Office of the Provost and Vice-Principal

OFFICE OF THE

Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)

OFFICE OF THE

Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)

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What is eCampusOntario Online Funding?


eCampusOntario is an initiative by the provincial government to provide funding to institutions that are developing innovative content for their respective schools in order to better serve the needs of prospective students. Funding is available based on a submitted proposal to the eCampusOntario office. On this page, one can find key resources to aid in this development process along with key contacts for the process.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is there a page limit for the submissions? Answer: No, but eCampusOntario recommends using concise language to ensure efficient processing and evaluation.

 

2. For Open Content Adoption – is the adoption for ‘fully online’ courses only? Answer: Yes.

 

3. Can a project team member call a staff member from eCampusOntario directly? Answer: Questions are best sent electronically to projects@ecampusontario.ca so they can be responded to quickly and included in this FAQ.

 

4. Is there a finite number of proposals an institution can submit? Answer: No.

 

5. Is there an internal competitive evaluation process to determine how many proposals should be submitted by one institution? Answer: Each institution is responsible for its own approval process for proposals to be submitted.

 

6. Do federated or affiliated institutions need to submit proposals via their affiliates? Answer: Federated or affiliated institutions must submit proposals through their parent institution. A complete listing of eligible institutions is provided as an Appendix in each Call for Proposals.

 

7. Are university submissions processed by the Council of Ontario Universities (COU)? Answer: This Call for Proposals is administered by eCampusOntario. All submissions should be directed to eCampusOntario. Please see the Call for Proposals documentation for details on how to submit.

 

8. Where can I find a list of previously funded projects from the 2015-2016 Shared Online Course Fund (ShOCF) to ensure no duplication occurs? Answer: The complete list is now available, Click Here.

 

9. What are the parameters for submitting a new program development proposal? Is a credential necessary? For example, could I submit to develop a set of Additional Qualification Courses for Teachers? Answer: New Program Development project proposals need to be related to the development of a fully online credential. For a list of eligible credentials, please see the Program Credential filter on the Program Search page on our website.

 

10. Where can I find a Word document of the Cover Page and Attestation? Answer: Word documents of the Cover Page and Attestations will be uploaded to the website by next week. Check back here for more detail.

 

11. For New Program Development projects submitted under Option 1 (New Program), that involve collaborations, can funding be allocated accordingly between multiple institutions at the discretion of the project leads? Answer: Yes. In the New Program Development Call, projects can propose budgets under the following framework: Part One, New Program Design: $60,000 for a single institution proposal; up to $20,000 additional funding for each additional collaborating institution, to a maximum of $100,000 Part Two, Course Development: Up to $50,000 maximum per course to be developed for a program Example: Institution X and Institution Y propose a New Program Development project, Part One only. This proposal is eligible for $80,000 in project funding. These institutions can decide to divide the $80,000 as they see fit. For example: Scenario One Institution X: $60,000 Institution Y: $20,000 Scenario Two Institution X: $40,000 Institution Y: $40,000 Whatever institutions decide, project budgets should clearly outline how funds will be shared between, and used by, collaborating partners.

 

12. We would like to submit a proposal which converts a portion of existing class content into an open online module. This content would not cover a whole course. Is this eligible? Answer: No. The Open Content Initiative seeks to fund proposals which will have an impact on a complete course in some way. This may be through the development of an open textbook or set of open modules which can be used for an entire course; or it may be through the adoption and adaption of existing open content to create a fully online course. Either way, a project proposal in this area will impact an entire course.

 

13. Are Course Development proposals between one Ontario publicly-assisted institution and an outside association acceptable? Answer: Yes. As long as the lead institution for the project is listed in Appendix C - Eligible Institutions, then the project is eligible. However, it is important to note that one of the key success factors for a Course Development proposal will be that it has high impact (weighted 40% of the final score). One way that evaluators will measure impact will be through the identification of collaborative support from other institutions. Please see the Rubric for the Evaluation or Proposals, p. 13 of the Course Development Call for more detail on evidence needed to indicate impact. Also, please note that eCampusOntario is a PSE-focused organization. 

 

14. Does the development of an online minor qualify under the New Program Development RFP if it offers a new or more flexible delivery option for students?” Answer: No. eCampusOntario is very supportive of flexible delivery options for students in any capacity. Unfortunately, any proposal submitted under the New Program Development RFP needs to be related to the development of a fully online credential. For a list of eligible credentials, please see the Program Credential filter on the Program Search page on our website.

