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National Science Foundation: Discovery Research PreK-12

Deadline: November 14, 2017

The Discovery Research PreK-12 program (DRK-12) seeks to significantly enhance the learning and teaching of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and computer science (STEM) by preK-12 students and teachers, through research and development of STEM education innovations and approaches. Projects in the DRK-12 program build on fundamental research in STEM education and prior research and development efforts that provide theoretical and empirical justification for proposed projects. Projects should result in research-informed and field-tested outcomes and products that inform teaching and learning. Teachers and students who participate in DRK-12 studies are expected to enhance their understanding and use of STEM content, practices, and skills.

The DRK-12 program invites proposals that address immediate challenges that are facing preK-12 STEM education as well as those that anticipate radically different structures and functions of preK-12 teaching and learning. The DRK-12 program has three major research and development strands: (1) Assessment; (2) Learning; and (3) Teaching. The program recognizes the synergy among the three strands and that there is some overlap and interdependence among them. However, proposals should identify a clear focus of the proposed research efforts (i.e., assessment, learning, or teaching) consistent with the proposal’s main objectives and research questions. The program supports five types of projects: (1) Exploratory, (2) Design and Development, (3) Impact, (4) Implementation and Improvement, and (5) Conferences and Syntheses. All five types of projects apply to each of the three DRK-12 program strands.

Amount: $57,000,000 is available for grants anticipated to be made as follows:

  • 8-13 Level I awards at up to $450,000 with a duration up to three years
  • 5-8 Level II awards at up to $3,000,000 with duration up to four years
  • 1-4 Level III awards at up to $5,000,000 with duration up to five years
  • 5 Conference/Synthesis awards: Synthesis proposals are up to $300,000 and two years duration; conference proposals are up to $100,000 and one year duration
  • One Resource Center with a budget of up to $3,500,000 will be supported for a duration of 3 years in the 2018 fiscal year

Eligibility: Universities; colleges; non-profit, non-academic organizations such as independent museums, observatories, research laboratories, professional societies and similar organizations located in the U.S. that are directly associated with educational or research activities; U.S. commercial organizations, especially small businesses with strong capabilities in scientific or engineering research or education; and state and local governments.

Link: https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2017/nsf17584/nsf17584.htm

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