Research in Special Education


To support scientifically rigorous research contributing to the solution of specific early intervention and education problems associated with children with disabilities.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Institute of Education Sciences, Department of Education
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2016 Applications for new awards are due August 6, 2015. It is anticipated that approximately 300 applications will be received and 50 funded. Applications for 2016 awards were due August 6, 2015. The Department received 356 applications and made 44 awards.
Fiscal Year 2017 Applications for 2017 awards were due on August 4, 2016. The Department received 187 applications and made 25 awards.
Fiscal Year 2018 Applications for 2018 awards were due on August 17, 2017. The Department received 289 applications and made 36 awards.
Fiscal Year 2019 Applications for 2019 awards were due between August 2018 and March 2019, depending on the competition. The Department received 290 applications and made 40 awards.
Fiscal Year 2020 Applications for 2020 awards were due on August 29, 2019. The Department received 282 applications and made 41 awards.
Fiscal Year 2021 Fiscal year 2021 competitions were announced in the Federal Register on May 4, 2020; applications were due August 20, 2020. The Department received 353 applications and made 36 awards.
Fiscal Year 2022 Fiscal year 2022 competitions were announced in the Federal Register on June 10, 2021; applications were due August 2, 2021, or September 9, 2021 (two competitions). Successful applicants will be notified by January 1, 2022 (for the first competition) or July 1, 2022 (for the second competition). NOTE: The Department received a $100,000,000 Mandatory Supplemental Appropriation under the American Rescue Plan Act (P.L. 117-02 for research related to learning losses caused by COVID-19. These funds are available for obligation for 3 years; the Department estimates that it will make approximately $20 million in grant awards under 84.324 in fiscal year 2022. These funds are in addition to those shown in the table.
Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002, Part E
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Applicants that have the ability and capacity to conduct scientifically valid research are eligible to apply. Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to, non-profit and for-profit organizations and public and private agencies and institutions, such as colleges and universities.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Infants, toddlers, and children with disabilities or at risk for disabilities benefit from this research.
Not applicable.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is not applicable.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Grant competitions are announced in the Federal Register and on the agency website ( Standard Form 424 ("Application for Federal Assistance"), an application narrative, and required certifications must be submitted by the deadline specified in the Federal Register. The Requests for Application grant notices (available on describe the substantive requirements for applications and provide information on how to prepare and submit applications electronically through The Application Packages provide all of the required forms and are available on Letters of Intent are encouraged but not required. Grant applications to Institute of Education Sciences (IES) competitions must be submitted via the government-wide portal that allows potential applicants to find grant opportunities and apply for grants. The registration process can take several weeks. Interested applicants should begin the registration process well in advance of application deadlines. Individuals planning to submit an application on behalf of their organization must ensure that (1) their institution/organization is registered with and (2) they register themselves as Authorized Organizational Representatives (AORs) well before the competition deadline. registration information can be found at
Award Procedure
Grant applications that are responsive and compliant to the Requests for Applications are evaluated by expert reviewers for scientific and technical merit. Scientific reviews are conducted in accordance with the review criteria stated in the Request for Applications and the review procedures posted on the IES website,, by a panel of scientists who have substantive and methodological expertise appropriate to the program of research and Request for Applications. Awards are competitive, with the following criteria considered in making award decisions for responsive and compliant applications: Scientific merit as determined by peer review, performance and use of funds under a previous federal award, contribution to the overall program of research described in the Request for Applications, and availability of funds.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
240 days - 330 days.
Not applicable.
Renewals are based on the review of annual performance reports and the recommendation of the project officer. All renewals are subject to the availability of funds.
How are proposals selected?
The criteria for selecting applications are contained in the Request for Applications that announces the competition. Each Request for Applications is posted on the Funding Opportunities home page of the Institute web site:
How may assistance be used?
Funds may be used for research on children with or at risk for disabilities and training in special education research.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Performance Reports: The Department has established performance measures for the program. The measures are: (1) The percentage of projects that result in peer-reviewed publications. (2) The cumulative number of IES-supported interventions with evidence of efficacy in improving education outcomes for students with or at risk for disabilities. (3) The number of newly developed or modified interventions with evidence of promise for improving education outcomes for students with or at risk for disabilities.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503.
As stated in grant or contract terms and conditions, the awardee shall maintain accounts, records, and other evidence pertaining to all costs incurred, revenues or other applicable credits acquired under this grant or contract. Each grantee will keep intact, and accessible, records relating to the receipt and expenditure of Federal funds and the expenditures of the grantee's contribution to the cost of the project, if any. Records will normally be retained for 3 years after the date of the submission of the final expenditure report, or for grants that are reviewed annually, 3 years after the date of the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Projects generally may be supported for 1 to 5 years. Funds are granted on a 12 month basis. All grantee obligations shall be liquidated within 90 days following the end of the award period. Payments may be made according to a predetermined schedule or by way of reimbursement. Electronic transfer.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None/Not specified.
Headquarters Office
Joan McLaughlin
Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Special Education Research, Office of the Commissioner, 550 12th Street, S.W., Room 4144
Washington, DC 20202 US
Phone: (202) 245-8201
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 22$51,625,000.00; FY 23 est $62,821,000.00; FY 24 est $62,821,000.00; FY 21$58,012,000.00; FY 20$55,442,000.00; FY 19$53,797,314.00; FY 18$54,536,601.00; FY 17$53,889,236.00; FY 16$54,000,000.00; - (Project Grants (Contracts)) FY 22$847,000.00; FY 23 est $1,434,000.00; FY 24 est $1,434,000.00; FY 21$488,000.00; FY 20$1,058,000.00; FY 19$2,202,686.00; FY 18$1,463,399.00; -
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Varies by competition.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance) codified at CFR Part 200, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474. The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 77, 81, 82, 84, 86 (part 86 applies only to institutions of higher education), 97, 98, and 99. In addition 34 CFR part 75 is applicable, except for the provisions in 34 CFR 75.100, 75.101(b), 75.102, 75.103, 75.105, 75.109(a), 75.200, 75.201, 75.209, 75.210, 75.211, 75.217 (a)-(c), 75.219, 75.220, 75.221, 75.222, 75.230, and 75.708. The Office of Management and Budget Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485.
Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2016 Available Information on funded grants is available at Information on funded grants is available at
Fiscal Year 2017 Available Information on funded grants is available at
Fiscal Year 2018 Awards will be posted at
Fiscal Year 2019 Awards are posted at
Fiscal Year 2020 Awards are posted on
Fiscal Year 2021 Awards are posted on
Fiscal Year 2022 Awards will be posted on


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