International Studies Research Lab

Photo of a decorative globe in a library

The Center for Global Studies (CGS) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is excited to announce the 2021 International Studies Research Lab (ISRL), an initiative that promotes the internationalization of community colleges nationwide. CGS invites applications from faculty, librarians, and administrators interested in expanding global and area studies curricula, instruction in less commonly taught languages, library collections, or international education programs at their home institutions. The Center is a National Resource Center supported by Title VI funds from the US Department of Education.

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The lab will be held in a virtual format from May 17 through July 30. Applications are due by the end of the day on March 16, 2021. Project submissions will be due by the end of the day on August 8.



To apply, you must be faculty or an administrator at a 2-year community college or a 4-year university that offers associate degrees. The Center for Global Studies particularly encourages applications from minority-serving institutions.

To demonstrate the extend of your research by the end of the lab, you are expected to submit a research or program plan. This can be a draft or current syllabus, an abstract and white paper, a library collection development abstract, or a draft plan for a new international education program. These materials will be published in our institutional repository, IDEALS.



Participation in the ISRL provides resources and time for research otherwise unavailable to applicants. ISRL offers the opportunity and funding to assist with the creation of materials to help internationalize your curriculum or college. Research stipends of $1,000 are available contingent upon receipt of completed research materials. For details, please refer to our funding page.


Research Support

Books at the University Library

CGS will connect you with subject librarians from the university’s International and Area Studies Library to provide specialized reference support for your research needs. The library has an extensive service that facilitates access to a wide range of materials related to globalization and global and regional studies. These collections come from Africa, China, the EU, Japan, Korea, Latin America and the Caribbean, North Africa and the Middle East, Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia, and South Asia. The library's holdings include current issues of over 1,000 periodicals and 110 newspapers in Western and less commonly taught languages.

The International and Area Studies Library is part of the University of Illinois Library, the largest library (by number of items) at any public institution of higher learning in the United States. You will receive courtesy access to the University Library collection for the duration of the lab. Via digital library privileges, you will have the opportunity to search among thousands of online journals and databases. For physical (print) items, we will work to find online versions or scan book portions as needed.

if you are a language instructor, the International Studies Research Lab offers the opportunity to conduct research and prepare curricula on less commonly taught languages including Arabic, Bosnian/Serbian/Croatian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Czech, French, German, Modern Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Quechua, Russian, Swahili, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uzbek, Wolof, Yiddish, and Zulu.

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library orientation will introduce participants to the library's services, discovery tools, and collections. The orientation is scheduled for May 25 from 11:00am to 12:30pm via SpatialChat.

Over the course of the lab, weekly coffee hour sessions will enable participants to discuss their work, socialize, and share ideas. These coffee hours are tentatively scheduled for Wednesdays at 11:00am from June 9 until July 21.

The ISRL will culminate with a virtual Collaborative Workshop at which participants will have the opportunity to share their work, discuss research progress, and establish collaborations. Other events include social check-in sessions and a library orientation. Guest speakers will offer you insight into the process of internationalizing curriculum, programs, and library collections. The Collaborative Workshop will take place sometime during the week of July 25.



For further information, please contact the Center for Global Studies at

This program is made possible by generous funds from the U.S. Department of Education Title VI Program and by co-sponsorships from the Center for East Asian and Pacific Studies, the Russian, East European and Eurasian Center, and the European Union Center.


Apply today!

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