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Research Award Program (RAP)

Extends modest financial assistance to Filipino graduate students in the social sciences to enable completion of their graduate thesis or dissertation.

PSSC Research Award Program

The PSSC Research Award Program (PSSC-RAP) was established in 1972 to assist graduate students in the social sciences complete their thesis or dissertation requirements and obtain their Master’s or Ph.D. degrees. A modest financial assistance is awarded to successful PSSC-RAP grantees—maximum of P50,000 for PhD students and P25,000 for MA students.


To be eligible for a RAP grant, the applicant must: 

  1. Be a Filipino graduate student who will be finishing a degree in the social sciences in a Philippine higher education institution (HEI) or a Filipino graduate student pursuing a social science degree abroad, provided that the topic of the thesis/dissertation is about the Philippines and that data gathering will be done in the country, and
  2. Have successfully defended the thesis/dissertation proposal. Hence, at the time of application, the applicant is expected to be either preparing for fieldwork or collecting or analyzing data.


Applicants must submit the following documents through PSSC grants email at no later than 1 July 2024:

  1. Accomplished RAP application form;
  2. Signed proof of approval of thesis/dissertation proposal;
  3. Proof of other funding sources;
  4. Two PSSC-RAP accomplished recommendation forms from thesis/dissertation adviser, and department chair.*
  5. A 10-page (A4 size paper, double-spaced, font size 12) proposal based on the approved thesis/dissertation research proposal following the PSSC-RAP grant proposal format.

 *If the adviser is also the department chair, the applicant can request from one of the panel members. The recommendation form must be directly emailed to PSSC email at


The thesis/dissertation grant proposal to be submitted must be no more than ten (10) pages long (A4 size paper, double-spaced, font size 12) based on the approved thesis/dissertation. The grant proposal must include a description of the following:

Statement of the Problem

This should be concise and to the point. It must indicate that the applicant has gone beyond having a general area of interest (e.g., gender, kinship, environment, governance, sustainable development etc.), and has now formulated a focused question/problem and objectives worth researching. The statement of the problem must inform readers what new knowledge they are going to gain from the thesis/dissertation research that they do not already know.

Literature Review and Theoretical Framework/s

The statement of the problem must be embedded within a given field of inquiry. Hence, the applicant must provide a summary of the relevant literature and theoretical framework/s informing the thesis/dissertation problem. A good grant proposal demonstrates an awareness of relevant literature and previous scholarly arguments and locates the thesis/dissertation problem within the intersections of ongoing debates and theoretical currents. 


The grant proposal must specify the research operations and activities the applicant will undertake and how the results from these operations will be analyzed and interpreted in terms of the thesis/dissertation problem. Research operations and activities (i.e., archival work, surveys, interviews, observation and testing statistical patterns, etc.) vary by discipline, but the applicant must be able to argue why the choice of methodology is the best approach to answering the thesis/dissertation’s central problem.

Timetable & Activities for the Grant Period

The applicant must indicate the remaining activities needed to complete the thesis/dissertation research, bearing in mind that the RAP grant period is for one year only. 


Each PSSC-RAP proposal will undergo a double-blind review from the members of the PSSC Research Committee based on the following criteria: (a) clarity of research problem and objectives; (b) contextualizing the research problem within existing literature and theoretical framework/s; (c) methodology; and (d) overall presentation and study significance.

The financial requirement of the research and the availability of other funds are also considered in the review.

The Research Committee will deliberate on the proposals and decide which proposals will be awarded a RAP grant. 

Results will be announced in August.