Seeding experimentation with teaching and learning

From 2011-2020, HILT offered opportunities for faculty, staff, and students to advance ideas related to teaching, learning, and education innovation. Our primary goal was to foster a community of innovation at Harvard.

The HILT Grants program is currently on hiatus.


History of HILT Grants

The first phase (2011-2013) of the HILT Grants Program was designed to catalyze innovative activities and promote effective learning and teaching across the University. Forty-five projects were awarded for up to $50,000 to faculty, staff, and students at Harvard. Feedback from participants in the inaugural round demonstrated to HILT that, depending on the scope of outlined projects, the funding amount was either too small or too large to complete the necessary work.

In phase two (2014-2016), HILT bifurcated the Grants Program into semesterly Spark Grants, for awards of up to $15K designed to help “spark” promising teaching and learning projects from idea to reality and position innovations for future success, and Cultivation Grants of up to $200K, designed to extend promising educational innovations into new intellectual and institutional contexts and to rigorously investigate the potential of their wide-scale adoption across the University.

In phase three (2017-2020), based on further feedback from previous grant award recipients, HILT made the decision to offer Spark Grants to faculty, staff, and researchers only, on an annual basis. In the fall of 2018, the student-only offering, Pilot Funds, launched. These funds are offered in four rounds during the academic year and are designed to help students who have early-stage ideas for improving education broadly to gain traction on those ideas and lean an innovator’s mindset.

Between 2011 and 2020, HILT received 1,089 applications for funding with a 29% application success rate; to date, 312 projects have been funded.

$5,643,400 AWARDED TO SCHOOLS to fund long-term initiatives, led by deans’ offices, with outcomes to be shared across the schools
$3,433,296 AWARDED TO INDIVIDUALS AND GROUPS to spark promising teaching and learning projects from idea to reality
1,089 TOTAL APPLICATIONS to the HILT Grants Program
312 TOTAL PROJECTS awarded HILT funding
1,896 UNIQUE APPLICANTS applied to the HILT Grants program; applicant pool each round on average 75% new grant applicants and 50% new to the HILT network

HILT also supports longer-term, school-based Decanal Priorities.

Browse past grants

Inaugural Grants (2012)

The first phase (2011-2013) of the HILT Grants Program was designed to catalyze innovative activities and promote effective learning and teaching across the University. Forty-five projects were awarded for up to $50,000 to faculty, staff, and students at Harvard. Explore awarded Grants below:

SciBox 1.0: An innovative, experimental learning space inspiring creative approaches to teaching

Awardees: Logan McCarty (FAS), Melissa Franklin (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to redesign a 2,500 sq ft space in the Science Center into an experimental "black-box" classroom that could be used for existing classes beginning in Spring 2013.

Case-based learning and teaching: A practice-based, peer-driven approach to sophomore tutorial

Awardee: Anne Harrington (FAS)
Summary: Awardee plans to assess her departments’ new sophomore tutorial program, investigate its generalizability to other departments, and create a “Hauser sophomore scholar” program.

Innovative Studio Space

Awardees: Michael Hays (GSD), Allen Sayegh (GSD), Mariana Ibanez (GSD), Silvia Benedito (GSD), Stephen Ervin (GSD)
Summary: Awardees plan to design and teach a studio class in a technology-enhanced, active-learning classroom.

The digital archive of Japan's 2011 disasters as a teaching tool and laboratory course

Awardees: Andrew Gordon (FAS), Theodore Bestor (FAS), Kyle Parry (FAS), Jesse Shapins (GSD), James Burns (GSD)
Summary: Awardees plan to further develop the Japan Digital Archive project and design a Fall 2013 lab course that capitalizes on the improved platform. 

Enhancing learning through hands-on exploration in a dynamic cross-disciplinary geospatial web platform

Awardees: Suzanne Preston Blier (FAS), Robert Bates (FAS), Joseph Koerner (FAS), Ingrid Monson (FAS), Nathan Nunn (FAS), Kelly O'Neill (FAS), Jason Ur (FAS), Bonnie Burns (FAS), Jacob Olupona (FAS/HDS), Hashim Sarkis (GSD), Lucie White (HLS), Chris Dede (HGSE), Jennifer Leaning (HMS), Felton Earls (HMS)
Summary: Awardees plan to further develop WorldMap’s functionalities (e.g., add discussion features) using existing staff at the Center of Geographic Analysis.

Hands-on virtual dissection for dynamic anatomy instruction and evaluation

Awardees: Alexander Bick (HMS), Trudy Van Houten (HMS)
Summary: Awardees plan to use Kinect technology for “hands-on” virtual dissection. 

