Funding Opportunities for Faculty Initiatives
At Western, teaching support services and workshops are regularly offered by the Center for Instructional Innovation and Assessment (CIIA), Writing Instruction Support, the Writing Center, and the Center for Service- Learning. In addition, faculty are invited to seek funding and support for faculty-development events and programs of their own design. Support includes logistical assistance with meeting arrangements, announcements, posters, etc. The typical funding limit is $5,000 for a program or project involving many faculty.
- Application is by a letter of proposal outlining the purposes of the event or program, the faculty served, expected results and a proposed budget.
- Applications may be submitted at any time.
- Applications are submitted to Steve VanderStaay and reviewed by the Faculty Advisory Board of the CIIA.
- Projects must be assessed for their impact upon instruction.
Examples of Funded Projects
The Faculty GUR Group was funded to establish a year-long sequence of workshops designed to improve instruction in the GURs. Faculty present lessons from their GURs and discuss the content and instructional methods in monthly presentations attended by all participants. The CIIA schedules, communicates and advertises the events. Faculty participants receive a modest honorarium upon completion of the program; the program coordinators receive a stipend of $1,000 for directing the year-long project. This project is ongoing.
Results: Past participants reported that the project improved their teaching, inspired and sustained their efforts to teach quality GUR courses, increased their understanding of student experience in the GUR program, and enhanced their appreciation of the value of a strong liberal arts core experience.
Computer Science Faculty were funded to attend a week-long "Best Instructional Practices" workshop for infusing high-impact strategies into their curricula and teaching.
Results: Faculty reported that they were inspired and reinvigorated in their teaching. Each participant piloted new instructional strategies in their classes, assessing the results.
- Interested faculty are welcome to discuss their idea with the VPUE.
- The VPUE can fund teaching-related materials. For instance, faculty occasionally ask about support for a teaching-related faculty book club, wherein we would purchase books faculty selected for discussion. Such a project would be eligible for funding.
- Funding for faculty-initiatives to improve upper division instruction is limited. Most VPUE funding must be directed to projects that impact GUR instruction. Projects that impact teaching at all levels are eligible.
- Departmental projects, such as the Computer Science project described above, are typically cofunded by the college or department.
- Single faculty projects are not eligible for VPUE funding through this program. However, Deans or Chairs may request that the VPUE match their support for a teaching-related faculty development initiative, such as a teaching-related workshop.
- Available funding varies from year to year, depending upon the costs of other teaching-related events.