The Friends of the Caltech Libraries created the prize in 2010 to recognize senior theses that exemplify research and the effective use of the scholarly record. The thesis is an extensive, independent written work produced during the senior year, usually within a senior thesis course series. The University Librarian and the Friends of the Caltech Libraries oversee evaluation and make recommendations to the Undergraduate Academic Standards and Honors Committee (UASH) for final selection. An oral presentation may be requested. At the discretion of the Friends of the Caltech Libraries, more than one award, or none, may be made in any year. Finalists are honored with a reception hosted by the Friends of the Caltech Libraries and receive acknowledgment of their finalist status on their official transcript. The citation is accompanied by a $1200 honorarium and appears in the Commencement program.
Finalist theses will be deposited in the CaltechTHESIS digital repository.
Applications must be submitted electronically by midnight, Wednesday, June 1, 2022. (Earlier deadlines apply for students graduating in an earlier semester.) See Submission Instructions below for details.
The prize recognizes effective use and incorporation of the scholarly record and information management tools in an original work of scholarship.
The prize recognizes soundness, originality, and creativity of the contribution to the research discipline.
Applications must be submitted electronically by midnight, Wednesday, June 1, 2022. Students may use either the Senior Thesis Prize Application Form OR submit required information to libraryprize_AT_library.caltech.edu . Students graduating in an earlier semester need to submit their thesis by the "grades due" date for that semester.
This essential component of the submission demonstrates awareness that whatever question the author seeks to answer connects in substantive ways to inquiry done by other scholars. Academic researchers consult the scholarly record at all stages of a research project, in order to help shape, inform, and advance their own work while acknowledging and crediting those who have gone before.
The narrative consists of a brief (1-2 page) statement that:
The final version of the senior thesis or project completed for a senior thesis course series. Students are encouraged to use Caltech's thesis templates. For projects in a format other than PDF, please include the URL on the cover sheet. A bibliography in a style appropriate to the discipline is to be included in the thesis.
Finalists are expected to deposit their senior thesis into CaltechTHESIS
From left to right, back: Nicholas Hutchins, Library Committee Chair Victor Tsai, Aadith Moorthy, Ruomeng Wan. From left to right, front: Jessica Du Li, Gillian Kopp, Ciara Ordner, winner Sarah Cai, Richard Antonello
From left to right: contestants Moriah Bischann, Bella Guo, Adrian Ray Avalani, Aaron Young, Shannon Wang, and winner Daniel Lim
Caltech Library Friends President Rosemary Choate, Senior Thesis Prize Winner Ayush Gupta, University Librarian Kristin Antelman, Arnold O. Beckman Professor of Chemistry Harry Gray
Kerry Betz and Adam Jermyn. Ms. Betz’s thesis, “A Novel, General Method for the Construction of C-Si Bonds by an Earth-Abundant Metal Catalyst,” was nominated by Prof. Robert Grubbs. Mr. Jermyn’s thesis, “The Atmospheric Dynamics of Pulsar Companions,” was nominated by Prof. Sterl Phinney.
Laga, Stephanie Midori (2014) A tale of two cobalts. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:05192014-150810287
Mukherjee, Eric S. (2014) How far from Jerusalem? Tropical customs and the question of race in the Book of John Mandeville. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:06052014-141341323
Kalbarczyk, Karolina Zbigniew (2013) Directed evolution of terpene synthases for non-natural substrates. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:05302013-204117395
Nichols, Eva Megan (2012) Structure and reactivity of copper dipyridyl carbinol- and rhenium diphosphine complexes. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:06142012-152459600
Liu, Hanna K. (2011) The abundance and behavior of viruses in ancient seawater and modern iron-rich environments. Senior thesis (Major), California Institute of Technology. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:06232011-131748079