Quests for wisdom: Religious, moral, and aesthetic searches for the art of living

Awardees: Arthur Kleinman (FAS/HMS), David Carrasco (HDS/FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to design, fund, and assess a new interdisciplinary, cross-school course on “wisdom for the art of living” that seeks to transform students’ moral experiences through experiential learning.

Those who teach, can: Characterizing the link between teaching and professional competency

Awardees: Charles Christopher Smith (HMS), Lori R. Newman (HMS), Grace Huang (HMS), Richard Schwartzstein (HMS), Eileen Reynolds (HMS)
Summary: Characterizing the link between teaching and professional competency. Awardees plan to study whether teaching and clinical skills correlate and whether teaching training improves clinical performance.

A Model for teaching and curriculum development informed by the theatrical process

Awardees: Diane Paulus (FAS), Ryan McKittrick (FAS), Thomas Derrah (FAS), Brendan Shea (FAS), Shira Milikowsky (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to host a series of professional workshops and roundtables that connect the dramatic arts with teaching.

The Connected Scholar

Awardees: Kimberly Hall (HLS), Susan Fliss (FAS), Sebastian Diaz (Other)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop further an online tool (“The Connected Scholar”) to teach and promote academic integrity and facilitate proper citation.

Native Americans in the 21st century: Nation Building II community research projects

Awardees: Dennis Norman (HMS), Shelly Lowe (Other)
Summary: Awardees plan to support and extend a multidisciplinary, experiential learning course on community building in indigenous cultures.

H20: Adaptable digital textbooks

Awardees: Jonathan Zittrain (HLS), Urs Gasser (HLS), Suzanne Wones (HLS)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop further their online H20 platform for digital textbook design and distribution.

Teaching with things: Curation, hybrid multimedia, and object-oriented pedagogy

Awardees: Jeffrey T. Schnapp (FAS), Yanni Loukissas (GSD), Matthew Battles (Other), Peter Galison (FAS), Ned Friedman (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to expand an existing curatorial program at metaLAB and the museums to support object-based teaching in the humanities. They are also designing interconnected lesson plans and courses that use their method to “teach with objects."

Einstein Reversed

Awardee: Peter Galison (FAS)
Summary: Awardee redesigned his Gen Ed course on the Einsteinian revolution, using video-recorded content to “flip the classroom."

Portraits in multimedia: A social engagement project in African and African American Studies

Awardees: Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham (FAS), John Mugane (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to create a digital archive of “social portraits” (short video interviews with African leaders and residents) for widespread use in humanities courses.

Learning from leaders: Weaving a leadership narrative into the educational experience

Awardees: Ian Lapp (SPH), Miranda Daniloff Mancusi (SPH), Deane Eastwood (SPH), Betty Johnson (SPH), Lisa Mirowitz (SPH), Alexandria King-Close (SPH), Robert Blendon (HKS/SPH)
Summary: Awardees plan to edit existing video of influential lectures into pedagogically-relevant clips, and create a user-friendly interface to enable faculty to better use these videos in their courses.

Making Classroom Minutes Count

Awardees: Suzanne J. Cooper (HKS), John D. Donahue (HKS), Richard Light (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees plan to use active learning strategies, peer instruction, and “flipped classrooms” to transform the core curriculum of their school’s flagship degree program.

The future of learning: Preparing professionals in education for a changing world

Awardees: Veronica Boix-Mansilla (HGSE), Howard Gardner (HGSE), David Perkins (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees plan to use learning principles of digital and social media to create an online environment that engages faculty, students, and staff involved with their professional education program; they also plan to create immersive exercises that promote active, interdisciplinary learning.

Coordinating and advancing statistical teaching and learning (CASTLE)

Awardees: Xiao-Li Meng (FAS), Joseph Blitzstein (FAS), David Harrington (SPH/FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to organize a two-day workshop that brings together faculty and students from across the University to discuss pedagogical strategies for teaching statistics.

Harvard students and incarcerated students: Learning together in a prison classroom

Awardees: Bruce Western (FAS), Kaia Stern (HDS)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop a joint experiential-learning course for incarcerated students and Harvard students.

Sounds Studies

Awardee: Alexander Rehding (FAS)
Summary: Awardee plans to create a computer lab for sound analysis that could support a number of existing courses across several departments.

Expanding existing innovative program for assessing student learning in hands-on innovation courses

Awardee: Beth Altringer (SEAS)
Summary: Expanding existing innovative program for assessing student learning in hands-on innovation courses. Awardee plans to advance methods for better assessing how teams interact and ideas develop during experiential learning in multi-disciplinary engineering classes focused on design and innovation.

Transforming stories and public health lessons of Ashland, MA, into a multimedia case for learning

Awardees: Rose H. Goldman (SPH), Amy Cohen (SPH), Dan Borelli (GSD), Kara Oehler (Other), Jesse Shapins (GSD)
Summary: Awardees plan to create (using Zeega software) a multimedia “case” that better integrates quantitative and qualitative information, for use in a public health course and as a model for next-generation case-based teaching.

