We offer assistance to faculty developing grants related to education and educational evaluation.
While we do not write the grants ourselves, we can offer several levels of help. Please get in touch as soon as possible.
If you come two months ahead, we will:
- Work with you to develop the grant by helping you formulate learning objectives and educational activities, find supporting literature, and develop an evaluation plan.
- Offer extensive feedback on your grant (2-3 appointments).
If you come two weeks ahead, we will:
- Consult with you (1 appointment).
- Offer follow-up feedback (via email or phone).
If you come less than two weeks ahead, we will:
- Refer you to grant-writing resources.
Letters of support
If the timing and conditions fit, we would be happy to write a letter of support. However, we cannot write such letters without proper notice or without reviewing and discussing the grant in detail.
In preparing your grant, you must develop an evaluation plan to determine if you achieved your educational objectives. We can help you develop your plan. Always consult the grant guidelines and/or your program officer to see who should conduct the evaluation. Some grants allow the evaluation to be conducted internally i.e. by you or members of your project team. Others require you to use an external evaluator who works at Northwestern but is NOT a member of your own project team, while others require an evaluator who is NOT an employee of Northwestern. You must allocate appropriate funds for conducting the evaluation. Certain foundations and agencies, such as NSF, expect you will allocate a substantive portion of the budget (10 to 15 percent) for evaluation of the education component.
Please note: we are not funded to provide free evaluation, nor are we staffed to work on every grant for which we are initially consulted.
Writing the education component
Consider the following:
- Create clear educational objectives (refer to Bloom’s taxonomy).
- Provide rationale (supported by literature) for what you are doing and why it is important.
- Provide support and evidence for why what you are proposing is likely to be successful (why you've chosen particular pedagogical methods and approaches).
- For each educational objective and activity, develop a plan that includes a way of assessing a) how well the activity went (formative evaluation) and b) whether the objective was achieved (summative evaluation).
- Include a plan to disseminate your educational work.
- Always follow the NSF guidelines for your specific grant.
- A guide for developing an educational evaluation plan
- Sample evaluation plans
- Online Evaluation Resource Library (OERL) website
- Evaluation-development checklist on the OERL website
- The National Science Foundation's User-Friendly Handbook for Project Evaluation