Bringing Theory to Practice Project
Bringing Theory to Practice Project (BTtoP) is an independent project established in partnership with the Association of American Colleges and Universities, and funded by the S. Engelhard Center with support from the Charles Engelhard Foundation, the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation and other foundations and individuals. The project is based on evidence that engaged learning, civic engagement and development, and psychosocial well-being are interrelated; that colleges and universities are strategically situated to strengthen their relationship; and that building capacity for this purpose complements the educational mission and democratic purpose of higher education.
Bringing Theory to Practice (BTtoP) requests proposals in one of the following categories:
Category I. Seminar Grants
Seminar Grants up to $1,000 are available for institutions to bring together diverse members of the campus community for meaningful conversations which will result in institutional actions. Matching support is not required.
Category II. Program Development Grants
Program Development Grants up to $10,000 are available for institutions to enhance or extend a program which is consistent with our objectives. Institutional matching support is required. Grants may be renewable.
BToP’s areas of emphasis include:
* Civic engagement: Students participate in public work—such as, but not restricted to—social and political action, community organizing, issue advocacy, and other activities which contribute to actual changes. Community service or service learning by themselves are not necessarily forms of engagement, but they might become such when linked to learning, reflection and action that produce changes.
* Civic development: Refers to indicators and measures of civic outcomes, such as civic knowledge and skills, civic dispositions, caring for others and community, and personal and social responsibility.
* Engaged learning: Students are active participants in “deep” rather than “surface” learning. There are various curricular and co-curricular approaches that contribute to engaged learning, in addition to the usual lectures and seminars that characterize most curricula. Such learning raises expectations of students, enables them to consider how their learning affects and is affected by its application, and enhances the educational process by increasing their involvement in learning. Authentic engagement can contribute to civic development and promote psychosocial well-being of students.
* Psychosocial well-being: refers, at a minimum, to the presence of characteristics that typify positive mental health, such as a sense of direction, personal growth and fulfillment, social development, empathy, perspective-taking, resilience, mindfulness, and psychological flourishing.
* Building institutional capacity: institutional sustainability, rather than one-time events. BToP supports strategies for institutional change. Although it normally invests in institutions, it is also open to proposals that build capacity among clusters of institutions, such as the creation of a regional network of colleges and universities.
Amount: Category I: Up to $1,000 each; Category II: Up to $10,000 each.
Eligibility: U.S. institutions of higher education that are members of the Association of American Colleges and Universities at the time the proposal is submitted.
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