Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Who is eligible to apply to participate in the institute and receive the $1,000 award?
    Tenured or tenured-track faculty, instructors, and SPS with teaching responsibilities are eligible to apply, provided that they have not previously participated in NIU's multicultural curriculum transformation institute and are not planning to retire during the academic year they participate in the institute or the following year. Individuals on twelve-month contracts are ineligible for the $1,000 award, but they are welcome to apply and participate in the institute.
  2. Are tenured or tenure track faculty members who receive 1 to 3-month summer support from a research grant in addition to a 9-month regular academic contract eligible for the $1,000 award?
  3. Can I apply to participate in the institute even though I may not be scheduled to teach the transformed the course until next spring?
    Yes, the committee understands that some courses chosen for transformation may not be scheduled during the fall semester. Faculty, instructors, and teaching SPS proposing to develop a new course or transform an existing course for the fall or spring semesters of the academic year following the institute are eligible to apply.
  4. How many applicants are selected to participate in the institute each year?
    Approximately 15 to 20 applicants are selected to participate in the institute each year.
  5. How will the $1,000 award be distributed?
    Upon completing all of the following commitments (complete and return by the deadline a pre-institute questionnaire to assess your transformation needs, participate fully in all the sessions and activites of the institute, submit a written final report, and give a presentation during fall semester on your transformation - or planned transformation - activities) and having a contract for a faculty or staff appointment at NIU for the next academic year, you will receive a stipend of $1,000.
  6. What is expected of institute participants?
    An open mind to discuss the issues covered during the institute, time to read assigned materials, willingness to attend all the sessions, a commitment to transform the chosen course(s). Participants must also submit a written report and give a presentation during the fall semester following the institute.
  7. What is the institute schedule (days, hours, etc.)?
    The institute is scheduled for five days from approximately 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Participants should check the program schedule for the institute for the exact time each day.
  8. Will I able to use my computer or have access to email during the institute?
    Participants may be able to use their laptop computers to take notes, but they are requested not to check email or surf the web during institute sessions as a courtesy to other participants. Participants who need special accommodations should indicate them in the institute application.
  9. If institute arrangements include refreshments, can I request special meals due to my dietary restrictions?
    Before the first session of each day, there will be some light refreshments such as coffee, tea, juice. A lunch break will be provided from noon to 1:00 p.m.
  10. Can I choose to attend some sessions of the institute which I am interested in and skip the rest due to other commitments or interests?
    Institute participants who have been selected to receive the $1,000 award are required to attend all sessions of the institute. Their participation in all the sessions is essential for small group discussions and syllabi review sessions.
  11. Is a tenure-track faculty member joining NIU during the summer or fall of a calendar year eligible to participate in the institute that May?
    If the hiring process has been completed and the faculty candidate has accepted NIU's offer before the institute application deadline, then that candidate is eligible to participate.
  12. If I am selected to participate in the institute, will I receive the reading materials in advance?
    Institute materials that are available electronically will be posted on the Blackboard site set up for the institute. Participants selected to attend the institute will be given access to the Blackboard site till the end of the fall semester. Any materials or handouts not available electronically will be distributed as hardcopies to participants during the institute.
  13. Will my application for the institute be considered even if I cannot obtain a letter of support from my department chair?
    Applications without a letter of support from the applicant's department chair or supervisor will not be considered. The letter of support is essential to indicate that the applicant's department chair and the department are willing to schedule the transformed course within two years following the institute.
  14. When will the final presentation be scheduled?
    The dates for final presentations of institute participants will be decided and announced shortly after fall classes begin in August. Every effort will be made to accommodate the teaching schedules of participants. The final presentations are usually scheduled in October.
  15. If I am unable to participate in the institute, are there other ways I can be involved?
    Many of the institute sessions are free and open to everyone. A list of these open sessions will be posted on this website and published in Northern Today a few weeks before the institute. In addition, everyone is welcome to attend the fall presentations by institute participants.

Please contact the Committee Chair for additional information or clarifications about the institute.