U.S. ED Releases Proposed Priorities for Competitive Grant Programs

The U.S. Department of Education (U.S. ED) has released the Secretary’s proposed priorities for competitive grant programs. The priorities will allow U.S. ED and program participants to focus limited federal resources in areas of greatest educational need and on multiple issues related to improving student outcomes.

U.S. ED will consider comments before issuing the final priorities. Comments must be submitted on or before November 13, 2017.

For more information about these priorities, including the rationale for each, and to submit comments, view the Federal Register notice.

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Grants.gov Phases Out Legacy PDF Application Package

In the past, applicants have downloaded and filled out a single, big PDF application package that contained all the forms (i.e., the “legacy PDF application package”). To improve the application experience Grants.gov launched Workspace in October 2015. By December 31, 2017, the 2-year lead time for transitioning will end, and the legacy PDF application package will be retired.

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UF Office of Research: Limited Submission Process

Funding agencies are increasingly restricting the number of applications an institution can submit in response to many funding opportunities. The UF Office of Research has established guidelines for selecting the proposal (or proposals) that will be submitted in response to a limited submission program.

A review of the limited submission process and relevant links are provided below:

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UF Information Technology: New, Updated Research Computing Storage Options

UFIT Research Computing has updated its storage offerings.  The UF prices, which are subsidized, have not changed. The new storage option ($25/TB/year) is called the “orange” option, while the existing /ufrc storage is now the “blue” option. The options support different use cases, summarized at Help > Getting Started > Storage.

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Awarded Projects for October 2017

Congratulations to Michael Bowie and Nancy Waldron for their award from the Florida Department of Education; Mary Brownell, Margaret “Meg” Kamman, and Erica McCray for their award from the US Department of Education/OSEP; Dennis Kramer for his IPA assignment from the General Services Administration; Donald Pemberton for his award from the University of Florida Foundation, Helios Education Foundation Flow Through; Donald Pemberton and Philip Poekert for their award from the Florida’s Office of Early Learning; Philip Poekert for his award from the Alachua County School Board; Philip Poekert for his award from Study Edge; and Patricia Snyder and Mary McLean for their award from the Santa Clara Office of Education.

For more details, see the Awarded Projects table.

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Submitted Projects for October 2017

Best wishes to Susan Butler and Nancy Ruzycki for their proposal to the National Science Foundation; Carlos Vallejos, Kent Crippen,  Salvador Gezan, Melanie Correll, Gerrit Hoogenboom, Maia Martcheva, and Ana Conesa for their proposal to the National Science Foundation;  Kara Dawson for her proposal to Pacific University, National Science Foundation Flow Through; Donald Pemberton for his proposal to the Sue Dickson’s Songs That Teach; Donald Pemberton for his proposal to Study Edge; Philip Poekert and  Donald Pemberton for their proposal to Study Edge; Philip Poekert  for his proposal to Study Edge; Rose Pringle for her proposal to Georgia State University, National Science Foundation Flow Through; and Patricia Snyder for her proposal to the University of North Carolina, US Department of Education/OSEP Flow Through.

For more details, see the Submitted Projects table.

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Ashley MacSuga-Gage
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Research Spotlight: Ashley MacSuga-Gage

Ashley MacSuga-GageQ & A with Ashley MacSuga-Gage, Clinical Assistant Professor in the School of Special Education, School Psychology, and Early Childhood Studies

What basic questions does your research seek to answer?

My research is focused on two main issues:

  1. What are the essential skills that teachers need to exhibit in order to effectively manage a classroom?
  1. What are the most efficient and effective ways to support teachers’ (both pre-service and in-service) development of evidence-based classroom management skills?

My background is in positive behavior supports (PBS) and focuses on developing classroom management skills using a proactive versus reactive approach. To date, I have conceptualized and focused on professional development for adults (i.e., pre-service and in-service teachers) utilizing a Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) framework.

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Fall 2017 NSF Grants Virtual Conference Registration Is Open

Experience the Fall 2017 National Science Foundation (NSF) Grants Conference virtually. NSF is pleased to announce that the upcoming conference in Phoenix, AZ on November 13 – 14 will be webcast live to the research community.

View the plenary sessions to gain key insights into a wide range of current issues at NSF including the state of current funding, new and current policies and procedures, and pertinent administrative issues.

Please click here to register. Check out the webcast agenda for more information on the sessions that will be covered.

These sessions will be recorded for on-demand viewing once the conference has concluded. Presentations will also be available on the conference website.

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UF Informatics Institute hosts ResearchVault Day

The UF Informatics Institute will host ResearchVault Day Thursday, November 9 from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. ResearchVault Day will feature a total of four speakers from the Office of Research, Research Computing, and Information Security Office. Lunch is included for attendees.

The presentations will be high-level and outline the roadmap for using UF’s ResearchVault.  To R.S.V.P. for the event, please email it-comm@ufl.edu. You will receive a confirmation email with links to the agenda and directions to the UF Informatics Institute.

The event will be recorded for watching on-demand at a later date, but your attendance at the event is encouraged if your schedule allows.

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Qualtrics Offers Free Online Event

Qualtrics is offering a free online event for researchers from October 16 – 19. The Qualtrics ExperienceWeek event will feature dedicated speakers and sessions for improving academic research.

Presenters will share compelling stories and best practices for researchers, professors, and administrators. The dedicated academic sessions include the following:

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UF Human Resource Services Training Course: The Auditor’s Perspective

Auditor: a friend or a foe? Find out what auditors consider to be high-risk issues in sponsored programs administration and accounting. The course also will include some of the most important things you need to know if your department or unit is ever the subject of an audit.

Wednesday, October 11, 9:00 a.m. – noon, HR Building, Room 120
Instructor: Joe Cannella

Click here to register!

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Assessing the Threat Posed by Small Inaccuracies in Evaluations That Seek to Detect Small Effects

The recent trend to design studies that detect smaller impacts may create the challenge of guarding against smaller inaccuracies or biases.

A new report from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) National Center for Education Evaluation (NCEE) finds that small inaccuracies can pose a real threat in evaluations that need to detect small impacts. The NCEE recommends strategies researchers can use to avoid or reduce these inaccuracies.

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Open Access Journals and Predatory Publications

Excerpted from the Grant Writers’ Seminars & Workshops blog

There are numerous reputable open-access journals; however, the number of publishers who use open-access to defraud authors and readers by promising reputable publishing platforms, but failing to do so, has expanded dramatically. The term “Predatory Publishing” has been coined to refer to this practice (Beall, J. 2016, Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 98:77).

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New Resource Helps Teachers Implement Evidence-based Practices

Based on user feedback, the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) has launched a new resource, Instructional Tips, to help educators implement the recommendations from WWC Practice Guides. Each Instructional Tips publication is a stand-alone pdf document. An accompanying pdf document describes the evidence base that supports the recommended practices.

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Research Spotlight: Walter Leite


Q & A with Walter Leite, Professor in the School of Human Development and Organizational Studies in Education

What basic questions does your research seek to answer?

In education, researchers have available a large amount of secondary data. These include national educational surveys, data collected by state departments of education, and data collected by online learning environments. Although these data do not come from experimental studies, educational researchers frequently use them for evaluating educational programs. Therefore, my first basic research question is, How can we strengthen causal inference from research performed using large non-experimental datasets? In addition, large-scale educational data can be used in an exploratory way to identify students at risk or who have specific growth trajectories. Identifying clusters of students is important to target interventions and to understand contextual effects of educational systems. Based on this, my second question of interest is, How can we detect clusters of individuals in large datasets?
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