2020 Office of the Provost Teaching and Learning Grants
The Office of the Provost provides funding opportunities for faculty looking to integrate new educational methods and technologies into their classrooms and learning environments. Outlined below are the funding opportunities and request for proposals for such opportunities.
This request for proposals identifies innovative projects to design course modules, entire courses, or massive open online courses (MOOCs), and also supports teaching initiatives at the department, programs, or school level. Projects will be developed over the next academic year and proposals from all disciplines and subject areas are welcome. The deadline to submit proposals is Monday, April 20, 2020 at 5:00 P.M.
The goals of the teaching and learning grants are 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 the learning outcomes of Columbia University students from all disciplines.
Awardees will have access to the resources and support of the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) in course and project design, content development, training in new pedagogies, media production, assessment and evaluation, and project management. Recipients will be expected to spend awarded funds as proposed and to collaborate with the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) staff.
A prior meeting and consultation with the CTL is strongly recommended to help develop the project plan and the appropriate in-kind support level. Please contact ColumbiaCTL@columbia.edu to schedule a meeting.
View the awardees of the Spring 2019 Provost’s teaching and learning grants.
On this page:
- Summary of Funding Opportunities
- Proposal Requirements and Checklist
- Grant Types
- Innovative Course Design
- Innovative Course Module Design (Start Small!)
- Large-Scale Teaching & Learning Grant
- Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)
- Emerging Technology Grant
- Provost’s Interdisciplinary Teaching Awards (ITA)
- Submission Procedure
- Review Process
- Information Sessions
- Download PDF of Call for Proposals
Summary of Funding Opportunities
|Innovative Course Design (full course)||increase teaching effectiveness and student engagement through the creative use of a new pedagogical strategy and/or digital tools||up to $20,000 + in-kind CTL support||courses taught in:
|Innovative Course Module Design (Start Small!)||support experimentation with a new pedagogical strategy or tool (not a full course redesign)||up to $2,000 + in-kind support from CTL||courses taught in:
|Large-Scale for Departments, Programs, or Schools||support large-scale, coordinated efforts around teaching initiatives and exploration in a department, program, or school||up to $20,000 + in-kind support from CTL||2020 – 2021 academic year|
|Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)||reach global audiences, make more visible the teaching and research activities of the University while promoting public engagement||up to $25,000 + in-kind support from CTL||Offered in 2021|
|Emerging Technology Grant||Support experimentation with new pedagogical strategies using extended reality technologies (augmented/virtual reality, 3D scanning/printing)||Up to $20,000 + in-kind support from CUIT||courses taught in:
|Interdisciplinary Teaching Awards (ITAs)||support faculty from different disciplines to work collaboratively on design and launch of innovative interdisciplinary courses||up to $20,000 + interdisciplinary teaching course design institute and CTL consultations||For teams of 2 or more faculty from different departments or schools collaborating on undergraduate or graduate courses that integrate content and perspectives from different disciplines|
Proposal Requirements and Checklist
- Cover Sheet: Include the name of the PI(s), title of the course or project, intended audience, and school.
- Course or project description.
- Plan of Project: Limited to five (5) pages or fewer.
- Describe the key learning outcomes for the course or expected outcomes for the project.
- Write a strong, compelling rationale for the project.
- Describe the project activities.
- For course projects only:
- Describe the course as it currently exists. If launching an entirely new course, discuss your vision for the new course.
- Describe the current design of the course, along with student enrollment figures and support for the redesign of this course.
- 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.
- If applicable, 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 or project outcomes and effectiveness will be measured, and how the impact on student learning will be measured.
- Description of in-kind support needed:
- CTL can offer support in learning design, assessment, project management, media production, and software development. A prior meeting and consultation with the CTL is strongly recommended to plan the appropriate in-kind support level. Please contact ColumbiaCTL@columbia.edu to schedule a meeting.
- For the Emerging Technology grant, a prior meeting and consultation with CUIT is strongly recommended to help develop a project plan. Please contact email@example.com to schedule a meeting.
