Four Consultants: Online Course Curriculum Development

Four Consultants: Online Course Curriculum Development

Four Consultants: Online Course Curriculum Development

Four Consultants: Online Course Curriculum Development

August 2, 2022
Washington, D.C.
Position type
Experience (minimum)
Not specified
Education (minimum)
Not specified
Travel required?
Not specified
Base salary (minimum)
Not specified



About InterAction:

InterAction is the largest U.S. based coalition of international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) with 180+ members working around the world in low- and middle-income countries, fragile and post-conflict states, and emerging/growth economies. Member organizations are large and small, secular and faith-based, with a focus on people living in the world’s most poor and vulnerable places. The U.S. public, foundations, and governments support the work of our member NGOs that collectively invest and manage more than $15.4 billion a year. InterAction revenues come from dues, government grants, private foundation and corporate grants, and a fee-for-service program portfolio. Using its collective voice and convening power, InterAction seeks to shape important policy decisions and actions across a wide range of issues – including foreign assistance, humanitarian relief, development, economic equity, food security, and climate change – that advance human dignity, human potential, and self-determination.

To learn more about InterAction's mission, DEI approach, values and more visit the link below: Who We Are - InterAction


This call for consultancy seeks four (4) consultants as described below. You may send a separate application for each of the following four consultancies, or a combination thereof, but specify your expertise, and cost estimates separately for each consultancy.

The update to the current curriculum (currently divided into five units) is expected to consist of up to four (4) expanded base units in the new course, as described below, as well as three additional new units on Protection, Environment, and SA/Coverage/Recovery. The final design of the curriculum will be decided with input from S&S sectoral experts.

Consultancy - 1

· Unit 1: Overview and trends of humanitarian S&S (Existing module to be Updated)

· Unit 2: Humanitarian issues and concerns (Existing module to be Updated)

· Unit 3: S&S assistance modalities (Existing module to be Updated)

· Unit 4: Disaster risk reduction/Urbanization and trends (Existing module to be Updated)

Consultancy 2: Unit 5: Protection concerns in S&S programming (New Module)

Consultancy 3: Unit 6: Environment/Climate concerns and best practices (New Module)

Consultancy 4: Unit 7: Settlements Approach, coverage, and long-term recovery (New Module)


Background and objectives:

Since the launch of the English version of the Humanitarian S&S online course in 2017 (and the recent addition of Arabic, French and Spanish versions in 2019), a diverse audience of over 10,170 people from 161 countries have taken the course with 2,348 people completing the full curriculum (Dec 2021). This remains one of the most sought-after online courses for S&S learners.

The initial S&S online course targeted senior managers from humanitarian organizations and provided an overview and the potential of the sector. During the last seven years, the sector has advanced its thinking, approaches, and response methodology, from preparedness to recovery. External factors have also influenced the sector during this period, from increased conflicts leading to forced displacements; multiplication of environmental and climate concerns; and house, land and property issues, as well as other protection-related topics.


When the root causes of displacement and related shelter needs stem from conflicts, rather than disasters, the modalities of shelter assistance can dramatically change. This can result in limited access to the affected population, challenges in transporting materials, and restriction of land use or rental markets, among other things. Conflicts often involve lapses and relapses of violence with affected populations tending to move between locations, particularly to urban areas. While some of these concentrated displaced populations are served by Camp Coordination and Camp Management actors, others are assisted by S&S actors. A range of options including cash, hosting, rental, and resettlements assistance may be combined in a single program.


Three other areas that are central to humanitarian action - links between protection and shelter, environmental concerns, and coverage and recovery - are briefly mentioned in the existing training. However, S&S actors could vastly improve their practice and potential impacts with better understanding of these areas. Three additional units covering these topics will be included in the updated training.


Consultant 1 - Update of existing S&S course

InterAction is soliciting Expression of Interest (EOI) from consultants to update the existing online course curriculum on Shelter & Settlements currently available here:

This consultant will update and develop the following four units. The final design of the curriculum will be decided with input from S&S sectoral experts.

1. Overview and trends of humanitarian S&S

2. Humanitarian issues and concerns

3. S&S assistance modalities

4. Disaster risk reduction


The contents for these units will primarily be taken from existing materials but updated based on progress made in the last seven years. It is expected that 70% of the material will be drawn from the existing curriculum. While using existing material, the consultant will be sure to include current thinking in the sector and expected trends and incorporate new case studies and evidence. The content of each unit will be cohesive between the said four units but also will link to the three new units being developed (see below). The consultant will have overarching responsibility to ensure other units (units 5, 6 and 7) integrate well within the course and to provide guidance to and work with all three sector specialist consultants.


