Instructure Announces $100,000 Grant Program to Spur Innovation in K-12 and Higher Education


SALT LAKE CITY, Oct. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Instructure today announced it will begin accepting proposals for Canvas Grants, a program to award $100,000 in education grants to spur technological innovation from within the educational system. The program, which will provide $50,000 for select projects in higher education and $50,000 for K-12 initiatives, was announced during the opening day of the annual EDUCAUSE conference on the best thinking in higher education IT.


"We want to stimulate and reward creative thinking within the existing educational community to create a vibrant ecosystem of new technologies to advance education," said Brian Whitmer, Instructure's co-founder and Chief Learning Officer. "The conversation around technology's role in remaking education has been largely dominated by third-party vendors. We want to see what can happen when the educational community works to drive innovation from within."

Submissions are due January 20, 2014, with the winning submissions announced at SXSWedu 2014 in March and cash grants awarded to five higher education proposals ($10,000 each) and ten in K-12 ($5,000 each). A panel of educational leaders, industry analysts and journalists will judge proposals on originality, creativity, feasibility and potential to drive meaningful change in the availability or quality of education.

The judges are as follows:

Higher Education

  • Michael Caulfield, Washington State University
  • Larry Cooperman, OpenCourseWare Consortium and University of California, Irvine
  • Jim Groom, University of Mary Washington
  • Joshua Kim, Dartmouth and Inside Higher Ed
  • George Siemens, Athabasca University
  • Jesse Stommel, Hybrid Pedagogy and University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Audrey Watters, Hack Education
  • Nancy White, Full Circle Associates


  • Steven Anderson, Web 2.0 Classroom
  • Jaime Casap, Google
  • Sean Junkins, Horry County Schools
  • Chris Lehmann, Science Leadership Academy
  • Scott McLeod, Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency
  • Linda Nathan, Boston Public Schools and Boston Arts Academy
  • Tom Vander Ark, Getting Smart and Learn Capital

"I believe there is considerable innovative energy among my peers in the academic and educational communities," said George Siemens, who will judge the higher education category. "I am excited to assess the proposals we receive and firmly believe some of them will lead to significant positive change for education."

The grant program is the latest in a series of efforts by Instructure to promote innovation from within the educational community. In April, Instructure launched an open API for building educational software applications on a common standard, a key step in establishing a collaborative education technology ecosystem. In May, Instructure partnered with other edtech companies on an "app bounty" that provided cash awards for educational apps built on the LTI standard.

More information about Canvas Grants is available at

About Instructure:

Instructure is a technology company committed to improving education. We provide instructors and students with modern tools and resources that empower and simplify the learning experience. Instructure offers Canvas, the open, easy-to-use, cloud-native learning management system, as well as Canvas Network, an index of open, online courses by educators everywhere – from Ivy League institutions to community colleges.

Copyright © 2013, Instructure, Inc. All rights reserved. Instructure, Canvas and their respective logos are registered trademarks or trademarks of Instructure, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Other brands and names may be claimed as the property of others.


Devin Knighton, Director of Public Relations at Instructure
(801) 722-8187  |  [email protected]
Twitter: @devinknighton  |

Brad Plothow, Method Communications
(801) 461-9777 | [email protected]

SOURCE Instructure