2020 General Education Innovation Grants


New General Education requirements began for students starting in Summer 2018 and served as the culmination of many years of committee work to reconceive General Education at Penn State. A key take away from that work was the desire to reinvigorate components of General Education courses and offerings on a periodic basis. Innovation is a necessary part of higher education and we are looking for the best ideas to support faculty who deliver General Education, engage students for improved learning in General Education, and broadly elevate General Education at Penn State.


The Office for General Education is excited to begin accepting innovative proposal ideas. Proposal ideas will be submitted via Qualtrics link (https://pennstate.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_d4mx9KLNUeG8vKB) no later than noon on January 27, 2020. Proposal ideas that have the greatest potential for funding will be contacted and a full proposal will be requested. This process is intended to reduce time developing proposals without a high likelihood for funding.

Award recipients will be announced at the end of March 2020 with work to commence in the summer over timelines that will vary based on the project. The Office for General Education is looking to select 3-4 proposals, distributing up to $250,000 through the 2020 grant program.


This call for proposal ideas is different from the past seed grants. We are not looking for course development, although course development may be part of a larger proposal. We are looking for your best ideas for fostering student learning and supporting those who teach General Education at Penn State.

Innovative proposals are sought that would help the University:

  • assess connections between
  • form strong collaborations between units, colleges, and disciplinary communities;
  • support the goals of Penn State 2025.

The submission form will have the following 3 questions in addition to contact information, each with a 250 word response limit. The deadline for submitting an idea is noon on January 27, 2020.

  • Describe your innovative idea for General Education at Penn State in an executive summary format.
  • Describe the ideal team of collaborators (roles and/or specific people) that would be necessary for a successful effort.
  • Describe the potential impact for General Education and the University more broadly.