Development of a multimedia textbook

Awardees: Shigehisa Kuriyama (FAS), Wayne Tan (FAS), Jennifer van der Grinten (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop a digital textbook for an existing course.

Exploring community differences using spatial data

Awardees: Christopher Winship (FAS), Dan O’Brien (Other)
Summary: Awardees plan to create a new course that teaches students in sociology to visualize and analyze spatial data.

Enhancing student team effectiveness

Awardees: David Wilkins (HLS), Scott Westfahl (HLS)
Summary: Awardees plan to use online assessments to improve team effectiveness and provide students with informative feedback about their role as team members.

Harvard Writes: A digital teaching and learning platform for better undergraduate academic writing

Awardee: Tom Jehn (FAS)
Summary: Awardee plans to develop a digital learning and teaching platform (“Harvard Writes”) for students and instructors to improve undergraduate academic writing by addressing the problem of knowledge transfer.

WSI/ELP water policy learning project

Awardees: John Briscoe (SEAS), Jody Freeman (HLS), Richard Lazarus (HLS)
Summary: Awardees plan to involve students in a multi-disciplinary, collaborative project on water policy in an effort to use experiential and team-based learning to teach students vital professional skills.

Understanding the teaching brain

Awardees: Vanessa Rodriguez (HGSE), Kurt Fischer (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees plan to systematically study expert teachers in an effort to develop a model of the “teaching brain” and understand its implications for comprehensive brain-based education.

Cultivating communities of practice in graduate student teaching

Awardee: Nonie Lesaux (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee plans to develop a formal model of professional development for doctoral students who serve as teaching fellows.

Framework courses in arts and humanities

Awardees: Diana Sorensen (FAS), Homi Bhabha (FAS), Peter Sacks (FAS), Jennifer Roberts (FAS), Robin Kelsey (FAS), Alexander Rehding (FAS), John Hamilton (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan three Graduate Seminars in General Education that will ultimately lead to proposals for foundational Gen Ed courses in the arts and humanities.

Geospatial education at Harvard: A new course in mapping and spatial perspectives

Awardees: Peter Bol (FAS), Kirk Goldsberry (FAS)
Summary: Awardees developed a new course on spatial reasoning, cartography, and geographic analysis.

Faculty Focus on Teaching: A collaborative venture to develop pedagogic insights, ambitions, and techniques

Awardee: Joe Blatt (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee plans to create an online, video-based process for analyzing and sharing effective teaching strategies among faculty colleagues.

Online analytic reading and writing tutorial dissemination and evaluation

Awardees: Meira Levinson (HGSE), Sherry Deckman (HGSE), Abena Mackall (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees plan to use usage data and impact assessments to further develop their online tutorial on analytic reading and writing.

Learning and teaching negotiation and conflict resolution skills to enhance patient safety in the OR

Awardees: Sharon Muret-Wagstaff (HMS), Richard Whyte (HMS), Brett A. Simon (HMS), James K. Sebenius (HBS)
Summary: Awardees plan to enable learners to apply principles of negotiation and conflict resolution in the high-stakes operating room environment, with the ultimate goal of improving medical teamwork and patient safety.

Calculus practitioner series: Meeting the changing needs of our students and client disciplines

Awardees: Robin Gottlieb (FAS), Juliana Belding (FAS), Peter Garfield (FAS), Jameel Al-Aidroos (FAS), Janet Chen (FAS), Oliver Knill (FAS), John Hall (FAS), Meghan Anderson (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to design and record a multimedia series on the interdisciplinary nature of calculus with speakers from Harvard faculty from the STEM and quantitative social science fields.

Graduate multimedia fellows program

Awardees: Marlon Kuzmick (FAS), Louis Epstein (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to organize a graduate multimedia fellows program that trains teaching fellows to evaluate and advise students’ on multimedia projects.

Transforming education through computer vision analysis and automated assessment

Awardees: Eric Mazur (SEAS), Todd Zickler (SEAS), Rachel Scherr (Other)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop tools for automatically analyzing student behavior, promoting richer interactions between students and teachers, and optimizing peer instruction in large lecture classes.

Test-enhanced learning: Applying principles of cognitive psychology to education

Awardees: Karl K. Szpunar (FAS), Daniel L. Schacter (FAS)
Summary: Applying principles of cognitive psychology to education. Awardees plan to study how formative assessment can be better used in lecture courses to promote learning.

The lecture in 21st-century learning: Reconstructing and revaluing our oldest teaching asset

Awardee: Robert Kegan (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee plans to redesign his large lecture course based on active learning strategies but, at the same time, preserving the possible benefits of the traditional lecture format.

