Office of Research

New Awards for Science Education to Research Universities

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute plays a powerful role in advancing biomedical research and science education in the United States. HHMI’s program in biomedical research rests on the conviction that scientists of exceptional talent, commitment, and imagination will make fundamental discoveries for the betterment of human health if they receive the resources, time, and freedom to pursue challenging questions. The Institute’s science education program supports initiatives with the power to transform education in the life sciences for all students. Our objectives are to recruit and develop talented students who will become the future leaders of science and science education and to promote scientific literacy among all students. Just as today’s researchers solve complex questions by working across scientific disciplines and integrating tools from these disciplines, HHMI seeks to support undergraduate science education by integrating a variety of tools and approaches that will engage students in science.


The 2014 competition will encourage research universities to develop effective strategies that lead to significant and sustained improvement in the persistence in science by all students, including those students who belong to groups underrepresented in science. Successful proposals will effectively present the rationale for each of the proposed activities, so that it is clear how the activity will contribute to the objective of student persistence at the institution. We seek bold ideas grounded in evidence-based strategies.


All proposals submitted by the deadline and conforming to the formatting instructions will be reviewed by a panel of distinguished scientists and educators. Reviewers will identify programs that offer effective strategies aimed at the objective of significantly improving the persistence in science of all students, especially during the first two years of their undergraduate experience. Evaluation criteria will include the following:


Proposed Activities

• The potential for the proposed program to make a significant difference at the institution.

• The degree to which the program strategies align with the goal of student persistence.

• The degree to which the proposal builds on documented past activities or new activities described and assessed in the published literature.

• The extent to which faculty members are involved in leadership and implementation of the proposed activities.

• The institution’s demonstrated commitment to the objective and to the proposed activities.


Long-Term Impact

• The quality of the institutional data provided in the proposal and the effectiveness of assessment of past and proposed activities in science education.

• Description of an outcomes-based plan to measure progress toward the goals of the program.

• The evidence that the applicant has a successful strategy for disseminating effective practices or products to the larger scientific and educational communities.

• The prospect of effecting long-term institutional change that persists well after the lifetime of the grant, and the institution’s record of sustaining successful programs.

• The evidence of involvement of a significant cross-section of faculty and administration in developing the proposal and implementing the proposed activities.


Budget and Administration

• The appropriateness of the budget to the activities specified in the proposal.

• The effectiveness of the plan of management, admin­istration, and oversight of the program, including distribution of grant funds.

• The evidence that the grant will enable new or ex­panded activities rather than provide budget relief for the institution.

Eligibility Requirements

Please submit a two to three-page letter of intent with a list of all anticipated investigators, description of proposed aims and approach, Biosketch of the PI, and a letter of support from the Dean or Chair to by Tuesday, May 21, 2013. This letter of support signifies that the Dean or Chair have ensured that the nominee and application are likely to be of sufficient quality to be competitive nationally.  The deadline to communicate our institution’s choice of applicant to the HHMI is 6/4/13.   Full applications are due to the sponsor 10/1/13, and so those materials will need to be in to the Office of Sponsored Programs by 9/24/13.

Opportunity Details

Program web page

Program Announcement No.


05/21/2013 UW Internal Deadline Closed
09/24/2013 OSP Deadline
10/01/2013 Sponsor Deadline

Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)

Funding amount


Maximum Number of Applications


Eligible groups
  • All campus

Inquiries and Contact Information

Investigators who identify a grant, award or fellowship program that restricts the number of applications that can be submitted from an Institution should immediately contact their Chairperson, Associate Dean for Research (or Dean, if no ADR) and the Office of Research (see below) if they intend to prepare a response. Failure to do so, or to meet the deadlines for submission of pre-proposal, will preclude submission of the application through the Office of Sponsored Programs.

For general inquiries, or to request a listing of a limited submission opportunity that should be but is not already listed, please email us at