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Education and Outreach Grants

Education and Outreach Grants

Grants of up to £1,000 are available to support relevant science teaching or promotion initiatives, or to support developments likely to lead to an improvement in the teaching of any aspect of microbiology.

Enquiries about this scheme should be made by email to grants@microbiologysociety.org or by phone: +44 (0)20 7685 2698.

Please read all information on this page carefully before submitting an application:

Eligibility

School Members, or Full, Full Concessionary or Postgraduate Student Members residing in the UK or Republic of Ireland.

What is covered by the grant

Up to £1,000 will be awarded to contribute to the expenses of the proposed activity. Activities as part of organisation open days or UCAS days will not be eligible for funding.

For individual members

A variety of educational outreach activities to promote public engagement with microbiology will be considered for support. These might include:

  • Talks, workshops, demonstrations, posters, leaflets, broadcasts, activities at science festivals and audio-visual or computer-based packages.
  • Activities that take place as part of a National Science and Engineering Week event at the applicant's place of work

Applications relevant to the teaching of any aspect of microbiology in primary, secondary or tertiary (including postgraduate) education will be considered. Examples of education activities that might be funded include:

  • Provision teaching materials (e.g. videos, slides, posters); the development of reliable novel practical exercises; new approaches to teaching/learning familiar concepts (e.g. computer simulations or tutorials); or any other appropriate aspect. It is not intended that the grant should subsidise normal departmental teaching practices; the Society wishes to encourage innovation.

Funds may be used for the purchase of consumable materials, but not capital equipment (i.e. core equipment over £5,000 in value). Funds may also be used to provide payment to a student providing short-term assistance in the development of the activity (e.g. vacation employment of an undergraduate, or exceptionally a postgraduate after expiry of studentship).

For schools members

Specific projects may include:

  • Organising a visit to or from a working microbiologist (no more than £200 in expenses may be claimed per visiting microbiologist)
  • Running a school- or college-based science week activity (e.g. hands-on or programme of talks)
  • Supporting microbiology activities in an out-of-school science club
  • Buying materials and equipment outside of normal department resources to support a microbiology activity (no more than £500 can be used toward large equipment such as microscopes and incubators). Such requests should be accompanied by a detailed description of the proposed microbiology activity. For examples of suitable microbiology activities for schools, pelase see the MISAC guidelines
  • A class visit to a microbiology laboratory to carry out activities

Payments to helpers such as undergraduates who are giving up their free time to deliver the activity may be included in the costings in the application, however please note that in the event of a successful application all claims should be substantiated by appropriate evidence of expenditure.

Terms and conditions

The activity to be supported must be microbiological.

Grants are awarded at the discretion of the Society and the decision of the Award Panel is final.

The activity should take place within 12 months of an award being made.

A brief report must be provided within three months of completion of the project. For outreach activities this should include a copy of the results of the evaluation completed by the audience.

For awards made to support education development successful applicants will be required to make the results of their work available to Society members, within 18 months of the award being made. Physical materials, whether off-prints, videos, slides, computer programs, microbial strains or in other forms, should be readily available to Society members either free or on low-cost loan or purchase for a period of at least five years after termination of the project.

The Society would encourage commercial or other dissemination of the results of the project to a wider public.

All claims must be made on the form provided with the offer letter and substantiated by receipts or copies of invoices or other documents as appropriate. Claims should be submitted within three months of completion of the visit. Payments to undergraduate students or teaching assistants must be supported by evidence, e.g. payslips.

By accepting a grant, recipients give their approval for the Society to use this and related ifnormation in publicity and marketing communications.

Application process

Applications must be made on the appropriate form no more than 12 months in advance of the proposed activity.

Applicants must provide a detailed description of the proposed initiative, full costings and evidence of any collaborations or other sponsorship. Each application should also include a safety risk assessment and evidence of, or costing for, appropriate public liability insurance cover if the activity is to be held at a public venue. Payments to helpers such as undergraduates who are giving up their free time to deliver the activity may be included in the costings. Applicants should also indicate how they will evaluate the success of their event in a suitable and proportionate manner.

There will be two rounds of application per year. Closing dates are 1 April and 1 October.

Awards are made by competition. Applications are reviewed by at least two referees and funding decisions are made by an Award Panel comprised of members of the Professional Development and Communications Committees, and are based on the reports of the referees.

Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome of their application within two months of the closing date. It is therefore expected that applications for the April and October rounds will be for activities taking place after 1 June and 1 December, respectively.

Administration of awards

Claims should be submitted no later than three months after the event, on the form provided with the offer letter.

Funds will be paid by bank transfer within one month of a claim being submitted.

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