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Update for Summer 2021

Given the campus shift to remote teaching in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid-19, this program has been suspended for Summer 2021. The Summer School Office partnered with our colleagues in Digital and Lifelong Learning (DLL, formerly the Carolina Office for Online Learning) to offer Summer School 2021 Online Course Design Support Grants. The Call for Proposals was completed in Fall 2020 and DLL staff is providing two or four-week training for grant recipients to plan ahead for their Summer 2021 courses.


The Summer School office launched a successful Teaching With Technology Mini-Grant Program in 2018 to encourage faculty adoption or expansion of instructional technologies or software use in Summer School courses. While the program is suspended for Summer 2021, we are hopeful the Summer School office will provide future funding and partner with CFE to manage the program. The goal is for faculty to adopt interactive software or instructional technologies that they currently do not use and that will enhance student participation and engagement. Proposals that simply provide tools that help faculty with course management are not the focus of this program.


Faculty who teach Summer School courses at Carolina play a vital role in helping many students complete academic requirements needed to graduate on time and visiting students earn transfer credits to their home institutions. Summer School courses also enable students to take courses for personal enrichment and others complete professional certification. To help students succeed inside and outside the classroom or lab, faculty can teach with technology using a wide variety of tools such as new features in Sakai, software programs relevant to the discipline, or campus-supported tools for classroom communication, polling, or multimedia uses (i.e., Adobe, PollEverywhere, VoiceThread, or Zoom).

Some faculty welcome technology, seek out the latest software, and weave it into their teaching. But the time needed to learn best practices for incorporating new technology into teaching and to research how to choose which tools align best with course objectives can prevent instructors from taking the time to consider such innovation in teaching. These Summer School Mini-Grants are designed to encourage faculty to pursue innovative teaching.

Who is Eligible

The Mini-Grant program is open to faculty who will be teaching courses during Summer School in the Maymester, First Session, or Second Session, AND who have taught that course in at least one prior summer. While graduate student and post-doc instructors can apply if they meet both criteria, priority will be given to faculty.

Faculty Support

The partnership involves the Center for Faculty Excellence, Information Technology Services Educational Technologies, University Libraries, OASIS, BeAM (network of makerspaces), and Summer School. Support partners will consult with grant winners to help implement their technology ideas.


Those faculty selected will receive a $750 grant in recognition of the extra effort and time to learn and adopt the technology and/or software for their summer course. The goal is to award at least 20 grants. The grant would be paid at the same time as the instructor’s summer teaching stipend. The faculty members receiving the grants should be available to participate in a one-time Information Session after teaching to share with other faculty what they learned, recommendations and reflections, and what’s next. This initiative could also assist faculty interested in learning more about supported technology and/or software on campus that could lead to an application for the CFE/Lenovo Instructional Innovation Grants program.

How to Apply

The CFE will usually host an Information Session in January for the upcoming summer where instructors can hear from prior Mini-Grant recipients and talk with UNC-CH consultants.

Any faculty member or instructor who plans to apply should draft two documents and complete a brief online application where they can upload both documents:

  1. Summer School course syllabus (at least a rough draft)
  2. A brief description (maximum 300 words) describing what new technology you plan to use in the course, how you plan to incorporate it, and what benefit it will have for student learning, participation, or engagement.

Deadline to Apply
As noted above, the Summer 2021 Mini-Grant Program is suspended. Please check back here for an update for Summer 2022. For more information, contact Dr. Doug James at or 919-966-4838.

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