NOTE: Three other units will be developed separately and incorporated into the overall online course. The following consultancies will be reviewed and awarded separately based on specific sectoral expertise. If Consultant 1 is applying for the development of the following units, please state your relevant expertise separately, and provide separate cost estimates for each.


Consultant 2 - New Unit 5: Protection Concerns in S&S programming

This unit will help the learners to understand and address the links between shelter, protection, GBV, HLP, and cash and markets. The consultant will have specific expertise in the areas mentioned and design the curriculum from scratch.

The new unit will emphasize strong links and cross-sector impacts between Shelter, Protection, GBV and HLP. This new unit will capture tools and guidance already produced by Global Shelter and Global Protection Clusters, HLP guidance, GBV site planning guidance, and the “Wider Impacts” publication.


HLP AoR has documented that HLP issues should be addressed in humanitarian response for many reasons, especially in S&S interventions. Access to secure tenure is one of the principal factors in determining the economic and social well-being of women. Improving the lives of women benefits their families, communities, and nations. Providing secure enough tenure could promote equal access to assistance, contribute to sustainable solutions, promote positive gender outcomes, and help social cohesion.


Similarly, GSC’s “Site planning guidance to reduce GBV” provides guidance on how the setup of camps can either exacerbate or mitigate the experience of GBV. For example, an overcrowded camp can lead to long wait times for communal latrines, increasing the exposure to physical attacks.


With increasing use of cash and voucher programs to support shelter, practitioners should be aware of the protection risks associated with these programs and incorporate protection principles at all stages of program design.


Most of the S&S assistance currently involves NFI distribution. Good distribution guidelines from the shelter cluster look at how shelter and NFI distributions can contribute to reducing GBV risks in emergencies by understanding contexts, conducting joint needs assessments, and making program decisions.


Key messages from protection mainstreaming will be captured in the curriculum. The key elements in mainstreaming are to prioritize safety and dignity; avoid doing harm; provide meaningful access; and have accountability, participation, and empowerment. Prioritizing safety and avoiding harm centers on building shelters in a safe location with minimal threats from physical attacks or avoiding building in environmentally unsuitable areas. It should also address the needs of the most vulnerable and marginalized populations.


These suggested thematic areas and concerns should be captured concisely in this unit and provide existing good practice guidelines. Please describe the suggested content in the proposed methodology and design in your application.


Note: If Consultant 1 is applying for the development of the following units, please state your relevant expertise separately, and provide separate cost estimates for each.

Consultant 3 - New Unit 6: Addressing environmental concerns and best practices

This unit will help learners to understand the overarching concerns of climate impacts, environmental sustainability, and the provision of humanitarian shelter assistance. This new unit will capture climate impacts and environmental sustainability issues at the local level with a focus on practice, design of shelters, distribution operations, disaster risk reduction and advocacy.


While direct impacts of climate change on settlements can be hard to quantify, the increase in severity and intensity of storms, floods, and wildfires, as well as rise in temperature and sea level has been attributed to human-induced climate change. The unit will capture, as micro case studies, a range of options that are being piloted, including sustainable procurement, transportation, material selection, and supply chain during implementation, in addition to effective design and construction such as improved ventilation, locally renewable materials and vernacular construction techniques. Please describe the suggested content in the proposed methodology and design in your application.


Note: If Consultant 1 is applying for the development of the following units, please state your relevant expertise separately, and provide separate cost estimates for each.


Consultant 4 - New Unit 7: Settlements Approach, Coverage in humanitarian shelter assistance and long-term recovery

This unit will define and discuss elements of the humanitarian-development ‘nexus,’ or the transition from humanitarian S&S assistance to longer-term reconstruction and recovery. The unit will emphasize the importance of consistent and defined data in needs assessments to understand and address challenges in coverage and the humanitarian-development nexus more specifically, extracting from ongoing coverage-focused research and recommendations as well as other work by S&S agencies and researchers.


This new unit will discuss assistance modalities that not only cover emergency, humanitarian needs but also enable the transition to longer term recovery. While the Settlements Approach online training curriculum is currently in the process of development, this new unit will incorporate core principles, application, and strengths of the Settlements Approach, and its role in connecting emergency assistance to longer term recovery and its efforts working with development and national actors. Primarily, this unit will focus on coverage, nexus, and related issues including local leadership.

