The Center for Teaching & Faculty Development (CTFD) offers a number of funding opportunities to support the teaching and professional development of faculty members at UMass Amherst, including team-based and individual Mutual Mentoring Grants funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Lilly Fellowships, IMPACT Grants for Blended Learning, and Summer Writing Fellowships. Please see below for more information and application instructions for each of these opportunities.
Flex Grants for Teaching/Faculty Development
Flex Grants are small grants of $500 that are intended to support faculty professional development related to teaching, funded by the campus through the MSP contract.
The grants are open to all MSP bargaining unit faculty and librarians.
In order to respond to the emergent needs of faculty, one proposal per faculty/librarian will be accepted on a rolling basis until the fund is exhausted, but no later than April 30th, 2015. The received funds must be spent by the end of fiscal year 2015.
To apply, please fill out the brief online application form.
Expenses that can be covered by these grants may include: travel to enhance teaching or area knowledge; membership in professional associations; classes or workshops to enhance teaching or area knowledge; books; software; equipment; catering a meeting or seminar; inviting a speaker to campus; hiring a graduate or undergraduate student; and other resources that enhance professional development related to teaching. Please see the application guidelines for specific expenditure and eligibility stipulations.
Decisions and awards will be made within approximately two weeks of application receipt.
Refer all questions to .
Lilly Teaching Fellowships
Established in 1986, this competitive award program enables promising junior faculty to cultivate teaching excellence in a special year-long collaboration. Each year eight to ten teaching fellows are selected to work closely with the CTFD on individual projects which typically involve developing or redesigning a course.
The fellows assess their teaching and their students' learning through classroom visits, reviewing of course materials, and student feedback. Lilly Teaching Fellows attend a bi-weekly seminar on college teaching organized by the CTFD, and work with a senior faculty mentor to anticipate many of the challenges and rewards of teaching here at the University. The year features three signature aspects: an annual retreat, bi-weekly seminars on college teaching, and a teaching development project. The Fellows' home departments receive stipends to defray the costs of release time.
The Lilly Fellowship Program for Teaching Excellence is currently accepting nominations from Chairs/Heads for AY 2015-16 through Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 5 PM E.S.T. Please refer all questions to .
Chairs/Heads: Download 2015-16 Nomination Form
Departmental Nominees: Download 2015-16 Application Form
The Mellon Mutual Mentoring Grant Program
The Mellon Mutual Mentoring Team and Micro Grant Programs are funded by a multi-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. These programs support the development of context-sensitive mentoring and professional networks, designed by and for faculty. Currently, we are not accepting new proposals for the Mutual Mentoring Grant Programs. Thank you for your interest and please feel free to contact
by email or phone (413-545-1699) if you have any questions or comments.
Periodic Multi Year Review (PMYR) Grants for Professional Development in Teaching
PMYR Grants are designed to support the teaching development goals of tenured faculty. After the successful completion of the PMYR process, faculty members are invited to submit a proposal to the CTFD for a project to enhance their teaching. In the past, faculty projects have included incorporating instructional technology into their teaching, redesigning courses to include more active learning techniques, and attending conferences or purchasing resources to benefit from the latest content knowledge and pedagogy in their discipline. The CTFD welcomes a wide range of teaching development activities.
Proposals for 2014-2015 PMYR Grants for Professional Development in Teaching (for faculty who completed their departmental PMYRs in 2013-2014) are currently being accepted. The due date is 5:00 PM on Tuesday, February 17, 2015.
For a detailed description of the program as well as proposal guidelines, please see here. For sample proposals by topic, please see: course redesign, technology, or other. For more information, please contact .
The Distinguished Teaching Award
The purpose of the Distinguished Teaching Award (DTA) program, a feature of the UMass Amherst campus for over 30 years, is to honor exemplary teaching at the highest institutional level. Both faculty and graduate students, nominated by students or alumni, are eligible for this highly-competitive award. DTA winners receive a monetary prize and are recognized at both the Undergraduate and Graduate Commencements. For more information about the DTAs please visit the Provost's Office website. Questions may be referred to .
The 2014-15 Nomination Form may be downloaded here.
College Outstanding Teacher Award
The College Outstanding Teacher Award (COTA) program was instituted as a complement to the Distinguished Teaching Awards, and is administered by the Provost's Office and the individual Colleges. The purpose of the award is to honor faculty members for their teaching accomplishments at the College level. The awards are given during the spring semester, and recipients are recognized at Undergraduate Commencement. For more information about the COTA, please see the award guidelines or contact .