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Grants in Support of Teaching

Innovations in Pedagogy I: Blended Learning Technology Grants @ Augustana

The Office of Academic Affairs is pleased to announce the opportunity to apply for Blended Learning Technology Grants to support the creation or redesign of an individual course or a sequence of courses that will be delivered primarily during the 2014-15 or 2015-16 academic years. These grants are an extension of an earlier blended learning grants program funded through Academic Affairs and managed by the Center for Faculty Enrichment.  All full-time and adjunct faculty are eligible to apply for funding. 

For the purposes of this request for proposals (RFP), blended learning is defined as a curricular design that integrates online educational mechanisms with face-to-face activities in a planned, pedagogically valuable manner.  Successful blended learning curricular design is achieved when:

  • Online learning technologies are integrated into a course or set of courses and employed as a primary means of achieving a subset of student learning outcomes appropriate to the selected online learning technologies and the course or set of courses,
  • Face-to-face activities are designed and implemented to 1) facilitate the successful use of the chosen online learning technologies and 2) focus faculty work on meeting the subset of student learning outcomes that are best achieved through face-to-face interaction.
  •  The overall amount of faculty work required to deliver the course or set of courses and meet the identified student learning outcomes is not significantly more than the amount of faculty work required to deliver a similar course or set of courses through a non-blended format.
  •  In comparison to previous iterations of a similar course or sets of courses delivered through a non-blended format, the degree to which students achieve the intended learning outcomes of the course or set of courses is maintained or improved.

(This conception of blended learning is derived from Picciano, Anthony G., and Charles D. Dziuban, eds., Blended Learning: Research Perspectives. Needham, MA: Sloan Consortium, 2007.)

These grants will provide awarded applicants:

  • Support to investigate, identify, and incorporate online learning technologies into existing courses and/or to develop new, blended learning curricular experiences for students
  • Support to identify and construct mechanisms to assess the relative effectiveness and efficiency of blended learning curricular designs in achieving student learning outcomes

Finally, the goal of these grants is to generate evidence from our students and our campus to determine whether or not and to what degree might blended and online learning mechanisms improve the quality of the education we provide while maintaining our commitment to our institutional mission as a residential liberal arts college.

Applicants can apply for one of three grant awards. Awards will be paid as stipends.

  • A $1500 Course Adaptation Award
    • This grant is designed for faculty who are already demonstrably comfortable with some level of online learning technology and would like to significantly revise an existing course to meet the definition of a successful blended learning curricular design outlined above.
  • A $4500 Course Creation Award (or a course release)
    • This grant is designed for 1) faculty who are already demonstrably comfortable with some level of online learning technology and would like to create a new course that meets the definition of the blended learning curricular design outlined above, or 2) faculty who have not previously used online learning technologies and would like to substantially revise an existing course or create a new course that meets the definition of a successful blended learning curricular design outlined above.  
  • A $1000 Course Sequence Collaboration Award
    •  This grant is designed for any group of faculty teaching a sequence of courses who 1) have also each applied individually to revise/redesign or create a single blended learning course, and 2) the group of courses proposed function together as a sequence of courses that already exists in the Augustana catalogue.  This grant would be awarded to the group of applicants and be distributed among them as they so choose. (Since learning communities currently count as a single course, this award would not apply to learning communities.)

An independent committee of faculty and administrators who have not submitted applications for these grants will evaluate all grant proposals.  The strongest proposals will explicitly address how the applicants will endeavor to meet each of the criteria for a successful blended learning curricular design outlined above. Applications should also include at least a basic description of the technological resource requirements necessary to fully incorporate the proposed blended learning design.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with ITS during the course of developing their proposal in order to better understand the current range of available resources and whether or not their proposal might require technology resources beyond those already provided by the College.
 
While applications will generally be considered under the grant category to which they have been submitted, the committee can consider the possibility of awarding the alternate grant based upon 1) the degree of revision/redesign or course creation proposed, and 2) the extent to which the applicant's proposal reflects a departure from their previous approach to course design and delivery.  For all approved applications, half of the funding will be awarded at the time of selection while the other half will be awarded upon completion of the course delivery and submission of the project summary and assessment.

