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Guidelines for Cross-Disciplinary and Departmental Teaching Circle Mini-Grants

  • Administered by the Center for Teaching Excellence, Reflective Practice Project

    Funded by the Office of the Provost

    Submission Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on Friday, December 2, 2016

    Notification by: Friday, December 16, 2016

    Inquiries and Electronic Submission:

    Dr. Heide Witthöft
    heide@iup.edu, 724-357-2320


    The purpose of the Cross-Disciplinary and Department Teaching Circle Mini-Grants is to support Teaching Circles, by helping them to achieve clear, well-defined outcomes which will enhance the teaching skills of its members or add to the Teaching Circle’s knowledge of the scholarship of teaching and learning. Outcomes could include changes in syllabi with a supporting rationale based on reading and discussion in the Teaching Circle, a presentation based on work done by its members, a publication which grows out of the work of the Teaching Circle, or other appropriate outcomes.


    The Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE), through the Reflective Practice (RP) Project, has encouraged and supported the organization of Teaching Circles for many years. 

    While the rewards of participating in a productive Teaching Circle are many, these mini-grants recognize the hard work involved and add monetary resources, albeit small, to help achieve the desired outcomes.

    Grants may be used for:

    • books and other educational materials (to include resources not otherwise available or obtainable by the IUP Libraries)
    • software, hardware, and courseware for curriculum development
    • student help with projects
    • faculty training costs
    • honoraria for speakers
    • website development
    • other appropriate activities that support teaching and faculty development as teacher-scholars

    Grants may NOT be used for:

    • food and beverages
    • marketing of academic programs
    • non-Teaching Circle related expenses

    Monies Available

    The maximum award is $500. The reviewers may award less than what the Teaching Circle has requested.


    Any Department or Cross-Disciplinary Teaching Circle may apply. Applicants must have registered their Teaching Circle with the Reflective Practice Project. Grant proposals will be awarded up to 20 points in each of the following categories for a maximum of 100 points:

    • impact of project on student learning
    • impact of project on faculty learning
    • feasibility of project
    • overall quality of proposal (including completeness and clarity of proposal)
    • quality of budget rationale

    Submission Date

    The December 2, 2016, submission deadline is firm. Please submit an electronic copy of your proposal, in Word format, to Heide Witthöft (heide@iup.edu) by 4:30 p.m.

    Review Process

    The Reflective Practice Co-directors will evaluate the proposals and select those that are to be funded. Awards notification will be on or before Friday, December 16, 2016.

    The Mini-Grant Proposal must include the following:

    • Completed cover sheet
    • A one-page proposal (maximum 500 words) including:
      • The goals and objectives that you have for your Teaching Circle
      • If your proposal relates to a course, please also include:
        • The number and name of the course on which you will be working
        • Expected enrollment and number of sections(s) offered
        • Current syllabus
        • Budget and rationale for how the award will be used.

    Important Notice

    Any work associated with the Mini-Grant must be completed during the 2016-2017 academic year. The Teaching Circle will need to provide a brief summary report of the outcomes of their Mini-Grant project for inclusion in the printed program for the Reflective Practice Recognition Dinner on April 26, 2017 and on the CTE website. This report (200-250 words) is due by April 14, 2017. Specific instructions will be sent out in late March 2017. The report is to be submitted electronically in Word format to Heide Witthöft.

    Application Form

    Examples of Successful Mini-Grant Applications

    Mini-Grant Proposal Evaluation Sheet