Provost SOLER Seed Grants (PSSGs) 2024 RFP Requirements


The Principal Investigator (PI) as well as Co-PIs (see below) must be full-time Columbia faculty members.

Postdocs, graduate students, part-time or adjunct faculty, and staff may be included on proposals as co-investigators but may not serve as PIs or Co-PIs. 

Applicants are strongly encouraged to schedule an individual consultation with SOLER prior to submitting the application in order to develop the project plan and define the scope of in-kind support. Please contact to schedule a consultation.


Proposal Requirements

I. Project Summary

  • Project title
  • Designate one investigator as the Principal Investigator (PI). Include the PI’s full name, title, department, and email address.
  • List all other personnel (e.g., collaborators, graduate students, postdocs) as co-investigators. Use an asterisk to indicate any co-investigator designated as a co-PI (for example, if the application involves a collaboration between two faculty members). 
  • Abstract: Describe the project in non-technical language; articulate the problem the project addresses and your corresponding research question or objective; specify what makes the project innovative; describe your plan to ascertain student impact or other insights; state your overall hypothesis or predictions.  

II. Project Scope


  • State the problem that the project addresses and your corresponding objective.
  • Identify specific research questions and explain how they align with the overarching objective. For each research question, state your corresponding hypothesis. 
  • Describe the overall methodology that will be used in this study, covering such factors as retrospective vs. prospective data collection, interventional vs. non-interventional, randomized vs. non-randomized, observational, experimental, etc.


  • Identify your target participants (e.g., students).
  • Specify how participants will be identified and contacted.
  • Estimate how many participants will be impacted during the grant period.
  • Briefly describe how the innovation will continue to benefit student cohorts beyond the grant duration (e.g., through curricular changes).

Rationale and Literature Review

  • Describe how the project aligns with national and/or Columbia strategic initiatives.
  • Highlight key findings of relevant educational research. Include citations as appropriate.
  • Describe any prior work your team has done in this space.

Assessment and Evaluation Plan for Specific Aims

  • Describe novel or to-be-adapted measurement tools (e.g., surveys).
  • Outline key comparisons and briefly describe data analysis procedures.   

Role of Key Personnel

  • Specify the expectations and obligations of all project personnel.
  • Outline expected needs for in-kind support from SOLER facilitators. 

III. Project Timeline

Use a timeline to depict the schedule for your project. The timeline should include start and finish dates for your project as well as the dates or periods during which various project tasks will occur. Indicate how you will monitor the effectiveness of the project as it evolves. All elements of the project should be completed within 12 months of receiving funds.

IV. Budget Overview and Justification

Provide a detailed budget and justification for funds. Funding can be used for expenses such as equipment, media development, compensation for study participants (typically students), and compensation for research assistants. Please mention other sources of funding, if any. The total budget requested should not exceed the maximum award amount of $5,000. 

V. Letter of Support (1-page Maximum)

A short letter of support from the PI’s department chair must be uploaded as a separate PDF along with your application. The letter should specifically indicate (1) that students in the relevant course(s) may be recruited for the study, and (2) that the department will implement procedures to ensure that the financial and administrative responsibilities of the research will be met.