The Alex and Brit d’Arbeloff Fund for Excellence in Education is soliciting preliminary proposals from MIT faculty members for ambitious projects to enhance the educational experience of our undergraduates. Projects that strengthen faculty-student direct interactions, that cross disciplinary boundaries, that explore new pedagogies including online components in residential education, and that aspire to provide dynamic, effective teaching are all appropriate.
Projects can be focused at any level of undergraduate education, but priority will be given to projects that:
- Improve the first-year academic experience
- Enhance the General Institute Requirements (GIRs)
- Enrich faculty-student interactions in the residence-based curriculum
- Transcend specific departmental curricula
Proposals that make use of online tools to improve student learning are encouraged, as are those that involve collaborative efforts and span multiple subjects with the potential to affect large numbers of students over time. Initiatives may be more practicable as small-scale projects, such as intense hands-on experiences or pilots in pedagogical innovation, but they should be designed with scalability in mind. A project’s survival should not be entirely dependent upon the continuing involvement of only one key faculty member or key students.
The preliminary proposal (2-3 pages) should include:
1. A detailed description of the project, including your planned activities and timeline
2. A description of the educational need that your project will address including answers to the following questions:
a. How will the project enhance your teaching?
b. How will it improve the students' experiences in the classroom?
c. What is the potential impact of the project at MIT?
Estimate number of students served now and in the future.
3. A description of resources and staffing required, noting interactions among faculty across departments or schools and/or among faculty and other members of the extended MIT community, such as alumni/ae, close industrial partners, research scientists, and partners at other institutions
4. The estimated total budget for the project with a list of other secured or requested sources of funding
5. The estimated amount to be requested from the d’Arbeloff Fund with a list of the personnel or items to be funded
6. A summary of the outcomes of any previous projects that the applicant(s) had supported by the d’Arbeloff Fund, noting unspent funds from those projects
The d’Arbeloff Fund Review Committee will review the preliminary proposals; applicants who pass the initial screening process will be invited to submit final proposals.
For the final proposal, applicants will be asked to address comments and questions from Committee members and provide final budgets. They must submit letters of support from their department heads addressing the sustainability of the projects after the d’Arbeloff funding terminates.
Preliminary proposals are due by Friday, October 23, 2015.
Final proposals are due by Monday, December 14, 2015.
Send proposals to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, please contact Dean Mary Enterline (3-9763) or Dean Dennis Freeman (3-6056).
Requirements and Restrictions
- The d’Arbeloff Fund Review Committee places a high value on assessment of educational innovations. Grant recipients will be required to attend a workshop on assessment.
- The Committee also encourages sharing of good practices and results. Grant recipients will be required to submit final reports on their projects.
- Participation in projects funded by these awards, whether participation is for compensation or as a volunteer, qualifies as “significant use” of MIT Administered Resources under MIT Policies and Procedures. In accordance with the treatment of “significant use,” ownership of intellectual property, including copyrights in instructional materials and curriculum, will vest with MIT.
- For multiple year projects, funding commitments will be made on a year-by-year basis.
- The d’Arbeloff resources are intended primarily for faculty-led initiatives, with the understanding that such initiatives may also involve non-faculty participants.