Learning bundles: A tool to enhance student learning in higher education

Awardee: Katherine Merseth (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee plans to create a tool that combines video, links to online material, and classroom exercises to facilitate student thinking about complex topics on which experts disagree.

Language through the visual arts: An interdisciplinary partnership

Awardees: Maria Luisa Parra (FAS), Elvira Di Fabio (FAS)
Summary: Awardees plan to develop innovative methodology and curricula to promote the use of visual art in language classes.

Leadership and authority in groups: An innovative and experiential leadership development collaboration

Awardees: John E. McDonough (SPH), Elizabeth A. City (HGSE), Loren Gary (HKS)
Summary: Awardees plan to design multidisciplinary workshops that use experiential learning to teach participants about group dynamics and leadership.

The use and evaluation of case-based collaborative learning to teach basic sciences at HMS

Awardees: Edward Krupat (HMS), David Roberts (HMS), Amy Sullivan (HMS), Richard Schwartzstein (HMS), Jeremy Richards (HMS)
Summary: Awardees plan to implement and evaluate a new instructional method that utilizes pre-class preparation, the case method, collaborative learning, and peer instruction.

Cultivation Grants (2014)

2014 Cultivation Grants of up to $200K were designed to extend promising educational innovations into new intellectual and institutional contexts and to rigorously investigate the potential of their wide-scale adoption across the University. Explore awarded projects below:

Digital Teaching Fellow program

Awardees: Dan Smail (FAS), Ann Blair (FAS), Rowan Dorin (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will expand the digital teaching fellow program from one to at least seven departments in the humanities and social sciences, pairing students with faculty to develop a variety of course-related digital projects, encouraging pedagogical experimentation in digital active learning, multi-media assignments, and unique faculty-student collaboration.

New educational opportunities at Harvard through online behavioral research

Awardees: Ken Nakayama (FAS), Krzysztof Gajos (FAS/SEAS), Ryan Enos (FAS)
Summary: Ken Nakayama (psychology), Krzysztof Gajos (computer science), and Ryan Enos (government) will create web-based modules for a variety of classroom contexts that can be utilized flexibly by students and instructors to actively participate in behavioral research.

Assessing the impact of an innovative curriculum at Harvard Medical School: A new paradigm for medical education

Awardees: Edward Krupat (HMS), Richard Schwartzstein (HMS), Jeremy Richards (HMS), Amy Sullivan (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will evaluate the impact of curriculum renewal at HMS and develop a model for educational assessment by analyzing student data of cohorts from both the previous curriculum and the new curriculum being implemented in 2015.

Spark Grants (2013-2019)

Spark Grants were designed to help Harvard faculty, staff, students, and researchers “spark” promising teaching and learning projects from idea to reality and position innovations for future success. Grants awards of up to $15,000 were offered during the 2013-2019 academic years. Below is a list of awardees by round starting from the most recent:

2019 Awardees

Supporting Virtual Reality Pedagogical Initiatives across Harvard

Awardees: Susan Berstler, Rus Gant, Nicole Mills (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will provide virtual reality (VR) equipment, software, and staff training for initiating and supporting innovative VR pedagogical initiatives at the Cabot Science Library VR studio.

Teaching Students How to Learn

Awardees: Brendan Kelly, Robin Gottlieb, Caroline Junkins, Logan McCarty, Sindhumathi Revuluri, Martin Samuels (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will develop an interdisciplinary STEM initiative that will enable instructors to incorporate explicit lessons to teach their students how to study and learn both inside and outside of the classroom.

Developing a Hybrid Interprofessional Education Model to Prepare Students for Cross-Sector Problem-Solving

Awardees: Stacey King, Nancy Turnbull, Laurie Pascal, Louise Weed, Fawn Phelps, Jolene Lehr, Ra’Shaun Nalls, David Ginnings, Jennifer Betancourt (SPH), Meghan Morrissey (HarvardX)
Summary: Awardees will build on the award-winning HarvardX MOOC, “Improving Your Business Through a Culture of Health (COH),” to develop a scalable and transferable pilot module to practice interprofessional (cross-sector) team learning.

Best models for blended learning between graduate students and professionals

Awardees: Bethany Kotlar, Henning Tiemeier, Sejal Vashi, Lorna Perkins (SPH)
Summary: Awardees will test a series of blended learning modules designed to facilitate collaborative learning between professional and graduate students to highlight best practices in using blended learning to allow collaborative, co-education between professionals and graduate students.

We are all Educators: Piloting a Workshop to Prepare University Staff to Act as Effective Educators

Awardees: David Havelick, Kris Markman (CADM)
Summary: Awardees will create resources and a workshop that will enable staff members to more effectively act as educators when working with students on formal and informal projects.

