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Spencer Foundation: Conference Grants for Advancing Education Research

Deadline: December 21, 2016

The Spencer Foundation’s Conference Grant program is designed to provide support to scholars for small research conferences and focused symposia. The conference grant program intends to bring together researchers whose substantive knowledge, theoretical insight, and methodological expertise can be assembled in ways that build upon and advance best practices in education research.

Proposals are being sought from scholars whose interests are related to measuring educational quality and improvement. The foundation intends to encourage the research community to advance new and innovative research on this topic and to ultimately increase collaboration within the research community. It expects the field to propose research conferences that will spur robust exchanges leading to innovations in measuring educational quality and improvement in not only K-12 contexts, but also in early childhood education, out-of-school time programs, and post-secondary institutions. With the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), there has been a renewed focus on how public schools assess quality and the key markers for success. Under ESSA, states are now encouraged to move beyond traditional standardized test-based metrics and incorporate nonacademic factors as they determine the best way to measure school quality. This opens up the possibility for schools and districts to explore a range of learning outcomes alongside other measures such as opportunity structures for supporting learning. The Foundation is especially interested in proposals that seek to address, in a thoughtful way, equity issues in measuring educational quality. While this conference grant announcement has been inspired by the federal policies governing public K-12 environments, the Foundation sees questions related to a more expansive articulation of educational quality and improvement as being highly relevant to early childhood as well as higher education.

Amount: Up to $50,000.

Eligibility: Principal Investigators (PIs) and Co-PIs applying for a conference grant must have an earned doctorate in an academic discipline or professional field, or appropriate experience in an education research-related profession. The PI must be affiliated with a college, university, school district, non-profit research facility, or non-profit cultural institution that is willing to serve as the fiscal agent if the grant is awarded.

Link: http://www.spencer.org/conference-grants-advancing-education-research

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