Please describe the suggested content in the proposed methodology and design in your application.

Note: If Consultant 1 is applying for the development of the following units, please state your relevant expertise separately, and provide separate cost estimates for each.


Expected Activities/Deliverables:

· Clearly understand the current Shelter & Settlements online training, and research any new relevant publications.

· Provide a draft storyline, suggested course design and format, and appropriate durations.

· The curriculum should contain an executive summary, main takeaways and a short quiz at the end of each unit.

· In consultation with InterAction, design an executive summary with introduction, overarching messages and key takeaways, specific sectoral highlights, advocacy points, conclusions, and references.

· Document research outcomes and evidence relating to S&S humanitarian assistance.

· Research additional materials and infographics/animations as appropriate for inclusion in the course curriculum.

· Design a short quiz/exercise to assess learners’ understanding of the material presented.

· Incorporate appropriate lessons from the Roadmap for Research2 (InterAction, 2021).

· The course content will initially be presented as a storyline, and final outputs will be in the form of slides (similar to PowerPoint format). Slides will be accompanied by text for narration that will be read by live voiceover.

· A Graphics Consultant will be deployed by InterAction to work with the consultants. Curriculum Consultant will provide scripts, draft PPT slides, initial draft powerpoint design, design suggestions, and incorporate all necessary graphics developed by the Graphics Consultant.

· Design and fit each unit for approximately 30-40-minute as a final product. Average estimate of the number of slides may vary between 40-55, depending on the design. Each slide will be accompanied by a narrator script.

· Work with external online course developer and ensure the curriculum is accurately reflected in the final course and all text, slides, narration, graphics, animation, and videos are synchronized.

· Work with team of consultants (Graphics, Protection, Environment, Coverage, and online course development) to ensure consistency.

· Facilitate and receive feedback on the draft curriculum and the final course from a peer review panel of experts in humanitarian response (supported by InterAction).



Applicants are expected to have:

· Significant expertise in humanitarian shelter and settlements response (and other thematic areas proposed) with exposure and understanding of other humanitarian sectoral programs and outcomes.

· If applying to develop one of the new units, significant expertise in that particular topic.

· Track record of research and publications in related topics.

· Considerable field experience that includes humanitarian response and coordination.

· Existing access to a wide network of humanitarian organizations and practitioners for consultations and peer review.

· Ability to synthesize large amounts of information quickly and write clearly.

· Experience with strategic content development, such as the ability to present results graphically

· Flexibility to work across time zones.


Additional instructions:

· Additional instructions and details of deliverables will be discussed with short-listed candidates.

· Consultancy will be reviewed under each consultancy mentioned. Consultancy could be awarded to one single entity or multiple entities.

· Applications can be comprised of a team consisting of a principal consultant supported by other sectoral specialists.

· It is expected that the total duration of effort for each new unit (units 5, 6, and 7) will be around 25-30 working days, and up to 5 days for review and comments of the final course. The effort for updating the existing curriculum is expected to be around 60-70 days.

· It should be noted that the curriculum development and review phases will take place with an interval of 3-4 months during which time the curriculum will be converted to an online course by external E-learning company. Flexibility of the consultant is key.

· The period of performance will be October 2022 up to August 2023.


Application: Interested organizations or individuals should send the following documents to, with a copy to, indicating the specific unit/s (Consultancy for S&S Curriculum Update; Consultancy for Shelter and Protection; Consultancy for Shelter and Environment; and/or Consultancy for Shelter Coverage) in the subject line by 15 September 2022. Recruitment is subjected to funding approval expected in October 2022. Only finalists will be contacted. Applications will be reviewed as received.


· Resume(s) with contact details, background (highlighting specific experience in humanitarian response) and qualifications (see above) as it pertains to the objectives of the work, relevant credentials, and any relevant partnering agreements. (Two pages)

· Suggested outline and overview describing the proposed methodology and creative concepts for the curriculum’s storyline, suggested themes, and how the design will meet project objectives. Each specific special unit (S&S Update, Protection, Environment, Coverage) should have its own proposed storyline and cost estimate.

· Links to prior research, publications, and work samples (1 page).

· Detailed cost proposal (daily rate and total number of days) with breakdown of staff capacities and relevant resources including proposed timeline for curriculum development (1 page).


Questions/Comments: Please send your initial inquiries related to the consultancy via email to with a copy to Juli King ( by 10 September 2022.

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