Rubric Visualization Project

Awardees: Zachary Nowak (FAS), Daniel Jamous, Jeremy Guillette (HUIT)
Summary: Awardees will create a program to transform raw rubric data into an easy-to-understand visualization that shows which part of an assignment students best performed on and which parts they need help with.

Holographic Electricity Toolkit and Curriculum

Awardee: Iulian Radu (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee will use augmented reality (AR) technology to design tools that allow students to visualize invisible phenomena and support digitally mediated scientific inquiry and knowledge exchanges in makerspaces.

Building Teaching Professional Development for Harvard Graduate Students involved in STEMM Educational Outreach

Awardees: Deepali Ravel, Brittany Michel, Taralyn Tan (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will create and curate professional development resources for evidence-based inclusive teaching that is specifically tailored to Harvard graduate students involved in STEMM outreach programs.

2018 Awardees

Helping students and faculty to optimize preparation for the flipped classroom: using efficiency metrics

Awardees: Henrike Besche, Randall King, Elizabeth Lemoine, and Barbara Cockrill (HMS)
Summary: Awardee will use efficiency metrics to study the best preparation methods for a flipped classroom.

Teaching Decision-Making through Experiential Learning and Personalized Practice Across Disciplines

Awardees: Baruch S. Krauss (HMS), Joanna Huang (FAS), Rhonda Bondie, and Chris Dede (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees will study how decision-making is taught and assessed across disciplines and disseminate effective teaching methods.

The Video Essay as a Learning Tool in Field-Based Courses and Design Courses

Awardees: Jorrit de Jong and Cecily Tyler (HKS)
Summary: Awardees will explore the video essay as an integrative teaching tool in field-based and design-oriented courses.

Development of Student-run Podcasts as an Innovative Learning and Communication Tool

Awardees: Natalie DuPre, E. Francis Cook, Myroslava Makuch, and Sejal Vashi (SPH)
Summary: Awardees will develop training workshops to teach students to communicate technical knowledge to broader audiences through podcasting.

Whiteness: An Ethnographic Question

Awardee: Kaya Williams (FAS)
Summary: Awardee will use an ethnographic lens to spark an interdisciplinary and intergenerational conversation on the role of whiteness in research, pedagogy, and institutional life.

2017 Awardees

Project Nights and open-ended design research

Awardees: Madeline Hickman, Elaine Kristant (SEAS), Robert Hart, and Daniel Rosenberg (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will measure the effects of open-ended extracurricular projects on student learning.

The Diversity Journal Club

Awardee: Nia Imara (FAS)
Summary: Awardee will pilot a Diversity Journal Club (DJC) to understand how diversity issues impact learning, teaching, research, and culture in the science community.

Choice architecture: When students become designers of optimal decision processes

Awardee: Jennifer Lerner (HKS)
Summary: Awardee will develop in-class and online activities to improve student decision-making and increase classroom engagement.

Virtual reality narratives in foreign language pedagogy

Awardees: Nicole Mills, Rus Gant (FAS), and Chris Dede (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees will engage foreign language students in cultural and linguistic immersion through virtual reality (VR) film narratives.

Team-based learning in the humanities

Awardee: Bernhard Nickel (FAS)
Summary: Awardee will redesign a course with team-based learning (TBL) principles and assess the benefits and challenges of the approach.

“Making space” for interdisciplinary critical thinking

Awardees: Megan Panzano and Lisa Haber-Thomson (GSD/FAS)
Summary: Awardees will offer a series of interdisciplinary workshops that develop critical thinking through making.

Assessing learning outcomes from a novel formative assessment in a large enrollment graduate life science course

Awardees: Madhvi Venkatesh and Ronald Jason Heustis (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will evaluate whether delivering a chalk talk in response to an open-ended experimental design question is an effective method to drive improvements in the general practice and articulation of experimental design, as measured through responses to subsequent written experimental design questions.

How digital education transforms residential teaching: Systematic analysis of faculty attitudes and experiences creating MOOCs

Awardees: Tiffany Wong, Drew Lichtenstein, and Selen Turkay (CADM)
Summary: Awardees will synthesize instructors’ pedagogically relevant experiences and lessons learned while making Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) and create a set of best practices.

Fall 2016 Awardees

Evaluating methods of teaching and assessing critical thinking: A mixed-methods study of faculty and students across Harvard University

Awardees: Margaret Hayes (HMS-BIDMC), Suzanne Cooper (HKS), Richard Schwartzstein (HMS), Amy Sullivan (HMS), and William Wisser (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees will conduct a mixed-methods study analyzing the teaching and learning of critical thinking skills at Harvard—the differences in approaches across Schools, and faculty and student perceptions of critical thinking instruction and assessment.

