OSP FO# 11-029

AGENCY: National Science Foundation (NSF)/Directorate for Education & Human Resources (EHR)/Division of Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings (DRL)

PROGRAM: Fostering Interdisciplinary Research on Education (FIRE)

OBJECTIVES: FIRE continues to be a strand of the Research and Evaluation on Education in Science and Engineering (REESE) program (NSF 10-586) in a stand-alone solicitation.

This program provides funding to facilitate the process by which scholars can cross disciplinary boundaries to acquire the skills and knowledge that would improve their abilities to conduct rigorous research on STEM learning and education. The primary goal of the program is to facilitate the development of innovative theoretical, methodological, and analytic approaches to understanding complex STEM education issues of national importance and, by so doing, make progress toward solving them. A secondary goal of the strand is to broaden and deepen the pool of investigators engaged in STEM educational research. In order to address this goal, investigators must pair with a mentoring scholar in a to-be-learned field of interest. Proposals therefore have both a research and a professional development component. Investigators may receive a FIRE award at any point in their post-graduate careers.

Investigators must propose a research project on STEM learning or education to be conducted under the direction of one or more collaborating mentors. Some examples of appropriate collaborations include: a developmental psychologist working with a curriculum developer; a biology education researcher working with a geneticist; a mathematics teacher educator working with an organization or systems analyst; a neuroscientist working with a special educator; a learning scientist working with a labor economist; a test developer working with a mathematician; a communications expert working with an expert on STEM workforce issues; a cognitive psychologist working with an undergraduate engineering education professor; a chemist working with a social science methodologist; a sociologist working with a museum exhibit designer; a computational linguist working with an assessment developer; a statistician or program evaluator working with an educational psychologist; and a science educator working with a philosopher of science.

ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS: Each proposal must consist of one individual who will serve as the mentor and one individual who will be mentored. FIRE is open as to whether the mentor is designated as the PI and the mentee as the co-PI, or vice versa, as allowed by their institutions. Other personnel and co-PIs are allowed, but the role of the mentor should be clearly described. Investigators may receive an award at any point in their post-graduate careers, whether at a more junior (e.g., immediately after earning a doctorate) or senior level (e.g., mid-career or later). Both the individual who will act as mentor and the individual who will be mentored must have obtained their respective doctoral degrees by date of award.

DEADLINE: April 29, 2011

FUNDING INFORMATION: NSF anticipates providing up to $4 million to fund 8–10 awards. The maximum award for FIRE projects is $400,000, with duration of up to two years.

Janice M. Earle
Division of Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings (DRL)
National Science Foundation
4201 Wilson Boulevard, Room 885 S
Arlington, VA 22230
Telephone: (703) 292-5097
Fax: (703) 292-9044
Email: jearle@nsf.gov
Web: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2011/nsf11526/nsf11526.htm

REMARKS: Applications must be submitted electronically using either the NSF FastLane system or Grants.gov. Collaborative proposals must be submitted via FastLane. For more information about FastLane, or to register as a FastLane user, please contact A. Brink Effgen (abeffgen@bu.edu) in the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) at x3-4365. Information about Grants.gov for BU Investigators can be obtained on the OSP website at: http://www.bu.edu/osp/proposal-preparation/electronic-submission/. In addition, for investigators interested in submitting proposals via Grants.gov, NSF has published the NSF Grants.gov Application Guide which may be found online at: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/docs/grantsgovguide.pdf. Investigators should contact the OSP Assistant Director assigned to their school or department as soon as possible to coordinate submission through either FastLane or Grants.gov.

Complete program guidelines and application material (NSF 11-526 and NSF GPG 11-1) may be obtained from the web site listed above or from the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). Please distribute this notice to any faculty or staff members who might be interested in the information. For more information, please contact the OSP at X3-4365 or ospinfo@bu.edu, or visit the OSP web site at http://www.bu.edu/osp.