College of Science Research Support Programs

Overview

The College of Science (CoS) has identified supporting and stimulating research, especially involving students, as a stategic priority. Accordingly, we have implemented a number of programs to facilitate and encourage research activity. These programs have been funded through a combination of sources, including RSCA infusion funds invested by Provost Feinstein and AVP Stacks, College funds invested by the Dean, and F&A reinvestments.

The research support programs fall generally into two categories: reassigned time for research active faculty and "Just-in-Time" grants. The reassigned time programs are further subdivided into two types, reassigned time for research student mentoring, and reassigned time for research-active faculty.

Every year, typically in May, all CoS faculty are asked to submit data related to their research activity to the College. Only tenured or tenure-track, non-FERP faculty who submit data are eligible to receive awards of reassigned time for research-active faculty and just-in-time grants.

 

Reassigned Time Programs

Reassigned Time for Research Mentoring

The College of Science provides regular (tenured or tenure-track) faculty with reassigned time for mentoring research students as follows: 0.33 weighted teaching unit (wtu) for each undergraduate research student enrolled in 180 and 0.5 wtu for each graduate research student enrolled in 298, with a maximum of 3 wtu assignable via this mechanism each semester.

Reassigned Time for Research-Active Faculty

This mechanism provides reassigned time to our most research-active faculty members. To assess research activity level, the average annual research activity for a five-year period, as measured by the CoS research activity metric, was calculated for each faculty member who submitted data. The CoS metric, version 2.0 is here.

For the first two years of the program the eligible faculty who had the highest five-year average research activity were offered 0.2 FTE of release until the allocated funds were spent. For the 2017-18 academic year, we were able to increase the amount of reassigned time for the most highly research-active faculty members. The awarded reassigned time, ranging from 0.2 FTE - 0.6 FTE, could be taken at any time in the 2017-18 academic year at the faculty member's discretion, with the proviso that department chair’s consent is required and that all faculty members must adhere to the College's minimum teaching load requirement.

 

Just-in-Time Grant Program

Faculty who have submitted data may request funds from this program for any research-related need at any time during the year. The request need only be a brief description of what is needed and how the funds will advance the research agenda of the requester, and a brief budget. All such requests are reviewed by the CoS Research Committee, that evaluates the merit of the request, and the evaluations are forwarded to the Dean for a final funding decision. We endeavor to release Just-in-Time funds according to the following schedule: ½ in the first quarter, ¼ in the second quarter, 1/8th in the third quarter, and 1/8th in the final quarter. This method balances providing funds early to maximally stimulate research with retaining some funds to meet unforeseen needs.

Report from 2015-16 RSCA Infusion