New methods for hands-on teaching in the history of technology

Awardee: Matthew Hersch (FAS)
Summary: Awardee developed experiential learning opportunities for students in history of technology courses, including in-class demonstration and simulation.

Graduate Writing Oasis

Awardee: Nancy Khalil (FAS)
Summary: Awardee ran a year-long Writing Oasis program, based on a successful pilot offering, to provide dedicated time and collaboration for graduate students in their dissertation writing.

A Pilot in mathematics enrichment to increase pathways to STEM

Awardee: Katherine Penner (FAS)
Summary: Awardee implemented a large-scale version of a successful pilot “book club” aimed at lower level math students to create an environment to practice and experiment with advanced concepts.

Revision history analytics in service of analyzing the writing process

Awardees: Daniel Seaton, Selen Turkay, and Andrew Ang (CADM-VPAL)
Summary: Awardees analyzed revision patterns in student writing, how they relate to activities within specific passages of a written text, and how revision-history analytics can play a role in supporting teaching and improvement in writing skills.

Bridging the gap between statistics courses and practice

Awardee: Emily Slade (SPH)
Summary: Awardee bridged the gap between statistics courses and students’ ability to implement concepts in their own work with a student-run consulting service to be permanently housed in the Biostatistics Department.

Spring 2016 Awardees

Extending active classroom activities to online students

Awardees: Greg Aimo and Rebecca Nesson (DCE)
Summary: Awardees developed methods for online students to participate in active learning exercises designed for the traditional classroom.

Transforming team-learning teaching cases in public health for online platforms: an e-learning module development project

Awardees: S. Bryn Austin (HMS-CH), Chris Dede (HGSE), Holly Gooding (HMS-CH)
Summary: Awardees transformed STRIPED teaching cases for online delivery, consistent with digital learning research and toward expanded outreach to working professionals.

Understanding the impact of using mechanistic concept mapping as a collaborative learning tool

Awardee: Krisztina Fischer (HMS-BWH)
Summary: Awardee conducted a mixed-methods study in HMS course Homeostasis I.

DIY flipping kit: Blended learning in the context of Canvas

Awardees: Mae Klinger and Maria Flanagan (HKS)
Summary: Awardees created a “do it yourself” flipping kit to help faculty across the University develop blended learning materials using Canvas.

Creating real-time connections in online courses

Awardees: Adrienne Phelps-Coco and Karina Lin (DCE)
Summary: Awardees evaluated types of interactivity between faculty and students and generated a resource guide of best practices to assist instructors in interacting with online and residential students in Canvas.

Fall 2015 Awardees

Leveraging teaching assistant potential and scaling-up high-intensity experiential learning

Awardees: Erin Baumann, Carolyn Wood, and Allison Pingree (HKS)
Summary: Awardees will conduct and analyze the data of faculty interviews to surface best practices in teaching team management, with particular attention to the role of teaching assistants in the development of high-intensity experiential learning environments.

Understanding how hackathon methodology drives participatory design pedagogy

Awardees: Marcus Mello and Lindsay Woodson (GSD)
Summary: Awardees will explore the “hackathon” as a participatory learning and engagement strategy to bring together members of the Harvard community and beyond.

Elective in primary care medicine and teaching

Awardees: Kristen Goodell (HMS), Barbara Ogur (HMS-CHA), Sara Fazio (HMS-BIDMC), Barbara Gottlieb (SPH/HMS-BWH), Valeria Pazo (HMS-BWH), Colleen Farrell (HMS), and Lydia Flier (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will pilot an advanced elective in primary care medicine and teaching, where senior medical students tutor junior medical students in clinical skills, with assessment of its benefits to both students enrolled in the elective and the junior students they tutor.

Analyzing long-term retention of information in science gateway course

Awardees: Susanne Jakob and William Anderson (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will administer a survey to Harvard College graduates to analyze the long-term retention of the concepts and abilities taught in a gateway science course.

Bridging education research and practice using online learning modules

Awardees: Marshall Thomas (HMS), Selen Turkay (CADM-VPAL), and Michael Parker (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will explore the best-performing sequences of instructional materials in both controlled studies and in the context of real online courses.

Embodied learning investigation

Awardee: Irwin Shapiro and Anna Yermakova (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will investigate whether embodied class exercises, relevant to the material being taught, yield greater understanding and retention of this material compared to teaching that relies solely on demonstrations.

Bottom-up pedagogy

Awardees: Jon Hanson and Jacob Lipton (HLS)
Summary: Awardees will develop, expand, and improve a new approach to legal education (and higher education generally) that is more problem-oriented, team-driven, and experiential than are traditional and conventional pedagogical methods.

