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Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Semester Program for U.S. Teachers

Professional Development Exchange
Program for USA Teachers and Educators

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) - Institute of International Education (IIE)

Deadline Date:

12/13/17 11:59 PM CST


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A program is available to USA and territories elementary and high school teachers and other educators to study at universities abroad. Qualifying tachers and educators may apply to be hosted at a university in one of the following participating countires: Bangladesh, Botswana, Brazil, Finland, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Philippines, Senegal, Singapore, Taiwan, and Uganda.

The Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching (DA) Semester Program provides funding for highly accomplished US primary and secondary level educators to take part in an intensive professional development program for three to six months abroad.

The Program recognizes and encourages excellence in teaching in the US and abroad. US teachers receive grants to study at a university, observe classes and complete a project pertaining to their field of educational inquiry during their time abroad. The program is open to teachers from the United States who may apply to be hosted in one of many countries worldwide.

The Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Semester Program seeks to promote mutual understanding among teachers, their schools and communities in the US and abroad by:

-Building teachers’ and students’ global competence
-Sharing of best educational practices internationally
-Participants in this three to six month program are based at university-level schools of education or other types of educational institutions. They take courses, lead master classes and seminars, visit local schools, collaborate with each other online and in person, and complete an inquiry project of their own design.

Program Components:
-Study in a research center or university abroad (academic support will be provided by a host institution advisor who will support the US teacher and help contribute to the design and activities of the inquiry project);
-Participate in a virtual community with other participants to collaborate and share best practices about education in the participating countries;
-Work within local schools in the host country;
-Complete an inquiry project which should enhance teachers’ learning and have practical applications to their teaching (see the Inquiry Project section for sample projects).

As part of the program, Fulbright Distinguished Teachers:
-Study and observe international best practices in education;
-Share professional expertise with educators and students in the host country;
-Develop leadership skills and understanding of educational policy;
-Enhance their ability to work in diverse and multicultural environments.

Upon return to the United States, Fulbright Distinguished Teachers:
-Integrate international best practices in education in the US classroom, school and community;
-Integrate inquiry project findings into the US classroom or school;
-Expand global and intercultural awareness of students and colleagues by sharing their Fulbright experience and infusing their experience into classroom content or curriculum;
-Develop partnerships and joint projects with schools and classrooms abroad

Grant Award:

The grant covers program costs, including transportation, lodging, host institution fees and related expenses. Grantees will attend a mandatory program orientation in Washington, DC in August to help them prepare for their program. While abroad, grantees will receive a maintenance allowance designed to assist with the costs of living during the program. Grantees will have the opportunity to apply for professional development funds to support development and research or to cover the expenses of attending a conference or workshop related to their field of teaching expertise. Grantees will study at a host university or institution abroad and conduct an inquiry project related to their professional interests. Additional activities in local schools include opportunities to observe classes, team teach or conduct seminars or workshops.

Travel expenses for grantees are paid for by the Fulbright program. All costs for dependents’ or family travel are the grantee’s responsibility.

Securing comfortable living arrangements in your host country is a vital part of a positive exchange experience. US and international teachers will receive assistance in locating suitable housing.


Family members are allowed to accompany the grantee to the host country for all or part of the program. US grantees will receive adependent allowance for each eligible family member that accompanies the grantee for 80% or more of his/her time in the host country. Eligible family members include dependent children aged 21 or younger and married partners. The grantee is responsible for paying for all additional family member costs.

Grantees are welcome to bring children with them on the Fulbright Program, however, arranging for and paying for children’s schooling will be the responsibility of the grantee with limited support from in-country partners. Partial funding for host country dependent tuition may be provided, pending available funding.

School type preference: It is recommended that children enroll in host country public schools, as they provide the most immersive and beneficial experience for students to learn about the host country. In some countries enrollment in local public schools is not possible or advisable.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 159978

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grantees will receive a $2,000 dependent allowance for each eligible family member that accompanies the grantee for 80% or more of his/her time in the host country.

Term of Contract:

The length of the program can be from 3 to 6 months long and take place anytime during the academic year, depending on host country requirements and the project design proposed by the teacher.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Current full-time elementary through high school teachers, guidance counselors, curriculum specialists, curriculum heads, Talented and Gifted coordinators, Special Education coordinators, media specialists/librarians, and other types of teachers or instructional staff who work with students at least 50% of the time are eligible to apply.

To meet the basic eligibility requirements of the program, an applicant must meet all of the following requirements at the time of application:

-Be a U.S. citizen;
-Be fluent in English;
-Hold a Master’s degree (or be enrolled in a Master’s program at the time of application);
-Be employed full-time at an accredited school in the U.S. or in a U.S. territory. For the purpose of determining eligibility, "full-time" refers to applicants who are currently employed full-time by a school or school district. Teachers who hold a combination of part-time jobs which may add up to a full-time equivalent are not eligible;
-Spend at least 50% of their time teaching or working directly with primary or secondary level students;
-Have taught primary or secondary students for at least five years. At the time of application, teachers should be in at least their fifth year of full-time teaching. If selected, the year of the Fulbright Program would be the teacher's sixth (or more) year of full-time teaching. Teachers who are in their fourth year (or less) of full-time teaching at the time of application are not eligible;
-Demonstrated experience conducting professional development activities;
-Demonstrate accomplishment in teaching or having previously received teaching awards or exemplary evaluations;
-Meet current Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board policies for U.S. teachers.

Preference is given to applicants who have not previously participated in the program and to those whose projects will reach underserved and/or under-resourced populations, as measured by Free and Reduced Meals (FARMS) rates in the U.S.

Participants in U.S. Department of State programs should represent the diversity of political, social and cultural life. Diversity should be interpreted in the broadest sense and encompass differences including but not limited to ethnicity, race, gender, religion, geographic location, social-economic status, disabilities and sexual orientation.

Pre-Application Information:

All interested applicants should read the Participating Countries section before applying. This section contains information on specific requirements for in-country placement. Applicants may not choose countries that are not listed in the Participating Countries section.

The Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Semester Program application for U.S. teachers is now available. The application deadline is December 13, 2017.

The submission deadline for US teachers is December 13, 2017 at 11:59 PM, US Central Standard Time.

All applications must be submitted through the online application system.

-October: Online applications available for US teachers
-December 13, 2017: Application deadline for US teachers
-December: US applications screened for eligibility and completeness; applicants notified of eligibility status
-December - February: Eligible US applications undergo final review by Review Committees
-February - March: Applications of recommended US teachers sent to the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FSB); FSB selects teachers for grant awards
-March: Eligible US applicants notified of initial application review status
-April: Once FSB selection decisions are made, US teachers notified of final application status

More information about the Fullbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program may be found here:

About the Long-Term Program:


Eligibility Requirements:

Participating Countries:

Application Information:

Selection and Notification Process:

Application Overview Video:

Tips for Writing a Successful Inquiry Project Proposal Video:


Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

US applicants may apply online here:

Institute of International Education (IIE)
1400 K Street NW, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20005


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA)   Guam (USA)   Puerto Rico (USA)   Virgin Islands (USA)   Northern Mariana Islands (USA)

USA Compact Free Associations: The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)

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