Promoting, supporting and encouraging the study of the United States since 1955

British Association for American Studies


BAAS Undergraduate Essay Prize


BAAS Undergraduate Essay Prize

The 2020 awards will open for submissions on 1 October 2020.


We are looking for essays that explore any aspect of the American experience, from the perspective of history, literature, film, politics or any other related or inter-related discipline. Submissions that engage with some aspect of social justice, such as (but not limited to ) voting rights, environmental justice, Indigenous rights, racial justice, healthcare, gender justice, immigration, or equality, are of particular interest to the awarding panel.

Essays may be adapted from coursework or ongoing research projects that students are engaged in, but they must conform to word length and the appropriate presentation style required by the judging panel for each award.

For the undergraduate essay prize, we request that no more than six essays per undergraduate department or programme should be submitted, each with a signed note by the Head of Department or tutor certifying the applicant’s registered status.

The prize for the winning author will be £500.

The essay must not exceed 2,500 words in length (excluding footnotes and bibliography).
Authors should use an appropriate bibliographic referencing system.

Essays and supporting letters certifying the applicant’s status should be sent by e-mail to: The deadline for submissions is 25 January 2021.

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Undergraduate Essay Prize Winners


Siobhan Owen, University of Exeter

(Honourable mention to Mark Parker, University of Bristol)


Adam Lawrence, University of Sussex


Jac Lewis, University of Exeter

Honourable mention to Robyn Wilson, University of Leicester


Nathaniel Sikand-Youngs, University of East Anglia


You can view the Submission Guidelines here.

BAAS is committed to promoting best practice in matters of equality and diversity, and will be attentive to issues of equality and diversity when judging applications.

For enquiries about the awards, contact