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Frequently Asked Questions

1. If I am a freelance writer but also teach at a university, or have another job, am I eligible?

If you get a full-time salary as a teacher or in another occupation, you aren’t eligible.

2. If I freelance, and my outlets include trade association or government work, am I eligible?

In general, eligible journalists may not work for trade associations or governments. Some exceptions for occasional freelance assignments may be made.

3. If I have had a 9-month fellowship elsewhere, can I still apply for the Knight Fellowship?

Those who’ve had a 9-month fellowship already are ineligible.

4. How are fellows selected? How many applicants are there usually?

Fellows are selected by a panel of judges -- usually five or six judges -- after they send a fully completed application. The judges take into consideration a number of things, including the quality of work, the likelihood a journalist will benefit from the Fellowship, and the likelihood a journalist will continue to work in science and health journalism. The number of Fellows chosen has changed over the years, but is currently 12 per year. The pool of applicants is now currently more than one hundred for the 12 spots.

5. I haven't taken the IELTS. Do I need to take the IELTS and have my scores reported by the deadline?

We don’t require that you take the IELTS, but would like to know your score if you have. We need to judge the ability of prospective Fellows to successfully listen and contribute to technical discusions in MIT  classes.

6. Is it okay for me to send you my letters of recommendation, or do they need to come directly from the recommender?

All letters of recommendation must now be submitted through our online application system. Visit our How to Apply page for more information.

7. Are KSJ events open to the public?

Many of the KSJ events are open to the public. For example, the twice-weekly seminars are usually open to the public, and if they are not, that will be noted on our seminar calendar. All our events are free, but some may require a ticket.

8. When does the 9-month Fellowship begin and end?

It may vary slightly, but typically the Fellowship begins on August 15 and ends on May 15.