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Apply for a Mini-Grant

Background | How to apply | Eligibility | Award levels | Expectations | Review criteria | Additional support


The Miller Open Education Mini-Grant Program, inspired by the Miller Faculty Fellowship Program, was created to promote the growing number of instructors utilizing Open Educational Resources (OER) at Iowa State University. Similar to the Miller Faculty Fellowship Program, these grants aim to support faculty development through the use of new and innovative resources in the classroom. This mini-grant program is co-sponsored by the Iowa State University Library, the Center for Excellence in Learning & Teaching (CELT), and the Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost (SVPP). 

The goal of the Open Education Mini-Grant Program is to encourage instructional innovation and enhance the scholarship of teaching and learning at Iowa State by providing instructors with the time and resources they need to redesign their courses around the use of OER. Examples of OER currently in use at Iowa State can be seen in the profiles of our Iowa State University OER Trailblazers.

How to apply

The call for proposals for the 2023/2024 Miller Open Education Mini-Grant Program has now closed. 

Stay tuned for our next CFP in spring 2024!


To be considered for this grant, proposals must meet the following criteria:

  • Submitted by one or more Iowa State University employees with teaching responsibilities.
  • The proposal includes the intent to use an Open Educational Resource in a credit-bearing course.
  • Instructors may only submit one (1) proposal per academic year. 
  • The PI(s) agree to the expectations listed below.

This grant may NOT be used for:

  • The adaptation or creation of a resource for commercial publication. 
  • The adaptation or creation of educational resources without the accompaniment of a Creative Commons license. 
  • The release of a resource under a Creative Commons license that includes a "No Derivatives" provision.

Award levels

The award levels outlined below provide guidance for applicants on the amount of funding that may be approved for different types of proposals. 

Award LevelAward RangeExpectations
Level 1$500 - $1,000

Locate, evaluate, and adopt an existing Open Educational Resource for your course(s):

  1. Locate openly licensed materials to adopt for your project. 
  2. Complete a review of the OER to be adopted using the Open Textbook Library Review Criteria.
  3. Integrate the adopted OER into a credit-bearing course.
Level 2$750 - $2,500

Adapt, update, or combine existing Open Educational Resources into a new resource:

  1. Locate openly licensed materials to adapt for your project. 
  2. Work with support staff to ensure best practices, quality design, and ADA compliance for adapted materials.
  3. Publish completed OER under a Creative Commons license that allows modification. 
  4. Publish OER created in an open, editable format. Text-based OER must be published through the Iowa State University Digital Press.1
Level 3Up to $5,000

Create an original Open Educational Resource for your course:

  1. Work with support staff throughout the project to ensure best practices, quality design, and ADA compliance for created materials.
  2. Publish the OER under a Creative Commons license that allows modification.  
  3. Publish OER created in an open, editable format. Text-based OER must be published through the Iowa State University Digital Press.1
Level 4Up to $5,000

Integrate open pedagogy into a course to support student learning:

  1. Work with support staff to develop your open pedagogy course design around best practices for the inclusion, representation, and freedom of student expression.
  2. Implement your open pedagogy assignment(s) or course and assess its impact on students.
  3. Publish student-created OER under a Creative Commons license that allows modification.2

Note: The funds from this grant may be spent on any item that the PI deems necessary. This can include personal awards and compensation. All expenses should be clearly articulated and justified in the budget section of the proposal and must align with the project's objectives.

Overarching expectations

All grant recipients must: 

  • Attend an orientation workshop to meet other grant recipients and discuss the timeline expected for awarded projects.
  • Complete projects and use resources in a credit-bearing course within 2 years from the award date (i.e. May 2025).
  • Implement and assess the OER’s impact on students. 
  • Submit your Mini-Grant Final Report [DOC] by the deadline outlined in your proposal. 
  • Showcase the outcomes of the project on the Iowa State University OER Trailblazers website.

Review criteria

The proposals will be reviewed by a subcommittee made up of faculty and representatives from CELT and the University Library.

Download the Mini-Grant Review Rubric

Additional support  

Each awarded mini-grant recipient will receive ongoing support for efforts with project management, locating resources, and accomplishing review, design, and production work, as needed.   

Please contact Abbey Elder ( if you have any questions. 

Mini-grant recipients may receive permission to publish their text-based projects elsewhere if they have sufficient reason for doing so. For example, Statistics OER with a heavy emphasis on code may be better served by Jupyter Notebooks than the ISU Digital Press' software.

Students should be given the opportunity to select the license they want for their project and to opt to publish under a pseudonym, if they wish.