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Grants to USA Nonprofits, For-Profits, IHEs, and Agencies for Research on Postsecondary Education for Students with Disabilities

Research Networks Focused on Critical Problems of Education Policy and Practice and Special Education Research and Development Center Program

GrantWatch ID# 205354
Agency: Federal

Funding Source
U.S. Department of Education (DOE) - Institute of Education Sciences (IES): National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER)
CFDA Number: 84.324
Funding or PIN Number: ED-GRANTS-081922-002
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Geographic Focus

Important Dates
LOI Date: 10/21/22
Deadline: 01/12/23 11:59 PM ET Receipt

Grant Description
Grants to USA nonprofit and for-profit organizations, IHEs, and agencies to conduct research and collect data regarding students with disabilities pursuing postsecondary education. Funding is intended to identify why students are not accessing available supports, and why there is such a stark gap in completion rates between students with disabilities and other students.

The Postsecondary Center will conduct a focused program of research, consisting of multiple studies, to explore factors that affect access to, progress through, and completion of postsecondary education for students with disabilities. Studies conducted by the Postsecondary Center must be exploratory; IES will not support intervention development, measurement, or efficacy work under this competition.

Exploratory research for this competition should examine relationships between student-, educator-, institution-, and/or policy-level characteristics and student academic outcomes as well as factors that influence these relationships. A variety of approaches are appropriate, including (1) primary data collection and analyses, (2) secondary data analyses, (3) meta-analyses that go beyond a simple identification of the mean effect of interventions, or (4) some combination of these. IES also encourages the use of mixed methods research, defined as the integration of qualitative and quantitative methodologies in a single study. Findings from this exploratory research should ultimately help the community of postsecondary administrators, faculty, staff, and researchers better meet the needs of the students with disabilities. Findings should also set the context for new research in this area, for instance by developing improved theories of change and identifying targets for future intervention or assessment.

Examples of research questions:

  • What factors support or hinder access to, persistence in, and completion of postsecondary education for students with disabilities?
  • What institutional policies and programs and educator practices facilitate student engagement and positive academic outcomes?
  • What factors influence students' self-disclosure of disability and decisions around accessing disability-related accommodations and universal supports?
  • How do factors such as race/ethnicity, gender, and type of disability influence the experiences and outcomes of postsecondary students with disabilities?
  • What are the relationships between different types of postsecondary instruction—such as remedial and developmental education, instruction incorporating universal design principles, or online remote instruction—and the academic outcomes of postsecondary students with disabilities?
  • What are the postsecondary experiences of students with intellectual disabilities and other low-incidence disabilities? 

General Requirements:


  • City or township governments
  • County governments
  • For profit organizations other than small businesses
  • Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  • Nonprofits that do not have a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  • Private institutions of higher education
  • Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)
  • Special district governments
  • State governments

Additional Criteria for Eligibility
Institutions that have the ability and capacity to conduct scientific 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.

IES is committed to broadening institutional participation in its research grant programs. IES encourages applications from minority-serving institutions (MSIs) that meet the eligibility criteria for this RFA. MSIs include Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions, American Indian Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Predominantly Black Institutions, and Native American-Serving, Nontribal Institutions.

Pre-Application Information
- Letter of Intent Due: October 21, 2022
- Application Package Available: September 30, 2022
- Application Deadline: 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Time on January 12, 2023
- Possible Start Dates: August 1-September 1, 2023

IES provides technical assistance (TA) to applicants that addresses the appropriateness of project ideas for this competition and methodological and other substantive issues concerning research in education settings. IES program officers work with applicants though a variety of formats up until the time of submission. If you submit a letter of intent (LOI), a program officer will contact you regarding your proposed project. The LOI is non-binding and optional but strongly recommended.

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For a list of relevant application documents, go to the Package tab (press Preview) on the link above.

Estimated Size of Grant
The maximum cost for a Postsecondary Center award is $5,000,000.
- No more than 70 percent of the total budget (direct costs + indirect costs) may be allocated to the focused program of research.
- $250,000 must be reserved for supplementary studies to be designed in collaboration with IES.

Term of Contract
The maximum duration of a Postsecondary Center is 5 years.

Contact Information

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