Reference Guide for Proposal Development

This is a step-by-step list of the proposal development process.  We recommend you keep a copy of this guide with your proposal materials so that you may easily cross off completed steps and stay ahead of future ones.

Reference Guide for Proposal Development

  • Find funding opportunities, review the proposal guidelines and share RFP/RFA with Corporate and Foundation Relations (CFR) Office.

  • If you have questions about the relevance of your proposal idea to the funder, please contact program officer. If you have questions about the proposal process or would like general advice, consult with appropriate CFR staff member.

  • Develop a timeline for the development of your proposal. Aim for a completion/submission date of several working days before deadline.

  • Outline your proposed activity or project and draft the proposal narrative.

  • Discuss proposal development with and obtain preliminary permissions from department chair (and dean where applicable).

  • Create or update profiles in electronic systems i.e. create or update profiles in NSF FastLane, proposalCentral, NIH eRA Commons etc.

  • If your research will involve IRB (human subjects) or IACUC (animals), file for approval.

  • Complete COI/IRB/IACUC/Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training as needed.

  • Confirm availability of internal resources (facilities, equipment, vehicles, etc.).

  • Draft an adequate and accurate budget to accomplish the scope of the work. CFR staff are available to help with budget issues. If matching funds are needed, discuss with your department chair and appropriate dean.

  • If necessary, contact colleagues and organizations for letters of commitment or support.

  • Share your draft and budget with colleagues in your department or field and with CFR staff for feedback.

  • Incorporate feedback and revisions into a final draft. Review proposal guidelines against the final draft.

  • Ask a colleague and CFR staff member to proofread the final version for grammatical and typographical errors.

  • File appropriate Significant Financial Interest disclosure form.

  • At least three (3) weeks before the deadline, submit complete draft of proposal, a budget and signed (P.I. and department chair) Grant Routing Form to CFR staff member for review.

  • At least two (2) weeks before the deadline, CFR staff member will forward reviewed documents from step above to appropriate dean for their signature on routing form.

  • Depending on the proposal guidelines, either you or CFR staff will submit the proposal. Following submission, please send CFR a complete copy of your proposal for record keeping purposes.