STEM Higher Education

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

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Deadline: Rolling

Grant amount: Unspecified amount

Fields of work: Education - Higher Education

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Research, Project / Program

Location of project: United States

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



STEM Higher Education Program

The Foundation believes that increases in human welfare are largely driven by increases in our understanding and mastery of the forces of nature and society. The health of the scientific enterprise is thus an issue of fundamental concern to us. This includes the quality of scientific training and inquiry, the structure of scientific careers, the diversity of the scientific workforce, the strength of scientific educational institutions, and the openness and accessibility of scientific education and training to all.

The Foundation’s interests in scientific education focus exclusively on training at the college, graduate, and post-graduate level.

Education and Professional Advancement for Underrepresented Groups

Program Goal: To increase the diversity of higher education institutions and the work force in STEM fields through college and university initiatives that support the education and professional advancement of high-achieving individuals from underrepresented groups.

The program makes a number of grants supporting select initiatives that promote the education and professional advancement of women and underrepresented minorities within STEM fields in academe.​

Science of Learning STEM

To enhance the persistence and success of students in STEM majors and programs through the improvement of STEM pedagogies that incorporate evidence-based principles of how people learn and account for differences in achievement among student groups, e.g., race/ethnicity and gender.


  • This program is transitioning from a focus on studying patterns of undergraduate entrance, attrition, and persistence in STEM majors to helping institutions improve student learning and better prepare undergraduates for graduate study and careers in STEM fields.
  • Emphasis will continue on hypothesis-driven projects that are sensitive to the heterogeneity of STEM disciplines, attentive to differences in student demographics and motivations, and concerned with the dissemination of findings and the portability of lessons learned to other institutions.
  • Pre-2010, when the program was called “Student Retention,” grantmaking focused on encouraging universities to collect and use information on student pathways through STEM fields, including retention rate and time-to-degree.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • In selecting projects for funding, the Foundation seeks proposals for original initiatives led by outstanding individuals or teams.
  • We are interested in projects that have a high expected return to society, exhibit a high degree of methodological rigor, and for which funding from the private sector, government, or other foundations is not yet widely available.


  • This program does not support projects aimed at K-12 student or the training of K-12 teachers.
  • What We Do Not Fund
    • The Foundation does not make grants to political campaigns, to support political activities, or to lobby for or against particular pieces of legislation.
    • The Foundation does not make grants to individuals except through its Books program.
    • The Foundation does not generally make grants to for-profit institutions.
    • The Foundation does not make grants in religion, medical research, or research in the humanities.
    • The Foundation does not make grants aimed at pre-college students except through its New York City initiative.
    • The Foundation does not make grants to projects in the creative or performing arts except when those projects are related to educating the public about science, technology, or economics.
    • The Foundation does not make grants for endowments, fundraising drives, or fundraising dinners.
    • The Foundation does not make grants in support of the purchase, construction, or renovation of buildings or laboratories. On some occasions, the Foundation will support the purchase or construction of scientific equipment if such equipment is essential to the success of a Foundation-supported research project or educational initiative.