- Budget and Budget Justification: Provide a detailed budget and budget justification for funds. Funding can be used for course preparation, external course content, technology and media development costs, administrative costs, and teaching assistants/course assistants. For large scale projects, describe the anticipated supporting activities or materials in need of funding. Please mention all other sources of funding, if any.
- Letter of Support from department chair or vice dean: 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. A letter of support is not required for large scale proposals.
- 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 award.
- Courses to be offered during either fall 2020, spring 2021, or summer 2021.
- A prior meeting and consultation with the CTL is strongly recommended to help develop a project plan. Please contact ColumbiaCTL@columbia.edu to schedule a meeting.
- See specific eligibility for MOOCs
Innovative Course Design
This grant supports the redesign of courses or the design of new courses to improve teaching and learning using innovative learning strategies. Designs advanced by technology or media-enhanced pedagogy are encouraged, but not required. Awardees will receive in-kind support from the CTL and funds up to $20,000.
We encourage approaches that re-imagine class as a space for active and collaborative learning, where 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 identifies innovative 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.
The Active Learning Institute
The CTL will be holding the Active Learning Institute (ALI) for faculty, from June 16 to June 18, 2020, 9:00 am to 4:00 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 course once you have been awarded a grant. Applications open on Monday, March 2, 2020, and are due on Monday, May 11, 2020. Learn more about the Active Learning Institute.
Innovative Course Module Design (Start Small!)
This grant supports experimentation with a new pedagogical strategy or tool without attempting a full course redesign. These grants are designed to promote innovative thinking about and approaches to teaching, learning, and student engagement that involve scalable high-impact practices and thoughtful assessment of student learning.
Faculty who have ideas for course innovation are encouraged to use this Course Module Design (Start Small!) grant to pilot tools and/or pedagogical strategies that could be expanded into a future Hybrid Learning Course Redesign proposal. Successful recipients of the Course Module Design grant will be given special consideration for future Innovative Course Design funding opportunities.
Awardees will receive in-kind support from the CTL and funds up to $2,000.
Examples of potential grant-funded expenses for the Course Module Design grant include:
- Devices and software to support active learning practices (e.g., screencasting, adaptive learning software);
- Software and devices for laboratory and maker projects;
- Training and supplies for innovative pedagogical methods such as Reacting to the Past, game-based learning, team-based learning, case-based teaching, and peer-led learning;
- Resources for teaching development or to support faculty development related to a discipline-specific or other instructional innovation, such as books, webinar or conference attendance; and
- Hardware or software to support innovations aimed at making learning materials more accessible and inclusive (e.g., speech recognition / captioning software, media production software).
Large-Scale Teaching & Learning Grant
The Large-Scale Teaching & Learning grant offers in-kind or financial support of up to $20,000 per academic year to support large-scale, coordinated efforts around teaching initiatives and exploration. The project must have the potential for making a significant, lasting impact within a department/school/program beyond the funding period and must be sustainable. The types of projects that could be supported through this grant are large-scale initiatives such as:
- Curriculum review (course requirements for majors and/or program curricula), including assessment practices, capstone courses, mapping courses and student pathways, and creating departmental learning outcomes;
- Integrating experiential learning (study abroad, internships, community engagement, research with a faculty member, etc.) and assessments of experiential learning at the course and program levels;
- Consideration of departmental teaching evaluation and review practices, such as implementation or revision of peer review processes, best practices in using student evaluation data (for administrators and faculty), teaching observation training for departmental reviewers, development of teaching portfolios, and ensuring equitable and inclusive processes for the review of teaching;
- Development of pedagogical facilitation skills, such as facilitating active learning and student engagement with material, peers, and instructors; inclusive teaching practices at the departmental and individual course levels; contemplative practices in teaching and learning; student reflective practices to build student metacognition for learning; and promoting and assessing learning in discussion-based courses;
- Planning and curricular alignment of digital projects (such as capstones, digital humanities research, and maker space assignments) in majors or Core courses with learning design and assessment.
