The Theory-to-Practice Grant is designed to help meet the teaching and learning objectives identified in the University’s Statement of Aims and, more specifically, in the Theory-to-Practice Grant strategic initiative that is part of the 2009 Strategic Plan. This grant program is competitive; submissions are evaluated by the Committee on Teaching, Learning, and Cross-Cultural Programming and awarded by the administration.  

Read all of the guidance below, if you intend to submit a proposal--there are important requirements and restrictions.


The goal of the Theory-to-Practice Grant Program is to provide intentionally meaningful opportunities for students to enhance and extend classroom learning through real world situations and experiences, which without funding they would not be able to do.

Preference will be given to projects that connect the “theory” of a discipline to its “practice,” either by testing or applying theoretical knowledge learned in the classroom in real-world situations or using real-world situations to develop theoretical knowledge. Funds also will be provided for interdisciplinary projects that promise an integrated approach to knowledge and help students in the transfer of ideas and skills among disciplines; for the development or reworking of specific disciplinary courses to incorporate experiential learning and/or off-campus experiences; and for projects to improve pedagogy. Other projects may be entirely co-curricular, offering experiential learning beyond the classroom.

In most cases Theory-to-Practice Grants will create first-hand experiences for students, although secondary learning enabled by faculty or staff projects also will be considered.


Grants will be awarded to individuals or small teams of faculty, students, and staff.

Projects proposed by faculty members should simultaneously address both the enhancement of the instructor’s future capabilities and the improvement of courses or programs through which those capabilities will be manifested and through which experiential learning and/or international opportunities are offered.  Faculty must apply for a TEW Grant, if the proposed project would be eligible for TEW funding. 

Students who are in good academic standing in their degree programs are eligible to apply -- there are no GPA requirements for submitting a proposal.  Conduct records will be considered as part of the evaluation. 


Recipients will be able to: (1) understand and articulate objectives/outcomes related to prior or future academic/research/creative work; (2) plan and participate in out-of-classroom activities that help achieve these stated objectives/outcomes; and (3) evaluate the effectiveness of the experience in meeting these objectives/outcomes.

The Theory-to-Practice Grant Application Form is a Google Form.  Both applicants and co-applicants use the same form. The applicant will be required to complete more fields than co-applicants (if any) and to upload (A) the proposal itself and (B) the budget proposal.

(A)  The proposal must include:

1. Project objectives (not to exceed 125 words):  Describe the main objectives and/or outcomes for the proposed project.

2. Project description (not to exceed 500 words):  Provide a complete description of the project including all planned activities and itineraries or timelines.  Describe how the proposed project furthers the aims of the University and the Theory-to-Practice Grant Program.  Make sure that you articulate the theory, if applicable, that you plan to address in the project.  

3.  Evaluation, Assessment, and Sharing (not to exceed 125 words):  Describe how, if funded, the project will be evaluated after its completion to assess how the main objectives and/or outcomes have been met.  Additionally, explain how you will share your experience with others.

4.  Personal Statement (not to exceed 500 words):  Address the following questions Why is the proposed project important to you?  In other words, what motivates you to undertake the project?  How are you prepared to complete the project?  This preparation and experience may include completed or in-progress course work, research, co-curricular activities, creative endeavors, practical experiences, or other academic or scholarly work.

Note:  This Personal Statement is required of all applicants.  Co-applicants will submit one with their Co-Applicant Form. 

(B)  The budget proposal must be carefully researched and detailed.  A good budget will be itemized and include all expenditures that will be needed to complete the project.

Theory-to-Practice Grant Application should:

  • Be clearly written and well organized.
  • Provide information describing each applicant’s background and preparation for the proposed project.
  • Include a reasonable and carefully thought-out itemized budget.
  • Contain a well-developed plan to meet clearly expressed objectives and/or outcomes.
  • Include a timeline or itinerary.  
  • Describe how the proposed project will be evaluated after its completion to assess how objectives/outcomes were met.
  • Provide a sufficient rationale for any travel. 

In addition, the proposed Theory-to-Practice Project itself should:

  • Fulfill the intent of connecting theory to practice.
  • Enhance and extend learning beyond the classroom.
  • Have intellectual, social, creative, artistic, cultural and/or professional value to the recipients, others involved in the proposal, and the OWU community.
  • Be feasible and likely to be completed on-time.
  • Have the promise of high quality without a change in plan, time-line, or budget.
  • Include a fully developed and creative way to share the results/outcomes of the project with the community.

