Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA), U.S. Department of Education

U.S. Department of Education

International Education Programs Service

Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Program



Access to the World and Its Languages

The mission of the International Education Programs Service (IEPS) is to meet the national needs for expertise and competence in foreign languages and area or international studies. IEPS administers 14 international education programs. These programs are complementary in nature and designed to benefit a variety of audiences through training programs, research, start-up or enhancement projects, and fellowships.




This program provides grants to colleges and universities to fund individual doctoral students to conduct research in other countries in modern foreign languages and area studies for periods of six to 12 months. This program holds an annual competition.




Institutions of higher education in the United States are eligible to apply for grants under the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Program. Students must apply through their institutions.



A student is eligible to receive a fellowship if he or she meets all of the following criteria:

  • Is a citizen or national of the United States or is a permanent resident of the United States.
  • Is a graduate student in good standing at an institution of higher education in the United States who, when the fellowship begins, is admitted to candidacy in a doctoral program in modern foreign languages and area studies at that institution.
  • Is planning a teaching career in the United States upon graduation.
  • Possesses adequate skills in the language(s) necessary to carry out the dissertation project.




Students may propose research for six to 12 months. This fellowship may not be renewed.




A fellow shall:

  • Maintain satisfactory progress in the conduct of his or her research.
  • Devote full time to research on the approved topic.
  • Not engage in any gainful employment during the fellowship period.
  • Remain a student in good standing at his or her institution.




A final report is due from each fellow 90 days after the end of the grant period. Students should contact their institution’s project director for electronic reporting instructions.




  • Travel expenses, including excess baggage to and from the residence of the fellow to the host country of research.
  • Maintenance and dependent(s)’ allowances based on the cost of living in country or countries of research for the fellow and his or her dependent(s).
  • Project allowance for research related expenses such as books, copying, tuition and affiliation fees, local travel, and other incidental expenses.
  • Health and accident insurance premiums.
  • An administrative fee of $100 to applicant institution.




E-mail questions to ddra@ed.gov or visit the IEPS website at for information, including: application deadline, application package, previous fellowships, technical assistance, and program statute and regulations.



Here’s what participants in the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Program have to say about their experiences in the program:



“Not only did time in Japan give me access to archives, without which my work would have been impossible, it also allowed me an excellent opportunity to get to know my Japanese colleagues. Over the course of the year I developed relationships that will continue to sustain my career and intellectual development for years to come. There is no substitute for joint research, and the DDRA facilitates the sorts of intellectual cross-pollination that many institutions claim to sponsor but rarely deliver.”

Ian Miller, Columbia University (New York)



“The contacts that I made during my research...will be invaluable to my further development as a scholar and as a participant in the increasingly global dialogue of scholars working on the field of Western Zhou history. They will be a source for me to draw on, and hopefully contribute to, throughout my career.”

David Sena, University of Chicago (Chicago)



“Collaborating with scholars and students I met while on the grant was one of the most enjoyable and fruitful aspects of my fieldwork. Local scholars in Lebanon were very forthcoming with tips and assistance on practical matters as well as providing theoretical and methodological insights. Being ’in the field’ has made me reconsider my project, both in terms of theoretical approach, but particularly in regard to sources.”

Sara Schlenghe, Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.)



“If my Fulbright-Hays-funded research stirs Ugandans to begin the process of discussion and formulation of culturally appropriate mechanisms to support their most vulnerable as society transitions from informal, tradition-based social support structures to a modern, legal framework, then I believe it was time (and money) well-spent.”

Simeon Wiehler, Cornell University (New York)


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