Spring 2015 Awardees

The Videographic essay: Innovating a multimedia pedagogical tool for 21st Century scholarship

Awardee: Pierre Bélanger (GSD)
Summary: Awardee will articulate the scholarly development of the use of the “videographic essay” as a method for communicating knowledge, compiling research, and synthesizing arguments, and organize a 2015 special workshop on multimedia methods.

Getting learners to AskUp: Enhancing education through learner-generated questions

Awardees: Jonathan Hausmann (HMS-BIDMC), Phil McGachey (CADM-HUIT), Sarah Schachman (College), Elliott Yates (CADM-HUIT), and Ziv Paz (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will develop an online platform – “AskUp” – using evidence-based techniques to facilitate and enhance learning through learner-generated questions.

Understanding the relationship between instructor performance and advice quality

Awardees: David Levari and Dan Gilbert (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will investigate the relationship between instructor performance and advice quality by comparing instructor performance on a series of web-based modules and the performance of “students” who completed the modules with instructor advice.

LINK: Preparing students to evaluate evidence and navigate real-world issues

Awardees: Stephanie Sasse (FAS), L. Todd Rose (HGSE), and Leah H. Somerville (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will refine six skill-building exercises intended to help students more effectively interpret evidence, and disseminate them to the Harvard teaching community.

Teaching rewriting

Awardees: Stuart Shieber and Allen Schmaltz (SEAS)
Summary: Awardees explored the potential impact of a writing instruction method that emphasizes the editorial and revision process, which has the potential advantages of scalability and skill transferability.

Explaining things differently: A Crowdsourcing approach

Awardees: Jacob Whitehill (CADM-VPAL) and Margo Seltzer (SEAS)
Summary: Awardees will build a crowdsourced repository of video tutorial explanations of key course topics.

Fall 2014 Awardees

An introduction to numerical computing for undergraduates

Awardees: Adam Cohen and Christopher Stubbs (FAS)
Summary: Awardees developed a two-week module on basic computational methods in MATLAB, lowering the barrier to use for students in courses from biology to economics.

From text to multimedia: Evaluating a scalable enhancement model for problem-based learning

Awardees: Maria Flanagan, Carolyn Wood, Dan Levy, Christopher Robichaud, Mae Klinger, and Laura Winig (HKS)
Summary: Awardees will conduct a comparison study to identify the impact of multimedia enhancements of case materials on student preparation and engagement.

Capture50: A tool to facilitate peer review and assessment

Awardees: Dan Coffey and David J. Malan (SEAS)
Summary: Awardees will provide a low-cost tool that automatically captures video of instructors, facilitating more robust peer review and frequent opportunity for pedagogical assessment.

A Virtual public forum and online resource platform for speaking and communication

Awardees: Sarah Jessop and Marlon Kuzmick (FAS-Bok Center)
Summary: Awardees will film a series of interviews (inspired by “Harvard Writes“) to convene a campus-wide conversation on the role of spoken communication in teaching, scholarship, and collaboration.

New models for evaluating learning outcomes in digital humanities teaching

Awardees: Jeffrey Schnapp, Jessica Yurkofsky, Kyle Parry, and Matthew Battles (FAS-metaLAB)
Summary: Awardees will host a workshop around opportunities and challenges in digital humanities teaching, applying lessons learned to the assessment of metaLAB platforms.

A Crash course in Harvard College and undergraduates

Awardees: Michael Zachau Walker and Sophia Watkins (College)
Summary: Awardees designed a workshop for teaching fellows to increase understanding of teaching Harvard undergraduates in order to foster meaningful and productive relationships. The goal was to improve teaching and learning experiences for both graduate teaching fellows and college students.

Spring 2014 Awardees

Online learning models matrix

Awardee: William Wisser (HGSE)
Summary: Awardee will convene a group of faculty and staff to study and document the current range of online learning models and disseminate a matrix of findings that will inform pedagogical strategies and production activities.

Improving statistics literacy in graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in the life sciences

Awardees: Abha Ahuja (HMS), Melanie Stefan (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will study misconceptions about statistics in a high-enrollment life science course and develop a related computer-based module.

Open review platform

Awardees: Erik Bauch (FAS), Georg Kucsko (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will, within several physics courses, test, assess, and refine a promising education tool that facilitates student and faculty collaborative annotation of scholarly materials.

Innovation and accountability in foreign language program evaluation

Awardees: Nicole Mills (FAS), Stacey Katz Bourns (FAS), Virginia Maurer (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will organize a new symposium and series of workshops for faculty to explore contemporary approaches in assessing and renewing foreign language curricula.

