Educational Research Mini-Grant Program

Call For Proposals 2019-2020

Now in it's eighth year, the Educational Research Mini-Grant program, funded through CAFE, provides grants to help instructors research a teaching and learning question that affects student, course or campus outcomes. Go to the Educational Research Mini-Grant Call for Proposals 2019-2020 for more information as well as  to the drop-down information below.

To submit a proposal, go here for a fillable PDF of the Educational Research Mini-Grant Proposal Template or here for a Word document of the form Educational Research Mini-Grant proposal template.

Results of these projects are shared via a presentation to the campus at the annual Missouri S&T Teaching and Learning Technology Conference in March as well as through a written final report. 

Grant Guidelines

All full-time faculty, full-time staff who also have teaching duties, or department chairs may apply. Team projects across disciplines are encouraged.

The purpose of the educational research mini-grant program is to provide funding for instructors to explore specific research questions about teaching and student learning, in order to promote a culture of the scholarship of teaching and learning. 

Projects can focus on design of educational innovations and outcomes, curriculum development, and pedagogical problem analysis, but must address a specific research question. 

Projects must address a specific research question that has the potential to address one or more of the following (at the course, department, college or university level):

  • Improve student engagement, retention and/or persistence
  • Improve attainment of student learning outcomes
  • Improve access and success for underrepresented students
  • Promote strategies for equity and inclusion
  • Enhance student professional development
  • Increase faculty-student interaction
  • Promote collaborative, experiential, technology-enhanced or active learning strategies

Awards will be up to $5,000 for individual projects and up to $8,000 for interdisciplinary team projects. Funds may be used for summer support, materials and supplies, printing, TA or GTA support, release time and/or project-related travel expenses. Any salary and wages of personnel need to have the appropriate fringe benefit added.

One-half of the funding will be available after awards are announced (June 1, 2019). One quarter of the funding will be released after an update is provided to the committee at the end of the 2019 fall semester. The remaining quarter of the funding will be released once the final report is submitted on Jan. 2, 2021. Contact the CAFE office at cafe@mst.edu if this is problematic for the implementation of your project.

Submit a letter of intent containing your research question and a brief abstract to CAFE (cafe@mst.edu) or mail to 207 Norwood by March 15, 2019.

Submit a full proposal on or before May 20, 2019, to the CAFE address above. Go here for a fillable PDF of the proposal form: Educational Research Mini-Grant Call for Proposals 2019-2020 or here for a Word document of the form: Educational Research Mini-Grant proposal template.Educational Research Mini-Grant Proposal Template 2018-19

The proposal should include:

  • Cover sheet (name, department, phone/email, project title, date, signature of department chair(s))
  • Research question
  • Purpose/objectives for project, including a literature review
  • Methodology and timeline (to be completed by December 2020)
  • Evaluation plan
  • Budget with justification
  • Deliverables and dissemination plan

Proposals will be reviewed by an educational research committee according to the Evaluation rubric for mini-grant proposals. Awards will be announced June 1, 2019.

  • Awardees must receive IRB approval within one month of proposal acceptance. For more information on IRB aproval, visit irb.mst.edu or contact Dr. Kathryn Northcut at irb@mst.edu.
  • Proposals will be reviewed by an educational research committee according to the Evaluation rubric for mini-grant proposals.
  • Awardees are required to present their findings at the March 2020 Teaching and Learning Technology Conference held at Missouri S&T.
  • March 15, 2019 – Letter of intent due to CAFE office (email cafe@mst.edu, or mail to 207 Norwood)
  • May 20, 2019 – Full proposal due to CAFE office (email cafe@mst.edu, or mail to 207 Norwood)
  • June 1, 2019 – Committee decisions announced, and 50% of funding available to awardees
  • December 2019 -- Awardee provides update to CAFE and 25% of funding released 
  • March 2020 -- Awardees present at Missouri S&T Teaching and Learning with Technology Conference
  • Jan. 2, 2021 – Final report due to CAFE office (email cafe@mst.edu, or mail to 207 Norwood); final quarter of funding released 

The final report for the project will be due to the CAFE office (email cafe@mst.edu or mail to 207 Norwood) no later than Jan. 2, 2021.

The final report should include:

  • Cover Sheet
  • Abstract & Research Question
  • Purpose of Project
  • Methodology
  • Results
  • Conclusion/Future Implications/Plans for Further Dissemination
  • Reflection on whether/to what extent the project has impacted your teaching, and/or student learning

Past Educational Research Mini-Grant Projects

Five educational research projects proposed by Missouri S&T faculty were funded for 2018-2019 as part of a mini-grant program which promotes scholarly inquiry into a question about teaching and learning. The Center for Advancing Faculty Excellence (CAFE) provided nearly $25,000 to fund the following projects:

