Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 19:07

Membership Levels & Qualifications


Membership in NCIS provides affiliation and an identity for the Independent Scholar worldwide.

NCIS welcomes scholars in any country who are pursuing knowledge in or across any field who are not affiliated with an institution of higher learning in a tenure track position. Scholars who are contingent faculty or part-time faculty are welcome to join. Candidates must provide evidence of scholarly production, including articles in peer-reviewed journals, presentations at conferences of scholarly societies, books, or, for candidates in the fine arts, exhibitions of work in juried shows, etc. This is accomplished by uploading a current CV (as a .doc, .docx, .rtf, or .pdf file) when creating a member account. Submission of a CV is required of all applicants. The Membership Committee reserves the right to reject applications which do not reflect credentials of merit as independent scholars or credentials which cannot be verified. Review by the membership committee will take place within two weeks of an applicant member joining, and all dues paid will be refunded if an applicant does not meet the requirements.

Recognizing that others who do not meet all qualifications for membership can benefit from an association with NCIS, NCIS now offers an Associate Membership category with limited benefits.

Nondiscrimination Policy

It is the policy of NCIS not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, ancestry, marital status, gender, sexual orientation, age, physical disability, veteran status, political service or affiliation, color, religion, or national origin. Furthermore, the officers, directors, committee members, and persons served by this corporation shall be selected entirely on a nondiscriminatory basis with respect to age, sex, race, religion, national origin, and sexual orientation. 


NCIS welcomes those pursuing and sharing knowledge in or across any fields whose credentials and/or activities show professional scholarly involvement and commitment.  We look for evidence that scholars demonstrate critical analysis in their work and that their work is open to scholarly debate in whatever venues for knowledge dissemination they pursue. A key consideration is that applicants are showcasing their work in ways that invite scholarly response, but we do not limit our definition to publication or presentation in any particular modality.  Further, service work with scholarly organizations is also considered as evidence of commitment.

We offer membership to those who are not associated with academic institutions, and to adjunct faculty, and others tangentially associated with academic institutions who do not receive ongoing financial and/or research support for their scholarly activities.

We also recognize the unique individual whose scholarly work proceeds successfully despite the lack of advanced degrees, or of any academic degree at all. Our focus on the individual independent scholar's qualifications is based upon knowledge as expressed and/or measured by scholarly production, and on the scholar’s demonstration that their work is analytical in nature.

To start an application visit Join.  Contact membership@ncis.org with questions.


Scholars who receive institutional support for their research may be eligible for membership as an Associate Member of NCIS. Associate members are scholars who support the purposes of NCIS but whose research may be funded by an institution and therefore not qualify them as independent scholars. They may also be graduate students, or early career scholars who do not yet have an academic publication record. If you are a graduate student or a NCIS member who is changing career paths and joining academia in a full-time position, and eligible for institutional support, you can still support NCIS and be a part of our network by maintaining Associate status.

Associate Members are eligible to receive an NCIS Associate Member card, to attend NCIS conferences at a fee determined by the Board, to publicly identify as an Associate Member of NCIS, to receive NCIS members-only communications, and to upgrade Associate membership at any renewal date by applying for Regular membership.

To start an application for associate membership please visit Join.  Contact membership@ncis.org with questions.


Members of partner groups affiliated with the National Coalition of Independent Scholars (NCIS) enjoy some of the benefits offered by NCIS. However membership in a partner (affiliate) group does not confer individual membership in NCIS. Membership in a partner group entitles new NCIS members to a $10 introductory discount on their first year's individual membership of NCIS.

Partner group members applying for individual membership in NCIS should indicate the name of the partner group to which they belong. Once NCIS confirms a new NCIS member's partner group membership, then NCIS will process a refund of $10 to them.

To start an application for partner group membership please visit Join.  Contact membership@ncis.org with questions.

For current partner groups see the side bar to the right of this page.

Contact us

National Coalition of Independent Scholars