FR Doc 04-2127
[Federal Register: February 3, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 22)]
[Page 5249-5251]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []

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Part II

Department of Education


Institute of Education Sciences; Notice Inviting Applications for 
Grants To Support Education Research for Fiscal Year (FY) 2004; Notice

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[CFDA Nos. 84.305A, 84.305B, and 84.902B]

Institute of Education Sciences; Notice Inviting Applications for 
Grants To Support Education Research for Fiscal Year (FY) 2004

SUMMARY: The Director of the Institute of Education Sciences 
(Institute) announces three FY 2004 competitions for grants to support 
education research. The Director takes this action under the Education 
Sciences Reform Act of 2002 (Act), Title I of Public Law 107-279. The 
intent of these grants is to provide national leadership in expanding 
fundamental knowledge and understanding of education from early 
childhood education through postsecondary study.

    Mission of Institute: A central purpose of the Institute is to 
provide parents, educators, students, researchers, policymakers, and 
the general public with reliable information about education practices 
that support learning and improve academic achievement and access to 
education opportunities for all students. In carrying out its mission, 
the Institute provides support for programs of research in areas of 
demonstrated national need.
    Competitions in this notice: The Institute will support the 
following competitions in FY 2004:
     National research and development centers. The 
centers will focus on the following topic areas: rural education, 
postsecondary education, improving low achieving schools, and 
innovation in education reform.
     Predoctoral research training.
     Secondary analysis of data from the National 
Assessment of Educational Progress.
    These competitions are in addition to those previously announced 
and are the final Institute competitions for FY 2004.
    Eligible Applicants: Applicants that have the ability and capacity 
to conduct scientifically valid research are eligible to apply. 
Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to, non-profit and 
for-profit organizations and public and private agencies and 
institutions, such as colleges and universities.
    Request for Applications and Other Information: Information 
regarding program and application requirements for each of the 
Institute's competitions is contained in the applicable Request for 
Applications package (RFA), which will be available at the following 
Web site:

    The RFAs will be available as follows: on February 4, 2004 for the 
national research and development centers and predoctoral research 
training competitions, and on February 11, 2004 for the secondary 
analysis of data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress 
competition. Interested potential applicants should periodically check 
the Institute's Web site.
    Information regarding selection criteria and review procedures will 
also be posted at this Web site.
    Fiscal Information: For national research and development centers, 
funds will support four centers. We expect these awards to range in 
size from approximately $1 million to $2 million per year. Awards will 
be for 5 years.
    For predoctoral research training, we expect to make from five to 
15 awards, depending upon the quality of applications received. We 
expect these awards to range from approximately $500,000 to $1 million 
per year. Awards will be made for 5 years.
    For secondary analysis of National Assessment of Educational 
Progress data, $700,000 is available and will support up to 10 awards 
for periods generally ranging from 12 to 18 months.
    The figures above are estimates and are not binding.
    Applicable Regulations: The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 77, 80, 81, 82, 
84, 85, 86 (part 86 applies only to institutions of higher education), 
97, 98, and 99. In addition 34 CFR part 75 is applicable, except for 
the provisions in 34 CFR 75.100, 75.101(b), 75.102, 75.103, 75.105, 
75.109(a), 75.200, 75.201, 75.209, 75.210, 75.211, 75.217, 75.219, 
75.220, and 75.230.

Performance Measures

    To evaluate the overall success of its education research program, 
the Institute annually assesses the quality and relevance of newly 
funded research projects, as well as the quality of research 
publications that result from its funded research projects. Two 
indicators address the quality of new projects. First, an external 
panel of eminent senior scientists reviews the quality of a randomly 
selected sample of newly funded research applications, and the 
percentage of new projects that are deemed to be of high quality is 
determined. Second, because much of the Institute's work focuses on 
questions of effectiveness, newly funded applications are evaluated to 
identify those that address causal questions and then to determine what 
percentage of those projects use randomized field trials to answer the 
causal questions. To evaluate the relevance of newly funded research 
projects, a panel of experienced education practitioners and 
administrators reviews descriptions of a randomly selected sample of 
newly funded projects and rates the degree to which the projects are 
relevant to educational practice.
    Two indicators address the quality of new research publications, 
both print and web-based, which are the products of funded research 
projects. First, an external panel of eminent scientists reviews the 
quality of a randomly selected sample of new publications, and the 
percentage of new publications that are deemed to be of high quality is 
determined. Second, publications that address causal questions are 
identified, and are then reviewed to determine the percentage that 
employ randomized experimental designs. As funded research projects are 
completed, the Institute will subject the final reports to similar 
    To evaluate impact, the Institute surveys a random sample of K-16 
policymakers and administrators once every 3 years to determine the 
percentage who report routinely considering evidence of effectiveness 
before adopting educational products and approaches.

Application Procedures

    The Government Paperwork Elimination Act (GPEA) of 1998, (Pub. L. 
105-277) and the Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement 
Act of 1999, (Pub. L. 106-107) encourage us to undertake initiatives to 
improve our grant processes. Enhancing the ability of individuals and 
entities to conduct business with us electronically is a major part of 
our response to these Acts. Therefore, we are taking steps to adopt the 
Internet as our chief means of conducting transactions in order to 
improve services to our customers and to simplify and expedite our 
business processes.
    We are requiring that applications for the FY 2004 competitions be 
submitted electronically to the following Web site:

    Information on the software to be used in submitting applications 
will be available at the same Web site.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: The contact person (and the deadline 
for receipt of applications associated with a particular program of 
research) is listed in the following chart and in the RFA that will be 
posted at:

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                                        Deadline for
  CFDA No. and program of research       receipt of                 For further information  contact
84.305A National Research and               5/27/2004
 Development Centers.
     Rural          ...............  Ram Singh
     education.                                        e-mail:
     Postsecondary  ...............  Jon Oberg
     education.                                        e-mail:
     Improving low  ...............  David Sweet
     achieving schools.                                e-mail:
     Innovation in  ...............  Michael Wiatrowski
     education reform.                                 e-mail:
84.305B Predoctoral Training........        5/27/2004  James Griffin
84.902B Secondary Analysis of               5/13/2004  Alex Sedlacek
 National Assessment of Educational                    e-mail:
 Progress Data.

    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may 
call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339.
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain this document in an 
alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to the program contact person listed under FOR 
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain a copy of the application 
package in an alternative format by contacting that person.

Electronic Access to This Document

    You may view this document, as well as all other documents of this 
Department published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe Portable 
Document Format (PDF) on the Internet at the following site:

    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have questions about using PDF, call the U.S. 
Government Printing Office (GPO), toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or in 
the Washington, DC area at (202) 512-1530.

    Note: The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at:

    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 9501 et seq. (the ``Education 
Sciences Reform Act of 2002'', Title 1 of Public Law 107-279, 
November 5, 2002).

    Dated: January 29, 2004.
Grover J. Whitehurst,
Director, Institute of Education Sciences.
[FR Doc. 04-2127 Filed 2-2-04; 8:45 am]