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Teaching Enhancement Grants

CTL, in partnership with Information and Instructional Technology Services (IITS), offers Teaching Enhancement Grants with two rounds per year. Categories include teaching equipment, software, enhancement, assessment, matching fund requests, professional development, and teaching and learning seed grants.

Teaching Enhancement Grants

There are seven categories of grants: (1) Teaching Equipment (2) Teaching Software (3) Teaching Enhancement (4) Teaching Assessment (5) Matching Fund Requests (6) Professional Development and (7) Teaching and Learning Seed Grants.

Grant categories 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 applications are submitted through an online application process at https://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/webapps/teachinggrant.

Applications for Seed Grant funds should be submitted through the Enhancement grant category.

Applications for matching funds for other teaching grants (type 5) should be sent to David Chan at davidyt.chan@utoronto.ca

For categories 1-4 and 7, the deadline is October 15th.

For categories 5 and 6, there is a rolling deadline but applications must be made at least one month in advance of the time the funds are required. 

UTFA faculty with continuing stream appointments, or term appointments of at least three years.

Sessional Instructors 2 and 3 are also considered for the Professional Development grants. 

The following are the criteria that will be used in assessing proposals. Depending on the nature of the proposal and the level of competition, all criteria may not need to be addressed.

  1. Clarity of the proposal: Goals for the project are clearly described and thoroughly documented
  2. Consideration of best practices and pedagogical literature
  3. Alignment with specified learning outcomes in named courses
  4. Feasibility of the proposal: Proposal has a strong and innovative design with procedures and activities that are well defined, fully explained and linked to project goals
  5. Sustainability of the proposal: If the project is intended to continue beyond one year, the proposal outlines the resources available to make that happen       
  6. Appropriateness of the budget: Read guidelines
  7. Scope of impact for primary users, and number of students and degrees of impact
  8. Transferability/Shareability: Where applicable, the proposal indicates how the project, (ie. a learning object) could be used/shared by other courses and instructors
  9. Collaboration with other instructors: All named courses and instructors should sign off on proposal
  10. Alignment with the following (proposals will receive additional points for alignment with these): U of T integrated learning experiences (see below); Other U of T, UTSC or department educational priorities; CTL criteria (see below)
  11. Applications from faculty at all levels are welcome, but especially from faculty early in their careers

For Assessment Grant Proposals: The proposal clearly articulates how the innovation/activity/course will be assessed.

CTL Criteria

  • Adapts or develops courseware or instructional technology
  • Supports diversity, inclusivity and accessibility
  • Promotes writing and oral communication skills within the disciplines
  • Improves discipline-specific information literacy
  • Develops quantitative reasoning skills within the disciplines
  • Implements and models innovative teaching that uses active learning or provides timely feedback or promotes a sense of learning community (cooperation and reciprocity)
  • Includes collaborations that serve multiple courses and/or disciplines (strongly encouraged)

Special priority will be given to applications that will expand UTSC’s capacity to offer Integrated Learning Experiences (i.e. community-engaged learning, service learning, work integrated learning), as defined and discussed in U of T’s White Paper Rethinking Higher Education Curricula: Increasing Impact Through Experiential, Work-Integrated and Community-Engaged Learning.

These guidelines can help you develop a budget for your application. Please note that funds are to be used within 12 months from the date that they are awarded.

Each of the following are to be completed in the Teaching Enhancement Grant web app https://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/webapps/teachinggrant. Please bookmark this site.

(1) Teaching Equipment Grants provide for the purchase and/or repair of teaching equipment (excluding software). Requests should take into account that the fund has annual resources of $50,000. Complete your application in the web app. The next round of TEG has not yet opened.

(2) Teaching Software Grants are to enrich courses with the one time–only purchase of software or for the purchase of a software license(s) for a one-year period. Licensing beyond one year cannot be guaranteed and require reapplication for the relevant year. Requests for funding should take into account that the fund has annual resources of $12,000.

(3) Teaching Enhancement Grants (TEGs) generally deal with the people side of the enhancement of teaching. TEGs are for one-time-only projects, not for ongoing expenses. Course-related proposals that will result in the direct improvement of an existing or approved course will be considered (including adding Service Learning to course/program curriculum). Integration with existing resources and services is strongly recommended, and projects should have identified learning outcomes. The intent is to distribute funds as effectively as possible across meritorious proposals; requests should take into account that this fund has annual resources of $45,000. Awards are typically in the $500 to $5,000 range, usually for personnel and supplies. Funds from this award cannot be used to support an applicant's time, travel or conference attendance. For conferences, see item 5.

(4) Teaching Assessment Grants are for the purpose of supporting research on the efficacy of a particular teaching innovation or activity. Awards will be for a maximum of $1,000 per year per person. Funds from this award cannot be used to support an applicant’s time, travel or conference attendance.

