2015 Annual: Seeding – and Speeding – Innovation | Teachers College Columbia University

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Seeding – and Speeding – Innovation


Since it creationin 2007, the TC Provost’s Investment Fund has seeded hundreds innovative, collaborative faculty projects.

This year the Provost’s Office has added a new Rapid Prototyping Grant program to promote the development of non-credit, master’s degree or certificate offerings that produce innovative learning settings and access for new enrollments.  Rapid Prototyping awards allow for six months of feasibility analysis before faculty begin larger-scale implementation.

One of the first Rapid Prototyping grants is supporting development by Professor Amy Stuart Wells of a 2016 Summer Institute on Teaching and Learning in Racially Diverse Educational Contexts. The grant builds on Provost’s Investment Fund backing Dr. Wells previously received to map TC’s course offerings on race, ethnicity and inter-cultural understanding.


Other Rapid Prototyping efforts underway include a certificate program to help school personnel better serve immigrant populations; asynchronous online non-credit courses for teachers of reading; and a Teacher Tinker: 21st-Century Skills and Technology Boot Camp to help teachers more effectively use technology in the classroom.


Meanwhile, the Provost’s Investment Fund, which seeds cross-disciplinary faculty work, helped launch a new journal, Philanthropy and Education; an International Conference on Robot and Human Interactive Communication and a joint engineering and science summer program with Massachusetts Institute of Technology for rising minority high school seniors; an assessment of “learning agility” to meet changing work demands; and creation of an advanced, for credit certificate in medical education.

Published Wednesday, Feb 3, 2016

Amy Stuart Wells
UNDERSTANDING: “TC is an epicenter for pedagogy and curriculum on race, ethnicity and cultural understanding,” says Amy Stuart Wells. “We want to tell the world.”
A Rapid Prototyping grant supports a new social studies focus on the interconnected world of New York City.
Lalitha Vasudevan
INCLUSION: Lalitha Vasudevan(pictured), Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz and Laura Smith led a Provost-funded Civic Participation Project for safely discussing social inclusion and related issues raised by the “Black Lives Matter” agenda.

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