University of Southern California

Research

NSF-17-573: Advancing Informal STEM Learning (AISL)

Slots:                                                     An institution or organization may serve as lead on no more than three (3) proposals submitted to the November deadline. However, an institution or organization may partner as a subaward on other proposals submitted.

Internal Deadline:                           Contact the Office of Research if interested.

External Deadline:                          November 6, 2017, 5pm PDT

Award Information:                        Type:  Grant

Estimated Number of Awards: 60-85

Anticipated Amount: $33,000,000 to $44,000,000 total (see NSF’s Program Description for maximum amount of funding per sub-category of proposal).

Submission Process:                     PIs must submit their application as a Limited Submission through the Office of Research Application Portal: https://app.wizehive.com/webform/USCgrants

Materials to submit:

Link to Award:                                  https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2017/nsf17573/nsf17573.htm

Who May Serve as PI:                    A Principal Investigator may serve in the role of PI or Co-PI on only one proposal per competition if they are at the sole-submitting institution or the lead institution of a collaborative project, but may serve as the Co-PI for a non-lead institution of a collaborative project more than once per competition.

Purpose:

The AISL program is situated within the Division of Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings (DRL). DRL’s mission is to cultivate and catalyze fundamental and applied research and development (R&D) to improve the learning of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics for the nation. In support of this mission, AISL seeks to (a) advance new approaches to and evidence-based understanding of the design and development of STEM learning in informal environments; (b) provide multiple pathways for broadening access to and engagement in STEM learning experiences; (c) advance innovative research on and assessment of STEM learning in informal environments; and (d) engage the public of all ages in learning STEM in informal environments.

The AISL program’s priorities are: (1) Maximizing Strategic Impact, (2) Enhancing Knowledge-Building, (3) Promoting Innovation, (4) Advancing Collaboration, (5) Strengthening Infrastructure and Building Capacity, and (6) Broadening Participation. Through these priorities, described in more detail throughout the solicitation, the program contributes to STEM engagement and literacy, workforce development, and educational success. It may also narrow the gap between the advancements in scientific discovery and the public’s understanding of science.

AISL program investments should be of interest and utility to public audiences, informal STEM practitioners, and decision-makers. All proposals must articulate clear rationales describing why a project is primarily informal and how it adds value to the informal STEM learning community.

The products of AISL investments may include, but are not limited to, exhibitions and programs in museums, zoos, aquaria, botanic gardens/arboreta, planetariums, nature centers, parks, libraries, and other environments; science communication; after-school and out-of-school time (OST) programs; radio, television, film, or media programs or series; Do-It-Yourself (DIY)/maker initiatives; opportunities for the public to engage in research including crowd-sourcing and citizen science; on-line and other digital experiences (e.g., games, simulations, social media, mobile computing, distributed networks, and massive online open courses); and research findings that articulate what works, for whom, why, and in what contexts.

AISL projects engage participants drawn from both public and professional audiences.

Visit our Institutionally Limited Submission webpage for updates and other announcements.

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