Connecting Students with Materials Research
QD is pleased to announce an award for the best student submission of a new educational experiment module. The award will fund travel for a student to a domestic research conference. Read about the 2019 winner.
Obtaining funding for instruments or research projects can be a daunting task. Below you will find helpful suggestions and online resources to help you on your way. Funding agencies will always concentrate on the broader impact this equipment will make on society. Here are some ways in which we can make this impact:
- The VersaLab enables faculty to engage undergraduates in original scientific research, publishing their findings in leading peer-reviewed journals as other VersaLab users are doing around the world.
- The QD education site education.qdusa.com is a collaborative portal where academics can contribute their own experiments and give feedback about existing modules, so that the whole teaching and research community can benefit from each other’s experiences.
- The experiments found on the QD education site are very effective teaching tools by illustrating to students how basic physical properties are deduced from complex measurements.
- Please use our Sole Source Justification for VersaLab Funding, which reiterates the above points in more detail.
Additional Suggestions to Obtain Funding
- As a research tool, the VersaLab can be funded through a major research instrumentation (MRI) grant: http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=5260
- The National Science Foundation (NSF) announces the launch of the NSF 2026 Idea Machine, a prize competition to help set the U.S. agenda for fundamental research in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and STEM education. Participants can earn cash prizes and receive public recognition by suggesting the pressing research questions that need to be answered in the coming decade, the next set of "Big Ideas" for future investment by NSF. It's an opportunity for researchers, the public and other interested stakeholders to contribute to NSF's mission to support basic research and enable new discoveries that drive the U.S. economy, enhance national security and advance knowledge to sustain the country's global leadership in science and engineering.
Entries will be accepted through October 26, 2018. For more information, including entry instructions, eligibility, rules, and judging criteria, please visit the NSF 2026 Idea Machine website.
- Other NSF links: Guide for proposal writing and Educational funding
- Seek interdepartmental collaboration: Work with existing advanced teaching labs in engineering, materials science and chemistry that will benefit from the measurements offered by VersaLab.
- If available, work with your university's advancement office. They might be able to help connect you with industry donors and philanthropists.
- Texas Instruments provides helpful grant-writing tips and guides for large scale grants:
- W.M. Keck Foundation Undergraduate Education Program: Grants $200K – $1M twice a year for undergraduate education.
- The Research Corporation for Science Advancement’s Cottrell Scholar program.
- The Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award Program.
- Sigma Xi grants in Aid research.