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EIU Office of Research and Sponsored Programs

Academic Program Innovation (API) Grants: 

Due by September 14th, noon

Final Report form

2022 Winners

Dr. Bradly Decker, Music Department  - Adopting the Avid Learning Partner (ALP) program into the music curriculum and facilities

Drs. Kathryn Havercroft, Melissa Jones-Bromenshenkel, Cori More, Special Education Department - Developing a Masters of Arts in Teach (MAT) in Special Education

 Program Guidelines and Application Instructions

Academic Program Innovation (API) grants will support projects designed to enhance the academic reputation and foster new curriculum innovations of the university.

Eligible Applicants: Applicants must hold status as a full-time EIU faculty member (either Unit A or Unit B). Department chairs are eligible to apply.  

Proposals submitted by a single individual

In any given round of funding, an individual may submit no more than one proposal for which they  will serve as the sole project director.  An individual who submits such a proposal may still submit one or more additional proposals, provided they are collaborative.

 Collaborative proposals

Collaborative proposals are welcome.  In any given round of funding, an individual may submit more than one proposal for which they  will serve as co-director of the project.

Anyone who submits more than one proposal per round of funding should explain how working on more than one project will be feasible.

  • Other Internal Funding: A faculty member is eligible to apply for an API grant that will be concurrent with a grant from the Council on Faculty Research. The applicant must demonstrate that the projects are clearly distinct from one another.
  • Proposals will be reviewed by a committee consisting of the Dean of the Graduate School, the Director of the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, and an additional dean selected by the Provost.
  • The maximum amount per grant will be $5,000.

Award Criteria

Two criteria will be used to assess applications:

Criterion 1:  Potential to enhance the academic reputation and foster new curricular innovations at Eastern Illinois University in order to increase enrollment.

Examples of fundable projects include, but are not limited to:

  • Projects that create new curriculum that will enhance Eastern’s academic reputation
  • Projects that support innovation in student learning
  • Projects that support innovation in program accessibility
  • Projects that enable Eastern to evolve to address new learning interests of students
  • Projects that provide innovative program pathways that will attract students to EIU

Criterion 2: Evidence of substantial academic engagement by the project director.

Examples may include, but are not limited to:

  • Previous record of curriculum innovation
  • A commitment to design, implement and disseminate results
  • Record of performance or presentation of creative works in external venues
  • Record of involving students as collaborators in external engagement
  • Interest in prior learning assessment or competency-based learning models

Budgetary Guidelines

  • API grants may be used for any of the following:

(1)  Travel: The applicant must show that the proposed activity requires travel to the destination specified. 

(2)  Student help: Wages must be appropriate to the task, as defined by EIU classifications. 

(3)  Equipment:  The applicant must show that the equipment is needed for the proposed activity and is otherwise unavailable.  Equipment purchased with the funding is the property of the university.

(4)  Commodities

(5)  Contractual Services

(6)  Summer salary

(7)  Other: The applicant must show that some other type of expense is required to make the API-funded project viable.

  • API grants may not be used for any of the following:                                                                

(1)  Campus student service-based activities

(2)  Programs focused solely on mentoring students

(3)  Research and creative activity projects with limited potential to increase EIU enrollment and student interest

(4)  Projects with small prospects for bringing external distinction to EIU

(5)  Equipment needs based solely on research activity


The timeline for program awards is as follows for the first year:

  • Program announcement made in summer, 2023.
  • Proposals are submitted by noon on September 14, 2023. Late proposals will not be reviewed.
  • Grants are announced by October, 2023.
  • Grant funds must be expended in accordance with Business Office deadlines during FY24.


A final report will be due by July 30, 2024. The report will detail the achievements of the project.  A final report form can be found here.

Instructions for Preparing Proposals

  • The Proposal Narrative portion of the proposal must not exceed three pages. This limitation does not include the attachments (including vita, and supplementary materials). 
  • The text should be single-spaced.
  • Margins must not be smaller than one inch.
  • The font should be 11 point Arial, Helvetica, or Times New Roman.


  1. Abstract (one paragraph limit)

The abstract should be a one-paragraph summary of the proposal.             

  1. Proposal Narrative (3 page limit)

This section is not intended for a lay audience; it should be written for review by someone who is trained in the faculty member’s field. Organize the plan into the sections shown below. Begin each section with the italicized section title and description in its entirety.

  • Goals: Describe the specific goals of the project.
  • Innovation: Describe what is innovative about the project.
  • Impact:  Explain what impact the research or creative activity would have on Eastern’s academic reputation and enrollment (Criterion 1).
  •  Academic Engagement: Describe the project director’s record of academic engagement (Criterion 2).
  •  Commitment of Time: Describe the project director’s commitment of time to the project ).
  • Budget:  Separately list expenditures for summer salary, academic year buyout, travel, student help, equipment, commodities, contractual services, and other.  Itemize specific expenditures within each category.  Provide sufficient explanation to justify the budget items.  This section should be a complete budget even though budget information is requested on the Agreement page.


  1. Vita

      Please attach a current vita and indicate with an asterisk any publications or papers or other experiences that relate to the proposed project or which provide evidence of your ability to complete the work.  The vita may not exceed five (5) single-sided pages.  Joint applicants may each include a vita not to exceed (5) single-sided pages.

  1. Supplementary Materials

You may include up to three single-sided pages of supplementary materials which can be photocopied for distribution to reviewers.  Examples of acceptable supplementary materials include figures, diagrams, and other material that is not primarily text.  Explanation of the relationship of these materials should be included in the text describing the project and must fit within the three page limit on that material.


Completed proposals should be emailed to Robert Chesnut ( by noon on September 14, 2023.

Related Pages

Contact Information


1102 Blair Hall
Fax: 217-581-7181

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