 

15. For the Open Content Adoption and Adaptation projects, do fully online courses associated with the adopted/adapted open content have to be made openly available? Answer: No, this was an error included in the first check box in Appendix B: Cover Page and Attestation: Open Content Adoption and Adaptation Projects. The error has been resolved and now reads “This is a proposal to adopt and/or adapt openly available content to create a fully online course.” French translation of this correction will be made available shortly. For your convenience, editable Word versions of the Cover Page and Attestations will also be posted.

 

16. Can a proposal be disqualified if it is interpreted to be under the wrong category, e.g., applied for a ‘new program design’ but proposal fits under ‘existing program?’ Answer: No. A mix-up may result in some confusion for the evaluator, but proposals will not be disqualified if they fall under the wrong category.

 

17. Are institutions expected to cover a certain percentage of funding? Answer: No. But in kind-contributions should be noted. See Budget section of the Evaluation Rubric for the appropriate Call for Proposals document for more detail.

 

18. If we are submitting one of the program proposals, are we required to submit additional course development proposals for an achievable set of courses? Answer: No. You are only required to submit one proposal but specific course(s) information is required for each course that you plan to develop by March 2018 within the program development proposal. See Appendix C – Rubric for evaluation of submissions for Option 1, Part 2 or Option 2, Course Development.

 

19. Is it acceptable to leverage existing open textbooks from other provinces (i.e., BCcampus) for an Open Content Initiatives proposal? Answer: Yes. Adapting and adopting an existing open textbook to create a new fully online course would be acceptable and encouraged!

 

20. Can each institution submit one proposal for a number of similar projects under the same category? For example, if Institution X proposes to develop five online diploma programs, would that require five separate proposals? Or would it be possible to submit one proposal which covers all five diplomas (with specific diplomas outlined)? Answer: Institutions must submit individual proposals for each program development project. The example above would mean five separate proposals. Each proposed program development project would need to have specific information about evidence of demand, course development where required and budget details.

 

21. Institution X would like to submit a Program Development proposal for a certificate which does not currently exist in any delivery format at Institution X or any of the partner institutions involved in the proposal. However, this certificate does exist at another Ontario Institution Y, but is not offered in a fully online delivery format. Which proposal option is the best fit? Answer: This proposal should be submitted under Option 1 (New Program Design Proposal). Institution X and partners will need to complete many of the tasks found in Option 1, including curriculum development, mapping learning outcomes, developing courses and descriptions, and seeking program approval. Alternatively, eCampusOntario would encourage Institution X and partners to reach out to Institution Y to collaborate to submit a proposal to convert the existing certificate into a fully online delivery format.

 

22. Institution X would like to submit a New Program Design Proposal (Option 1) for a certificate. Institution X has checked eCampusOntario.ca – Program Search and has discovered that this certificate is currently offered in a fully online format at another Ontario institution. What steps should Institution X take to ensure a successful proposal? Answer: eCampusOntario asks that institutions identify these existing online programs in their proposal and make clear the justification for creating this new online version (such as compelling evidence of unmet demand, or new fully online packaging to provide novel delivery of an existing program, e.g., program laddering, accelerated delivery, alternative pathway, alternate revenue and cost-sharing options between institutions, etc.) Collaboration is encouraged.

 

23. What is the amount of funding allocated to institutions that design and deliver curriculum in French? Answer: A minimum of $1,000,000 in funding over two years is available for French-language projects across both the Open Content Initiative and the New Program Development projects to the stated limits per project.

 

24. Are the French-language institutions allocated funding from the same pool of funds as English institutions or from a separate fund? If yes, what is the amount of funding allocated for year 1 and year 2? Answer: Yes, funding comes from the same pool. The total funds available for the Open Content Initiative and the New Program Development projects includes a minimum of $1,000,000 in funding over two years for French-language projects.

 

25. Are French-language institutions able to submit their proposals in French? Answer: Yes. French-language proposals will be evaluated by Francophones.

 

26. Will there be a separate evaluation committee or evaluation process for proposals in the French language? Answer: No, the process will be the same for all proposals; however, proposals submitted in French will be assigned to Francophone evaluators.

 

27. Will there be a separate evaluation committee or evaluation process for proposals from French language institutions (in either language) Answer: The evaluation process will be same for all institutions and projects.

