Teaching Communities Grants

We're pleased to offer funding to support groups who regularly engage in discussions of teaching and learning topics or issues. Funding is available for start-up or existing communities.

The purpose of these grants is community-building around teaching and learning including to shared experiences and exhanging expertise, strategies, and solutions. This program is not appropriate for one-time meetings or retreats, supporting the activities of individuals, very small groups, or faculty research groups.

To apply, please send your answers to the following questions in an email to the program lead, Cindy Decker Raynak cdr1@psu.edu with answers to the following questions:

  1. What is the name and focus of your community?
  2. How often do you intend to interact (e.g. monthly, 3x/semester)?
  3. Who will serve as the organizer and point-person?
  4. Who has already agreed to participate? Please include a list.
  5. What are your spending plans for the grant funds? (see below for spending restrictions)

Funds available: up to $1000 per community, per academic year. The Institute will determine the funding. Some Communities have obtained additional funds from their college or campus. Funds may be used only to support activities of the community related to teaching and learning such as books, resources, or modest group meals. These funds may not be used for prizes or gifts, stipends, research, conference attendance, or retreats.

Per Penn State's rules for endowment spending, all purchases must be made by our staff; expenses may not be transferred to our budget. Unused funds will revert to the Institute on May 15.

Teaching Communities funded this year. If you would like to join an existing community please contact the listed member.

  • Arts & Architecture Sustainability Teaching Community — Mihyun Kang
  • Behrend Faculty Teaching Community — David Kahl & Qi Dunsworth
  • Fayette Faculty Teaching Community — R. Kevin Maxwell
  • Improv & Pedagogy Teaching Community, University Park — James Tierney
  • Innovative Teaching at Penn State (ITAP), University Park — William (Bill) Goffe
  • Language Teaching Community, University Park — Heather McCoy & Susana Prudencio
  • Liberal Arts Teaching Community, University Park — Josh Wede
  • Online Teaching — Learning, University Park — Chris Gamrat
  • STEM Teaching Community, University Park — Julia Kregenow & Stephen (Steve) VanHook

Interested in starting a new community or supporting existing one?

Pennsylvania map of Penn State campuses with the Faculty Teaching Community locations indicated.

Communities may be proposed by:

  • faculty of any rank or title
  • administrators responsible for supporting teaching
  • staff who support teaching or provide faculty development
  • graduate students who teach

Topics might include:

  • discipline-based teaching
  • inclusive teaching
  • engaging learners
  • teaching problem solving
  • assessing student learning
  • teaching large courses
  • online teaching
  • teaching & learning scholarship
  • evaluating teaching

The possibilities are endless; contact Cindy Raynak to discuss your ideas today!