Grants proposals are due to the Office of Academic Affairs by Monday, November 18th, 2013. Decisions will be announced by December 20th, 2013. The proposed blended learning courses are expected to run during the 2014-15 or 2015-16 academic years.


Proposal Guidelines

All proposals should include:

1. A narrative description that answers the following questions:

  • Which course will benefit from this project? When will the blended learning course be offered, and which students will be its target constituency? Please include how often you plan to teach the course, and if applicable, enrollments from the past two years' offerings, and the syllabus from the last time you taught the course.
  • Which specific blended learning innovation(s) will you employ in this course?
  • How will blended learning enhance student learning in the course? In what ways does the educational objectives of this course make it particularly conducive to blended/online learning?
  • How have you employed creative teaching pedagogies and/or technology-enhanced teaching in the past (please include any relevant URLs, Moodle sites, or other online locations)?
  •  What kinds of equipment, instructional design assistance, computer training, technical assistance, and/or other resources will you require in order to complete this project?
  •  What challenges do you foresee that might inhibit the redesign or creation of this course or sequence of courses or the delivery of this course or sequence of courses?  
  •  Above and beyond the previous definition of a successful blended learning curricular design, how would describe a successful outcome of the project you are proposing?  How will you assess the impact of this project on student learning and faculty work load (i.e., what is your evaluation plan)?

2. A timetable for planning, implementation, and assessment.

3. A current CV

Project Completion

Funded projects must be completed by the end of the Summer of the 2015-16 academic year with a final project summary detailing activities and assessment submitted to the Academic Affairs office by August 31, 2016. Funded participants will be asked to share their results with colleagues during one or more public forums (Faculty Retreat, Faculty Newsletter, Teaching Circle, Friday Conversation, etc.).

Listed below are several resources that provide more information and insights on blended learning:

Power point presentation from Bryn Mawr College about their experience with a blended learning pilot program: http://nextgenlearning.blogs.brynmawr.edu/files/2012/01/May2012.pdf

A research paper on one institution's experience transitioning an undergraduate course to a blended format: http://www.eric.ed.gov/PDFS/EJ918216.pdf

A podcast reviewing a meta-analysis from the Dept of Ed. on the effects of blended or online learning: http://www.educause.edu/blogs/gbayne/eli-2011-podcast-blended-learning-designs-learning-science-perspective

An article from Inside HigherEd that provides "some observations by an archetypal Old Prof who wonders as he wanders through the new terrain of distance learning." http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2012/07/10/professors-shouldnt-be-afraid-online-learning-essay

An article from New York Times that opines on the drawbacks of online learning:.
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/20/opinion/the-trouble-with-online-education.html

Information on how to think about building a blended learning course -

From the University of Central Florida, this site is a virtual do-it-yourself warehouse for building a blended learning course: http://blended.online.ucf.edu/

Also from the University of Central Florida site, this site cuts the chase for the whole process of building a successful blended course: http://blended.online.ucf.edu/blendkit-course-diy-project-tasks/

Everything you could want and more from EDUCAUSE, a non-profit organization dedicated to maximizing technology in learning: http://www.educause.edu/library/blended-learning#jqtab-0

Another great site from the University of Maryland: http://otal.umd.edu/instructional-resources

 


Innovations in Pedagogy II: Connection Grants @ Augustana

The Office of Academic Affairs is pleased to announce the opportunity to apply for Connection Grants  to support the creation or redesign of an individual course or a sequence of courses that will be delivered primarily during the 2014-15 or 2015-16 academic years. New or redesigned courses will feature curricular designs that do one of two things:

