MAPOR Fellows Student Paper Competition

45th Annual Conference

November 20-21, 2020

Virtual Location! Accessible anywhere via internet connection

The Midwest Association for Public Opinion Research invites eligible students to enter the association’s MAPOR Fellows Student Paper Competition. Two winning papers, the Doris A. Graber Award in public opinion and the Allan L. McCutcheon Award in survey research methodology, will receive $500 and will alsol be accepted for presentation during a session at the May 2021 AAPOR conference.


For the purposes of this competition, an eligible student is someone enrolled in a graduate or undergraduate program at the time of the conference. A paper authored by more than one person is considered an eligible student paper only if all authors are students according to the above definition. Students need not be members of MAPOR.

The topic of the paper must fall under one or both of MAPOR’s general areas of scholarship, which are (1) public opinion and (2) research methods in public opinion and survey research. When submitting, the author(s) must indicate the topic for which the paper should be considered. The papers need not be quantitative nor must they report data in order to qualify for consideration in this competition. Each student may be an author on only one paper submitted to the competition.


  • Submit an abstract to the MAPOR conference at In addition to a title and abstract, you will be asked to provide the name, institutional affiliation, and email address for all authors. Students must provide the name and e-mail address of a faculty mentor when submitting their abstract. Abstracts can be submitted until 11:59pm CDT on Friday, August 21, 2020.
  • Students whose papers have been accepted for the 2020 conference can have their papers considered for MAPOR Fellows Student Paper Competition.  Here are the requirements:
    • Send full paper  in Word format to Tom Smith at by 11:59pm CDT, Friday, October 2, 2020.
    • Remove all acknowledgments and other identifying information and run “Inspect” in Word to remove all authorship information that Word stores in the document.
    • Include a title page with title, abstract, and the word count (number of words of text including footnotes).
      • Maximum length is 6,500 words of text including footnotes.
    • Put the following at the end of the manuscript and do not include them in the word count:  tables, references, and appendices.
    • Review the information described on p. 2 of this announcement (under the AAPOR Code of Professional Ethics & Practices) and make sure this information is included in the appropriate places in the manuscript. (For example, include response rate when you describe the data.)
    • Include the following in the email that accompanies your submission:
      • A subject line that says:  MAPOR Student Paper Competition-Student Name
      • A statement that your manuscript includes the information required by the AAPOR Code of Professional Ethics and Practices.
      • The names and email addresses of all authors.
      • The USPS address, phone number, and email address of the contact author.
      • The name and email address of the faculty mentor for the paper.
    • Identify a faculty mentor and ask them to do the following:
      • Review the submission to ensure it meets professional standards of readability, grammar, and so forth. This ensures that the reviewers can attend to the substance of the paper.
      • Review the submission to verify that it does not exceed the length limitation
      • Send a brief email to Tom Smith (  by the deadline. The statement should:
        • Have a subject line that says:  MAPOR Student Paper Competition – [student name]
        • State that they have reviewed the submission to ensure that it meets professional standards and does not exceed length limitations
        • Describe the contribution of the student(s) and the contributions (if any) of any faculty to the research design, execution, and writing.  

A committee composed of MAPOR Fellows will judge all papers submitted to the competition. Winners will be announced at the Friday Awards Session.

AAPOR Code of Professional Ethics & Practices

All submissions must abide by the AAPOR Code of Professional Ethics & Practices. Manuscripts that make use of survey data must include, at minimum, the information below from Section III-A of the Code:

A…. [I]nclude the following items in any report of research results or make them available immediately upon release of that report. 

  1. Who sponsored the research study, who conducted it, and who funded it, including, to the extent known, all original funding sources.
  2. The exact wording and presentation of questions and responses whose results are reported.
  3. A definition of the population under study, its geographic location, and a description of the sampling frame used to identify this population. If the sampling frame was provided by a third party, the supplier shall be named. If no frame or list was utilized, this shall be indicated.
  4. A description of the sample design, giving a clear indication of the method by which the respondents were selected (or self-selected) and recruited, along with any quotas or additional sample selection criteria applied within the survey instrument or post-fielding. The description of the sampling frame and sample design should include sufficient detail to determine whether the respondents were selected using probability or non-probability methods.
  5. Sample sizes and a discussion of the precision of the findings, including estimates of sampling error for probability samples and a description of the variables used in any weighting or estimating procedures. The discussion of the precision of the findings should state whether or not the reported margins of sampling error or statistical analyses have been adjusted for the design effect due to clustering and weighting, if any.
  6. Which results are based on parts of the sample, rather than on the total sample, and the size of such parts.
  7. Method and dates of data collection.
  8. All submissions must include the following:
    1. The response rate and details of its calculation (if response rate is not appropriate, the refusal rate). Accurate reporting of the response rate requires consulting the AAPOR Standard Definitions (, to identify the appropriate response rate definition. If the AAPOR recommendations are not followed, authors should explain why a nonstandard approach was employed.
    2. For models fitted to the data, the equations of the models should be presented, including the numerical values of the parameter estimates, the respective standard errors, and goodness-of-fit statistics for the model.

In addition, authors need to agree to make other specific information about the study available within 30 days of any request for such materials. This information is listed in Section III-B of the Code located at