INNOVATE 4.0: CLA Undergraduate Education Fund

Overview

The College of Liberal Arts envisions an energized commitment to undergraduate programs as essential to a Purdue education that prepares sought-after graduates for meaningful careers and inspired leadership. In support of that commitment, Dean David Reingold established Innovate, a recurring undergraduate education fund, in 2015.

Creativity among the faculty is the most important asset in developing new advances in undergraduate education. Innovate supports bold, new ideas that transform course offerings, fuel meaningful innovation across the curriculum, and enhance the student experience.

For 2018-2019, the Innovate fund will distribute up to $150,000 for proposals to enhance undergraduate education. The focus for Innovate 4.0 will be the review and revitalization of low/under-enrolled majors and/or courses.

Proposal Topics:

Priority 1: Low Enrollment Majors

Several majors across the College of Liberal Arts are under-enrolled, meaning there are not enough majors to sustain enrollments in major-specific courses. At present, almost half of our academic programs have less than 10 identified primary majors. Innovate funding will support schools/departments in efforts to develop plans to reimagine these majors, combine them with other majors, or discontinue these majors. Faculty are encouraged to consider removing course prerequisites and modifying courses that must be taken in sequence when appropriate. Funding opportunities include market research, professional consultants in both the area of specialization and/or curriculum development and improvement, site visits to peer model programs, and other associated costs to support the effort of major and significant curriculum review and/or redesign.

Priority 2: Low Enrollment Courses

There are many lecture-format courses in the College of Liberal Arts that are consistently unable to meet required enrollments. CLA requires 100 and 200 level courses to enroll 15 students or more, and 300 and 400 level courses to enroll 10 students or more. For the past three years, half of the under-enrolled courses at Purdue are from the College of Liberal Arts. Essential courses, required for the major or degree completion, that are consistently under-enrolled might benefit from review and renewal. Academic units and/or individual instructors are encouraged to submit proposals to support the radical redesign of these courses to improve enrollments and viability. Strong proposals would include substantial data and research from aspirational peers who have solved these problems using unique and inventive solutions or new and innovative ways to address problems that would be piloted within the College of Liberal Arts at Purdue. Funding opportunities include market research, professional consultants in both the area of specialization and/or curriculum development and improvement, site visits to peer model programs, and other associated costs to support the effort of major and significant curriculum review and/or redesign.

Priority 3: Open Call

Innovate 4.0 welcomes proposals for any and all ideas related to innovation in undergraduate education. These ideas could come from any level of faculty or staff, but must be endorsed and approved by the head of the appropriate school/department.  Examples include new/revised majors, minors, certificates, or courses, inventive learning communities, partnership with Cornerstone, Degree in 3, and/or Degree+, or any other idea related to the enrichment of undergraduate education in the humanities, social sciences, or the arts.

The focus must be undergraduate education and the goals must be to serve existing students better and/or to attract new students to the college. Proposals will be evaluated on their potential to serve current students or attract new students, from within and outside of Purdue University and the College of Liberal Arts.

Application Process

The application process for Innovate 4.0 will begin with an email memo to Senior Associate Dean Joel Ebarb jebarb@purdue.edu. In addition to general applicant information such as name, title, department, etc. and a title for the proposal, the memo should include the following information in three distinct paragraphs:

  • Where we are now: Succinctly define the current situation, and clearly articulate the challenge to be solved.
  • Where we want to go: Describe the ideal outcome and provide clear goals, strategies, and benchmarks of success.
  • How we plan to get there: Explain your plan for solving the problem and what resources would be necessary to achieve this goal.
  1. The entire proposal should be no more than two printed pages.
  2. There is no need for a budget to be included in the preliminary proposal.
  3. You need not provide extensive supporting data and research at this time, but you may be called upon to provide this information as the proposal develops.
  4. If the memo is not sent from the school/department head, they must be cc’d in the email, which will serve as their endorsement of the preliminary proposal.

After submission, Senior Associate Dean Ebarb will review your proposal, ask for clarification if needed, and schedule a meeting to discuss next steps. If selected for final review, the proposal will be developed to include a budget and appropriate supporting documents. Once a final proposal is complete it will be shared with Dean David Reingold for his review.

Proposals will be reviewed upon submission. Awards will be made until all funds are expended for the year.

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