 

28. Will French-language colleges be expected to collaborate with three institutions or in collaboration as the two publicly-funded French language colleges collaborating warrant lower marks on their submission(s)? Answer: All proposals will be evaluated based on the evaluation rubric provided in each RFP. Francophone institutions are encouraged to apply and collaborate with other French and/or English speaking institutions

 

29. If a French-language institution chooses to work with English-language institutions will budget maximums differ for this collaborative submission (e.g. fees for development in the French language or translation fees; note, translation fees of English-language curriculum may not suffice)? Answer: Budget maximums will remain the same for any proposal submitted under the appropriate RFP. Translation expenses are a permissible component of eligible projects.

 

30. Does the signature of the Associate Vice-President Academic (or above) have to be from the lead institution? Answer: For Open Content Initiative projects and New Course Development projects a proposal needs approval from the lead institution’s Associate Vice-President Academic or above. For New Program Development projects, Vice-President Academic approval is required. Please see the Cover Page and Attestation of the appropriate call for exact details.

 

31. The current call for 2016-2018. Does that mean that the next call won’t be until 2019? Or can we reasonably expect that a similar call will occur again around this time next year? Answer: eCampusOntario is currently in the 4th year of a 5-year funding commitment from the Government of Ontario. It may be that further funding will be available commencing April 2018; however, we are unable to provide any guarantees at this point in time.

 

32. If a program proposal is granted funding, does the program need to be open to registrations in the 2017-2018 academic year? Can it be later, such as 2018-2019 or 2019-2020? Answer: It is not required that a proposed program be fully developed for online delivery within the time available in this Call for Proposals cycle (i.e., by March 2018). However, if more time and budget will be required beyond March 2018 to complete development of the fully online program, the proposal must articulate the institutional plan and commitment to complete the work and deliver the program online. It may be that further funding will be available beyond March 2018, therefore it is acceptable for an institution(s) to describe two planning horizons (i.e., Plan A time to completion with further external funding, and Plan B time to completion without further external funding).

 

33. Can collaborations include institutions outside of Ontario? Will a proposal be penalized for partnerships out of province? Answer: While collaboration with partners outside of the province is wonderful and encouraged, it is important to note that reviewers will be focused on evidence of impact within Ontario.

 

34. Two or more colleges wish to submit a proposal for the development of a new online program (one credential) with the courses well outlined. The same colleges also want to request funds for the design of a new pathway for students that complete this credential so that they may ladder to the next credential (e.g. course credit equivalencies accelerate the completion of the next credential). Is it best for the colleges to submit one proposal requesting funds for both initiatives or two proposals that reference the other (and if so, will the evaluation team reference each in their selection process)? Answer: In this instance, collaborative partners should submit a single proposal for the development for a new credential which outlined plans to align with a laddering opportunity. Unfortunately, a separate submission for a pathway development project would not be eligible under this call for proposals because it is not a complete credential.

 

35. How do you define collaboration? For example, if a college engages another college for their design support but not the development of academic content (toward learning outcomes) is this collaboration? If a college claims all courses within a program but another claims the pathway to the next credential, is this collaboration? Is sharing the quality review process collaboration? Is offering the course/program at the local college collaboration? Answer: Collaboration is broadly defined in the context of each Call for Proposals. For program development projects, collaboration may be in the development of the program and/or the delivery of the program. eCampusOntario encourages institutions to create opportunities to share resources and leverage expertise of partner institutions. The strength of the collaboration will impact the evaluator’s assessment of the broader impact of each proposal.

 

36. I cannot find an editable template for my proposal submission. Do we draft the proposal ourselves using the various points highlighted in the RFPs? Answer: Due to the variety of project areas proposal templates will not be provided. Applicants should carefully read the Proposal Submission Requirements for the applicable project area and follow the outline of Proposal Content contained in each. Institutions must structure proposals using the same order and numbering provided in this section as applicable to their project. Editable versions of the Cover Page and Attestation can be found here.

*This list of questions will be updated weekly throughout the development process.* 

 

 

Resource Links
Attestation Documents and Cover Pages
Complete List of Past Funded Projects
Webinar Presentation by eCampus Staff
Collaboration Forum (password distributed to relevant parties by email)

For more information on eCampusOntario initiatives or general questions concerning the overall proposal development or submission processes please contact Nadia Timperio, Teaching and Learning Coordinator, in the Office of the Provost.