Seasoned grant writers might notice that some funders, especially for major grant programs, ask for a dissemination plan in their request for proposals. That is, applicants are asked to describe how the results of their project will be shared after the grant period ends. Funders ask for a dissemination plan so that others can learn from the results of grant-funded projects and can replicate successful projects in their own institutions.
Developing a dissemination plan is not very difficult, but it might involve researching some potential avenues to distribute the information if you are unfamiliar with doing this. Look at dissemination as a circle that starts small and then widens out more broadly. In other words, think at a local level, a state level, a national level, and possibly even an international level for ways to disseminate the results of your grant-funded project.
Here are a few general suggestions to help guide the creation of a dissemination plan:
1. What local avenues are available for dissemination of project results? The first logical step is to educate your stakeholders, such as school board members and parents. You can publicize the results of your project in the district newsletter, on the district website, and on your local cable TV channel. Other possibilities include doing a presentation at a school board meeting or having a special evening presentation for parents. To inform the community at large, send press releases to your local newspapers and television stations.
2. To disseminate project information at the state level, look for newsletters your state education department might publish, or research state-level organizations related to the project’s area of focus (math or science, for example) and see if they publish a newsletter. State agencies and organizations also might have a “best practices” section of their website, where you can submit information about your project. Also, consider doing a workshop presentation or poster session at a state conference. Keep in mind, however, that some conferences request speaker information at least nine to 12 months in advance of the conference.