Title III Grant

Faculty Interest Groups and Faculty Development

USM's Title III Faculty Development Project Team Faculty Interest Groups (FIG)

USM’s Title III Faculty Development Program announces a Spring 2018 Call for Proposals for Faculty Interest Groups (FIGs) and FIG leaders

Applications Due January 26th

Are you seeking collaboration and community?

Would you like to be a member of a group with a shared interest and/or passion in the area of teaching and learning?

Are you interested in finding ways to improve your work as a faculty member and student mentor?

Apply for FIG support today!


What is a FIG?

  •  A FIG, or Faculty Interest Group, is an intentional group of people with a mutual interest in a particular aspect of teaching and learning, in particular using, adapting, or adopting High Impact Educational Practices (HIPs).
  •  FIGs are open to all instructors, full or part-time, as well as staff with a particular interest in the topic.
  • FIGs are intended to foster scholarly teaching and research, scholarship, and creative artistry (RSCA) around effective, evidence-based teaching practices to improve student outcomes and success at USM and beyond.


How does it work?

Each FIG has a faculty coordinator who takes responsibility for maintaining the group and working with appropriate university offices for support and assistance. FIGs are designed to create a structure where members can come together to share best practices, do research about their topic, support each other in practicing their methodology, assess the effect of the method upon student learning, and/or produce scholarship about the method.


Suggested 2018 FIGs:

  • Online Learning/ High Impact practices
  • Advising / student success
  • New Faculty / pre-tenure support
  • Assessment /best practices
  • MEIF research/ creative activities
  • Study abroad


Resources provided to FIGs include:

  • $1000* compensation for ONE coordinator or $500* each for co-leaders.
  • Up to $1000* support in convening of FIG meetings and resources to facilitate the work/philosophy proposed.
  • BlackBoard site available; Adobe Connect Meeting room available, CCD meeting space available upon request.

*All FIG funds must be spent by May 31, 2018

FMI on the FIG application process: Kelly.Hrenko@maine.edu 


Interested in Applying for a Spring 2018 FIG?
Here is what to do - by January 26th!

Please submit the following information in a 2-page (max) Word document and email to: Kelly.Hrenko@maine.edu 

  1. Name(s)
  2. Department s/programs/individuals involved in proposed FIG
  3. Proposed FIG name
    *Priority will be given to those choosing from the 2017-18 list of suggested FIG themes:
    • Online Learning/ High Impact practices
    • Advising / student success
    • New Faculty / pre-tenure support
    • Assessment /best practices
    • MEIF research/ creative activities
    • Study abroad
  4. Description of FIG (purpose, structure, strategies, outcomes including types of participants, frequency of
    meetings, materials developed)
  5. Description of how the FIG will enhance student learning, engagement and/or retention and any
    additional possible student outcomes.
  6. Proposed budget* for resources (include projected costs for any relevant materials or services eg. food,
    equipment, space rentals, honoraria, etc.)


Proposals will be evaluated in relation to the following criteria:

  1. Clear identification of proposed Faculty Interest Group with regard to:
    a) Members (e.g., faculty, instructors, students, student success staff, research personnel)
    b) Purpose
    c) Possible/likely outcomes for students and faculty (e.g., student retention, collaborative student/faculty work, such as a paper, other   qualitative and/or quantitative measures, publication or other scholarship for the group)
    d) Duration (e.g., one semester, one academic year)
    e) Budget/Resources needed (max $1000)
  2. Clear rationale for how the FIG can enhance student learning, engagement, and/or retention and
    proposed meaning and impact for FIG members, students, and USM.
  3. Clear description of proposed activities (e.g., structure for ongoing collaboration; strategies for
    sharing best practices, support group for practicing and adopting a new teaching approach; scholarly
    product support) and the budget to support the activities.
  4. Interdisciplinary/interdepartmental approach.


Applications to be sent to Kelly.Hrenko@maine.edu

At USM, FIGs offer an opportunity for a collaborative approach to improving teaching and for producing research, scholarship, and creative activity necessary for peer review, promotion and tenure.  Other institutions have developed FIGs for similar purposes to good effect.  To read more about how high impact practices affect student success, look at: Outcomes of High-Impact Educational Practices: A Literature Review by Brownell & Swaner, C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University.  You can access the article by clicking here.


2016-17 FIGs Examples