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OMnI Request For Proposals, 3/2011

Oberlin Modeling Initiative
Curriculum Development Grants  

Applications are due by 5:00 PM on
Monday, March 21, 2011

With funding provided by a three-year National Science Foundation (NSF) CPATH II award, Oberlin
College (through the Oberlin Modeling Initiative, OMnI) is able to offer curriculum development grants to faculty, particularly in the natural, social and mathematical sciences, looking to promote computational thinking in their introductory courses and beyond. All participants are expected to attend the OMnI/Shodor Workshop to be held on campus during the week of June 13, 2011. Level I and II participants are also expected to develop new course materials and attend the August 25-26 OMnI Retreat, as described below.

Level I and Level II grants.
Stipends of $2,000 (pre-tax) will be awarded to approximately 14 applicants. Level I is intended for new applicants while level II is for participants in last year’s OMnI program. Level I and II OMnI participants will attend the OMnI/Shodor Workshop on the Oberlin campus June 13 - 17, 2011, for which they will receive a $400 stipend. To receive the remaining $1,600, Level I participants are expected to develop a teaching module of one or more weeks in length for an introductory course, incorporating the ideas of computation and modeling, and introduce that module during the 2011-2012 academic year. Level II stipends of $1,600 will be given for projects that do one of the following: 1) develop a new module at the introductory level; 2) expand last year’s introductory module
with a 2-3 week commitment including model analysis and hands-on student experience; or 3) develop a new module for upper-level courses. Modules developed through the CPATH grant are expected to become part of the regular curriculum, taught in courses offered at least three times in the next five years. Level I and II participants are also expected to attend OMnI Retreat in August.

NSF expects OMnI to distribute course materials via our Website, therefore all curricular materials developed on this project must be submitted in a form that allows them to be shared. Each Level I and II participant will be teamed with a graduate student from the University of Michigan Center for the Study of Complex Systems, with whom they will collaborate on developing and presenting the course materials and who will assist in preparing the materials for distribution. OMnI curricular materials must be submitted for distribution immediately following the semester in which they are first presented. NSF requires assessment activities as part of their CPATH projects. Level I and II participants are expected to cooperate with the assessment process as it pertains to their courses.

Observer grants
Observer stipends of $400 are offered for faculty interested in participating in the summer 2011 workshop and the possibility of developing course materials in future years. Observers will be able to apply in year 3
of the OMnI program for the remaining $1,600 of the Level I stipend.

All continuing members of the teaching faculty of Oberlin College are eligible to apply. Applicants for
Level I and II grants must be teaching during the 2011-2012 academic year. Individuals who received other internal grants in previous competitions are eligible to apply, providing reports on all previous projects have been submitted to Sponsored Programs. NSF and College policy limits summer salary from all grants to a maximum of two summer months. Faculty who will have two months of summer salary from grants in summer 2011 are eligible for observer stipends of $400 for workshop participation but not Level I or Level II grants.

Introductory Workshop in April.
An introductory workshop will be offered by visiting modeling expert Prof.
Tony Starfield in mid-April. OMnI participants are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity.

OMnI/Shodor Workshop, June 13 - 17, 2011.
OMnI will hold a workshop in computation and modeling presented by the Shodor Educational Foundation, a national resource for computational science education ( This workshop will be designed especially for newcomers to computational and modeling, to help OMnI participants create their modules. Sessions for second-year (i.e., Level II) participants are also being planned.

OMnI Retreat, August 25 - 26, 2011.
Just prior to the fall semester OMnI will hold a 2-day session during which Level I and II participants and University of Michigan graduate students will have the opportunity to share their experiences and materials.

Application Procedure.
Please fill out and submit the form at . Applications
are due March 21, 2011. For further information contact Richard Salter at
Albert Borroni,
Mar 9, 2011, 7:03 AM