Instructions and Guidelines for CTL Course Activity Grants

Applications Open November 1st, 2018
Applications Due December 1st, 2018

The Claremont Colleges Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) offers grants to support course (re)development and enhancement. These grants may be used for things such as, but not limited to, supplies or equipment, support from Claremont Colleges librarians, support for student assistants, and conference travel and registration fees.

Priority will be given to requests for projects that

  1. Have a high likelihood of resulting in demonstrably enhanced learning outcomes for students and/or faculty,
  2. Have a high likelihood of resulting in greater inclusivity in the classroom, broader participation within a particular area of study, or more equitable learning outcomes for students,
  3. Result in generalized learning that can be shared with other instructors,
  4. Enable the grantee to do something that they would not be able to do otherwise,
  5. Enable durable, sustainable improvements after the conclusion of the grant period,
  6. Leverage existing infrastructure at the Claremont Colleges (e.g. existing centers such as the Hive or IFC, expertise of colleagues, resources available through the Claremont Colleges Libraries, or CTL events and programs),
  7. Build on current evidence-based teaching practices in the grantee’s discipline,
  8. Meet needs that cannot be met through other sources of funding.

All faculty, including visiting and part-time faculty, as well as instructional staff at all seven Claremont Colleges are eligible to apply for these funds.  Applicants should, however, have a reasonable assumption of teaching the course under consideration at least twice in the future. The CTL will prioritize awarding grants to faculty who have previously not received funding from the CTL. Previous CTL grantees will be more successful if they can demonstrate how the new proposed work is different from or builds on previously awarded projects. The CTL will also attempt to distribute funds equitably across institutions and disciplines and to create a diverse and broadly representative set of grantees.

Examples of faculty projects that could be good candidates for CTL funding:

  • Working with Claremont Colleges librarian to replace expensive textbooks and course materials with open-source or low-cost alternatives
  • Working with a student over the summer to redesign a course to involve project-based learning
  • Performing preliminary “action research” on some teaching-related question that could set the stage for a larger scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL)/discipline-based education research (DBER) project
  • Attending a conference to learn a new instructional strategy, implementing it in a course, and sharing those experiences with others at the Claremont Colleges

Before applying, please consider whether there are other sources of funding that may be more appropriate to support your course enhancement ideas. Here are some sources to consider:

  • Your academic dean and/or department chair may have resources to support course enhancements, especially if they are specific to a new initiative at your campus.
  • (5C only) The Hive offers course activity grants for projects that infuse creative collaboration and active learning into courses
    https://creativity.claremont.edu/category/course-grants/
  • (5C only) IDAAS (Intercollegiate Department of Asian American Studies)
    http://idaas.pomona.edu/programs/events/request-funding/
  • (5C only) EnviroLab Asia offers a variety of funding for faculty:
    http://envirolabasia.claremont.edu/resources/opportunities/
  • The IFC (Intercollegiate Feminist Center) offers funding for feminist and gender studies-related events:
    http://colleges.claremont.edu/ifc/resources/funding
  • Your institution’s IT department may have funds to support the purchase of teaching-related software and hardware. Since these kinds of expenditures are usually ongoing (e.g. annual license fees, equipment maintenance), they may be more appropriate for your IT department rather than the CTL.
  • Your disciplinary organizations or professional societies may also offer grants to support teaching-related activities.

Components of a complete application: 

  1. A completed online application (https://goo.gl/forms/jubThDN7EC3UB3Y12), which
    1. Collects contact information from everyone involved in the grant, including Vitae for each grantee, which should be uploaded as a pdf in the online form.
    2. Describes the activities that are being proposed, why the activities would be helpful, and when the activities would take place (a grant abstract)
    3. Explains and justifies the funds that are being requested (a proposed budget)
    4. Addresses, with relevant evidence, as many of the eight priorities listed above as apply to your project. (The CTL’s growing resource database may help you find relevant evidence)

To aid in your preparation, you can view the application as a pdf here

Notes on allowable expenditures and total budget for your grant proposal:

  • Because these grant funds are made possible by a generous gift from the Mellon Foundation, there are some restrictions on the kinds of expenditures that can be requested. CTL Course Activity Grants cannot be used for food, entertainment, or course buy-outs.
  • Course (re)development is an expected duty for most full-time faculty, and thus a faculty stipend is unlikely to be funded. Any requested stipend must be justified via an explanation of why that work falls beyond the usual scope of course development work at your institution, or involves other extenuating circumstances.
  • Don’t forget to include sales tax, when it is appropriate.
  • The CTL has about $30,000 annually available for these grants. The goal is to award roughly ten grants a year with an average amount of $3,000 per grant.

Applications will be reviewed by CTL staff and Advisory Board.  Funds cannot be used for expenditures that take place prior to successful grant notification. We hope to notify awardees prior to the start of the Spring Semester. The CTL will work with successful grantees to assess the impact of their projects and to share their completed work with the Claremont Colleges.  All successful grantees will be expected to submit a post-grant report to the CTL and, if possible, be available for public sharing of their work at CTL events.

Questions about course activity grants? Please send an email to ctl@claremont.edu or speak to any CTL staff or Advisory Board member (https://teaching.claremont.edu/contact-us/) prior to submission.

Congratulations to the grant recipients from our March 2018 application cycle!