Funding, Grants & Awards | News

Academic Partnerships Opens Latest Round of Online Learning and Teaching Grants

Educators in institutions that work with Academic Partnerships programs have about two weeks to apply for grants related to online learning research. The company expects to issue about $50,000 in grants up to $3,000 for individual proposals and up to $5,000 for collaborative research. The projects are expected to be "scholarly and worthy of publication in refereed journals," according to the grant information page.

The Texas-based firm works with colleges and universities to develop and launch online versions of face-to-face programs. Its services include providing capital to develop an online campus, faculty support for doing course conversion, a learning management system, marketing and recruiting and student retention. The partner institution handles admission and enrollment, all aspects of curriculum and instruction and credentialing.

The company said preference would be given to proposals in three areas: retention, student engagement and assessment of adult learning in online environments. To be eligible, the faculty member needs to teach currently in a program that is working with Academic Partnerships and needs to include some aspect of quality improvement for online teaching and learning. Proposals are being accepted through October 3, 2014.

"Academic Partnerships is committed to supporting research that broadens the scholarship on the effectiveness of online learning," said Melissa Kaulbach, vice president of academic services. "Though still an emerging field of academic inquiry, online learning has been gaining substantial importance in higher education, and we are pleased to support the advancement of its understanding through our faculty research grant program."

Among the nine recipients of grants during the 2013 program were Annette Hux, a professor at Arkansas State University, who researched career advancement and financial opportunities for graduates in online educational leadership programs, and Amy Leh, a professor and instructional technology coordinator at California State University, San Bernardino, who studied the effects of "innovative professional development" on online course design. Earlier this year the company announced recipients for its first round of grants in 2014. Their final reports are expected to be published this fall.

Recipients of grants in this second round will learn about their selection in writing by November 7. Grant winners will be announced on Faculty eCommons, a company-sponsored site that supports online faculty. Grant applications are available on the Academic Partnerships site.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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