2018‑19 Active Learning Project Funding

The Office of the Provost is pleased to announce the 2nd call for proposals for funding of Active Learning Projects under Associate Vice-President Academic's Academic Innovation Program.

What is Active Learning and how signifigant is it?
Active Learning is the process by which students are activley engaged in the learning process through instructional methods that differ from 'traditional' lecturing. James Lang explains in his book, "Small Teaching" (Jossey-Bass, 2016, ISBN-13:978-11118944493), that even small amounts of active learning inserted into a lecture can have signifigant positive effects on student performance (this can be as little as 10% of lecture time). 

For a list of active learning examples, please click on the following link:

Active Learning Activities

  • Question and Answer - (Students respond orally to questions, comments, etc.)
  • Short Reflective Writing Activity - (One -minute paper, muddiest point, free write, misconception/preconception check, etc.)
  • Think/Pair/Share - (Short individual response to posed question, followed by paired or small group discussion, followed by large group debrief/discussion)
  • Student-Generated Questions - (Students create questions for possible quizzes or exams capturing central elements of the course)
  • Formative Quizzes or Surveys - (Ungraded quizzes or surveys to determine comprehension)
  • Student Response Systems - (Students participate by responding to questions/statements using computer or other technologies)
  • Small Group Presentation and Discussion - (Presentation and discussion of course material led by students)
  • Self/Peer Assessment - (Activities that require students to assess and provide feedback on their own/peer performance based on articulated criteria)
  • Role Playing or Immersive Simulations - (Students performing specific roles in a learning situation, using guiding principles, specific rules, and structured relationships)
  • Debates - (Small or large group structured debates exploring central concepts, beliefs, or values)
  • Peer Instruction - (Structured opportunities where groups of students - normally a pair or small group - teach each other based on individual and collective responses to common posed questions)
  • Concept Maps - (Drawings or diagrams that show mental connections students make between a major concept presented and other related concepts previously learned)
  • Case-based Learning - (Scenarios that require students - individually or in groups - to integrate their skills to solve problems)
  • Jigsaws - (Team-based activities where students learn in one group, and then are mixed with other groups to undertake collaborative peer instruction to teach their peers their respective subject matter)
  • Problem-based or Cooperative Learning - (Students work together collaboratively to learn course material or develop course skills)
  • Research or Inquiry Based Learning - (Students learn through an authentic research or inquiry process from hypothesis or question formation to dissemination)

Applicant Eligibility

The Office invites faculty members, i.e., professors and instructors, to submit proposals. Please note: if a single faculty member submits several applications, the Committee reserves the right to rank their applications. 

Course Eligibility
Only undergraduate courses are eligible with priority for courses taken by first-year students.  All class sizes are eligible, but preference will be given to applications where the largest number of students can benefit. 

Award Details
Applicants can receive up to $2,000 each to support the development of one or more activities.  Total funding for this initiative is capped at $20,000.  Please note:  costs relating to purchasing of new software or specialized supplies, as well as costs of hiring teaching assistants and markers are eligible expenses.  Software that is similar to software Dalhousie has already licnced is not eligible for funding. 

Proposal Assessment
For the purposes of this call, the Associate Vice-President Academic will accept and review proposals that plan on designing and implementing one or more active-learning strategies.  Applications must clearly demonstrate how the proposed activity or activities will enhance students’ experience, engagement, knowledge acquisition and application over the Winter Term 2019.

Download and complete the Active Learning Projects Application Form and email to aif@dal.ca.

The submission deadline is November 23, 2018, but late submissions will be accepted until all funds are allocated.