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Notice

Applications for New Awards; Arts in Education National Program

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AGENCY:

Office of Innovation and Improvement, Department of Education.

ACTION:

Notice.

Overview Information

Arts in Education National Program.

Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2011.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.351F.

Dates:

Applications Available: July 14, 2011.

Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: August 15, 2011.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

Purpose of Program: The Arts in Education National Program supports national level high-quality arts education projects and programs for children and youth, with special emphasis on serving students from low-income families and students with disabilities.

Priorities: This notice includes one absolute priority and one competitive preference priority. We are establishing these priorities for the FY 2011 grant competition only, in accordance with section 437(d)(1) of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA), 20 U.S.C. 1232(d)(1).

Absolute Priority: For FY 2011, this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3) we consider only applications that meet this priority.

This priority is:

Model Projects.

High-quality projects that are designed to develop and implement, or expand, initiatives in arts education and arts integration on a national level for pre-kindergarten-through-grade-12 children and youth, with special emphasis on serving students from low-income families and students with disabilities.

In order to meet this priority, an applicant must demonstrate that the project for which it seeks funding will provide services and develop initiatives in multiple schools, school districts, and communities throughout the country.

Competitive Preference Priority: For FY 2011, this priority is a competitive preference priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) we award up to an additional 10 points to an application, depending on how well the application meets this priority.

This priority is:

Supporting Programs, Practices, or Strategies for which there are Strong or Moderate Evidence of Effectiveness.

Projects that are supported by strong or moderate evidence. A project that is supported by strong evidence (as defined in this notice) will receive more points than a project that is supported by moderate evidence (as defined in this notice).

Application Requirements:

A project must describe how it would (a) Serve low-income students and students with disabilities; and (b) implement the following activities on a national level:

1. Professional development based on national standards for pre-kindergarten-through-grade-12 arts educators.

Note:

National standards refers to the arts standards developed by the Consortium of National Arts Education Associations. The standards outline what students should know and be able to do in the arts. These are not Department standards. To view the standards, please go to http://www.menc.org/​resources/​view/​the-national-standards-for-arts-education-a-brief-history.

2. Development and dissemination of instructional materials, including online resources, in multiple arts disciplines for arts educators.

3. Arts-based educational programming in music, dance, theater, media arts, and visual arts, including folk arts for pre-kindergarten-through-grade-12 students and arts educators.

4. Community and national outreach activities that strengthen and expand partnerships among schools, school districts, and communities throughout the country.

Definitions:

As used in this notice—

Arts means music, dance, theater, media arts, and visual arts, including folk arts.

Arts educator means a teacher or other instructional staff who work in music, dance, theater, media arts, or visual arts, including folk arts.

Carefully matched comparison group design means a type of quasi-experimental study (as defined in this notice) that attempts to approximate an experimental study (as defined in this notice). More specifically, it is a design in which project participants are matched with non-participants based on key characteristics that are thought to be related to the outcome. These characteristics include, but are not limited to: (1) Prior test scores and other measures of academic achievement (preferably, the same measures that the study will use to evaluate outcomes for the two groups); (2) Demographic characteristics, such as age, disability, gender, English proficiency, ethnicity, poverty level, parents' educational attainment, and single- or two-parent family background; (3) The time period in which the two groups are studied (e.g., the two groups are children entering kindergarten in the same year as opposed to sequential years); and (4) Methods used to collect outcome data (e.g., the same test of reading skills administered in the same way to both groups).

Experimental study means a study that employs random assignment of, for example, students, teachers, classrooms, schools, or districts to participate in a project being evaluated (treatment group) or not to participate in the project (control group). The effect of the project is the average difference in outcomes between the treatment and control groups.

Integration means (i) Encouraging the use of high-quality arts instruction within other academic content areas, and (ii) strengthening the arts as a core academic subject in the school curriculum.

Interrupted time series design means a type of quasi-experimental study (as defined in this notice) in which the outcome of interest is measured multiple times before and after the treatment for program participants only. If the program had an impact, the outcomes after treatment will have a different slope or level from those before treatment. That is, the series should show an “interruption” of the prior situation at the time when the program was implemented. Adding a comparison group time series, such as schools not participating in the program or schools participating in the program in a different geographic area, substantially increases the reliability of the findings.[1]

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Moderate evidence means evidence from previous studies whose designs can support causal conclusions (i.e., studies with high internal validity) but have limited generalizability (i.e., moderate external validity), or studies with high external validity but moderate internal validity. The following would constitute moderate evidence:

(1) At least one well-designed and well-implemented experimental or quasi-experimental study supporting the effectiveness of the practice, strategy, or program, with small sample sizes or other conditions of implementation or analysis that limit generalizability;

(2) At least one well-designed and well-implemented experimental or quasi-experimental study that does not demonstrate equivalence between the intervention and comparison groups at program entry but that has no other major flaws related to internal validity; or

(3) Correlational research with strong statistical controls for selection bias and for discerning the influence of internal factors.

