Faculty Research Support Programs


The College of Science (CoS) has identified supporting and stimulating research, especially involving students, as a strategic 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 [pdf] invested by Provost Feinstein and AVP Stacks, College funds invested by the Dean, and F&A reinvestment.

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.

University RSCA Grants

Central RSCA Grant Program

The Office of Research announces the continuation of the Central RSCA Grant Program for Unit 3 faculty for their research, scholarship and creative activities. Funding is provided by the Academic Affairs Division and, if available, by the CSU Chancellor’s Office. Applicants are invited to submit proposals for funding to assist them as they advance an on-going RSCA project or as they launch a new avenue of RSCA. Faculty who receive funding through this program are expected to submit a report on award results, share their accomplishments at a campus-wide event, and serve as a resource for prospective applicants. More information about Call for Proposal 2020-2021, please visit Research and Innovation website.

Multidisciplinary RSCA Stimulus Grant

Provides an opportunity for faculty to expand their established RSCA in new directions through multidisciplinary collaboration and to sustain these activities in the future through extramural funding. A call for this new University program came out in December from the SJSU Division of Research and Innovation, and the due date was February 27, 2020. Award notifications will be made by April 10, 2020, and project periods will be May 2020 - July 2021. Find more information about this grant on Research and Innovation website.

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.

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 WTUs assignable via this mechanism each semester.

Reassigned Time for Research-Active Faculty

The University Faculty RSCA Assigned Time Program is a University program intended to fund un-tenured faculty until the tenure decision, and research active tenured faculty. Awardees receive 3 wtus/semester for up to five years based on their application and five-year RSCA Metric Score. To apply for this program, faculty must submit an application when the call is issued, and submit their RSCA metric data to the College of Science with the application, and each year for the next four years. The CoS metric, version 2.0 is here [pdf]. The deadline for full applications this year was April 10th, 2020 to the Dean's Office.

Faculty should submit a full application if:

  • You are a probationary faculty member in the last year of your contractual assigned time
  • You are a probationary faculty member who applied for tenure in fall 2019
  • You are a research-active tenured faculty member who is not already receiving assigned time through the University RSCA Assigned Time Program 

Faculty who do not need to submit a full application this year (i.e. faculty who do not fall into the three bulleted categories above), must still submit RSCA metric data and their ORCID iD to maintain eligibility for the University and CoS RSCA Faculty Assigned Time Programs and the CoS Just In Time Funds program by May 22, 2020 using 2019-2020 Faculty Research Activity Report form.  The inclusive dates for CoS RSCA metric data have not been changed.  

The Full applications information will include the following:

  1. Cover Sheet, including name, rank, department, college, date of your initial appointment to SJSU, and ORCID iD (see #5 below).
  2. Current Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  3. Scholarly Agenda, describing your RSCA goals, activities, and expected outcomes/products for the coming 5-year period. The scholarly agenda should be concise (no more than two pages) and must include a brief summary aimed at an educated lay audience describing the importance of the proposed line of inquiry. Note that this agenda is forward-looking and complements our current CoS metric, which only looks at past activity.
  4. RSCA metric data must also be submitted, using the link that was emailed by Dr. Miri VanHoven on February 28th
  5. ORCID iD must be generated and updated at orcid.org

Who Should Apply?

Probationary faculty in the last year of their contractually awarded RSCA assigned time who have not already received the award, faculty who submitted an application for tenure in AY 2019-20, and tenured faculty who are research-active who have not already received the award should apply to the program.  

How Much Assigned Time Will I Receive? 

  • Probationary faculty first receiving the award in AY 2020-21 because of the expiration of their contractually awarded RSCA Assigned Time in Spring 2019 will have a maximum teaching load of 18 WTUs (6 WTUs of assigned time) in AY 2020-21 and in each subsequent year until they are awarded tenure.  
  • Probationary faculty first receiving the award in AY 2020-21 after receiving a positive tenure decision in May 2020, will have a maximum teaching load of 18 WTUs (6 WTU of assigned time) in AY 2020-21 and in subsequent years, for a total period of five years, pending satisfactory progress on their RSCA agenda. 
  • Tenured faculty first receiving the award in AY 2020-21 will have a maximum teaching load of 21 WTUs (3 WTUs of assigned time) in AY 2020-21, and a maximum of 18 WTU (6 WTUs of assigned time) in subsequent years, for a total period of five years, pending satisfactory progress on their RSCA agenda. 

Please note that all awards are dependent on annual submission of CoS RSCA Metric data each year. 

What is the Selection Process? 

In the CoS, the Dean will make award recommendations to the Office of the Provost and the Office of Research based on an evaluation of the CoS RSCA Metric, which measures past productivity, and the Scholarly Agenda, which is a forward-looking document. The weighting of these two factors will differ for probationary and tenured faculty: for probationary faculty, the recommendation will be based 80% on the Scholarly Agenda and 20% on the average RSCA metric score (up to 5-year), whereas for tenured faculty the recommendations will be based 80% on the 5-year average RSCA metric score and 20% on the Scholarly Agenda. Final notice of award will likely be announced no later than May 15, 2020

What is the Duration of the Award, when are Reviews, and what are the Reporting Requirements? 

Each award will be for a 5-year period or until the tenure decision, whichever is less. There will be an annual mini-review of awards and a formal review after year 3 of the award. For example, the first formal review of Cycle 1 awards (awards made in AY 2018-19), will be in March 2021. Faculty receiving awards must submit information about their scholarly productivity by completing the Faculty Research Activity Report (used for submitting RSCA metric data) each year in spring (due date will be emailed out annually). Faculty who do not submit their data are not eligible to continue the award. In most cases the outcome of the formal review will be that there is no change in the award. If, however, in the Dean’s opinion, there has not been adequate progress on the RSCA agenda or adequate productivity according to the CoS RSCA metric, the Dean may recommend that the remaining years of the Faculty RSCA Assigned Time award be rescinded. 

The College of Science also supplements the University assigned time with  additional assigned time awards to the most research active faculty as funding allows, based on the 5-year average RSCA Metric Score.