undergraduate Psychology major every Spring to help offset the need for part-time work, cover the costs of carrying out research, and/or to attend a professional conference. Students must identify from an underrepresented population OR be interested in carrying out research pertinent to underrepresented populations. Learn more online.
    • Award Amount: $3,000 to $4,000, dependent on the availability of funds
    • General Deadline: November 1
    • Contact: Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone and Dr. Enrique Neblett