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How to Apply


Students’ research may be in any academic subject or major at UC Davis.

Submissions will be considered from individuals or groups.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Be currently enrolled, full-time UC Davis undergraduates at any class level and in any discipline. Graduate students and post-baccalaureates are not eligible.
  • Have completed a creative work, empirical research or interpretive analysis paper for a credit course at UC Davis during one of the previous four quarters — spring, summer, fall or winter (Spring 2023-Winter 2024) — including study abroad.
  • Not be a previous Lang Prize winner.
  • Winner or finalist agrees to provide the creative work, empirical research or interpretive analysis for public display in the UC Davis Library and/or online.
  • Winner or finalist agrees to attend a reception at Shields Library where the winners will be honored.
  • If you are, or ever have been, employed or currently employed at UC Davis, the submission must be unrelated to work performed during your employment.

Note: Prize/Award payments are generally subject to federal tax. California residents may be subject to state tax.

Important Dates

Start Date for Accepting Submissions

Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Student Submission Deadline

Monday, April 1, 2024, at 11:00 p.m.

Instructor/Principal Investigator Support Due

Monday, April 1, 2024

Review Period

Tuesday, April 2 — Friday, April 26, 2024

Winner Notification

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Winner Reception

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Required Application Materials

Review the evaluation rubric to see how your submission will be scored by the judges

Lang Prize Rubric (pdf)

To complete the application, you will need to provide the following supporting documentation:

1. Your Research Paper or Creative Project

If the project is in a format that cannot be submitted electronically, such as an architectural model, CD, or DVD, please submit a document that provides a detailed description of the project in sufficient detail to allow its merits to be judged. If the project is online, please submit the URL.

Your project can be:

  • Creative Works, including, but not limited to, an art installation, software program, musical composition, film or video, special project, etc.
  • Empirical Research, including, but not limited to, collection, analysis, evaluation, and integration of primary and secondary research, e.g., research articles and essays.
  • Interpretive Analysis, including, but not limited to, cultural/literary criticism, film analysis, historiographies, social criticism, etc.

Your paper or project must have been completed between Spring 2023 and Winter 2024. Regarding the use of AI (artificial intelligence) tools, such as ChatGPT, please follow the guidelines provided by your instructor.

2. Reflective Essay

Your Reflective Essay is an opportunity for you to provide an understanding of the information research process related to your research paper or creative project. Please include the following information in your Reflective Essay, which you should submit as a Microsoft Word document or PDF:

  • Describe your information research process, highlighting any methods and strategies you learned or developed to access the information you needed for your work. 
  • Describe the strategies you used to search for information to develop your project. Your detailed description should identify the scope and nature of the information needed and how this informed your choice of search tools and information sources used. 
  • Describe any challenges you encountered in the search process and how you addressed them. 
  • Describe how you evaluated the resources you found through your information research process and decided which to reference in your work. In your reflection, it should be clear how your work uses existing scholarship to create something new. 
  • If you used Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) tool(s) in the preparation of your Reflective Essay, you must also include an acknowledgment of the use of AI tool(s) at the end of your Reflective Essay, including the following: 
    • The name of the tool used and a link to the website for the tool
    • A description of the type of task you used the tool to accomplish (e.g., outlining the essay or checking your essay’s grammar and syntax)
    • A list of the specific prompt(s) used, if appropriate
    • For reference, see Acknowledging the Use of Generative Artificial Intelligence (Monash University)
  • If you did not use an AI tool, please add this statement to the end of your Reflective Essay, “No AI tools/technologies were used in the writing of this essay.”

3. Bibliography

Bibliography in a recognized style (e.g., APA, MLA), included for your paper or project.

4. Instructor or Principal Investigator Review

The scoring of your application will include an evaluation of the quality of your research effort and resulting work by the person overseeing your work, such as the instructor of the course in which the work was created or principal investigator for the research project. The form for submitting an Instructor Review is linked below.

It is your responsibility to request a review from your instructor or principal investigator well in advance of the deadline. As a courtesy, when you upload your complete application online, a reminder email will be sent to the person named in your application. However, you should notify this person well in advance of the deadline.

Download Instructor Review Form (docx)

Apply for the Lang Prize