National non-profit arts education organization means an organization of national scope that is supported by staff or affiliates at the State and local levels and that has a demonstrated history of advancing high-quality arts education and arts integration for arts educators, education leaders, artists, and students through professional development, partnerships, educational programming, and systemic school reform.

Quasi-experimental study means an evaluation design that attempts to approximate an experimental study (as defined in this notice) and can support causal conclusions (i.e., minimizes threats to internal validity, such as selection bias, or allows them to be modeled). Well-designed and well-implemented (as defined in this notice) quasi-experimental studies (as defined in this notice) include carefully matched comparison group designs (as defined in this notice), interrupted time series designs (as defined in this notice), or regression discontinuity designs (as defined in this notice).

Regression discontinuity design study means, in part, a quasi-experimental study (as defined in this notice) design that closely approximates an experimental study (as defined in this notice). In a regression discontinuity design, participants are assigned to a treatment or comparison group based on a numerical rating or score of a variable unrelated to the treatment such as the rating of an application for funding. Another example would be assignment of eligible students, teachers, classrooms, or schools above a certain score (“cut score”) to the treatment group and assignment of those below the score to the comparison group.

Strong evidence means evidence from previous studies whose designs can support causal conclusions (i.e., studies with high internal validity), and studies that in total include enough of the range of participants and settings to support scaling up to the State, regional, or national level (i.e., studies with high external validity). The following are examples of strong evidence:

(1) More than one well-designed and well-implemented (as defined in this notice) experimental study (as defined in this notice) or well-designed and well-implemented (as defined in this notice) quasi-experimental study (as defined in this notice) that supports the effectiveness of the practice, strategy, or program; or

(2) One large, well-designed and well-implemented randomized controlled, multisite trial that supports the effectiveness of the practice, strategy, or program.

Well-designed and well-implemented means, with respect to an experimental or quasi-experimental study (as defined in this notice), that the study meets the What Works Clearinghouse evidence standards, with or without reservations (see http://ies.ed.gov/​ncee/​wwc/​references/​idocviewer/​doc.aspx?​docid=​19&​tocid=​1 and in particular the description of “Reasons for Not Meeting Standards” at http://ies.ed.gov/​ncee/​wwc/​references/​idocviewer/​Doc.aspx?​docId=​19&​tocId=​4#reasons.

Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) the Department generally offers interested parties the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities, selection criteria, definitions, and other requirements. Section 437(d)(1) of GEPA, however, allows the Secretary to exempt from rulemaking requirements, regulations governing the first grant competition under a new or substantially revised program authority. This is the first grant competition for the Arts in Education National Program under section 5551 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (20 U.S.C. 7271), and therefore qualifies for this exemption. In order to ensure timely grant awards, the Secretary has decided to forgo public comment on the priorities, selection criteria, definitions, and other requirements under section 437(d)(1) of GEPA. These priorities, selection criteria, definitions, and other requirements will apply to the FY 2011 grant competition only.

Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7271.

Applicable Regulations: The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR Parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 82, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99.

II. Award Information

Type of Award: Discretionary grants.

Estimated Available Funds: $6,654,000.

Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

Note:

The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.

Budget Period: 12 months.

Project Period: Up to 36 months (subject to availability of funds).

Note:

The applicant should propose to use the entire amount of available funds ($6,654,000) during the twelve month budget period. If additional funds subsequently become available, we may make continuation awards.

III. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants: A national non-profit arts education organization.

2.a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost sharing or matching.

b. Supplement-Not-Supplant: This program involves supplement-not-supplant funding requirements. Under section 5551(f)(2) of the ESEA, the Secretary requires that assistance provided under this program be used only to supplement, and not to supplant, any other assistance or funds made available from non-Federal sources for the activities assisted under the program.

c. Coordination Requirement: Under section 5551(f)(1) of the ESEA, the Secretary requires that each entity funded under this program coordinate, to the extent practicable, each project or program carried out with funds awarded under this program with appropriate activities of public or private cultural agencies, institutions, and organizations, including museums, arts education associations, libraries, and theaters.

