Research Rich Courses & Curriculum Grant

Fund information:

up to $30,000 for one year with opportunity for renewal

Rice University’s Office of Undergraduate Research and Inquiry (OURI) annually awards Research Rich Courses & Curriculum (R2C2) grants to individuals and academic units involved in undergraduate teaching. R2C2 grants are intended to financially support the development of inquiry-rich courses or curricula within a department major, area major, interdisciplinary major/minor. Awarded R2C2 grants can be used to support new initiatives that fill a curricular gap, enhance an existing departmental initiative, or facilitate exercises in an individual course. Proposals should make clear how inquiry-based experiences will both be made accessible to all students within a course/major and promote the inclusion of diverse learners in research skill development.

OURI’s two types of R2C2 grants differ based on funding amounts and scale of proposed interventions. OURI’s two types of R2C2 grants are:

  1. level one (up to $1,000)
  2. level two (over $1,000 and up to $30,000)

Level one R2C2 grants generally operate in classrooms and within individual courses. As such, level one R2C2 grants can be used to initiate, promote, and/or implement research in an undergraduate course. This can take numerous shapes including (but not limited to): development of inquiry-rich curricular changes to a foundational undergraduate course, research activities in an individual class, implementation of a Course-Based Research Experience (CURE), or facilitation of outside research into classroom-based teaching activities. The duration of level one R2C2 grants are typically one semester.

Level two R2C2 grants aim to facilitate larger, more systematic, and temporally sustainable changes to a department/unit’s undergraduate curriculum and/or course offerings. Level two R2C2 grant funded proposals can take multiple forms including (but not limited to): single course development or revision including activities with larger scope or scale than permitted by a Level one grant, multi-course initiatives, coordinated efforts to promote undergraduate research across a department/unit’s curriculum, and synchronized attempts to redress identified needs/gaps in a department/unit’s curriculum. As level two R2C2 grants are larger in scope, scale, and funding, the proposed changes, initiatives, and practices should also be more sweeping. Furthermore, level two R2C2 grants, applicants are required to submit a completed, up-to-date Inquiry Curriculum map with their grant application. Curriculum maps should identify the strengths and weaknesses of a unit’s curricular inquiry and research scaffolding. More information on systematic evaluation of unit curricula, departmental assessment, and templates for curriculum maps can be found on OURI’s website (

Allowable Costs:

Grants will be awarded for the 2024-2025 academic year and CANNOT be automatically carried over or renewed for a second year. Examples of allowable cost include

  • Course development and implementation: materials, supplies, software, undergraduate or graduate TAs, honoraria, summer salaries for NTT faculty for curriculum development.
  • Off-campus learning: student travel, meals, and lodging associated with off-campus learning; transportation and meetings associated with off-campus partners.
  • Co-curricular support: student conference travel, stipends for undergraduate research that support grant activities
  • Graduate fellows: graduate students to support development, implementation, and assessment of experiential inquiry and research into curriculum (budgeted at $20/hour up to ten hours per week)
  • Assessment: tools, student incentives

Funding CANNOT be used to cover the following: overhead or indirect costs, equipment, academic term salary for faculty, summer salary for tenure/tenure-track faculty, or capital projects.

Departments are encouraged to seek additional funding for course development by applying for the Brown Teaching Grant and/or for a grant from the Program in Writing and Communication (PWC). The PWC is eager to work with departments that are interested in integrating writing, speaking, or visual assignments into courses as part of their OURI proposal. For more information, contact Jennifer Wilson (, Director of the PWC.


  • R2C2 grants can be awarded to either individuals or teams as needed to implement proposed changes to course, curriculum, or departmental procedures. R2C2 grants that involve multiple courses must include all relevant faculty on the team. For coordinated curricular change proposals, team members should have sufficient authority over a major, area major, or interdisciplinary major/minor.
  • If a department/unit applies for multiple RRC grants in the same award term, demonstrated coordination and cooperation between grants is required when relevant.
  • Individuals/teams submitting Level two RRC grants must meet with OURI staff at least once when drafting and before submitting application materials.
  • Level two R2C2 grants must include some process/plan for sustaining curricular changes and/or changes beyond the grant award period.

Review Process:

Level one R2C2 grants (≤$1,000) can be submitted at any time and can be reviewed immediately upon submission.

Level two R2C2 grants must be submitted by April 1, 2024, 5PM. They will be evaluated by OURI staff and its Faculty Advisory Committee. Relevant deans and department/unit leadership will be consulted in making final award decisions when necessary.

Selection Criteria:

Proposals will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

Level one and Level two Proposal criteria:
  • Identification/inclusion of requisite individuals and/or team for implementing grant proposed initiatives
  • Impact of the proposed initiative on student learning outcomes and skills
  • Both an attention to and commitment to addressing issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion when developing inquiry activities within courses
  • Justification for proposed budget
Additional Level two Proposal criteria:
  • Expressed commitment to include OURI learning outcomes in course and department learning outcomes
  • Innovation of curricular change
  • Plan for how OURI rubric will be used to assess learning outcomes if they are not present already.
  • Plan for sustaining curricular changes beyond the grant award period (e.g., funding, faculty time, materials, departmental resources)

How to Apply:

Proposal materials should be prepared using OURI’s student learning outcomes and resources to support inquiry-based curriculum development ( R2C2 grant proposals MUST be submitted as a single pdf document to Liz Eich (

Level one and two proposals should include the following documents:
  1. A project description of no more than three pages (in 12-point type) that includes:
    • Identification of individuals or team with sufficient departmental influence and demonstrated commitment to lead undergraduate curricular change and to carry out regular assessment of the program.
    • Statement of proposed changes and how they will support inquiry-rich undergraduate experiences. Level two grant proposals must situate proposed changes in context of the Inquiry Curriculum map.
    • Demonstrate a commitment to research-rich undergraduate curricular change and assessment
  2. A budget indicating how requested funds address proposed research initiatives and needs identified in the application Level two R2C2 grants additional proposal components:
  3. Inquiry Curriculum Map evaluating and assessing research and inquiry strengths and gaps within an undergraduate department/unit’s major, area major, or interdisciplinary major/minor
  4. Letter of support from department/unit chair.

Please contact Liz Eich ( or Danny Gibboney (