How to Apply

Marci Sortor and Beverly Nagel are pleased to solicit an eighth round of proposals for grants to pursue curricular collaboration at St. Olaf and Carleton. Proposals will be accepted through the online application form through Friday, September 29, in the three main categories described below.

Ambitious projects with activities or costs that do not fit strictly within those areas are also welcome, as are curricular activities that build on previously-funded projects, especially courses that are jointly taught by faculty members at both colleges or that link parallel departments.

Note that the colleges are likely to offer at least one more round of Broadening the Bridge collaborative grantmaking, in spring 2018 for activities over the second half of that calendar year. Depending on the availability of funding, a final round of grantmaking may occur in fall 2018.

Above all, the project seeks to foster proposals that investigate, propose, and implement far-reaching and sustainable changes to the colleges’ curriculum, especially at the departmental or program level. Projects will take place primarily (but not only) from November 2017 through spring 2018.

Exploration Grants for Inter-College Collaborations

Several grants of up to $7,500 each to small teams for activities such as

  • Visiting successful joint programs at other liberal arts consortia.
  • Investigating new shared curricular offerings – for example, a new course or course assignments.
  • Exploring ways to mitigate or resolve differences in our academic calendars—for example, “flipped” classes, asynchronous course meetings, or “modules” that run for less than a regular academic term.


Targeted Opportunity Grantstom_7768-M

Several grants of up to $20,000 each to pursue more ambitious joint curricular projects such as

  • Staging joint faculty workshops in which, for instance, pairs (or larger groups) of departments/programs discuss new directions in their disciplines/fields, examine specific topics or pedagogical approaches (e.g., digital scholarship or academic civic engagement), or otherwise stimulate further curricular collaboration.
  • Aligning prerequisites and curriculum structures so that students can cross-register or so that courses provide greater coverage and depth.
  • Developing new jointly-offered majors.
  • Creating and launching collaborative engaged-learning experiences, such as major-centered research or methods seminars or courses with experiential learning components.
  • Sponsor joint academic civic engagement projects in and around Northfield.
  • Launching intensive summer research collaborations, including
    • mentored undergraduate research experiences, especially in areas where this is a less common practice,
    • research that capitalizes on our colleges’ distinctive assets: special collections, archives, the Arboretum and Natural Lands, et cetera.


Course Release Funding


Major grants of up to roughly $50,000 each for a pair of faculty (one from each college) who can offer a team-taught course through their departments to students from both colleges.

Given the significant “start up” costs for faculty in developing team-taught courses that serve multidisciplinary needs, these grants should (but need not always) follow on an Exploration Grant project that laid the groundwork for the team-taught course. Course-release funding will then permit the faculty members to actually lead the course. The colleges expect that after being team-taught one or two times, such collaborative courses could then be taught by a single faculty member, either rotating between the campuses or with input from the faculty counterpart at the other college, ensuring the course’s sustainability.

The application form asks for essential but not extensive information about the project:

  • information about the applicants;
  • a description of the project, including a title, a one-sentence summary, a specific period of support, and a project description of up to 625 words;
  • details about and an explanation of the budget, which can include faculty stipends at the rate of $600 per week per person, travel costs, project materials, contracted services, or other expenses;
  • and a short statement on the likely trajectory of the project after an initial grant period.