National Science Foundation Dear Colleague Letter: Enabling the Future of Making to Catalyze New Approaches in STEM Learning and Innovation
Building on NSF's early investments in Making, the purpose of this Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) is to encourage EAGER proposals to conduct exploratory work in its early stages on untested, but potentially transformative, research ideas or approaches that advance the frontier of knowledge with respect to STEM learning and design thinking. Specifically, NSF challenges and encourages the community to submit innovative proposals for fundamental research or the integration of research and education that:
Elucidate the processes and potential benefits of learning, e.g. design thinking, in the Maker context;
Leverage Making to develop and test its role in improving the effectiveness of formal and informal learning pathways for increasing retention and broadening participation in STEM for students and faculty;
Explore new ideas and models of formal and informal STEM learning by leveraging existing knowledge in Making;
Investigate and test effectiveness of new approaches to design and innovation enabled by Maker spaces and practices;
Enable new tools and knowledge for design and prototyping across all disciplines that can significantly increase Making capabilities; and Further the understanding of innovation processes from prototypes through their transition to products that have greater societal and economic impact through enhanced marketability and large-scale market adoption.
EAGERS in response to this DCL are due December 15, 2016, after which this DCL will expire.
For more information, read the full text of the DCL: https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2015/nsf15086/nsf15086.jsp
On Tuesday, October 18, STELAR hosted NSF Program Officers David Haury and Robert Russell as they presented a webinar on National Science Foundation funding for research, development, and small business proposals for Maker-focused projects. During the webinar overviews were provided of the Dear Colleague Letter Catalyzing the Future of Making and many other NSF Progams.