Important Information

  • All faculty and staff engaged in teaching and learning on the West Lafayette campus are eligible to apply.
  • Funding and duration: up to $80,000 for up to 12 months duration
  • Grant due date: May 24, 2024

As part of the Transformative Education 2.0 Purdue Move, and with generous financial support from the Lilly Endowment, the Office of the Provost invites applications for an Innovation Hub funding program Hub. The Innovation Hub is an engine and incubator for innovation in teaching and learning and focuses on two priorities: scalable innovations in teaching and learning and transdisciplinary opportunities for students.

Program Description

Program priorities. This funding opportunity supports the development and deployment of innovative AI-enhanced assistive technology in course-based learning environments. Purdue anticipates an increase in the number of enrolled students with reported disabilities, consistent with national trends in higher education. From language translation and captioning to image recognition and summarization functionality, AI-enhanced tools have the potential to address current gaps in support for students with a range of disabilities. The most commonly self-reported disability categories supported by the Disability Resource Center currently include attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, chronic medical conditions, learning disabilities and autism. Purdue should be at the forefront of deploying innovative assistive technologies in parallel with evidence-based pedagogical strategies.

This funding will support projects with the potential to make a discrete impact on the quality of residential undergraduate teaching and learning support at Purdue. Proposals are invited in any area of teaching and learning, from any discipline, and from any relevant angle, including:

  • Deploying AI-powered technology within a specific learning domain and context and/or deploying technology with a specific group of learners across their curriculum. AI-enhanced assistive technologies may include but are not limited to:
    • Real-time Language Translation and Captioning (speech-to-text and text-to-speech tools)
    • Smart Tutoring Systems
    • Word Prediction Software
    • Gesture, Image and Motion Recognition
    • Enhanced Feedback Systems
    • Personalized Learning Platforms
    • Tools that increase students’ ability to manage and self-direct their learning through evidence-based cognitive strategies
  • Understanding tool-specific considerations, resource demands, limitations, and strengths for specific populations within the disabled student demographic at Purdue. The project must explore the tool’s alignment with content, assessment, and pedagogy appropriate for supporting students with disabilities.
  • Exploring policy implications of AI-enhanced assistive technology in teaching and learning applications, including dimensions of student privacy, academic integrity issues, or other considerations that can be addressed through academic policies.
  • Characterizing key equity, ethical, or trustworthiness considerations of using AI to support students with disabilities.
  • Exploring AI-enhanced strategies and tools that empower faculty and instructors to practice universal design and thoroughly evaluate and enhance the accessibility of their teaching materials including documents, presentations, assessments, and digital content with a goal of making them more accessible for all students.

Program parameters and expectations. This program is entirely about the deployment of innovative AI-enhanced tools in support of students with disabilities. As such, these are development grants, not research grants. This is not a research seed funding program, and applications for research funding will be returned without review. These development grants support exploration of the content, assessment, pedagogy, equity, and policy dimensions of leveraging technology. Project teams are expected to deploy one or more experiments in teaching and learning with actual students, and each project needs an appropriate plan to collect feedback from all stakeholders involved in the project, especially students.

An Innovation Project charter with expanded detail is attached to this RFP. Please pay special attention to the section on eligible expenses; Innovation Hub grants may not be used to support post-docs or PhD students, except in exceptionally narrow circumstances. We urge proposers to discuss their ideas with Innovation Hub leadership by submitting a one-page summary to