IV. Application and Submission Information

1. Address to Request Application Package: Carolyn Warren, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 4W209, Washington, DC 20202-5900. Telephone: (202) 205-5443 or by e-mail: carolyn.warren@ed.gov.

If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Start Printed Page 41493Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) by contacting the program contact person listed in this section.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this competition.

Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your application. We suggest you limit the application narrative (Part III) to no more than 50 pages, using the following standards:

  • A “page” is 8.5″ x 11″, on one side only, with 1″ margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.
  • Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as well as all text in charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
  • Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
  • Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial.

3. Submission Dates and Times:

Applications Available: July 14, 2011.

Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: August 15, 2011.

Applications for a grant under this competition must be submitted in paper format by mail or hand delivery. For information (including dates and times) about how to submit your application by mail or hand delivery, please refer to section IV.7. Other Submission Requirements of this notice.

We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements.

Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the application process, the individual's application remains subject to all other requirements and limitations in this notice.

4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. Information about Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under Executive Order 12372 is in the application package for this competition.

5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification Number, and Central Contractor Registry: To do business with the Department of Education, you must—

a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);

b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the Central Contractor Registry (CCR), the Government's primary registrant database;

c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and

d. Maintain an active CCR registration with current information while your application is under review by the Department and, if you are awarded a grant, during the project period.

You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number can be created within one business day.

If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a new TIN, please allow 2-5 weeks for your TIN to become active.

The CCR registration process may take five or more business days to complete. If you are currently registered with the CCR, you may not need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will need to update your CCR registration on an annual basis. This may take three or more business days to complete.

7. Other Submission Requirements:

Applications for grants under this program must be submitted in paper format by mail or hand delivery.

a. Submission of Applications by Mail.

If you submit your application by mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier), you must mail the original and two copies of your application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 351F), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260.

You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:

(1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.

(2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the U.S. Postal Service.

(3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial carrier.

(4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:

(1) A private metered postmark.

(2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.

If your application is postmarked after the application deadline date, we will not consider your application.

Note:

The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your local post office.

b. Submission of Applications by Hand Delivery.

If you submit your application by hand delivery, you (or a courier service) must deliver the original and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 351F), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.

The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you mail or hand deliver your application to the Department—

(1) You must indicate on the envelope and—if not provided by the Department—in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are submitting your application; and

(2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not receive this notification within 15 business days from the application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

1. Selection Criteria: We will use four selection criteria to evaluate Start Printed Page 41494applications for this competition. Selection criteria (1) Significance, (2) Quality of the project design, and (3) Quality of project services are established in this notice pursuant to section 437(d)(1) of GEPA, as explained in the Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking section of this notice. Selection criterion (4) Quality of the project evaluation is from 34 CFR 75.210.

The maximum score for each criterion is indicated in parentheses. The maximum score for all of the selection criteria is 100 points. The total maximum score of an application is 110 points (100 points under the selection criteria and an additional 10 points under the competitive preference priority). Each criterion also includes the factors that the reviewers will consider in determining how well an application meets the criterion. The notes following the selection criteria are provided as guidance to help applicants in preparing their applications, and are not required by statute or regulations.

The selection criteria are as follows:

(1) Significance (20 points). The Secretary considers the significance of the proposed project. In determining the significance of the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:

(a) The national significance of the proposed project.

(b) The extent to which the proposed project is likely to build local capacity to provide, improve, or expand services that address the needs of children and youth, with special emphasis on serving students from low-income families and students with disabilities.

(c) The extent to which the applicant has a history of three or more years of demonstrated excellence in the areas of arts education and arts integration on a national scale.

(2) Quality of the project design (40 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the design of the proposed project. In determining the quality of the design of the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:

(a) The extent to which the design of the proposed project is appropriate to, and will successfully address, the needs of pre-kindergarten-through-grade-12 children and youth, with special emphasis on serving students from low-income families and students with disabilities.

(b) The extent to which the proposed project will provide high-quality professional development for pre-kindergarten-through-grade-12 arts educators and other staff who provide instruction in music, dance, drama, media arts, or visual arts, including folk arts.

(c) The extent to which the proposed project will develop and disseminate instructional materials, including online resources, in multiple arts disciplines for arts educators and other instructional staff.

