Five College Consortium

Five College Blended Learning Initiative

Mini-grants for Training

Call for Applications:

Mini-Grants for Digital Training, Coding Camps, and Course Planning in the Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Applications Due: March 15, 2017

Are you interested in using technology, blended learning, digital humanities, or other digital pedagogies in the classroom? Do you need more technical experience before planning new courses or changing existing ones?

Eligibility: Five Colleges invites applications from faculty members at any of the five campuses for digital training mini-grants that will help faculty explore how to use digital resources and techniques in courses to support pedagogical innovation and student learning (including student research or creation) in contexts that combine on-line and in-person forms of student engagement. Faculty teaching classes related to digital culture, digital humanities, spatial humanities, and gaming are especially encouraged to apply. However, applicants need not specialize in digital cultural studies in order to apply—we welcome applicants from all humanities and humanistic social sciences fields, including the performing arts. Graduate students working closely with faculty members on courses may also attend the training; faculty should apply and list potential students as participants on the application.

Training: Accepted participants will commit to attending at least two of several offered training and “coding” camps and workshops that will be hosted by Five Colleges during the final week of May 2017 and during the last two weeks of August 2017. On average, each camp or workshop will run for 3-5 days. The topics covered for these training and coding camps may include: computer programming for humanities professors; creating student projects and archives with Omeka and Scalar; customizing websites using Drupal; creating visual showcases and visualizations with Gephi and other software; supporting interactive storytelling with Twine; creating digital games. We will also offer a theoretical track that explores other methods, ethics, and the challenges of digitizing the humanities and humanistic social sciences.

Compensation: Grant winners will be supported to participate in the Five College workshops during the summer, and participants may also be supported in attending workshops elsewhere, such as the Humanities Intensive Learning and Teaching Institute (HILT) or Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI) in June 2017 or June 2018. By the end of the summer 2017, participants will be expected to submit a concept paper outlining a course that will incorporate digital resources or techniques in a blended format. Further assistance and advice will be available from faculty mentors, instructional technology and instructional design specialists, as well as a specialist in learning assessment. The micro-grant will also include a summer stipend ($1500) and support for expenses related to any necessary additional travel for training in Summer 2017 or June 2018. After attending the training sessions, all participants will be invited to work with the out-going and incoming faculty coordinator to either design a new course or revise an existing course by using some of the tools and concepts explored during the training phase. Faculty members who continue to work on these courses during the summer or in January 2018 will receive an additional stipend ($1500) for applying their new technical skills on a “micro” level to courses taught during the 2017-2018 school year. Additional grant funds may be used to meet project needs (e.g. consultant visits, technical assistance, limited supplies, software, etc.)


Applications are due by the end of the day on March 15, 2017 and should be submitted using the following form.  Interested applicants are encouraged to consult with TreaAndrea Russworm, Five College Coordinator for Blended Learning.  

Awards will be announced by April 1, 2017.  For further information about the program, including previously funded projects, please visit:

This initiative is supported by the Five College Deans and a multi-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The goal of the grant is to engage faculty members in the exploration and evaluation of blended learning’s potential to enrich teaching and learning in liberal arts settings.

Please describe your interests in technology and how they pertain to your current research and teaching. You might include recent experiences you’ve had with digital tools in the classroom, technologies you would like to explore, courses you will be or are considering teaching, skills you would like to develop, or just general areas of interest.
Please list your courses for academic years 2016-17 and 2017-18. Feel free to briefly note any relevant contextual information (for example, if your approach included specific pedagogical or technological experiments or innovations).
To help us better understand your work and teaching, you may list some of the software, tools, resources, and other technologies you have recently used in your research and teaching (past 1-2 years). Technological expertise is NOT a prerequisite for receiving a grant. We are actively seeking instructors with a diverse range of experiences incorporating technology in their research and teaching. A list is encouraged; you may if you like add a brief description of the use for context. For example: Google sheets – statistical analysis & graphs; Photoshop – hi-res image manipulation; StoryMap – interactive web presentation; …etc.
If there is an existing digital humanities or blended learning training that you want to attend for summer of 2017, please provide a link to the program and a brief description of its relevance. It will be your responsibility to register and provide documentation for reimbursement of up to $2000 for fees, lodging, and/or travel. If you are not attending another training program, you must be available during either the last week of May or for two weeks during the middle of August to attend our digital camps. You will need to sign up for at least two short sessions during that time block.