Grants for Engaged Learning (GEL) Program

The GEL Program application window is currently closed. The application period is generally within the fall semester of the academic year, contingent upon successful renewal of support for this pilot program.

Please check back for updates and faculty request forms. To learn more about other potential support opportunities, do not hesitate to contact CRE Director Latika Young at

Grants for Engaged Learning (GEL) Faculty Request Form

Frequently Asked Questions and Sample Proposals (updated November, 2015)


Funded by the Office of the Provost, the Grants for Engaged Learning (GEL) program supports faculty initiatives to promote student engagement and innovation within new or existing undergraduate courses at any level (see one here from the Department of Art). The program (formerly Academic Engagement and Innovation Grant Program) is part of a larger university "Graduate Success" initiative focused on advancing graduates to the next step along the career path of their choice.

Responsive proposals will increase undergraduate student engagement and provide “hands-on” experience in students’ fields of study. Applicable course enhancements should, in most cases, engage all students enrolled in a course and may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Inclusion of research projects in courses (group and/or individual projects)
  • Scholarship-in-Practice & capstone courses
  • Integration of internship experiences
  • Industry & government academic partnerships through undergraduate coursework
  • Project/Product-oriented service-learning/community-based learning
  • Integration of product-oriented entrepreneurship and/or social innovations

The program especially encourages:

  • Interdisciplinary, collaborative, and cross-listed courses  
  • Enhancements that affect multiple courses, courses with significant enrollment, and/or that add a great deal of depth to a smaller-enrollment course
  • Inquiry-based pedagogy, where appropriate 
  • Student presentations at CRE’s Undergraduate Research Symposium  and other university dissemination events
  • Archiving in university’s DigiNole institutional repository

There are two categories of grant support in the pilot program: 1) Graduate Student Personnel Support and 2) Materials and Course Enhancement Expenses. Faculty may apply for one or both categories of support.

Category 1) Graduate Student Personnel Support

GEL Mentors: Graduate students (selected by the faculty instructor of the course) who receive a $1,000 stipend for work over the term to assist/coach/mentor undergraduates on a course-based engaged-learning project. Faculty may request GEL Mentors as deemed appropriate for the projects to be undertaken in the course, but a typical ratio would be one Mentor per 30-35 students. Please keep in mind the workload limitations of a $1,000 stipend (typical workloads might be around 40 hours over the term, but are capped at 60 hours for the semester). Faculty may request more than one Mentor per course. GEL Mentors are not instructors and not TAs.

However, according to FSU’s University-wide Standards for Graduate Teaching Assistants at Florida State University, any graduate student who works with undergraduate students in/during the process of course instruction is required to have a minimum amount of training in various university policies and procedures. For the purposes of holding the GEL Mentor position, a graduate student would be required to have first completed/attended, at minimum, the equivalent of the Program for Instructional Excellence (PIE) training provided on Day 1 of the fall PIE TA Conference. This PIE training is offered twice a year: once each fall and once each spring. Please check for complete details of this training, including schedule and registration. 

Category 2) Materials and Course Enhancement Expenses

Faculty may request funding to pay for materials/expenses necessary to implement their proposed course enhancement. Note: There is a suggested ratio of $500 of materials/expenses funding per 30-35 students in the course, though faculty may apply for more if justified. Please keep in mind there is a limited pool of overall pilot program funding.

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