IUSE: Innovation in Two-Year College STEM Education

National Science Foundation (NSF)

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Deadline: Dec 11, 2024

Grant amount: Up to US $10,000,000

Fields of work: STEM/STEAM Education

Applicant type: College / University

Funding uses: Education / Outreach

Location of project: United States

Location of residency: United States


NOTE: All applications are due by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. 

The National Science Foundation (NSF) plays a prominent role in the improvement of undergraduate STEM education at the Nation’s colleges and universities. Through the IUSE: Innovation in Two-Year College STEM Education (ITYC) program, the agency seeks to extend this effort by making an intentional investment in the country’s two-year institutions of higher education, or two-year colleges. The twin goals of the ITYC program are to (1) center students in the effort to advance innovation, promote equitable outcomes and broaden participation for all students in STEM education at two-year colleges, and (2) enhance the capacity of two-year colleges to harness the talent and potential of their diverse student and faculty population through innovative disciplinary, multi-department, and college-wide efforts. These goals will be achieved by investing in projects at two-year colleges that contribute to student success in STEM-based foundational courses and academic pathways for both majors and non-majors. Project activities may be in any discipline that is currently supported by NSF funding, which includes the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. Collectively, projects in the ITYC program will make progress towards ensuring that two-year college students and faculty have the resources to fully participate in and contribute to the broader STEM enterprise. Aligned with the goals above, the ITYC program features two tracks: (1) A Focus on the Academic Experiences of Two-Year College Students and (2) Leveraging Institutional Strengths and Innovation. Each Track can support projects requesting up to $500,000 for a duration of up to three years. For institutions that have not received NSF funding in the past five years, an additional $100,000 may be added to the budget which may be used by the institution to support and carry out grant-funded activities over four years. This would result in a total maximum budget of $600,000 for a project over four years. Institutions that have been funded as part of a collaborative award with their own NSF Award Number are not eligible for this incentive, however, institutions that have had a subaward from another institution are eligible. This program is open to two-year colleges, which includes the following institutions, as described by Carnegie Classifications:

  • Associate’s Colleges: Institutions at which the highest-level degree awarded is an associate degree. This may include transfer as well a career and technical oriented colleges.
  • Baccalaureate / Associate’s Colleges: Institutions that award at least one baccalaureate degree but confer at least 50% of their degrees at the associate level.

The ITYC program is aligned with NSF's Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) framework, which is a comprehensive effort to accelerate improvements in the quality and effectiveness of undergraduate education in STEM fields.

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This page was last reviewed February 26, 2024 and last updated February 26, 2024