Types of Projects

Funding may be requested for:

  • Travel grants for projects both inside and outside the United States — for our students, faculty, and staff to learn more about the culture, socioeconomic conditions, health and/or other environmental conditions that vary across the world.
  • Internship opportunity grants — sponsor faculty and staff in the development of local and distant internships for students; support students in the completion of these internships.
  • Independent research grants sponsor faculty, staff, and students in the development of research projects designed to enhance student learning in the laboratory, archive, and field, particularly concerning issues of global significance.
  • Grants to fund creative projects in the fine and performing arts.
  • Grants to individuals or groups for cultural immersion and/or volunteer experiences that enrich the understanding of diverse cultures and the importance of civic engagement.

Instructions for Submission

  • Review the list of Frequently Asked Questions for guidance as you prepare your proposal.
  • The Application for Primary and Co-Applicants is the same Google Form.  Applicants must complete fields for data entry and fields for file upload.  Be prepared in advance to upload files for those sections that require it. Co-Applicants must complete fields for data entry.  Confirmation of receipt will be provided immediately upon submission of the forms; confirmation emails will not be sent.
  • The Application for Primary and Co-Applicants includes fields that request general information about the proposed project, information about the principal applicant and co-applicant(s), a description of the preparation to undertake the proposed project, a description of the project itself, a proposed budget and a description of the evaluation of the proposed project after it is completed. A member of the faculty or staff who is part of a proposed group project should normally be the primary applicant and not a co-applicant.
  • All aspects of proposed student projects, including the obligation to share the results/outcomes with the University community, must be completed prior to the graduation of all students involved.
  • Review the Theory-to-Practice Grant Checklist (PDF) to assist you with your submission.  It is an aid and not prescriptive.
  • Please carefully note the following important rules and policies:  
    • All student applicants must be in good academic and community standing and have no accounts outstanding with the University. 
    • No stipends or wages will be awarded through this Program. 
    • Equipment purchased with TPG funds will become the property of the University. 
    • Tuition will not be paid to other institutions for any type of credit-bearing instruction or for auditing courses that could bear credit.
    • For proposed projects that include international travel, $20 per person per week abroad should be budgeted for accident/evacuation insurance.   
    • TPG funds cannot be used for vaccinations, travel medicine consultations and personal medications.  Passports and other travel documents need to be secured well in advance of travel.  Visas for travel to foreign countries are the responsibility of the traveler--both the cost of the application and the application process itself.  
    • TPG funds cannot be used for alcohol, tobacco or personal items.
    • TPG funds cannot be used for gasoline for a personal operating vehicle.  Reimbursement for use of personal operating vehicle follows institutional policy and is based on a reimbursement rate of $0.50 per mile. Use of personal vehicles is restricted to OWU Registered Vehicle Drivers who can provide proof of auto insurance. 
    • Research projects involving human subjects are required to comply with the policies of the OWU Institutional Review Board (IRB).  IRB policies include review and approval processes which may take some time.  Please see OWU Human Subject Research IRB.
    • Research projects involving animals are required to comply with the policies of the Institution Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  If your proposed project includes research involving animals, contact Lisa M. Tabak, MA, at , for further information.
    • Students who wish to participate in the activities of or receive accommodations or services from an external international organization, such as an NGO or a charity providing a service or internship opportunity, must supply two letters of reference from US universities/colleges that have worked with said organization.  These letters of reference should be submitted as attached files in an email to immediately after the TPG Proposal has been submitted; the subject line of this email should read: [last name of TPG primary applicant], External Letter of Reference.
    • Travel to certain countries is prohibited. Proposals that include travel to countries/regions with U.S. Dept. of State level three travel advisories will be reviewed by the administration; those considering travel to such countries should contact the OWU Connection / International and Off-Campus Programs Office prior to submitting a grant proposal for more information.  There will be no University support for travel to countries/regions with a U.S. Dept. of State level four advisory. 
    • All travel arrangements must be made through:  Christopherson Business Travel Advisor Group - University Team: 800-285-3603   Email:
      To get a quote or price estimate, please contact them directly.
    • Certain activities are prohibited by our institutional insurance policy. These include skydiving, parachuting, hang gliding, bungee jumping, mountain climbing, pot-holing, zip-lining, motorcycle riding, scuba diving (unless scuba diving is an assigned part of the curriculum of study for course credit) and certain athletic activities (contact OWU Connection / IOCP for details).
    • Vehicle rental is almost exclusively restricted to faculty/staff; students may be approved to rent vehicles rarely and in exceptional cases (contact OWU Connection / IOCP for details). When approved to rent a vehicle outside of the USA, all local insurance must be purchased. Use of vehicles is restricted to OWU Registered Vehicle Drivers who can provide proof of insurance. 
    • University employees who are classified as "non-exempt" have restrictions on how they can be involved with TPG activities.   Only enrolled students and faculty/staff in a continual state of employment are eligible to participate. Please see the Staff Handbook for more information or contact the OWU Connection / IOCP office.  Part-time faculty must get the permission to participate in TPG related activities prior to submitting a proposal; part-time faculty considering participating in the TPG program should contact the OWU Connection / IOCP office for more information. 
  • For the 20/21 Academic Year there will be two rounds of funding.  See the main TPG web page for deadlines.  All submitted proposals must be complete and submitted no later than 11:59PM on the date of the deadline. All co-applicant forms must also be received by the same deadline.
  • Important note on timing of submission of proposals:  Generally, those submitting a proposal for the Fall round should not expect funding for projects that start earlier than 1 April, those submitting a proposal for the Spring round should not expect funding for projects that start before 1 July.  Normally, it takes up to six weeks from the deadline for submission for awards to be made.  
  • Students cannot miss class in order to be engaged in TPG activities, except in exceptional cases for which prior approval from the faculty member has been received in writing.
  • Questions should be sent to

