NCIS welcomes people who are pursuing knowledge in or across any fields whose credentials demonstrate an active involvement in independent scholarship in any field, as evidenced by advanced degrees or presentations/publications. Further qualification is that the scholar not be employed on a full-time basis by an academic institution or other organization in the field to which their independent scholarly activity pertains. Graduate students intent on pursuing independent scholarship, adjunct faculty, and others tangentially associated with academic institutions who do not receive financial support for their scholarly activities are eligible.
NCIS was formed in January 1989 to facilitate the work of independent scholars. NCIS objectives are to:
- Bring independent scholars together to share scholarly interests and expertise
- Improve access to research libraries for independent scholars
- Offer independent scholars information and advice about grants and fellowships and about publishing.
- Encourage foundations and institutes to open competitions to independent scholars and to include them on review committees
- Hold conferences and workshops of interest to independent scholars and to the public
- Offer grants-in-aid to NCIS members and small grants to affiliates
- Serve as administrator for members applying for grants
- Encourage information exchange through publications and electronic communication
- Aid organizations of independent scholars by collecting and sharing organization experience and by publicizing their work
- Provide information for the creation of local organizations of independent scholars
Thinking of joining NCIS? Here are some of the additional benefits of membership:
- Members have access to Foundation Center's Grants to Individuals Online, a service that provides access to thousands of grants available to independent scholars, grant writing training, and more.
- Members are eligible for numerous grants that are limited to members of NCIS.
- Members receive a Membership Card that can be used at research institutions and other places as a form of identification that indicates their membership in the organization.
- Members may expand their network of scholars with similar research interests.
- Members may get involved in the administration of NCIS, write articles or book reviews for our member publication, The Independent Scholar.
- Members are eligible to have member web pages to showcase their talent or to serve as a tool for self-promotion.
- Members may get an @ncis.org e-mail address to show their affiliation and to avoid unprofessional-sounding addresses from one of the many free e-mail services.
- Members may order business cards that include the NCIS logo.
- Members have access to our membership directory, enabling them to connect with other independent scholars in their local geographic area or within their areas of interest.