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)
Courses offered through MOOC platforms have the potential to reach large and global audiences, to stimulate curiosity and intellectual exploration, to make more visible the teaching and research activities of the University, and to promote public engagement. While the experience of developing and producing a MOOC is rewarding, it can also be very demanding requiring substantial time and resources from the faculty. With some productions lasting more than a year, it is critical to engage in careful planning and coordination of numerous activities, including course content, course design, media production, rights clearances, and publicity. The proposal process ensures that Columbia’s MOOCs reflect the University’s commitment to teaching excellence and that courses receive full support in each of these areas.
Proposals from all disciplines and subject areas are welcome. We particularly encourage proposals for courses that:
Accepted courses will receive consultation services and support for instructional design, content and media production, and software development from the Columbia Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL). Funds will be available from the Office of the Provost for each MOOC of up to $25,000. These funds and other funds available to the instructor(s) must cover all teaching and production costs (including teaching assistants/course assistants costs, rights clearances, and media costs that exceed the CTL’s normal in-kind support). Read more about the MOOC RFP requirements.
Emerging Technology Grant
This grant supports faculty members who want to experiment with new pedagogical strategies using emerging technologies in their classrooms to improve teaching and learning along with improving student engagement and outcomes. These grants are designed to promote innovative approaches with emerging technologies specifically involving augmented/virtual/mixed reality and 3D scanning/printing.
Awardees will receive in-kind support from CUIT and funds up to $20,000.
Examples of potential grant-funded expenses include:
- Augmented/virtual/mixed reality head-mounted displays
- Structured-light 3D scanner
- Desktop 3D printer including materials
- Computing hardware resources (ex: dedicated VR computing backpack)
- Augmented/virtual/mixed reality software packages
Provost’s Interdisciplinary Teaching Awards (ITA)
Provost’s Interdisciplinary Teaching Awards (ITA) are designed to support faculty from different disciplines to work collaboratively on the design and launch of innovative interdisciplinary courses. Emerging from the deliberations of the Provost’s Interdisciplinary Working Group, this program will award up to $20,000 to teams of two or more faculty from different departments or schools to develop and offer undergraduate or graduate courses that integrate content and perspectives from different disciplines to enhance student learning. The RFP can be downloaded here.
The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) will offer a Collaborative Interdisciplinary Course Design Institute for ITA recipients. The Institute is intended for ITA teams to come together and collaboratively design new interdisciplinary courses. During the Institute, teams will work on developing interdisciplinary student learning objectives, assessments and learning activities that align with the learning objectives, plan their approaches to co-teaching or team-teaching / course implementation, refine their course evaluation strategy, and leave with the elements of a learner-centered syllabus.
Awardees are 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:
- For course projects:
- 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 activity 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?
- For large scale projects:
- How well have participants achieved project outcomes?
- How well were project activities implemented?
- How did participants experience the project activities, both in terms of achievement of key outcomes and satisfaction?
- Can the new programmatic elements be maintained and/or how can they be improved?
- What impact has this initiative had on teaching and learning?
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.
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, 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.
Faculty submitting a proposal must complete the proposal submission form.
Awards will be announced by Friday, June 5, 2020. Faculty will be notified of the award 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.
The CTL will hold a number of sessions to support grant applicants. Find out more about these offerings at https://ctl.columbia.edu/events/.
- Attend the Office of the Provost RFP Town Hall offered on Tuesday, March 3, 2020 3:00 PM – 4:30PM to learn about the types of awards and the application process.
- Register for Assessment Tune-Up for RFP Applicants offered on Thursday, March 26, 2020 12:15 PM – 2:00 PM to build or refine the evaluation and assessment section of the proposal.
- Visit the CTL for RFP-focused office hours on April 3, April 9, and April 17. CTL consultants will be on hand to help select the appropriate grant, to answer questions about the application process, and/or to provide feedback on proposals.
- Learn more about previous successful projects and interact with awardees at the Celebration of Teaching & Learning Symposium to be held on Tuesday, February 18, 2020 in Low Library.
Download PDF of Call for Proposals