To: Education, Social Science, and STEM Faculty at HBCUs

Quality Education for Minorities (QEM) Network
Workshop on Broadening Participation in the National Science Foundation (NSF)
Education and Human Resources (EHR) Core Research (ECR) Program
Friday-Saturday, April 21-22, 2017• Washington, DC


Registration Deadline Extended: Monday, April 3, 2017
Required Project Summary Due to QEM: Wednesday, April 5, 2017

QEM Network invites you to bring a three-person team of Education, Social Science, and STEM Faculty from your institution to participate in a Workshop on Broadening Participation in the National Science Foundation EHR Directorate’s Core Research (ECR): Fundamental Research in STEM Education Program. QEM will conduct the workshop on Friday-Saturday, April 21-22, 2017 at a meeting venue/hotel in the Washington-DC metro area. The overall goal of this proposal and professional development workshop and related follow-up technical assistance sessions with QEM consultants is to increase the number of STEM faculty from HBCUs who submit proposals and receive research grants from the NSF EHR directorate, and more specifically, the ECR Program.

The EHR Core Research (ECR) program provides funding in critical research areas to advance the frontiers of understanding about how people learn, and use STEM knowledge, more effectively. EHR seeks proposals that will help synthesize, build and/or expand research foundations in the following focal areas: STEM learning, STEM learning environments, STEM workforce development, and broadening participation in STEM. Awards range from $300,000 (Synthesis Projects) to $1,500,000 (Level III Studies). A copy of the current ECR Guidelines (NSF 15-509) is attached and the next proposal submission deadline is September 14, 2017.

With funding from the NSF Historically Black Colleges and Universities-Undergraduate Program (HBCU-UP), QEM can support the participation of 10 eligible three-person teams, consisting of: 1) a current/recent PI/Co-PI of a HBCU-UP Broadening Participation Research (BPR) award or other education research-focused grant; 2) a STEM faculty member;  and 3) an Education or social science research-focused faculty member. QEM can provide support (travel, lodging, and meals) for only one team from an institution but schools interested in registering more than one eligible team may do so at their own expense. The ECR program has no restrictions or limits on who can serve as PI; the number of proposals from an organization, or proposals per PI or Co-PI.

To participate in the April 21-22 QEM ECR Proposal Development Workshop, each team must prepare and submit the following three (3) documents:

(1)  The QEM Registration Form (download word document), with complete contact information for each of the team members, including the disciplines represented. Deadline: Monday, April 3, 2017

(2)  A one-page Project Summary for the proposed research project, beginning with a clear statement in the first sentence of the focal area(s) and the proposal type (Level 1, 2, 3, synthesis; or conference/workshop). It should be prepared in accordance with the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) NSF 17-01) Deadline: Wednesday, April 5, 2017

      The required one-page summary should be a self-contained description of the activity that would result if a proposal were funded. The summary should begin with an Overview of the proposed project with clear statement of the goals, objectives, and methods to be used in the proposed project. Separately labeled paragraphs should follow that clearly address both of NSF's two Merit Review Criteria (criteria used in determining the merit of all proposals submitted to NSF): Intellectual Merit and Broader Impacts. Guidelines for addressing merit review criteria are detailed in the ECR program solicitation NSF 15-509.

(3)   A brief description (two-page limit) of the proposal’s ECR elements – Upon notification from QEM of their registration status, selected teams will receive an ECR Elements Outline, with instructions, that will need to be completed and submitted prior to the start of the workshop to facilitate session planning.     Due Date: Monday, April 17

QEM must receive all documents no later than the deadline dates noted. Please make sure that the names of the institution and each team member are indicated on each document.

The workshop will employ a variety of strategies to engage participants, including: (1) pre-workshop and on-site review of the draft project summaries for proposed ECR projects; (2) technical assistance by experienced QEM STEM consultants, including PIs who have received NSF BPR or other education research-focused awards; and (3) presentations by NSF program directors. Concurrent sessions will be led by QEM Consultants and Staff to assist teams in revising their one-page ECR proposal project summaries and ECR Elements outlines.

Following the workshop, during the May to August timeframe, QEM consultants also will provide each team with up to eight hours of targeted technical support as the faculty members revise their project summaries and prepare their ECR proposals for submission in September.

Please refer questions to Laura-Lee Davidson, QEM Associate, via email to or phone at 202-659-1818. We look forward to receiving the registration form for your institution’s team as soon as possible but no later than Monday, April 3 and your required project summary by Wednesday, April 5.


Ivory A. Toldson, President & CEO
QEM Network
1818 N Street, NW. Suite 350, Washington, DC 2036