Teaching creativity: Landscape, architecture, originality, and autobiography

Awardee: Michael Van Valkenburgh (GSD)
Summary: Awardee will develop a new interdisciplinary course, involving leaders in landscape architecture and other fields paired with faculty at Harvard to examine originality, authenticity, and invention, and develop a model for courses that spark students to develop their own creative voice.

Fall 2013 Awardees

Repository of TF Section Plans

Awardee: Kris-Stella Trump (FAS)
Summary: Awardee plans to develop and pilot an open database of section plans for Teaching Fellows in the government department.

Teaching genomics across Harvard schools

Awardees: Winston Hide (SPH), William Gelbart (FAS), Maxwell Heiman (HMS)
Summary: Awardees will establish the “Harvard Genomics Teaching Group,” share pedagogical approaches, a dedicated platform for analysis, and document best practices.

Study of collaborative writing

Awardees: Charles Lang (HGSE), Suchitra Saxena (HGSE)
Summary: Awardees will conduct a feasibility study on the collection and analysis of behavioral data from students’ writing collaboration.

New gateway to STEM

Awardees: Alyssa Goodman (FAS), Edo Berger (FAS), Alicia Soderberg (FAS), John Johnson (FAS), Robert Kirshner (FAS), Dimitar Sasselov (FAS)
Summary: Awardees will install an interactive, touch-screen kiosk running interactive WorldWide Telescope Tours in the Science Center and analyze usage.

Faculty scholarly working papers on teaching and learning

Awardee: Dan Levy (HKS)
Summary: Awardee will incentivize and support the publishing of faculty studies of curricula and host related events.

Improving learning experiences by building cooperative environments in classrooms

Awardees: Bethany Burum (FAS), Gordon Kraft-Todd (Other), Erez Yoeli (Other)
Summary: Awardees will use classroom simulations to study helpful behavioral economic interventions toward increased learning and cooperation in classrooms.

Advance Grants (2017)

2017 Advance Grants were designed to help previous HILT grant recipients extend the scale and success of a prior HILT grant project. Browse awarded projects below:

Transforming team-learning teaching cases for online platforms: scaling up an e-learning module development project to expand reach across Harvard and to public health professionals in field settings

Awardees: S. Bryn Austin (HMS-CH), Chris Dede (HGSE), Holly Gooding (HMS-BWH), Megan Kipp (M.Ed. ’10), Lori Garg (HMS-CH), Adrienne Phelps-Coco (DCE), and Karina Lin (DCE)
Summary: Awardees will extend the transformation of traditional to online cases across Harvard by developing a new e-module for delivering teaching cases on-line to public health professionals in field settings, and convening a cross-Harvard workshop to share best practices.

AskUp: Improving learning and metacognition through learner-generated questions

Awardees: Jonathan Hausmann (HMS-BIDMC), Elliott Yates (CADM-HUIT), Katherine Loboda (College), and Eli Miloslavsky (HMS-MGH)
Summary: Awardees will continue the development of AskUp, a free, open-source studying and learning app that leverages evidence-based techniques to enhance learning, and will evaluate the efficacy of the application’s improvement to metacognition, self-directed learning, and class performance through small randomized trials.

SLab 2.0

Awardee: Alexander Rehding and Chris Danforth (FAS)
Summary: Professor Rehding will build upon his previously awarded HILT grant to develop an enhanced version of the Sound Studios Lab with SLab 2.0, which will be more of a “lab” in the scientific sense: a space for experimentation and exchange, with a community of researchers who will work collaboratively on a range of sound-related projects combining research and creative work particularly focused on exploring “Sound as a Conveyor of Knowledge,” and offering a range of services to the broader Harvard community.

Targeted Support (2018)

2018 Targeted Support of up to $125K was designed to help those who have piloted projects with demonstrated success toward scalability. Browse awarded projects below:

Making “Inclass” into a campus-wide educational technology app store

Awardee: Gabriel Abrams (DCE)
Summary: Awardee will scale the availability of the SEAS educational technology (edtech) app store across the University.

Hedera: A personalized vocabulary database and readability gauge

Awardees: Ivy Livingston (FAS), Mark Schiefsky (FAS), Rebecca Miller (HUIT), Jeff Emanuel (HUIT), Bill Barthelmy (HUIT)
Summary: Awardees will incorporate more languages and enhanced features into Hedera, a web application that supports research-based language pedagogy.

Teachly: A research project

Awardees: Dan Levy, Theodore Svoronos, Karti Subramanian, and Sarah Hamma (HKS)
Summary: Awardees aim to study the effectiveness of Teachly, a software tool designed to help faculty teach more inclusively and effectively.

Operation Impact

The mission of Operation Impact was to empower students to become agents of change in the field of education. By providing students with resources, funding, and connections, we built a runway for their innovative ideas to take off and have a measurable impact on learners of all ages, globally.