Student Welcome 1

Welcome to the Graduate Student Acquisition Research Program

Completing your thesis with the Acquisition Research Program (ARP) will deepen your understanding of acquisition processes and prepare you to lead and innovate as an acquisition professional. ARP provides students with topics, professional editing, and transcription services, when needed, at no cost.

Students can choose a sponsor topic (list available in 372 Ingersoll) or create their own in collaboration with thesis advisers. Sample research areas include the following:

  • acquisition and procurement policy

  • contract, supply chain, cost, project, logistics or engineering management

  • acquisition workforce

  • public budgeting and finance

  • outsourcing

  • performance measurements

  • small business

  • human systems integration

Student Expectations


Students are expected to produce publishable research, stay on schedule, and complete research projects two months prior to graduation. Submit poster and video on research findings which will be presented at ARP’s annual symposium, held each May virtually.

Over the span of about 6 months, you will complete the following steps:


Student Resources



Your goal is to produce data-driven, rigorous research that can be used by policymakers, leaders, and other researchers to understand and improve defense acquisition. You must also satisfy thesis and graduation requirements for NPS. We've collected a few resources to get you started.

Find Research Topics:
ARP maintains a list of Sponsored Research Topics to get you started.

Use Definitive Sources of Contract Data:
All government contract data is found at You'll need to set up an account to run reports.  Review the FPDS Government User's Manual for help.

Learn How to Research, Organize, and Write a Thesis: 
Work with the pros from the NPS Graduate Writing Center: watch video overviews, attend workshops, and get a coach. Check out their citation guide before you start writing.

Understand Thesis Requirements:
Get to know the process used at the NPS Thesis Processing Office

Summarize Academic Research for a General Audience:
Read this guide to converting your thesis into a research brief.  ARP will provide you templates for summarizing your research as a poster and a YouTube-friendly video. 

See more resources in the Student Application Packet.

Student Application

Project Plan

Ready to research with ARP?  Full information about program requirements and deadlines can be found in ARP welcome packets below. These include the project plan, associated forms and samples.  We have also included relevant resources and writing handbooks for your use. 

To apply to ARP, email with a short cover email and your signed ARP project plan. 

Click on your graduation date to get started.

Students Meet the Team


Meet the ARP Team

We would love to meet you!

Drop by the ARP Office (Ingersoll - 372) anytime to meet Jochele & Nadia and talk about our student program.  We can also be reached via email at or by phone at (831) 656-3793.