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College of Information and Communications

CIC Grant

The College of Information and Communications is committed to supporting collaborative research and creative scholarship across the college and with other units on campus.

2023-2024 CIC Internal Funding Program for Research and Creative Scholarship


Track I – Faculty-lead Research

Hashtaging for Change: Exploring the Inter-Group Relationship of Social Media Influencers During #BlackLivesMatter and #StopAsianHate.
Anli Xiao, Candice Edrington, Wesley Stevens
Award amount: $3,684

Resistance, Resilience and Engagement: Understanding the Social Media Practices of LGBTQ+ Youth
Leigh Moscowitz, Vanessa Kitzie, Jabari Evans
Award amount: $4,000

Assessing Perceptions of Source Credibility on Twitter for Emergency & Risk Communication
Brett Robertson, Shannon Bowen
Award amount: $3,850

Instructors’ Roles in Providing Equitable Access for Blind, Visually Impaired, and Print Disabled (BVIPD) Students at the University of South Carolina
Dick Kawooya, Eric Robinson, Clayton Copeland
Award amount: $3,250

Track II – Student-led Research

Examining the Sexual Health Information Seeking Practices of South Carolina Young Adults on Social Media
Alexander Vera
Award amount: $1,000

The Impact of Black Male Superintendents’ Race and Gender in Organizational Change
Keisa Gunby
Award amount: $345

Announcement Release Date: Feb. 6, 2023

Application Receipt Date: May 12, 2023

Estimated Award Announcement Date: June 30, 2023

Based on some of the CIC’s strategic planning priorities, we are launching a call for proposals to support collaborative research and creative scholarship across the College and with other units on campus. We are seeking proposals from faculty and doctoral students in the CIC to support research and creative scholarship in 2023-2024. 

In line with the university’s strategic goals, these grants are designed to provide seed funding to fund pilot studies or projects that could lead to future external funding. 

The focus of this grant call is open, but priority will be given to proposals that include or promote the following: 

  • Collaborative proposals such as multiple CIC faculty and students partnering together to advance research and creative scholarship.
  • Research and creative scholarship that involves one or both of our labs, the Social Media Insights Lab and/or the Biometrics and User Experience Lab.
  • Collaborations with other faculty or units on campus, such as the AI Institute, College of Education, College of Engineering and Computing, College of Nursing, Arnold School of Public Health, etc. 


Two types of grants are offered:

  • Track I Faculty Grants: Up to $4,000 will be awarded to a faculty-lead project.
  • Track II Student Grants: Up to $1,000 will be awarded to a (doctoral) student-lead project. 


All full-time faculty from the CIC are eligible to apply for Track I Faculty Grants. All full-time Ph.D. students from the CIC are eligible to apply for Track II Student Grants. 


Up to $18,000 will be allocated to support selected proposals (4 Track I Grants and 2 Track II Grants). The college reserves the right not to offer funding if meritorious proposals are not identified. 

  • Allowable costs: Research participants compensation, travel essential to conduct the project, project supplies, salary and fringe for student assistants.
  • Unallowable costs: Faculty salary; doctoral student salary for Track II Grants. 


Develop a three-page proposal (12-point font, single spaced, and 1-inch margins) that include the followings: 

  1. Introduction and objectives.
  2. Significance.
  3. Methods or design: Research questions and hypotheses, data collection and analysis plans for a research project, or tasks and expected accomplishments during the course for a creative project.
  4. Outcomes: Plan for presentations and publications, and a clear description of seeking potential external funding sources (with a timeline of seeking external funding sources). If other funding is involved, please specify in the proposal.
  5. References, a budget, budget justification, and timeline for project activities should be included but are not part of the 3-page limit noted above.
  6. CVs for all study team members 

Timeline and other details

Proposals will be accepted through May 12, 2023. Please send submissions electronically to the Associate Dean for Research, Linwan Wu ( Please use “2023-2024 CIC Internal Grant Application” as the submission email subject.

Proposals will be reviewed by the Associate Dean for Research and the Research and Scholarship Advisory Council or other CIC faculty who may be invited to provide expertise in the proposed research and creative area. The funding decisions are anticipated by the end of June, 2023. Research projects should be concluded and summarized in a brief report by the July of 2024. Failure of meeting this deadline will keep the principle investigator from applying for future CIC Internal Funding Programs. Funding recipients will be asked to present their progress at least once during or at the end of the funding cycle. Funded teams should acknowledge the source of funding in all publications and presentations resulting from the work. 


Previous Awards

YingYing Chen, Jungmi Jun, Sei-Hill Kim, and Jacob Long: $10,000 - Anti-Intellectualism on Twitter: An Analysis of the Source, Content, and Network Features

Candice Edrington, Tara Mortenson, and Sarah Johnson (SJMC Doctoral Student): $6,690 - Cultural Projection via #IAmaBlackMan Challenge on Instagram

Jabari Evans and Ellen Wartella (Northwestern University): $10,000 - Diversity & Youth Participatory Action Research Project involving Haven Studios in Chicago and Richland Library Teen Center

Darin Freeburg and iSchool Research Assistant (TBD): $6,300 - A Study of Knowledge Work in the Library

Tara Mortensen, Brian McDermott (UMass, Amherst), and Bob Wertz (SJMC Doctoral Student): $6,400 – CIC Internal Collaborative Research involving the Biometrics and User Experience Lab

Ehsan Mohammadi, Sei-Hill Kim, Holly Overton, Linwan Wu, Tara Mortensen, Taylor Wen - The Mosaic of Communication Science: An Analysis of 20 years of Academic Publications 

Tara Mortensen, Taylor Wen, Linwan Wu, Ehsan Mohammadi - Emotionality in Staff News Photography Versus Stock Photography 

Jungmi Jun, Ehsan Mohammadi, Kim Thompson - Social Conversation on the FDA’s Modified Risk Tobacco Products (MRTP) Authorization of IQOS and Young Adults’ Interest and Trial Intent of IQOS During the Pandemic

Amir Karami, Robert McKeever, Brooke McKeever, Brie Turner-McGrievy (Arnold School of Public Health) - Detecting and Characterizing Health Posts of Malicious Actors on Twitter


Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.