  1. For the humanities and social sciences: The course will more intentionally connect traditional study in the humanities/social sciences and study in our pre-professional programs. "Humanities and social sciences" here reflects traditional definitions, not our divisional structures, so the arts and economics are also included. Examples of already existing courses that accomplish this include the Religion department's courses in Medical Ethics and Business Ethics, and the Spanish department's creation of the new major Spanish for Professional Use. Collaborative grants may be proposed with faculty in pre-professional programs.
  2. For all disciplines: The course will more intentionally connect the college and the local Quad Cities community by making some aspect of our location central to the course's content and learning objectives. An example of an already existing course that accomplishes this is the Environmental Literature and Landscape Learning Community.[*]

We hope that by encouraging faculty to develop these types of curricula, we can (1) recognize the ways that the skills, knowledge, and dispositions developed in humanities/social sciences courses can enhance our students' pre-professional pursuits; (2) expose more students and/or different types of students to our excellent faculty across the college; (3) further develop our ties to the local community and introduce our students to the QCA as a learning laboratory; and/or (4) encourage interdisciplinary and interdivisional collaboration between faculty. Faculty can apply for either (or both) of the two grants listed below. Awards can be paid as stipends.

  • A $1500 Course Redesign or Course Creation AwardThis grant is designed for any faculty member interested in fundamentally redesigning a course or creating a new course that integrates traditional study in the humanities/social sciences with a pre-professional area of interest, or makes our location central to the course's themes and learning objectives. ("Fundamentally redesigning" means more than adding a component or section of the course.)
  • A $1000 Course Sequence or New Program Collaboration AwardThis grant is designed for any group of faculty teaching a sequence or group of courses. This grant can be used for either 1) a group of courses that function together as a sequence of courses that already exists in the Augustana catalogue; or 2) a new sequence or group of courses.  This grant will be awarded to the group of applicants and be distributed among them as they so choose. This award can apply to learning communities.

An independent committee of faculty and administrators who have not submitted applications for these grants will evaluate all grant proposals.  The strongest proposals will explicitly address how these courses will serve our students and help students meet the student learning outcomes established in the course, sequence, or program design. For all approved applications, half of the funding will be awarded at the time of selection while the other half will be awarded upon completion of the course delivery and submission of the project summary and assessment.

Grants proposals are due to the Office of Academic Affairs by November 18th, 2013. Decisions will be announced by December 20th, 2013. The proposed courses are expected to run during the 2014-15 or 2015-16 academic years.

Proposal Guidelines

All proposals should include:

1.  A narrative description that answers the following questions:

  • Which course will be developed from this project? When will the course(s) be offered, and which students will be its target constituency? Please include how often you plan to teach the course(s), and the impact on your department's current offerings.
  • What are your student learning outcomes for the proposed course/sequence? How will your course help students meet these proposed SLOs, and how will you assess their progress?
  • How has your past work prepared you for developing the new course(s)?


2.  Proposals for the development of new concentrations will also need to address the staffing implications of the new curriculum.

3.  A timetable for planning, implementation, and assessment.

4.  A current CV

Project Completion

Funded projects must be completed by the end of the Summer of the 2015-16 academic year with a final project summary detailing activities and assessment submitted to the Academic Affairs office by August 31, 2016. Funded participants will be asked to share their results with colleagues during one or more public forums (Faculty Retreat, Faculty Newsletter, Teaching Circle, Friday Conversation, etc.).


[*] Community connection grants will be eligible for a Learning Community stipend and mini-grant when applicable, but not eligible for a Service Learning stipend.

 

 


 

Faculty-Student Summer Research Fellowships

These are available to students working with faculty on significant scholarly projects in any of the disciplines taught at Augustana College. For their help in mentoring students in a summer research experience, a faculty member will be awarded an honorarium of $1000. For further information, see Bill Hammer (Geology), and consult the summer research website on CampusNet (log-in required).

More information...


Learning Community Stipends

Deadline: Ongoing. Mini grant applications are due one month before the LC is scheduled to be taught.
Notification: Ongoing; funds added to the balance of PMA account

Description: Beginning in the 2012-13 academic year, this policy will replace the previous policy of awarding $500 per instructor per LC course each time the LC is offered.

