Collaborative Learning Community Grants 2024-2025

Discussion at ITL Symposium



Applications are due at 5:00 PM CST on Monday, May 13, 2024

Contact  Kaitlyn Farrell Rodriguez if you would like to chat about the Collaborative Learning Communities (CLC) Grant.

The Collaborative Learning Community (CLC) Grant is open to all instructors (graduate student and postdoctoral instructors, lecturers, tenure-track, clinical, tenured), interested in collaborating with undergraduate or graduate students, co-instructors, inter- or intra-departmental colleagues or members of the Austin community to better enhance engagement, wellness, resilience, and belonging in the different learning spaces they co-create.

This grant is designed to support new learning communities dedicated to identifying and disrupting barriers to engagement and wellness within classrooms, clinics, studios, or labs. Funds of up to $2,500 will be awarded for projects that assemble small groups of instructors and students to discuss and learn together about strategies they can implement in learning spaces to enhance engagement, wellness, resilience, and belonging. Funds can support activities scheduled any time during summer 2024 or the Fall 2024 semester.

Preference will be given to proposals that meaningfully incorporate student perspectives in proposed learning communities. This may include centering student voices through co-facilitation practices, active mentorship opportunities, or the co-generation of resources to share more broadly with the UT-Austin teaching and learning community.

Collaborative learning communities will gather a minimum of three times. The consultants at the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) will also interview each member of the learning communities after the collaborative learning community has concluded these initial gatherings to collect key insights, resources, and best practices from the groups to inform instructor development efforts around engagement and belonging with broader Austin teaching and learning communities.

This year, we are particularly interested in applicants who look to collaboratively explore methods of promoting instructor and student engagement, wellness, resilience, and belonging in ways that fully represent the breadth of experience and expertise present within the University of Texas at Austin community.


How do I apply? What is required for the application?

You can apply through our submission form. To help you get ready, here is the information we are requesting. Applications should address all five of the following areas:

1. Description of Proposed Collaborative Learning Community (CLC)

  • Who is or will be in your group? Do they come from the same department, or is this a multi-disciplinary community? What brings this group together (e.g., common experiences as instructors or learners; teaching positions; or interests)?
  • How will student perspectives and voices play a role in the design and facilitation of the collaborative learning community?
  • How will you recruit members and motivate them to consistently participate?
  • How often will you meet?
  • What is your proposed timeline within or across Summer 2024 and/or Fall 2024?


2. Community Plan

What is your plan for gatherings and ways of motivating members to participate? 

For example, will you focus on case study discussion and strategizing, syllabus exchange, peer classroom observations and feedback, discussion of readings about topics of engagement, belonging, wellness, and resiliency, etc.? Something else?


3. Budget 

How do you intend to spend the grant funds?  

For example, will you prioritize stipends for members of guest speakers, book purchases, tickets/transportation money for an experience that would inform instructor and student conversations about topics of engagement, belonging, wellness, and resiliency etc.? Something else?


4. Outcomes and impacts

What do you want to achieve with this project? 

For example, is your goal to: increase understanding of and share best practices for promoting engagement, belonging, wellness, and resiliency? To raise campus awareness about student concerns/challenges around existing barriers to learning? To create resources or curriculum revision plans for UT instructors invested in instructor self-care and care of students? Something else?


5. Dissemination plans

What will the collaborative learning community produce that you can share beyond members’ insights? 

For example, will your community design a workshop modeling and providing practice opportunities for enhancing engagement, belonging, wellness, or resiliency? Will you create a series of blog posts or sets of brief video(s) for the CTL website to disseminate your findings? Will you draft an article or conference proposal and report out your discoveries at department faculty meetings? What other applications of your future work as a collaborative learning community can you imagine?


Who will be able to apply?

Any UT Austin instructor (graduate student or postdoctoral instructors, lecturers, tenure-track, clinical, tenured) may apply.


How will the proposals be evaluated?

This is an open call where submissions will be evaluated by a team consisting of CTL staff and faculty. Funds will be awarded to proposals that most clearly demonstrate:


  1. Clear focus on campus climate and topics of engagement, belonging, wellness and/or resilience in different types of co-created learning spaces


  1. Substantive rationale for how the proposed activities will directly enhance engagement, belonging, wellness and/or resilience in UT-Austin learning spaces


  1. Likelihood of success in recruiting and retaining participants


  1. Potential for impact on campus beyond the collaborative learning community’s participants


  1. Clear connection between the budget and the proposed project


  2. Effort to include the voices of students or community members in design or facilitation of the learning community


What is the schedule for submission?

Applications must be submitted for review by 5:00 PM CST on Monday, May 13, 2024.


How can I give back to my UT colleagues?

At the conclusion of this year’s grants, CTL will hold an informal showcase to celebrate the work done across the grant categories, discuss outcomes, and reflect on the learning community experience. More information about this showcase or a similar opportunity is forthcoming.


Financial Stipulations 

Funds will be transferred to grantees’ departments. Funding requests should be consistent with relevant departmental, college, or University policy, Regents’ rules, and Texas state law.


If I have further questions, whom do I contact?

Contact Kaitlyn Farrell Rodriguez if you would like to chat about the Collaborative Learning Communities (CLC) Grant.



2023-2024 Grantees


Berit Batterton, PhD Candidate

Hannah S. Rempel, PhD Candidate           

Mel Neill, PhD Student

Dr. Christopher Biggs, Assistant Professor of Instruction

The University of Texas Marine Science Institute

Developing Inclusive Teaching Frameworks for Campus and Community STEAM Education

Rasha Diab, Associate Professor

Department of Rhetoric

Fostering Accessible Pedagogy for the DRW Community and Beyond

Laura I. Gonzalez, Assistant Professor of Instruction

Biology Instructional Office

Improving Academic Success Through Focused Teaching

Di Wang, Assistant Professor of Instruction

College of Liberal Arts

Centering Diverse Learners: Inclusive Assessment Strategies Community