How does one apply for the NSF GRFP?

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 6:15 pm

How does one apply for the NSF GRFP?

Post by 1mathboy1 » Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:24 pm

One of the requirements for the application is a research plan statement. This involves proposing a research topic and methods required to tackle the problem. How would you write this if you want to do a pure math PhD? And let's say I'm interested in algebraic geometry and algebraic topology.

The issue is that to even understand an open problem, you (usually) need a considerable amount of background knowledge. And there aren't any "experiments" you can talk about.

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Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2015 6:42 pm

Re: How does one apply for the NSF GRFP?

Post by p-adic » Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:41 pm

Talk to your advisors (not official advisor, just LOR writers I guess) about open problems in fields you're interested in (preferably something related to your research experience), and pick something. Then write about it, and some open problems you could see yourself pursuing. Math is hard for this because you're not necessarily supposed to know what you want to study specifically before applying. Totally different from getting an English Ph.D., for example.

Or wait for someone who actually won the fellowship to answer.

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