(d) The extent to which the proposed project will support arts-based educational programming.

(e) The extent to which the proposed project will provide community and national outreach.

(3) Quality of project services (20 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project. In determining the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:

(a) The extent to which the services to be provided by the proposed project involve the collaboration of appropriate partners in order to maximize the effectiveness of project services.

(b) The extent to which the proposed project will provide services and initiatives that will reach students and educators in multiple schools, school districts, and communities throughout the country.

(4) Quality of the project evaluation (20 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the evaluation to be conducted of the proposed project. In determining the quality of the evaluation, the Secretary considers the following factors:

(a) The extent to which the methods of evaluation include the use of objective performance measures that are clearly related to the intended outcomes of the project and will produce quantitative and qualitative data to the extent possible.

(b) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward achieving intended outcomes.

Note:

A strong evaluation plan should be included in the application narrative and should be used, as appropriate, to shape the development of the project from the beginning of the grant period. The evaluation plan should include benchmarks to monitor progress toward specific project objectives and also outcome measures to assess the impact on teaching and learning, or other important outcomes for project participants. More specifically, the plan should identify the individual or organization that has agreed to serve as evaluator for the project and describe the qualifications of that evaluator. The plan should describe the evaluation design, indicating: (1) What types of data will be collected; (2) when various types of data will be collected; (3) what methods will be used; (4) what instruments will be developed and when these instruments will be developed; (5) how data will be analyzed; (6) when reports of results and outcomes will be available; and (7) how the applicant will use the information collected through the evaluation to monitor progress of the funded project and to provide accountability information both about success at the initial site and about effective strategies for replication in other settings. Applicants are encouraged to devote an appropriate level of resources to project evaluation.

2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality.

In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

3. Special Conditions: Under 34 CFR 74.14 and 80.12, the Secretary may impose special conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; has a financial or other management system that does not meet the standards in 34 CFR Parts 74 or 80, as applicable; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.

VI. Award Administration Information

1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.

If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, we notify you.

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify administrative and national policy requirements in the application package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The Start Printed Page 41495GAN also incorporates your approved application as part of your binding commitments under the grant.

3. Reporting: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition, you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR Part 170 should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).

(b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final performance report, including financial information, as directed by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual performance report that provides the most current performance and financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, please go to http://www.ed.gov/​fund/​grant/​apply/​appforms/​appforms.html.

4. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), the Secretary has established four performance measures to assess the effectiveness of this program. Projects funded under this competition will be expected to collect and report to the Department data related to these measures. Applications should, but are not required to, discuss in the application narrative how they propose to collect these data. The four GPRA performance measures are: (1) The total number of students who participate in standards-based arts education sponsored by the grantee; (2) the number of teachers participating in the grantee's program who receive professional development that is sustained and intensive; (3) the total number of students from low-income families who participate in standards-based arts education sponsored by the grantee; and (4) the total number of students with disabilities who participate in standards-based arts education sponsored by the grantee.

5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.253, the extent to which a grantee has made “substantial progress toward meeting the objectives in its approved application.” This consideration includes the review of a grantee's progress in meeting the targets and projected outcomes in its approved application, and whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and budget. In making a continuation grant, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is operating in compliance with the assurances in its approved application, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

VII. Agency Contact

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Carolyn Warren, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 4W209, Washington, DC 20202-5950. Telephone: (202) 205-5443 or by e-mail: carolyn.warren@ed.gov.

If you use a TDD, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) on request to the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice.

Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System at: http://www.gpo.gov/​fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site.

You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: http://www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department.

Start Signature

Dated: July 11, 2011.

James H. Shelton, III,

Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement.

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Footnotes

1.  A single subject or single case design is an adaptation of an interrupted time series design that relies on the comparison of treatment effects on a single subject or group of single subjects. There is little confidence that findings based on this design would be the same for other members of the population. In some single subject designs, treatment reversal or multiple baseline designs are used to increase internal validity. In a treatment reversal design, after a pretreatment or baseline outcome measurement is compared with a post treatment measure, the treatment would then be stopped for a period of time; a second baseline measure of the outcome would be taken, followed by a second application of the treatment or a different treatment. A multiple baseline design addresses concerns about the effects of normal development, timing of the treatment, and amount of the treatment with treatment-reversal designs by using a varying time schedule for introduction of the treatment and/or treatments of different lengths or intensity.

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[FR Doc. 2011-17756 Filed 7-13-11; 8:45 am]

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