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National Science Foundation
I-Corp - NSF Innovation Corps

I-Corps Curriculum

The I-Corps curriculum provides real-world, hands-on, immersive learning about what it takes to successfully transfer knowledge into products and processes that benefit society. It's not about how to write a research paper, business plan, or NSF proposal. The end result is not a publication or a deck of slides or even a scientific discovery.

Instead the entire I-Corps Team will be engaged with industry; talking to customers, partners, and competitors; and encountering the chaos and uncertainty of creating successful innovations. Getting out of the laboratory/university is what the effort is about.

This curriculum requires full participation from the entire I-Corps Team. (Each team member must commit to in-depth preparation, attendance at the lectures and workshops, and at least 15 additional hours per week for Customer Discovery.

The I-Corps curriculum is built on a special, accelerated version of Stanford University's Lean LaunchPad course (ENGR 245) and additional elements designed just for I-Corps grantees. All I-Corps Team members will be required to attend a kick-off workshop at an I-Corps Node to join a series of web-based lectures *, and to present their business pitches at a meeting of I-Corps grantees. All I-Corps Team members also are expected to invest significant effort in their projects outside of the university/laboratory environment.

Participation in the I-Corps curriculum is mandatory.

Important Curriculum Dates and Times:

Summer 2016

Cohort I

July 6-8: introductory workshop

July 14, 21, 28, August 4, 11 (Thursdays, 1-4 p.m. Eastern): web-based discussions

August 18-19: lessons learned

Cohort II

July 18-20: introductory workshop

July 26, August 2, 9, 16, 23 (Tuesdays, 1-4 p.m. Eastern): web-based discussions

August 29-30: lessons learned

Cohort III

July 18-20: introductory workshop

July 25, August 1, 8, 15, 22 (Mondays, 1-4 p.m. Eastern): web-based discussions

August 29-30: lessons learned

Fall 2016 (Fiscal Year 2017, Q1) Cohorts

Fall Cohort I

Kickoff (on-site): October (arrive 4) 5-7

Web sessions (online): Wednesdays 1-4 ET Oct 12, 19, 26, November 2, 9

Lessons Learned (on-site): November (arrive 16) 17-18

Fall Cohort II

Kickoff (on-site): October (arrive 18th) 19-21

Web sessions (online): Thursdays 1-4 ET Oct 27, November 3, 10, 17, December 1

Lessons Learned (on-site): December (arrive 4) 5-6

Fall Cohort III

Kickoff (on-site): October (arrive 23rd) 24-26

Web sessions (online): Tuesdays 1-4 ET November 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Lessons Learned (on-site): December (arrive 7) 8-9

Winter 2017 (Fiscal Year 2017, Q2) Cohorts

Winter Cohort I **tentative dates**

Kickoff (on-site): January (arrive 17) 18-20

Web sessions (online): Thursdays 1-4 ET January 26, February 2, 9, 16, 23

Lessons Learned (on-site): March (arrive 1) 2-3

Winter Cohort II
**tentative dates**

Kickoff (on-site): January (arrive 22) 23-25

Web sessions (online): Mondays 1-4 ET January 30, February 6, 13, 20, 27

Lessons Learned (on-site): March (arrive 5) 6-7

Winter Cohort III
**tentative dates**

Kickoff (on-site): January (arrive 29) 30-Feb 1

Web sessions (online): Wednesdays 1-4 ET February 8, 15, 22, March 1, 8

Lessons Learned (on-site): March (arrive 15) 16-17

Winter Cohort IV
**tentative dates**

Kickoff (on-site): February (arrive 5) 6-8

Web sessions (online): Tuesdays 1-4 ET February 14, 21, 28, March 7, 14

Lessons Learned (on-site): March (arrive 19) 20-21

To see the related E245 course description, syllabus and previous final presentations, visit Stanford's E245 course website.


* Tech requirements for weekly, web-based lectures are:

  • Processor >2 GHz with latest Windows or Mac OS
  • Connection speed greater than 700 kb/sec
  • Installed video camera
Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations presented in this material are only those of the presenter grantee/researcher, author, or agency employee; and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.