Research Fellowships

Request for Proposals: Humility: Moral, Religious, Intellectual (2016-2017)

Humility: Fellowship Description

Biola University’s Center for Christian Thought (“the Center”) will grant multiple semester- and year-long residential research fellowships in amounts up to $90,000 per year. Fellowship recipients will comprise an interdisciplinary group of approximately eight researchers per semester (some of whom will stay for only a semester, others for the entire academic year). Approximately half of the Center's fellows will be non-Biola scholars and the other half Biola faculty. Fellows will be in residence at Biola University for either the fall term (August 19, 2016 to December 21, 2016) or the spring term (January 27, 2017 to May 17, 2017) or both.

Focal Questions

  • What are the marks of humility in religious, intellectual, and moral domains; and how can it be cultivated?
  • Is there a distinctly Christian approach to humility?
  • What can be learned from recent scientific efforts to quantify or measure humility?
  • What are the cross-cultural markers of humility?
  • What do studies of childhood development explain about the acquisition of humility or arrogance?
  • What are the ways intellectual humility supports knowledge and intellectual arrogance undermines knowledge?
  • What are the effects of humility on fruitful communication and learning?

Visiting Scholars

The Center invites prominent scholars from a variety of disciplines to visit the Center for a seminar with research fellows. The following scholars will be visiting the Center during the 2016-2017 year:

  • Jason Baehr (Loyola Marymount University)
  • Justin Barrett (Fuller School of Psychology)
  • John Greco (St. Louis University)
  • Jonathan Kvanvig (Baylor University)
  • June Tangney (George Mason University)
  • Everett Worthington (Virginia Commonwealth University)


Applicants must hold a PhD or equivalent terminal degree, identify themselves as members of the Christian tradition, broadly construed, and be willing to relocate to Biola University for one or two semesters. 

Selection criteria include: fit of research proposal with focal theme and questions, coherence of the intended research plan, feasibility of the project in the specified timeframe, prior research accomplishments, and fit of research proposal with other fellowship applicants.


For those relocating to the Biola area, a reimbursement of up to $6,000 is available for housing within 5 miles of Biola, and a reimbursement of up to $2,000 is available for relocation expenses. Fellows will be responsible for finding and securing their own housing arrangements.

Proposal requests from non-Biola-affiliated scholars will be for up to $90,000 for projects lasting the full 2016-2017 academic year and up to $45,000 for projects lasting one semester that academic year.

Post-doc fellowships may also be available pending qualified applicants and available funding.

Proposal requests from Biola faculty will be for teaching-load reductions sufficient to reduce their teaching to approximately one half of their normal contracted teaching load.

Non-Biola fellows will have office space in the Center, a first-rate facility built around a large conference table and designed with collaboration in mind. All fellows will meet for weekly roundtable meetings to discuss and critique one another’s research. They will also be invited to participate in a year-end conference in which they present the results of their research, some of which may then be published in an edited volume.

Each fellow will have the opportunity to collaborate with Center staff to communicate their research to both academic and non-academic audiences. There are no teaching or other requirements connected to the fellowships. During the course of each semester, fellows will have the opportunity to interact with visiting scholars at the Center’s roundtable seminars. Visiting scholars will be in residence at the center for two-or three-day visits and will return to Biola in May for the end-of-year conference.



CCT Humility RFP (PDF)




How to Apply

Applicants must submit the following by email to the Center’s Director, Gregg Ten Elshof, at CCT@BIOLA.EDU. Biola University’s Center for Christian Thought (“the Center”) will grant multiple semester- and year-long residential research fellowships in amounts up to $90,000 per year. Fellowship recipients will comprise an interdisciplinary group of approximately eight researchers per semester.

  • Cover letter clearly stating applicant’s preferred semester(s) in residence (fall, spring, either, or both)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Name and contact information of three references familiar with applicant’s scholarly work
  • A research proposal that begins with a 150-word abstract summarizing applicant’s proposed research project. The body of the proposal (600 words maximum) should clearly state the connection of the research to the Center’s 2016-2017 theme (Humility: Religious, Intellectual, and Moral), the significance of the research, the distinctive character of the argument advanced, and the methodology employed.
  • Please also include:
    • Visiting applicants: Please indicate the award (not to exceed $45K per semester) for which they are applying. Roughly half of an applicant’s salary at their home institution is a good rule of thumb.
    • Biola applicants: Please include permission from their department chair and dean among their application materials.

Deadline to apply: November 1, 2015


  • Applications due by November 1, 2015
  • Awards announced by March 1, 2016
  • Fall program: August 19, 2016–December 21, 2016
  • Spring program: January 27, 2017–May 17, 2017



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