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Teaching Grants: Course Improvement Grants and Educational Advancement Fund

The Office of the Provost offers two internal funding programs, the Educational Advancement Fund and the Course Improvement Grant, designed to support excellence in the classroom through pedagogical advancement and long-term educational transformation.

View the current faculty recipients and details about their projects.


Course Improvement Grants

Course Improvement Grants aim to promote excellence in teaching within a single course or course section. Proposals may request funding to support activities such as acquiring or developing course-related materials; and seminars and other programs to improve the quality of teaching; or small-scale studies of new instructional methods and programs. Up to $500 may be requested for the Course Improvement Grants, which must be used within 12 months.

The Educational Advancement Fund

The Educational Advancement Fund will support longer-term educational transformations. Proposals should aim to support long-term educational benefit that have the potential to extend beyond the applicant to the larger Vanderbilt teaching community. Proposals may request funding to support activities such as seminars or other initiatives aimed at implementing evidence-based teaching practices, research efforts to investigate the impact of new teaching approaches, or acquisition or development of materials that can support implementation efforts across multiple courses, course sections or programs. Up to $2,500 may be requested, and funds must be used within 24 months. This grant will not support anything related to classroom technology that is currently within the scope of the provost–VUIT partnership.

How to Apply

Interested faculty should visit the Educational Advancement Fund and Course Improvement Grants webpages to learn more, including eligibility standards, proposal requirements, funding guidelines and selection criteria. Applications will be submitted via InfoReady Review, with two submission deadlines during the academic year: mid-May (funds available beginning July 1) and mid-October deadline (funds available December 1).

Applicants interested in using grant funding to purchase educational technologies are encouraged to familiarize themselves with existing technology resources on campus. Center for Teaching staff can assist faculty in getting started with centrally provided educational technologies, including Brightspace Top Hat, Gradescope, and Perusall. The Digital Imaging Lab at the Digital Commons houses equipment and resources to photograph and digitize most 2D and 3D objects.

Successful applicants will participate in a CFT-supported learning community to learn and share experiences with other grantees. At the end of the grant period, successful applicants will share their project and results in project summaries on the Course Improvement Grant or the Educational Advancement Fund website.

Learning Community

Recipients of either a Course Improvement Grant or Educational Advancement Funds are invited to participate in a learning community that will provide an opportunity to collaborate and support each other as they develop their projects. There will be opportunities for recipients to share their goals and approaches, consider how they will assess their success, and report on their progress and challenges.

Selection Committee

  • Cynthia Brame, Associate Director of the Center for Teaching
  • Derek Bruff, Assistant Provost and Executive Director of the Center for Teaching
  • Brett Byram, Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Andrea Capizzi, Associate Professor of the Practice, Special Education
  • Divya Chaudhry, Senior Lecturer in Hindi-Urdu
  • Julaine Fowlin, Assistant Director of the Center for Teaching
  • Jermaine Soto, Director of Faculty Development


The programs are jointly managed by the Office of Faculty Development and the Center for Teaching. Questions? Contact Derek Bruff, executive director of the Center for Teaching, or Jermaine Soto, director of faculty development.