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Vritual Field Trips
Funding opportunity

New round of seed grants to support design and research of virtual field trips

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The Transforming Learning Accelerator leverages advances in neuroscience, data, and technology to create more effective and equitable learning solutions.

Learning is associated with nearly every positive life outcome. Conversely, a lack of education leads to higher rates of incarceration, poverty, and disease. For 150 years, the education model has focused on the average student and standardization. The future can be different. 

Big data, new technologies, and advances in our understanding of the learning process foreshadow precise, novel, and creative solutions. Stanford's Transforming Learning Accelerator leverages these game-changers to revolutionize educational opportunities for all.

Our Strategy

The Transforming Learning Accelerator is about making education more scientific, more learner-centered, and more collaborative. It enables a new theory of change – one that emphasizes combining Stanford’s unique strengths in science and the design of usable solutions with a clear focus on helping specific groups of learners and the institutions that serve them. Our strategy fosters a future where all learners thrive – no matter their cultural backgrounds, neighborhood, or abilities. Three key factors distinguish the Transforming Learning Accelerator:

A learner-centered approach addresses an individual's distinct learning needs and considers students’ daily lives, prior knowledge, and cultural backgrounds. 

Science and Design 
The science of learning seeks to understand how we learn. Learning design addresses the process of learning – the activities, tools, and environments best suited for acquiring knowledge.  

Pathways to Impact 
Co-creating with outside organizations and individuals committed to improving learning for all will ensure research is relevant, the best tools are leveraged, and solutions are shared broadly.

Our Initial Focus Areas

The Transforming Learning Accelerator pursues the learning challenges of those who are most in need of new discoveries, evidence, and solutions. Breakthroughs in these areas have the most potential for impact beyond these specific groups, and therefore hold the most promise for expansive gains.

  • Early Childhood Learners (PDF)
  • Digital Learning (PDF)
  • Learning Differences (PDF)
  • Under-resourced and Marginalized Learners
  • Workforce Learners

Our Current Projects

The Transforming Learning Accelerator supports faculty and student projects across campus with seed grants, networking, workshops, and other resources. Currently, a dozen projects are focused on challenges facing children and young adults, particularly during COVID-19. 

Boy making robot

School-aged children

Faculty seed grants are supporting research and design efforts to help educators and learners during the time of COVID-19 and beyond. Most projects strategically incorporate innovative uses of digital technologies.

Learn about K-12 projects
Picture of three college students at graduation

College learners

Stanford scholars are developing virtual field trips, looking at ways to build virtual spaces that foster community engagement, and investigating how to deliver high-quality online learning experiences to college students globally.

Learn more

Digital Learning Design Challenge

Stanford students have an opportunity to learn how to approach digital learning challenges through a student-centered lens using science and design to create solutions. Participants develop ideas and pitch creations for seed funding. 

Learn about the challenge


The Transforming Learning Accelerator arose out of Stanford’s Long-Range Vision, which seeks to increase and accelerate Stanford's impact in the world.

Learn more about Stanford's vision