National Project Fund
Information about Ako Aotearoa's National Project Fund and applying for funding in 2016.
Creating sustainable change
Ako Aotearoa has published a guide which can assist with the preparation of your funding application: Creating sustainable change to Improve outcomes for tertiary learners
Use the links below to find further information.
The Ako Aotearoa National Project Fund (NPF) is a strategic change fund – a fund that supports evidence-based change in teaching and learning practice for the benefit of learners.
The goals of the NPF in priority order are to:
- enhance educational outcomes for learners
- contribute to the development of a more coherent knowledge base of effective tertiary teaching and learning in Aotearoa – New Zealand
- promote collaboration across and within different parts of the tertiary education sector
- build research capability and capacity.
Established in 2008, the NPF has developed a large body of work and we are now well positioned to identify key areas we want to build on. To ensure our funding supports a balanced portfolio and addresses key sector priorities that have received less attention, in 2016 we will be releasing four requests for proposals (RFP) processes for co-funded projects. The RFPs will each request project proposals that seek to enhance outcomes for learners in tertiary education in priority areas.
Each RFP will be for co-funded projects with applicant organisations contributing a minimum of 50% of the funding (in kind and/or in dollars). RFP proposals will range between $100k (that is $50k contributed by Ako Aotearoa) and $300k (that is $150k contributed by Ako Aotearoa) in value.
2016 RFP will be in the following areas:
- Supporting the increased participation and success of women in trades or STEM subjects where they are traditionally under-represented
In partnership with the Ministry for Women we are interested in developing a strand of work that builds on the Ministry’s work in this area including Getting it done: Utilising women’s skills in the workforce (2015).
Indicative RFP release date: end of April 2016
- Assessment for and of learning post MRoQ (mandatory review of qualifications): Developing models of good assessment practices for new pre-degree qualifications
We will be releasing this RFP in partnership with the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA).
Indicative RFP release date: end of April 2016.
Enhancing work readiness through tertiary education
We are interested in developing a strand of work on the employability of graduates. Project’s will be required to build on Fullan and Scott’s (2014) “Work-ready plus” framework.
Indicative RFP release date: end of April 2016.
Fullan, M,. and Scott, G., (2014). New Pedagogies for Deep Learning Whitepaper: Education PLUS. Collaborative Impact: Seattle, Washington.
Supporting Māori learner success in tertiary education.
Focus areas are currently being explored with key Māori stakeholders. Further announcements will be made towards the middle of the year.
As a guide, projects will be 2-3 years in duration. Contracts will be negotiated in 2016 and projects are expected to start substantively from 1 January 2017.
The RFPs will be released by Ako Aotearoa e-bulletins and placed on the Government Electronic Tenders Service (GETS). The detail of each RFP will be made available on our website.
Indicative RFP release date for the RFP in the following areas:
Ako Aotearoa funding information sessions begin and formal review process opens.
Indicative RFP close dates for three RFP processes
Further announcements related to the RFP for project focused on supporting Māori learners
As part of our commitment to working in partnership with project teams, our support for applicants includes:
- a guide to support the development of change projects, including Anne Alkema's, Creating sustainable change to improve outcomes for tertiary learners
- a 2016 national series of funding information sessions on developing applications:
- a formal review process, whereby applicants can submit their draft proposals for feedback – please contact Rhonda Thomson, Research Manager
- a commitment to understanding and enhancing the outcomes of funded projects through our Impact Evaluation Process.
Click here for information about in progress NPF projects.
Click here for information about completed NPF projects.
The Ako Aotearoa NPF SelectionPanel is an independent group that evaluates application to the NPF. Click here for information about the panel.
Project teams are encouraged to contact Ako Aotearoa to discuss their project ideas.
Email: Rhonda Thomson, Project Funds Manager.
- Ako Aotearoa Project Funding Procedures and Guidelines 2016 (1,001KB PDF)
- Ako Aotearoa Funding Policy (119KB PDF).
- Download Ako Aotearoa Funding Information Session 2016 powerpoint presentation (3.5MB PPTX).
The NPF supports projects in partnership with other funders and organisations on a co-funding basis. Potential partners are encouraged to contact the National Office with a project idea as early as possible.