Mass Media Fellows

Application Procedures

It’s important to start the online application as soon as you decide you want to apply.  This will allow you to provide us with the email addresses of your recommenders.  This year, instead of accepting letters of reference we are sending a link to a “Recommendation Questionnaire”.  Recommenders will answer questions online and must submit by January 15th.

A complete application packet consists of:

  1. Applicant information (contact information, academic history etc.) 
  2. Two "Recommendation Questionnaires" completed online by recommenders you identify.  At least one of these recommenders should be a faculty member who can comment on your academic work.  A third is optional but encouraged.  Recommenders who can comment on your science communication or writing is highly encouraged as well.
  3. Your CV – structured in a way that makes sense for this opportunity.
  4. Candidate Questions: Responses to each of the 7 reflective questions found within the online application.
  5. General Writing Sample; 2-3 page, double-spaced brief sample of your writing on any subject (science or non-science topic) and directed toward a non-scientific audience (using language appropriate for the general public). Please do not include technical or journal articles.
  6. Sample News Story: A 750-word 'news' story for the general public summarizing a science, mathematics or engineering journal paper from the past 6 months (published after July 1, 2017) and describing what the study's findings are, why the study's findings are important and what impact it will have on the public.   The original paper needs to be PRIMARY literature (scientific papers published in a journal or presented at a scientific conference NOT from a newspaper, magazine or other popular media).
  7. Source Article: The source journal article used to write your Sample News Story.
  8. Unofficial transcripts of your undergraduate and graduate work.  Semi-finalists may be and asked to send official transcripts later in the review process.

Applicants are evaluated by a selection committee composed of experts in the sciences, education, and media. The committee makes recommendations to the AAAS staff, who are responsible for the final decisions and for negotiations between the candidates and the media hosts. Telephone or virtual interviews are conducted with semi-finalists sometime in March. Candidates should receive final notification of the status of their application by late April.

Find more tips on putting together your application here.