History

The Berkeley Discovery Initiative is the product of many years of campus effort including significant grass-roots innovation and advocacy by faculty, staff, alumni and students as well as central campus leadership. Here is a selection of milestones in the history of the initiative: 


2016-2017 Academic Year:

  • Spring - Vice Chancellor Cathy Koshland and Vice Chancellor Paul Alivisatos, in collaboration with Berkeley Collegium faculty, host a series of open campus forums to generate ideas for how to foster discovery experiences in undergraduate education. 

  • Summer - Growing out of the enthusiastic campus forums, forty-five faculty, staff, and administrators volunteer to take part in summer working groups. The five working groups explore themes of: undergraduate mentoring, scaling existing discovery-orientated programs, curricular entry points to discovery, undergraduate maker spaces and program assessment.

2017-18 Academic Year:

  • Fall - First report on the potential components and strategies of the initiative is compiled and shared with Chancellor Christ’s Cabinet.

  • Spring - All departments complete a survey gathering information on how discovery learning appears in their curriculum and ideas for further developing discovery learning in their curriculums.

2018-19 Academic Year:

  • Fall - Grant received by the Berkeley Student Technology Fund to explore the development of "Discovery Tools" - a suite of online tools that will facilitate student navigation of campus resources. 

  • Fall - Campus strategic planning groups, under the leadership of Chancellor Carol Christ, release final reports which name discovery as the foundation of the undergraduate experience.

  • Spring - Discovery faculty working group is convened by Vice Chancellors Koshland and Sutton, resulting in a white paper on discovery in the undergraduate experience in November of 2019. 

  • Summer - Discovery website launched, showcasing the first batch of short videos profiling undergraduate student discovery.

2019-20 Academic Year:

2020-21 Academic Year:

  • Fall - Berkeley Discover Departmental Innovation Grant Program is launched to develop and infuse the Discovery Arc throughout the undergraduate experience.

  • Spring - 28 units submit preliminary proposals for the inaugural Departmental Innovation Grant Program and 10 units are selected for participation in the full proposal process. Workshop series including many campus partners is held throughout spring to support the full proposal process. 

  • Summer - Six teams of “Trailblazers” are chosen as the first cohort of Departmental Innovation Awardees.