Evaluation of Submitted Proposals

Those submitting a proposal should review the Rubric that is used by the review committee to evaluate submitted proposals (see below).

Examples of Previously Funded Proposals

Members of the Teaching, Learning and Cross-Cultural Programming Committee have selected the following examples of funded proposals as good examples for review by those considering submitting a proposal:

Evaluation of Proposals and Awarding of Grants

The Theory-to-Practice Grant Program is competitive.  The Teaching and Assessment Committee oversees the selection process for faculty-led proposals.  A review group of faculty and administrators is convened to evaluate the proposals.  Using the Rubric (see above), the members of the review committee evaluate each submitted proposal and score it based on the criteria set forth in the rubric.  The submitted proposals for the Round are then ranked.  At a meeting called for the purpose, the submitted proposals and the rankings are discussed.  Any proposal that has evaluation scores that vary beyond the established standard deviation are reviewed carefully by the committee as a whole.  Awarding is based on available funding for the Round and the ranking of submitted proposals that is submitted to the Administration of the University for final review.  A recusal process is employed to limit conflicts of interest.

Those who propose and are not awarded may resubmit in future Rounds.  Feedback will be given to all students who wish to receive it.  The review committee may or may not provide specific feedback, but general feedback will always be provided.

Notification of the results of the evaluation are normally made within six weeks of the deadline for the Round.  Funds normally become available to those who have had their proposals approved ten to fifteen business days after notification.  Recipients are required to complete and submit forms and to complete any required grant stipulations, such as IRB or IACUC approval, prior to the release of funds.  No funds will be released to those who have an outstanding balance on their OWU student account.

Expectations of Those Receiving Grant Funding

Those who have been awarded a Theory-to-Practice Grant are expected to submit the following: (1) within 30 days of the completion of the project, an Expense Report, including a full list of all expenditures with receipts or missing receipt affidavits documenting each expense item (See the TPG Expense Report Guidelines (PDF) for requirements and other information.), and (2), within 90 days of the completion of the project, a Project Report of the experience.  (See the TPG Post-Completion Report Guidelines (PDF) for requirements and other information.)

Additionally, recipients must report how they have shared their experience with the campus community.  This may take place at the appropriate time and place following the completion of the project.  (See the TPG Presentation of Experience Form (PDF) for requirements and other information.)

All should be concerned and prepared for ethical and sustainable travel.  We encourage our students to engage their host cultures ethically and to mitigate the impact of their travel, if any, on the environment. A good place to start:  The Ethical Traveler  and Sustainable Travel.