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Library Prize for Undergraduate Research


The Library Prize for Undergraduate Research, sponsored by the IU South Bend Libraries, rewards and celebrates excellence in undergraduate research projects. The annual Library Prize is designed to honor students who demonstrate sophisticated research skill by incorporating information found through the library’s resources into original scholarship. While consideration is given to the product of the research, the prize focuses on the research process and application of information literacy: the demonstration of library research skills, adept use of library resources, and the reflection upon the strategies utilized to investigate a research problem.


A monetary prize of $500 will be awarded yearly for the most outstanding undergraduate research project. If there are no deserving research projects in a given year, the Prize will not be awarded.


Individual or group applicants must:

  • Be currently enrolled undergraduates at IU South Bend, or have graduated in 2024.
  • Have completed the research project under consideration for a credit course or another co-curricular activity under the direction of a faculty member at IU South Bend during the 2024 calendar year.
  • Agree to contribute the project itself, if print, or develop materials describing the project and research , if in other media, to the IU South Bend Archives.
  • Agree to provide the project itself, if print, or develop materials describing the project and research, if in other media, for public display in the Library and/or online.


Submissions will be judged on how well they meet the following criteria:

  1. Depth and breadth in the use of library collections, including, but not limited to, print resources, online databases and Web resources, primary resources, and materials in other media.
  2. Effective application of the principles of information literacy by:
    • Determining information needs
    • Evaluating and analyzing information
    • Managing, organizing, and synthesizing information
    • Communicating information in formats appropriate to an academic audience
    • Making responsible use of information by appropriately documenting sources
  3. Evidence of significant personal learning and an understanding of the process of research and inquiry.
  4. Content of the research project.

The judging panel is composed of IU South Bend librarians, faculty and staff.

Required elements:

  • Application form [MS Word, PDF]. (For group projects, identify the explicit role and contribution of each member).
  • A 500-700 word essay [Essay Tips] describing and reflecting upon your research strategy and the use and evaluation of library resources.
  • A supporting statement [MS Word, PDF] from the faculty member in the class or activity for which the research project was completed.
  • A final version of the research project including a complete bibliography in a standard citation format.
  • The syllabus for the course for which the research project was completed.

Application process

All written components of your application should be word-processed. Please submit your project in digital format; pdf preferred. Incomplete and/or late applications will not be accepted. Applications become the property of the IU South Bend Libraries and will not be returned.

Have questions? Check out our FAQ.

For questions about the Prize or the process, please contact Julie Feighery, Head of Research and Outreach Services.

Please submit your application packet by February 7, 2025 via email to the Library Prize Committee Chair, Julie Feighery.

Important Dates

Deadline: Feb. 7, 2025
Winners will be notified no later than March 21, 2025