(5) Matching funds: Some teaching grants external to UTSC require a guarantee of matching funds, such as the Instructional Technology Innovation Fund (ITIF). Faculty can apply to CTL for matching funds. Please note: Grants in this category that are approved by CTL will only be funded if the grant that they are matching is also approved for funding.

(6) The Professional Development Fund - This fund can support an instructor’s (as outlined below) attendance at a teaching-themed conference (such as the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education) or at a pedagogical session of a discipline-based conference. The maximum available for reimbursement of expenses (i.e. registration, travel, accommodation) is $300 per year for each applicant as follows:

  • UTFA Faculty (professor, teaching stream; lecturer/senior lecturer): One award per year for a teaching-related conference.
  • Sessional Lecturer II and III and Writing Instructor IIL One award per year for a teaching-related conference. This award is being offered on a trial basis. Applicant must be teaching at UTSC in the term that the application is submitted and the conference occurs. Special consideration will be given to pre-tenure professors and pre-promotion instructors in the teaching stream.

The funding cycle is May 1 to April 30. The process is as follows:

  • Apply using the web app. You can contact us in advance to check if the conference you want to attend qualifies. We will confirm our intention to reimburse or not.
  • If the conference attendance is approved for reimbursement, applicants should complete an expense reimbursement form after the conference. Original receipts must accompany the form. Awards must be claimed no later than two months after the conference.
  • You can contact David Chan in advance to ask about availability of funds (as there is a limited amount per year), or to see if the conference you're interested in qualifies for reimbursement or to receive details about reimbursement.

(7) The Teaching and Learning Seed Grant aims to fund innovative teaching projects that require subsequent yearly funding (up to three years). Projects can include, but are not limited to, course or program redesign, teaching strategies, and creating work-integrated or experiential learning experiences. These funds are intended to help instructors demonstrate efficacy and impact, with the intention of seeking additional departmental and/or external funding after the provided funding period. Successful applicants will be awarded up to $10,000 distributed equally over three years.

Criteria: The Teaching and Learning Seed Grant will be judged on all the same criteria as a Teaching Enhancement/Equipment/Assessment Grant, as well as the following:

  • Metrics: Applicants will be assessed on how the projects aim to measure success and impact. For example: reporting student performance prior to and after the changes or reporting student feedback or student surveys. Metrics will differ depending on the project's goals and may change from year to year. For more information, please consult with David Chan at davidyt.chan@utoronto.ca.
  • Sustainability: Applicants will be assessed on how the proposal aims to secure funding after the provided funding period. If applicants are aiming to acquire departmental funding, please speak to your chair well in advance, as they will have an opportunity to comment on the application after they have been submitted. 
  • Future Funding: Many of the funded proposals may be looking to their departments for long-term funding. It is imperative that you speak to your chair well in advance to begin the discussion to determine whether this is feasible. You should not be applying to this teaching grant if you have not first spoken to your chair and made your intentions clear that the aim is to transition the successful project into something long term. Applications with strong support from their chair or department heads will be given further merit.

 

Additional notes:

  • Funds will be provided for three years. When applying, please indicate how the funds will be used for each of the three years, providing a detailed breakdown of the budget across each year, and a specific timeline of phases and expenses. 
  • Grant recipients will be required to submit a yearly report, which includes sections on sustainability, impact and future growth. A yearly report document will be provided. Failure to provide a yearly report may be grounds to withdraw funding for the remainder of the funding period.
  • Grant recipients must present their project at a Teaching and Faculty Showcase, no later than 13 months after the end of the funding period. Recipients are strongly encouraged to present their project every year at the showcase, which will provide valuable feedback from the teaching community.
  • This fund differs from Teaching Enhancement Grants as the focus is on long-term development. Applicants should only apply to this grant if their project requires year-to-year funding (up to three years), in which the hope is to use these years to demonstrate impact and success to secure more long-term funding.
  • Applications that touch on institutional mandates, in addition to meeting all the requirements, will be given further merit. 
  • Applicants can only hold one Teaching and Learning Seed Grant at a time, even if they are not the primary applicant on the Teaching and Learning Seed Grant.
  • Although subtle changes and modifications may occur with the proposed project throughout the funding period, the fundamental goals of the project must remain the same over the span of the funding period. If changes do arise, please contact us.

It will take approximately six weeks for decisions to be made about applications and announced to applicants.

For successful projects, the project title, brief description and grant amount will be posted on the CTL website. Applicants will be asked to submit a two-page report on project outcomes within 12 months of the award. As well, successful applicants may be invited to take part in a local (virtual or event-based) showcase.

Thank you for your efforts to improve our teaching community.