Request for Proposals: Hybrid Learning Course Redesign and Delivery – Spring 2019


The Office of the Provost invites faculty to apply for funding to support redesign of courses to improve teaching and learning using innovative learning strategies advanced by technology- or media-enhanced pedagogy.

Whether through online environments, digital tools, or “hybrid” approaches that re-imagine class as a space for active and collaborative learning, pedagogical innovations provide many opportunities for creative change within the Columbia curriculum. These novel modes of education allow for the thoughtful exploration of new teaching methods, course designs, and strategies for promoting active learning.

This request for proposals will identify innovative course modules (or entire courses) to be developed over the next academic year. Proposals from all disciplines and subject areas are welcome, but we particularly encourage those that:

  • Develop ideas with significant potential to enhance teaching effectiveness and student learning and engagement
  • Make creative use of custom tools, online platforms, visualizations, media, etc., to make the course more accessible and engaging to students and/or to support course assignments
  • Include consideration of professional development needs to train instructors in new or alternative pedagogies to accommodate newly designed courses or delivery approaches
  • Include consideration of any necessary or novel skills or digital literacies that students will need to engage in the new course format; and
  • Lead to measurable impact on student learning.

A key goal of this fund is to measure the impact and effectiveness of these designs, pedagogies, and learning strategies, to improve teaching (both online and face to face), and to enhance learning outcomes of Columbia University students from all disciplines.

Instructors of courses selected will have access to the resources and support of the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) in course design, content development, training in new pedagogies, media production, assessment and evaluation, and project management. Courses selected will receive in-kind support from the CTL and will also be funded from $5,000 up to $20,000. Recipients will be expected to spend awarded funds as proposed and to collaborate with CTL staff.


The Active Learning Institute

The CTL will be holding the Active Learning Institute (ALI) for faculty, from June 18 to June 20, 2019, 9:00 am to 4 PM.  During the three-day institute, faculty will explore the purposes and outcomes of active learning and apply research-based practices to the process of developing active, learner-centered course units.  ALI is a great way to begin to develop your hybrid course once you have been awarded a grant. Applications are due on Monday, May 13, 2019. Learn more about the Active Learning Institute.


Related Opportunities

Faculty who are interested in experimenting with one new pedagogical strategy or tool without attempting a full course redesign are encouraged to apply for 2019 Provost’s RFP for Start Small! Mini-grants. Faculty who are interested in developing a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), rather than online components for courses taught at Columbia, should respond to the 2019 Provost’s RFP for MOOCs.



  • Full-time and part-time faculty. Individual faculty, groups of faculty from the same department, and interdisciplinary teams are welcome to apply; however, teams receive one grant.
  • New or existing courses which will become hybrid through this grant; (or) new or existing courses that have begun the process of becoming a hybrid course; (or) new or existing courses who are well into the process of becoming a hybrid course.
  • Courses to be offered during either fall 2019, spring 2020 or summer 2020.
  • A prior meeting and consultation with the CTL is strongly recommended to help develop a project plan. Please contact to schedule a meeting.

Proposal Requirements

I.  Cover Sheet: Include name of the PI, title of the course, intended audience and school.

II.  Course Description (250 words): Describe the course as it currently exists. If launching an entirely new course, discuss your vision for the new course.

III.  Plan of Project: Limited to five (5) pages or fewer.

  • Describe the key learning outcomes for the course.
  • Describe the current design of the course, along with student enrollment figures and support for the redesign of this course.
  • Write a strong, compelling rationale for the project:

               -Describe how the course redesign will structure the student learning experience through enhanced engagement with course materials, instructors, faculty and other                     students.

               -Specify which learning outcomes will be enhanced or improved through the course redesign.

               -Articulate how the course design aligns with theories and methods in teaching and learning.

  • Describe, in depth, the technologies and/or media that will be used and how their inclusion will enhance student engagement and learning.
  • Describe appropriate changes to current course assessments (e.g. assignments, exams, projects, problem sets, etc.) as a result of the course redesign.
  • Provide a plan that describes how course outcomes and effectiveness will be measured, and how impact on student learning will be measured.

Proposals should be written in a style that is accessible to reviewers who are not experts in the specified area.

IV.   Budget and Budget Justification (1 page): Provide a detailed budget and budget justification for funds ($5,000-$20,000). Funding can be used for course preparation, external course content, technology and media development costs, administrative costs, and teaching assistants/course assistants. Please mention all other sources of funding, if any. Also provide a detailed in-kind support needed from the CTL covering learning design, assessment, project management, media production, and software development.

V.   Letter of Support: From the applicant’s department chair or vice dean must be provided. In order to provide the review committee with additional information to base their funding decision, department chairs or vice deans are invited to provide comments on the importance of the proposal plan to the department and school.



Grant awardees will be required to submit a summary report of project success and a description of expenditures to the Office of the Provost. The report should reference assessment and evaluation data and describe insights and conclusions, answering such questions as:

  • How did the innovation support the student learning goals of the course and how did it impact the student experience of the course?
  • How well did the new curricular elements meet the original course design goals?
  • What could be enhanced to improve student success overall?
  • Should the new curricular elements be maintained or how can they be improved?
  • What do you see as your successes and challenges in the course design process and in achieving overall outcomes?

The report will be important in informing continued strategies to develop hybrid learning approaches and in providing input to the Office of the Provost as it continues to develop initiatives to support teaching and learning.

Grant awardees will be invited to present on their projects at CTL events including the annual Celebration for Teaching and Learning Symposium in order to share the lessons learned with the broader Columbia community. Additionally, grant awardees might consider submitting an article for publication, or presenting at a disciplinary or pedagogical conference. Please note: faculty who wish to make student data public as part of this dissemination may need to obtain IRB approval.


Submission Procedure

Faculty submitting a proposal must complete the proposal application form.  Final proposals must be submitted by the Dean’s office of your school (one PDF file for each proposal) via email to with the subject line of “RFP Hybrid Learning 2019: [Last Name of Applicant].” An email confirmation that the proposal submission has been received will be sent within 24 hours.



The deadline is Monday, April 22, 2019 at 5:00 P.M.  Future RFPs will cover courses to be offered in 2020 and beyond. We look forward to continuing to support Columbia faculty as they develop new and exciting enhancements of teaching and learning at the University.


Review Process

Proposals will be reviewed by a committee of faculty representing a range of disciplines and schools, who will provide a recommended set of grants to the Provost.



Grant awardees will be selected by Friday, May 24, 2019 and announced soon after. Faculty will be notified of the grant amount and will be assigned a CTL contact for the project. The CTL contact, together with a team of staff with appropriate expertise for the specific project, will provide support in instructional design, pedagogy, media and/or technologies, and assessment.


Information Sessions and Resources

The CTL will hold a number of sessions and has developed resources to support Hybrid Learning and Course Redesign grant applicants. Find out more about these offerings at