Office of Medical Education
Research and Development
College of Human Medicine

Office of Medical Education
Research and Development
College of Human Medicine

Medical Education Mini Grant Program


The mini grant awards are intended to promote collaboration and synergy among faculty of the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, to encourage educational research relationships between departments within the institution, and to foster research and scholarship in undergraduate medical education. The goals of the mini grant program include:

  • Expanding our base of nationally competitive undergraduate medical education research activity leading to the potential for increased extramural support for medical education research at Michigan State University
  • Elevating the visibility and reputation of the College of Human Medicine faculty for teaching excellence and scholarly accomplishment
  • Strengthening the medical school's educational offerings by providing medical students and junior faculty with opportunities to participate in educational research, scholarship, and creative activity
  • Stimulating the intellectual environment at the College of Human Medicine


Grant Theme

This year, the theme for this grant solicitation is "enhancing learner engagement in undergraduate medical education."  Grants addressing this theme will receive priority.

In this context, "learner engagement" refers to products or activities that enable learning by exploration and discovery. These products (presentations, digital interactive modules, games, simulations, blended courses, etc.) successfully integrate content with complementary 'DO' activities to reduce the time that learners are physically or mentally passive.

Some examples of tested combinations of learner engagement activities include:

  • Learners follow demonstrations of techniques or procedures with practice activities. Ask learners to apply what is being demonstrated. Learners may repeat demonstrations on their own or complete a coached simulation.
  • Use discovery activities (virtual labs, instructor-led or virtual case studies, role-playing) to help learners notice principles and expand on these principles.
  • Use games and simulations to provide meaningful productive play (e.g., software simulations, device simulations, quiz-show game that requires both recall and inference).
  • Design presentation/content activities for social learning in communities of practice, learning communities, professional networks (e.g., embedded presentation in a blog, podcast, or forum) where discussions can naturally follow.
  • Mobile learning, designed for the environment where the learning occurs.



Horton, William. E-Learning by Design (Second Edition). (2011) San Francisco: Pfeiffer. ISBN 978-0-470-90002-4.

Alomoglu K, et al.  An observation tool for instructor and student behaviors to measure in-class learner engagement: a validation study.  Med Educ Online. 2014, 19: 24037


Proposal Requests for Funding

Full-time faculty may apply for Medical Education Mini Grants for up to $1000 to support innovations in teaching and learning activities that will lead to scholarship in undergraduate medical education. Grant funds can be used in a variety of ways, including support for teaching–related supplies, materials, services, and travel. The timeline for grant activities can extend for up to 12 months. Grant budget requests may include funds for:

  • Specialty manuals/handbooks/materials to improve your teaching or promote innovation in courses/clerkships
  • Purchasing and integrating instructional technology materials and supplies into your courses/clerkships in new ways
  • Funding for special services related to teaching
  • Other reasonable expenses as required for the project

Funds cannot be used to support expenses normally covered by departments/colleges (office supplies, photocopying, etc.) or routine books/videos typically used for teaching. Funds cannot be used for faculty or staff salary support.

Grant recipients will have access to free instructional design consultation and instructional technology resources available to CHM faculty through the Blended Curricular Learning Resources group (B-CLR). For more information about B-CLR services, visit the B-CLR webpage.



All full-time faculty may submit proposals for the Medical Education Mini Grants program.


Application Procedure

The proposal is limited to a maximum of ten pages (12 pt font; single spaced type); this page limit does not include supporting documents. Details about the grant application requirements can be downloaded here.

Interested candidates should submit their completed proposal to OMERAD electronically. Submit an electronic copy to

DEADLINE for application is April 15, 2015 at 5:00 p.m.

April 15, 2015: Application deadline

June 1, 2015: Notification of funding

July 1, 2015: Project start date

June 30, 2016: Final project reports are due to OMERAD

Award criteria include:

  • The project must address some aspect of undergraduate medical education.
  • A clear description of your proposal, with an itemized budget
  • A description of the innovation represented by your proposal
  • A description of the anticipated contribution to teaching and learning
  • The scope of your proposal's benefit (how many classes, students, colleagues)
  • The longevity of your proposal (one semester only? More than one semester?)
  • Potential for sustainability
  • Plan for scholarship or dissemination



All award recipients shall submit a brief final report summarizing their activities no later than June 30, 2016. A project summary will be posted on the OMERAD website.



Award recipients will document expenditures and provide OMERAD with a progress report at mid-point (no later than six months into the grant period) and a full report at the conclusion of my grant period (June 30). These reports should outline progress on achieving specific project goals, describe how grant funds have been used, and list any scholarship related to grant activities in progress or completed.



This mini grant program is supported by funds from the Dr. Ruth M. Allen Endowed Fund for Medical Education.