Graduate Student Research Grants

Deadline: May 31, 2024

The Spackman Award, formerly known as the TSOP Student Grants Program (originally patterned after the 1998 AAPG Grants In Aid Program), supports graduate thesis research in organic petrology. Research must demonstrate the utility and significance of organic petrology (which includes coal petrology, kerogen petrology, organic geochemistry and related disciplines) in solving the thesis problem.

The Spackman Award supports qualified graduate students from around the world who are actively seeking advanced degrees. Applicants who have previously been granted a Spackman Award are not eligible to apply for a second grant under the scheme.

Usually two monetary awards, of U.S. $1,000 and $750 are granted. All applicants, whether successful or unsuccessful, are eligible to apply for one year of TSOP Student Membership at no cost.

Monetary awards are to be applied to expenses directly related to the student's thesis work, such as field expenses, laboratory analyses, etc. A portion (not to exceed 25%) of the award funds may be used to attend a TSOP Annual Meeting. Funds should not be used to purchase capital equipment, to pay salaries, tuition, room, or board during the school year. Funds must be spent by the end of the calendar year following granting of the award, and an account of expenditure with copies of receipts should be provided by the end of that year (December 31, 2024 for awards granted in 2023).

All students who receive the Spackman Award are required to submit to the Chair of the TSOP Spackman Award Committee a document summarizing expenditure (see page 8 of the the award's application form) with copies of receipts, and (2) a summary of the research resulting from the grant. These submissions are due by the end of the year following the grant award.

Awardees are required to make an oral presentation showcasing their research during annual TSOP meeting or during online student seminar. At the conclusion of the research project, awardees are also required to publish an extended summary of their work in the TSOP Newsletter.

Completed applications (download below) must be e-mailed by May 31, 2024 to:
Jingjing Liu, Chair of TSOP Spackman Committee

A subcommittee of at least three TSOP members (and/or external experts when needed) will independently review the pool of applications and score each of them according to the “Application Evaluation Form”. The reviewers will be drawn from people who have no association with the host institution of any applicant. Winners will be notified prior to the Annual Meeting and all applicants will be informed by email of the final status of their applications. No other information, such as specific scores, rankings, or written comments will be disclosed.

Please note, that all students who have submitted applications for the Spackman Award, regardless of the application outcome, and who are not yet TSOP members, are eligible to receive a complimentary one-year TSOP membership. To avail of this offer, please proceed to the 'JOIN TSOP' section and complete the membership application form. In the 'FIRST YEAR FREE' section, please select the 'SPACKMAN AWARD APPLICANT' option.


After downloading the application form becomes fully fillable.