The Excellence Fund for Learning and Teaching Innovation
Rewarding excellence and promoting courageous and innovative ideas in research and teaching
Find out more
The College’s Strategy 2015-20 encourages Imperial to act courageously and innovatively when pursuing new opportunities.
The President, Professor Alice Gast, has dedicated one million pounds per year to reward excellence, while promoting courageous and innovative ideas in research and teaching.
Half of this has established the new Excellence Fund for Learning and Teaching Innovation which will be used to support educational initiatives that will challenge our students to fulfil their potential. Those receiving funds will help to form a community of excellent and innovative teachers who will play a key role in promoting good practice and helping the College to deliver a world-class educational experience for all of our students. This funding is designed to give our staff the time and space to be bold, to take risks, to investigate and to learn.
In the third annual call, funding will be available to support innovative projects which support inclusion for Home students from under-represented groups at the College, focussing on supporting student success. Departments are encouraged to work together (either within or across Faculties) and to propose projects which have the potential to be implemented more broadly across College. All proposals should include a plan for evaluation. Funding is available to support three grants, each paying up to £50k in the first year. Extension funding may be made available for successful projects.
To apply, please review the Grant Information (below) and complete the Excellence Fund application form 2019.
Find out more about the projects in the first two years of the Fund in these news articles:
Funding is available to support three grants, each paying up to £50k. Funds can be used to support salary, consumables, professional services fees, travel and subsistence and equipment fees. Projects may apply for funding for a twelve month period and will be asked to indicate the profile of expenditure across financial years.
Where funds are used for personal salary support, this scheme will not be responsible for continued support after the initial funding. In addition, any costs around the ending of employment that result (directly or indirectly) in consequence of the scheme's limited fixed funding will need to be borne by the employing department/division.
How to apply
Departments are encouraged to work together (either within or across Faculties) and applications must be supported by the relevant Head(s) of Department or Vice-Dean (Education). The Excellence Fund application form 2019 is made up of eight sections:
Section 1. Applicant details
Section 2. Project title, plus brief description of intended use and impact of the funding
Section 3. The ways in which the project will support success and inclusion for Home students from under-represented groups at the College
Section 4. The plan for evaluating the impact and effectiveness of the project
Section 5. The ways in which the work will engage a diverse range of students in design, implementation and evaluation
Section 6. An indication of applicability in other Departments/Faculties and an outline of the ways in which the learning, if successful, might be disseminated across College
Section 7. A brief outline of the input required from the Centre for Higher Education Research and Scholarship
Section 8. Summary of past achievements in learning and teaching, including a demonstration of an ongoing commitment to developing professional practice in teaching within higher education
Section 9. Statement of support from the Head of Department or Vice-Dean (Education) as appropriate
Applications should be submitted by a Head of Department or their delegate by Friday 6 September 2019. Applications will be considered by the panel on Thursday 12 September 2019, and outcomes will be communicated to the applicants and their Head(s) of Department as soon as possible after this date.
Review and selection of applications
A review group chaired by the Vice-Provost (Education) including the Vice-Deans for Education, Assistant Provost (Learning & Teaching), Director, Centre for Higher Education Research and Scholarship, and Deputy President (Education) ICU will review the proposals. Applicants may be invited to attend an interview with panel members.
Proposals will be considered using the following criteria:
- The intended use and impact of the funding
- Alignment to the College’s plans to support inclusion and success for Home students from under-represented groups at the College
- The educational rationale and the contextual and theoretical underpinning of the proposed approach
- The plans for subsequent evaluation of impact
- Depth of student engagement in design, implementation and evaluation
- The difference the funding will make, including clear justification of why this funding scheme is appropriate
- Achievements in learning and teaching of applicants, including the demonstration of an ongoing commitment to developing professional practice in teaching within higher education
Information on how to access funds will be provided to successful applicants with their award letter. Funding will be available to start immediately.
Successful applicants will be required to report their progress to the Vice-Provost (Education).
Staff receiving grants will be expected to engage actively with a broad range of communication channels in order to share their findings.