Faculty Development Course Release Awards

Mercy Faculty


Mercy University full-time core faculty are eligible for a competitively-awarded course release for faculty development, with a particular focus on pursuit of scholarship and with the aim of advancing scholarly work towards external support.

Course Release Application Form

Application for the Faculty Development Course Release Award.

Award Requirements

To provide opportunities to advance faculty research and scholarship—including scholarship of teaching and learning (though not course development per se)—with strong potential for external support, the Faculty Development Grants framework includes the possibility of applying for a single course release over an academic year.

Applications will be judged on the basis of scholarly merit of the proposed project, the potential for substantial progress on the project, and possibilities for further opportunities (such as external funding or research collaboration).  To this end, applicants are asked to provide a 300-word summary of their project, specify the current stage of their research (middle or early-middle stages are preferred), and provide details about probable sources of external support.

Course releases will be awarded on a competitive basis with a limit of one per faculty member per academic year. The application deadline is April 15 for course releases to be taken up during the following academic year. 

Faculty Development Course Releases awards are not accompanied by any stipend or other funding for personnel, supplies, fees, or travel. Additionally, faculty members requesting course release may not apply for a separate Faculty Development award bearing a financial grant for the same period.

A faculty member may apply for a Faculty Development Grant award for a research project to be taken up in the semester after a Faculty Development Course Release award is taken up (though not during the same academic year), in case the proposed project is an original development or continuation of the work previously supported by a Faculty Development Course Release award.

All proposals will be reviewed and ranked by the Faculty Development Committee. The Provost, in consultation with the appropriate Dean and Academic Unit Head (Department Chair or Program Head), will make the awards.

Faculty members receiving this award are required to consult with the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) by close of the grant period. OSP will share resources and RFPs with faculty members to build on the Faculty Development Course Release award and facilitate pursuit of external grant opportunities. The expectation is that awardees will complete (or make substantial progress toward completion of) an external grant proposal by close of the course release award period (end of semester during which the course release is taken up).

Consent and Approval of Academic Unit Head (AUH) and School Dean

Please note that applicants are required to consult with the Academic Unit Head and School Dean regarding their Course Release Award application prior to submitting for approval.
In addition, once the online application form has been completed, the application will be forwarded to the applicant's Academic Unit Head (AUH) and School Dean for their approval.
The Faculty Development Committee cannot consider your application for course release without the consent and approval of your AUH and School Dean.
Please direct any questions about this process to research@mercy.edu.

Note on IRB Approval

Course Release Awards may be granted contingent on IRB application, though human subjects research cannot commence without IRB approval.

If you require IRB approval for your research project and have already made the request, please forward the email to the Research and Grants Coordinator at research@mercy.edu. The information will be passed along to the Faculty Development Committee.

  1. You will need IRB approval for any research that involves human or animal subjects.
  2. You may need IRB approval for secondary analysis of a data set. Projects that use an existing data set, which includes identifiable data, may require an IRB protocol for review. Though such projects do not involve interactions or interventions with humans, they may still require IRB review, as the definition of "human subject" at 45 CFR 46. 102(f) includes living individuals about whom an investigator obtains identifiable private information for research purposes
  3. All applicants should discuss their proposal with the IRB Chair to determine if IRB approval is required. Please submit the IRB response (email or letter) in conjunction with the Faculty Development Course Release application.