  • "Impact of Exposure to Broad Engineering on Student Persistence," Kellie Grasman, lecturer, engineering management and systems engineering, $4,962.03.
  • "The Impact of Classroom Design on Active Learning," Michelle Schwartze, assistant teaching professor, teacher education and certification, $5,000.
  • "Evaluating the Impact of an Expanded Sophomore Design Curriculum for Aerospace Engineering Students," Jill Schmidt, assistant teaching professor; Warner Meeks, assistant teaching professor; Hank Pernicka, professor; mechanical and aerospace engineering, $4,500.
  • "Maximizing the Co-op Experience, Step 1", Bob Schwartz, professor, materials science and engineering; Bill Gillis, assistant teaching professor, civil, architectural and environmental engineering; K.M. Isaac, professor, mechanical and aerospace engineering; Doug Ludlow, professor, chemical and biochemical engineering; Ed Malone, professor, English and technical communication; Keith Nisbett, associate professor, mechanical and aerospace engineering; Joe Stanley, associate professor, electrical and computer engineering; Nathan Weidner, assistant professor, psychological science; Phil Whitefield, professor, chemistry; $8,000.
  • "Comparison of Learning Outcomes and Student Demographics Between Classroom-Based and Asynchronous Online Lectures in Large Enrollment Engineering Physics Courses," Jim Musser, assistant teaching professor, Agnes Vojta, associate teaching professor, physics, $2,500.
  • “Student-Centered Dynamic Syllabus Development for Mathematical Programming,” Dincer Konur, assistant professor, engineering management and systems engineering, $3,000
  • "Impact of Cross Functional Interdisciplinary Team Structure and Immersive Learning Environment on Students' Perception of Learning Experience, Engagement, and Course Satisfaction," Bih-Ru Lea, associate professor, and LiLi Eng, associate professor, business and information technology, $3,000.

Click here for the 2016-17 Educational Research Mini-Grant Final Reports

  • “Visualizing Research and Writing: Improving Student Self-Confidence Through Focus Groups and Library Interaction,” Jossalyn Larson, lecturer, English and technical communication, $2,500;
  • “Introducing and Evaluating Innovative Teaching Techniques in Economics Principles Classes,” Ana-Maria Ichim, assistant professor, and Sarah Steelman, assistant teaching professor, economics, $5,500;
  • “Evaluating the Impact of Interactive Technology in the Classroom on Students' Perceptions,” Elizabeth Cudney, associate professor, engineering management and systems engineering, $1,980;
  • “Do Flipped Lectures Increase Student Engagement With Course Material?” Katie Shannon, associate teaching professor, biological sciences, $3,500;
  • “Evaluation of Section Properties App for Mechanics of Materials,” Nicholas Ali Libre, assistant professor, civil, architectural and environmental engineering, $3,500;
  • “Analysis of Student Success in a Blended Laboratory Course by Trend Analysis in a Parallel Lecture Course,” Klaus Woelk, associate professor, chemistry, $4,050;
  • “Assessment of Freshman Mathematics Placement at Missouri S&T,” Stephanie Fitch, associate teaching professor, mathematics and statistics, $2,600.

Click here for the 2015-2016 Mini-Grant Final Reports.

  • “Assessment of Textbook-free Courses in the Biochemical Engineering field as Vehicles for Lifelong Learning,” Daniel Forciniti, professor, biochemical engineering, $4,720.
  • “Improving Understanding of Academic Integrity Among Undergraduate Students in STEM Fields” Amber Henslee, assistant professor, psychological science; and Susan Murray, professor, engineering management and systems engineering, $8,000.
  • "Development of a Conceptualized Guided Coding for the Course of Mathematical Foundation of Finite Element Methods,” Xiaoming He, assistant professor, mathematics and statistics, $4,732.
  • “Implementing Guided Group Activities to Improve Performance and Self-efficacy in College Algebra – Stage 2,” Kimberly Kinder, assistant teaching professor, mathematics and statistics, $4,500.

Click here for the 2014-2015 Mini-Grant Final Reports.

  • “Class Redesign for Chemistry 375 – Principles of Environmental Monitoring,” Yinfa Ma, Curators’ Teaching Professor of chemistry, $4,750.
  • “Developing, Implementing and Evaluating Active Learning Components for Traditional Engineering Lecture Courses,” Mary Reidmeyer, associate teaching professor of materials science and engineering, and Richard Brow, Curators’ Professor of materials science and engineering, $2,500.
  • “Face-to-Face Classroom Learning versus Synchronous and Asynchronous Distance Learning,” Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, professor, Business Information and Technology, $4,400.
  • “Flipping the Microbiology Laboratory to Improve Student Preparation and Increase Student Interaction,” David Westenberg, associate professor of biological sciences, $3,895.
  • “Implementing Guided Group Activities to Improve Performance and Self-Efficacy in College Algebra,” Kimberly Kinder, assistant teaching professor, mathematics and statistics, $2,500.
  • “Using ‘Conceptual’ and ‘Assessment’ Problems to Enhance Student Learning of Fundamental Concepts Taught in an Undergraduate ThermoFluid Mechanics Class,” Nishant Kumar, assistant teaching professor, mechanical and aerospace engineering, $3,955.

Click here for the 2013-2014 Mini-Grant Final Reports.