  • Instructors offering a new LC will be awarded a $170 per credit hour stipend per instructor, per LC created (this would mean $510 per new, 3-credit LC course).
  • Instructors offering continuing LCs will be awarded a $100 per credit hour stipend.
  •  Instructors offering continuing LCs can apply for an additional $70 per credit hour assessment mini-grant.

To apply for a mini grant, please complete this document and submit to Associate Dean Kristin Douglas.

 


 

Humanities Fund

As part of a Challenge Grant received in 1982 from the National Endowment for the Humanities, a $100,000 permanent endowment has been established to support special programs in the humanities.  Earnings from this endowment are used for student and faculty enrichment opportunities as well as for the development and enhancement of courses and programs in the humanities; an "average" award for the Fund is $500.  NEH defines “humanities” to include:

language, linguistics; literature; history; jurisprudence; philosophy; archaeology; comparative religion; ethics; the history, theory, and criticism of the arts; those aspects of the social sciences which have humanistic content and employ humanistic methods; and the study and application of the humanities to the human environment with particular attention to the relevance of the humanities to the current conditions of national life.

We will give priority to proposals submitted one month before the start of the term in which the project or event is to be held.  Thus the recommended deadlines for (2013-14) Winter Term projects will be October 18th and the recommended deadline for Spring Term projects will be February 10. While we will still accept proposals submitted any time during the year, those proposals submitted on or before the deadline will have a better chance of being funded.


There are two categories for funding: 

1. Humanities Fund project
(e.g. campus visitors, humanities-related event reception, field trip and related transportation costs etc.)

 2. Curriculum Fund project
(e.g. establishing a program/center; planning by faculty for an off- campus study opportunity for students; developing a summer seminar for faculty with related interests; creating a speaker/ convocation series, etc.)

Applications should include, in no more than 1000 words:

Name(s) of proposer(s)

Project goals

Description of project

Timetable of project

Proposed budget for project and other sources of funding accessed

Description of how the project will be assessed

Anticipated impact of the project

A grant report is due after the funded event.

Direct all proposals to the committee chair, Margaret Farrar.

 


 

Service-Learning and Vocational Reflection Course Development Grants

Augustana's Service-Learning Office and Center for Vocational Reflection encourage and support members of the campus community in continually enriching the learning environment through meaningful reflection and service. We want to nurture commitment, understanding, and responsibility so that our graduates not only have successful careers, but also contribute to their communities and our society, and live life with intention, integrity and generosity in the context of the world around us.

Over the past decade through previous initiatives, Augustana faculty have successfully and creatively integrated reflection and service-learning into a variety of courses on campus. To build upon this work and momentum, we are now requesting proposals from faculty for further integration with two new course design grants - one for developing service-learning courses, and another for integrating reflection. Both grants offer a $500 award for a faculty member's ongoing or to-be-developed course. $250 will be distributed upon grant approval and the remaining $250 will be distributed either upon the first day of the term (Service Learning grant) or after the submission of a post-term reflection (Reflection grant). Grant applications are rolling and will be accepted throughout the year as funds remain available.


The Reflection Grant provides further incentive for a faculty member to integrate purposeful and integrative reflection into a course. Reflection at its heart is "considering for further understanding," and helps students make sense of, see importance in, and find meaning in their educational experiences. Proposals are encouraged therefore to engage students in reflection that might (a) deepen their critical understanding of content and its meaning, (b) relate prior knowledge and other coursework with the proposed course material, and (c) help students consider the implications of their undergraduate experience upon their own self-awareness and future direction.

The Service-Learning Grant provides an incentive for a faculty member to develop a proposal for a "Service-Learning Designated Course." Service-learning is "a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility and strengthen communities" (National Service-Learning Clearinghouse). The community served, whether local or afar, must establish the objective of the service project.

*Individual courses are not eligible to receive both grants.

Contact Ellen Hay, Interim Director of the CEC (x8614) and Ryan White, Director of the Center for Vocational Reflection (x8287) in the Community Engagement Center for grant applications, additional information, or for assistance in developing your application proposal.