Since releasing our call for applications for the 2023-2025 research seminar on Mentoring Meaningful Learning Experiences, we’ve received a number of questions about the research seminars and the application process, so I’m sharing the most frequently asked questions – and my responses – here.

Is there a fee / cost to participate?

The Center does not charge an application or participation fee. The Center covers housing (single rooms with private bathrooms in residence halls) and all meals during each week-long summer meeting. In addition, each participant will be reimbursed up to $500/year (up to $1000/year for international participants) for travel costs (e.g., airplane tickets, mileage, airport parking, meals in transit) incurred while traveling to the seminar’s summer meetings at Elon University. Full reimbursement policies will be distributed to accepted participants. Other participant expenses, including travel costs above the limit and any research costs, will be paid by the participants and/or their home institutions.

Is the research seminar co-sponsored by another funding agency?

No. The Center’s research seminars are fully funded by Elon University. Elon is routinely recognized for its engaged learning programs, and the Center’s signature program reflects the university’s commitment to also foster research on engaged learning.

Should I / do I need to form a multi-institutional team before I apply?

No. Accepted participants form research teams during the first summer meeting with guidance from the seminar leaders based on participants’ applications. Applications are accepted from individuals – not teams. Prioritizing applications from individuals helps us attend to diversity of participation across institution types, geographic regions, and disciplines.

Can a team from my institution apply?

No. Since we are facilitating multi-institutional research, we typically accept only 1 or 2 applicants from each institution, and when we accept multiple applicants from the same school, the accepted participants join different research teams.

That said, you still can work with a team from your home institution to support institutional data collection and analysis. We encourage accepted participants to wait until their research seminar team has developed their shared research question and shared research plan before finalizing institutional plans, though. Multi-institutional research allows teams to learn more about their research question across varied institution types, often leading to more generalizable results – as well as significant outcomes for each members’ home institution.

The research planning process is most productive, though, when participants come ready to embrace collective brainstorming and willing to find a balance between institutional and multi-institutional research priorities.

Who can apply? Can staff apply? Can graduate students?

We accept applications from all higher education professionals committed to exploring the research seminar topic through multi-institutional research over three years. Implementing and assessing high-quality, equitable engaged learning often requires contributions from multiple campus units/professionals, so we welcome all active contributors to join our multi-institutional study of these engaged learning practices.

Graduate students sometimes find it difficult to make a three-year commitment, but students have participated in some prior research seminars.

Have a question that isn’t addressed here? Please email me ( Thank you for your interest in the research seminar!