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“To have a great idea, have a lot of them."
~ Thomas A. Edison
I need to:
I need information about:
- Our F&A (Indirect Cost) rate (policy, rate agreement, waiver request)
- Who can be a PI at UMCES?
- Subawards and Contracts in my proposal
- Export Control in proposals
- Computers in proposals
- Cost Sharing
- Compliance (animal use, human subjects, conflict of interest, RCR)
- Proposal Writing Resources
- Proposal templates
- Cayuse (UMCES routing)
- Submitting through the Foundation
- CFDA Numbers
Best Practices for Proposal Preparation
- Plan Ahead. Know your timeline, and be aware of possible impediments to submission: holidays, vacations (including those of your co-investigators), etc.
- Read the RFP carefully. As funding gets tighter, there are more proposals submitted for each opportunity. Weeding out the proposals that are not prepared in accordance with the submission guidelines is an easy way for reviewers to cut down their workload. Don’t let your brilliant idea be low-hanging fruit!
- Know your limitations. Don’t wait until you’ve invested hours and hours of your time to find out that your submission doesn’t meet the requirements for the submission of research proposals from UMCES. Talk to your lab director and the ORAA office; there are certain things that we as a State of Maryland Institution of Higher Education are not able to do.
- Know your audience. Contact the agency’s technical representative or program manager to discuss research ideas to ensure your project meets the mission and criteria of the agency.
- Give everyone involved as much time as possible. You give your proposal the best shot at funding by allowing everyone – your business office, your co-investigators, your ORAA contact – adequate time for review. We want your research to be funded and funded adequately, so we want time to make sure all the i’s are dotted, the t’s are crossed, and that both letters are in the proper font.
- Remember the routing chain. If a submission is due no later than 5:00 p.m. EST, that means the last person in the routing chain has to be finished reviewing / approving the proposal, and the proposal has to be submitted by 5:00 p.m. EST. With electronic submissions, there is no wiggle room; when the official US NIST-F1 clock ticks over to 5:00, the submission sites close. We cannot submit past the deadline, not to be mean but because it’s not possible.
- Don’t wait for all the details to contact us. Fill out the Notice of Intent to Submit a Proposal as soon as you know you are planning to submit a proposal. This lets both your business office and ORAA know that a submission is coming, and we can manage our time accordingly. We very rarely have only one researcher submitting a proposal to any given RFP, and with the big agencies we often have 6 or more submissions due on the same day. Even if you don’t know exactly when the submission will be due or who your co-investigator(s) will be, give us a heads up that something is coming.
- Take care with titles. As I’m sure you’re aware there have been instances lately of public figures ridiculing research projects as a profound waste of money, usually because they don’t understand the ultimate purpose. We have been asked by funding agencies (particularly NSF) to be aware of how project titles will read to the lay public. You may be asked, either by someone at UMCES or by your agency, to modify your title to make the ultimate goal of your work more apparent. This is a reflection of the times we live in, not a reflection on you or your work.
Here are some tools to assist you in both finding funding opportunities and developing your proposal once you find one.
- Grants.gov Site with search feature for finding federal grant opportunities.
- NSF Programs
- NOAA Research Programs
- National Institutes of Health
- Office of Naval Research University Research Initiatives page
- Federal Business Opportunities Site with search feature for federal announcements of contracting opportunities.
- Maryland Governor’s Grants Office
The Maryland Governor’s Grants Office site provides information on programs from over 70 different state agencies. The information is primarily on grant opportunities, but there is also information on scholarships and other financial assistance opportunities.
- Maryland Industrial Partnerships (MIPS)
Funding offered to faculty throughout the University System of Maryland, MIPS funding supports research projects teaming faculty with Maryland companies to develop technology-based products.
The Foundation Center provides assistance in learning about foundation opportunities and basic information including lists of national foundations with their areas of expertise. Clicking on "Search" feature at top of page will take you to free searches.
Equipment Grants – Funding for scientific equipment
- NSF Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) Program – due January 13, 2016 (Second Wednesday in January, Annually Thereafter)
- NSF Earth Sciences: Instrumentation and Facilities (EAR/IF) – proposals will be accepted at any time.
- Instrument Development for Biological Research (IDBR) – due July 31, 2015 (Last Friday in July, annually thereafter)
- NIH Shared Instrumentation Grant Program (S10) – search site for opportunities
- Defense University Research Instrumentation Program (DURIP): Office of Naval Research, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Office – due August or September annually.
- NSF Fastlane/Research.gov (Not registered? Click here to request FastLane ID. You will need to affiliate with University of Maryland Center For Environmental Science using our DUNS number 021463831. Role request will be ‘PI’ once affiliated, ORAA will receive a request to accept the affiliation. ). Click for FAQs and assistance.
- NASA NSPIRES (Not registered? Click here to register with NSPIRES)
- UMCES FAQs and Administrative Information for Proposals
- Guide to Proposal Submission under the Uniform Guidance
- NSF Guide for Writing Proposals
- NSF Specific Guidance: Data Management and Postdoctroal Mentoring Plans
- NIH Guide for Grants and Preparing an NIH proposal
- Budget 5-Year with Cost Share
- Budget 5-Year without Cost Share
- Simple 1-Year Budget
- Federal Research & Related Budget
- Budget Justification Sample
- University-Industry Research Agreements
Use this as a starting point for discussions with industry partners. It gives them an idea of what sort of contractual clauses UMCES can and cannot accept, and can help formal negotiations go more smoothly.
- UMCES F&A Policy (last updated 02/29/2012)
- UMCES Rate Memo & Implementation (dated 11/25/2019)
- UMCES/DHHS F&A Rate Agreement (valid through 6/30/2023)
All UMCES proposals are to be routed electronically using the Cayuse424 system.
- Cayuse424 FAQ and Grant.gov Workspace
- Cayuse424 Step By Step Instructions
- Cayuse424 User Guide
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Frequently Asked Question
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Project Types, Definitions and Examples
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Proposal Attachments Section - What goes where?
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Proposal Tab Definitions - What goes where?
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Revisions and Resubmissions
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Attaching and Submitting non-PDF files with Proposals
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Web Browser Configuration
- Cayuse Quick Tip - Proposal Summary Example
- Cayuse424 Link for UMCES Cayuse Proposal System