Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Creating an Educational Nexus for Training in Experimental Rigor (CENTER) (UC2 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:
June 08, 2021
Estimated Publication Date of Funding Opportunity Announcement:
August 01, 2021
First Estimated Application Due Date:
October 21, 2021
Earliest Estimated Award Date:
June 01, 2022
Earliest Estimated Start Date:
July 01, 2022
Related Announcements

NOT-NS-21-075 - Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Materials to Enhance Training in Experimental Rigor (METER) (UE5 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Issued by

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)


The purpose of this Notice is to alert the community that the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) plans to publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications for Creating an Educational Nexus for Training in Experimental Rigor (CENTER), which will build, evaluate, and disseminate a user-friendly, harmonized, and openly accessible educational resource to promote awareness, understanding, and utilization of the principles of rigorous biomedical research. CENTER will provide comprehensive administrative oversight, expertise required to establish and maintain the educational platform, and infrastructure to create cutting-edge digital educational components (e.g. videos, interactive activities, relevant scientific examples). A companion FOA will solicit applications for Materials to Enhance Training in Experimental Rigor (METER) to support subject matter experts to develop content for the educational resource (see related Notice). It is expected that CENTER and METER awardees will work collaboratively to evaluate, improve, and disseminate the educational resource.

This Notice is being provided to allow potential applicants sufficient time to develop meaningful collaborations and responsive projects. The FOA is expected to be published in Summer 2021 with an expected application due date in Fall 2021. This FOA will utilize the UC2 activity code. Details of the planned FOA are provided below.

Research Initiative Details

The objective of CENTER is to provide the scientific community with an open and freely available, easily discoverable, engaging, modular, adaptable, and upgradable educational resource on the principles of rigorous research and to partner with the scientific community during development, evaluation, and dissemination. The online resource is intended to be used in different educational settings, including utilization as part of lectures, independently performed problem-based coursework, and seeking practical advice in the laboratory. Planned deliverables include an educational platform, encompassing the platform interface and website; a suite of interactive, engaging, and harmonized educational units on the principles of rigorous biomedical research; and evaluations of the platform and the effectiveness of its educational approaches. An educational unit is defined as an assortment of educational materials, lessons, and activities that collectively address a single principle of rigorous research and whose content will be developed in collaboration with externally funded subject matter experts (METER awardees; see related Notice). Educational units should contain effective and engaging educational components, including measurable and attainable learning objectives, a broad and deep overview of the principle of rigorous research, guidance on why and how to apply the principle, complex and realistic neuroscience-relevant scientific examples, interactive components, effective multi-media (e.g. text, videos, graphics, animations), instructional supports for diverse learners, and additional resources. CENTER is expected to incorporate 30-50 total educational units into the online resource by the end of the 5-year project period.

The educational resource produced by CENTER must be freely and equitably available, attractive, and user-friendly. All data and resources produced by CENTER should be open-source where possible and widely distributed to the national and international scientific community at no cost to individuals, consistent with achieving the goals of this program. The resource must also be compliant with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C.§794 d) as amended by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (P.L. 105 – 220) to ensure accessibility by individuals with disabilities.

A successful CENTER application will have strengths in four major areas: (1) leadership and project management, (2) building and dissemination of digital interfaces and educational materials, (3) evaluation of educational effectiveness, and (4) collaboration with and outreach to the scientific community. This outreach will include organizing and coordinating annual meetings, beginning one year after initial funding, to enhance communication and collaboration between CENTER and the scientific community, including METER awardees, active researchers, rigor champions, resource users and evaluators, education professionals, and educational technology developers. Qualifications for CENTER applicants should include familiarity with the research environment and expertise in project management, digital platform and educational technology development, pedagogy, evaluation of educational products, and technology dissemination.

Funding Information
Estimated Total Funding


Expected Number of Awards


Estimated Award Ceiling


Primary Assistance Listing Number(s)


Anticipated Eligible Organizations
Public/State Controlled Institution of Higher Education
Private Institution of Higher Education
Nonprofit with 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institution of Higher Education)
Small Business
For-Profit Organization (Other than Small Business)
State Government
Indian/Native American Tribal Government (Federally Recognized)
County governments
Independent school districts
Public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities
Indian/Native American Tribally Designated Organization (Native American tribal organizations (other than Federally recognized tribal governments)
U.S. Territory or Possession
Indian/Native American Tribal Government (Other than Federally Recognized)
Regional Organization

Applications are not being solicited at this time. 


Please direct all inquiries to:

Shai Silberberg

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)


Devon Crawford
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-496-1917

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices