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Mini-Course Proposals

The Stanford Bioscience Office of Graduate Education is now accepting mini course proposals for 2015-2016 academic year. The proposal deadline is Monday, April 27th at 5pm.

All course proposals will be reviewed by the Mini Course Faculty Committee and instructors will be notified of the decisions(s) and/or awards in early May. Mini Course information for awarded courses will be included in Explore Courses for the opening of enrollment on August 1st. Courses submitted after April 27th may be reviewed periodically, but are not guaranteed to be approved or supported.

Mini courses are offered during the last 3 weeks of Winter and Spring. Summer course scheduling is more flexible. Courses can be from 1-3 weeks in duration and proposals can include repeats of current courses or new courses. If you would like to propose a course for 2016, please see the guidelines and instructions below and complete the online application form. Proposals must be submitted online. You will receive a confirmation email.

We look forward in receiving your proposal.

Mini-Course Proposal Guidelines


The intended audience for the Mini-Courses is graduate students, postdocs, and faculty.


Mini-courses will be short format, one-to-three week courses. The short format allows students to explore something new or in depth without devoting a whole quarter to it. It also potentially allows faculty to provide intensive course experiences--e.g. courses with lab sections--that cannot feasibly be sustained over a whole quarter. The structure is completely open.


Mini-Courses are offered for up to three weeks at the end of the Winter and Spring Quarter (weeks 9-11) and at three week intervals throughout the Summer Quarter (2015). *Please note that due to spring quarter week 9 fall on the Memorial Holiday. Courses must begin on Tuesday.

Time Pattern


A Mini-Course that meets for a total of 5-15 hours will be considered a 1 unit course. 15-25 hours = 2 units, 25-35 hours = 3 units, and so on. Please make sure to note variable units.

Course Topics

Mini-Courses can focus either on topics covered previously in full courses or on new topics not yet approached in the curriculum.


To encourage and support the development of Mini-Courses, the Office of Graduate Education offers Developement Funds and TA support. Funds are limited and will be allotted in part based on number and types of proposals. Please note that departments receive TECU-based funding for Mini-Courses just as they do for regular courses.

Please be as clear and detailed as possible in your funding amount request, e.g. (software, materials, food, etc.).

Who May Propose Mini-Courses?

We invite proposals from faculty members or faculty-postdoc, faculty-student, and faculty-staff teams. Post docs and students who submit a proposal must have a faculty involved in the instruction and development. If awarded, funds will allocated to the Faculty's PTA/Course Director.

If you think there is a need for a specific mini-course, even if you aren't able to teach it, please let us know.

Proposal Format

Online Proposals should include:

  • Name(s) of Faculty members proposing the course
  • Quarter(s) you want to teach the course
  • Weeks, days and times for proposed course (e.g. lecture 10:30-11:30 am, lab 2:30-5:30 pm, MWF, weeks 9-11)
  • Units
  • Grading basis
  • Course description
  • Funds requested
  • Space preference and space capacity for students and post docs.

*Post Doc Enrollment

Due to post doc enrollment interest being strong and an overwhelming number of participants we have a created a default first come first serve application process for post docs with a cap and wait list. From these applications faculty can select whom they wish to enroll and those post docs get a spot in the course. Instructors can notifiy selected post docs the week follwing normal ADD/Drop deadlines for current students, however, current graduate students do have the option to ADD/DROP the course after deadlines on AXESS if space and schedule permits.


Proposals should be submitted using the online form here by 5 PM April 27th, 2015 (feel free to let us know if you anticipate any challenges with this deadline). To start your submission, please use our online form.

Questions? Contact Monica Devlin at or visit the Mini Course FAQ page.

Proposal submissions

Submit your Mini-Course proposals online here

Mini-Course Development Timeline

See deadlines and scheduling for creating a Mini-Course. Learn more

Teaching Resources

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