Faculty Course Development Grants

*Important note: The SMU Human Rights Program is not accepting Course Development Grant applications at this time. Future application cycles will be announced here and communicated via campus email.

Interested in adding your course to the SMU Human Rights program curriculum?

We are seeking new courses from all disciplines. To qualify, your syllabus must mention the theme of human rights in the course description, and outline how this theme will be developed in the material and pedagogy.

Courses can be co-listed as HRTS, or included in our curriculum without an additional listing. Existing courses can be tweaked to clarify the human rights theme (although only new courses can qualify for a development grant). 

The  Human Rights Program awards grants to SMU faculty members seeking to develop new courses that will be centered on human rights and taught within their respective disciplines. Each course development grant is worth $4000.

Submissions and inquiries should be directed to Associate Director Dr. Brad Klein at kleinb@smu.edu.

The Application

Interested faculty members are encouraged submit the following three materials:

1. A course proposal. The course proposal should: a. follow the form required by the faculty member’s school or department; b. include a statement of learning goals and outcomes; and c. integrate one or more significant human rights themes at the center of its content and/or pedagogy.

2. A funding rationale. The course rationale should: a. illustrate the importance and timeliness of the human rights themes being addressed; b. specify the expertise of the faculty member in this area; and c. explain the nature of the pedagogy being proposed.

3. A current CV.

The Criteria

Course development grant applications are evaluated on a number criteria, including:

  • The centrality of human rights themes to course content and pedagogy;

  • The importance and timeliness of the human rights themes being addressed;

  • The faculty member’s demonstrated expertise and interest;

  • The potential contribution to the overall human rights curriculum; and

  • The inclusion of a service learning component (preferred, but not necessary).

The Process

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Faculty members may receive a course development grant once every two years. The application process typically unfolds as follows:

1. The course development proposal is submitted to Dr. Halperin and the committee for preliminary approval. If desired by the applicant, the SMU Human Rights committee is happy to communicate regarding best practices, possible resources, and administrative suggestions.

2. The proposal is then submitted for approval to the appropriate administrators in the faculty member’s department (e.g. the departmental chairperson) and school (e.g. the Dedman College Undergraduate Council).

3. When all approvals have been obtained, the faculty member resubmits a copy of the final proposal with endorsements. At this point, a final decision is made. Courses are typically offered within the faculty member’s home department and cross listed with human rights.

The Funds

The first grant installment of $2000 is disbursed after the final course proposal with endorsements has been accepted by SMU Human Rights. The second installment of $2000 is disbursed at the end of the semester in which the course is first offered. The funds can only be distributed as extra compensation to the faculty member.