Register to be a Potential GRFP 2021 Reviewer

NSF welcomes scientists and engineers to evaluate the current competition's applications each year during the annual GRFP review process. Please visit for more details on GRFP. Serving as a GRFP Reviewer is an excellent opportunity to apply your research and career expertise to help identify future science and engineering leaders, and to gain valuable perspective to share with faculty and students at your institution. NSF is committed to compiling a reviewer pool comprised of a diverse mix of researchers and educators from a wide range of institutions, geographic locations, and academic disciplines.

Serving as a GRFP Reviewer is an excellent opportunity to:

  • Be of service to the STEM community.
  • Gain firsthand knowledge of the GRFP review process.
  • Receive valuable perspective on the NSF Merit Review criteria.

Following are key details related to GRFP Reviewer service:

The entire review process will be conducted online.

  • Reviewers must attend an orientation webinar and be familiar with all reviewer training materials and requirements.
  • Reviewers evaluate applications similar to graduate school admission packages. Applications include a personal statement, graduate research statement, educational background information, transcripts, and reference letters.
  • Each reviewer will review on average 15-20 applications.
  • Review of applications will begin in early December 2020.
  • Review service culminates with participation in a one day, five-hour virtual panel during the timeframe of January 11-29, 2021. (Exact panel date would be specified if invited to serve as a reviewer.)

Reviewers will receive a flat rate payment of $200 for participation in the virtual panel. Reviewers who are Federal employees, citizens of foreign countries who are not permanent residents, and special visa holders are not eligible for this payment.

Please note the following:

Conflict of Interest Policy: You may serve on the same panel as an application with which you have a conflict of interest (e.g., you are an advisor for an applicant, wrote a letter of reference for the applicant, etc.). However, you cannot participate in the evaluation or discussion related to any applicant with whom you have a conflict of interest. Except for serving as a reference provider, advocacy for any current GRFP applicant for which you have a conflict of interest will result in immediate removal as a reviewer.

Invitation Status: Registering in the reviewer system does not commit you to serve or guarantee you will be invited to serve. Invitations to serve will be issued beginning in October 2020.

If you would like to be considered as a 2021 GRFP Reviewer, please visit to register.