Prior to preparing a budget for a grant proposal, familiarize yourself with the funding agency's policies. If the proposal is in response to an RFA (Request for Applications) or PA (Program Announcement), carefully review the requirements of the funding opportunity (and this might include individual agency requirements), then meet with the PI to determine their needs and financial target.
The University Budget Template from the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) website includes the current approved rates for University fringe benefits. As part of the budget preparation, enter the appropriate F&A rate into the University budget template. When preparing a budget, reference the funding agency's policies to determine allowable costs. If human subjects are included with any budget/proposal there are usually additional steps that need attention so please be aware of that. Information and ORSP contacts regarding human subjects can be found at the ORSP webpage. The complete list of approved grant accounts is included in the ORSP budget template.
Once the budget is completed and reviewed with the PI, enter the proposal into the University RAPSS system for review and approval. The PI must route the proposal for review and approval by clicking “Submit for Department Review”. If the PI does not “Submit for Department Review” the award will not be routed through the RAPSS system for approval.
After the proposal is reviewed and approved, ORSP will initiate the review process. Every academic department has a Grants Specialist assigned to assist with these matters so that will be your individual point of contact. See ORSP's Responsibility List.
Proposal preparation guidelines:
Grant Submission Timeline:
5 days prior to Sponsor Due Date
RAPSS Funding Proposal should be entered along with budget and all administrative requirements into the portal and approved by all.
- Final proposal excluding final science
- Final budget with budget justifications
At this time the Specialist will review documents and reach out to PI and department administrator for corrections needing to be made
2 days prior to grant submission
Note, if proposal is not submitted to ORSP by the two (2) business day deadline, an exception request must be sent by the PI to the Associate Vice President for Research Administration () along with a CC to your Grant Specialist with a justification to why the proposal cannot meet the required deadline.
- Final Science must be submitted to ORSP
- Project Summary/Abstract
- Project Narrative
- Bibliography and References Cited
- Facilities and Other Resources
- Specific Aims
- Research Strategy
- Completed Conflict of Interest (COI) Disclosure Form
- For all PIs, a disclosure must be on file and active (submitted within the last 12 months) at the time of proposal submission.
Once your ORSP specialist reviews the proposal, the Grant Specialist may request changes.
Day of Submission
All changes requested by ORSP must be completed and returned to ORSP on the day of the sponsor deadline.
Depending upon the agency, the proposal may be submitted through portals such as Grants.gov, NSF FastLane, or other agency systems. An endorsement form must be completed for every proposal, including the signatures of the PI, department chair, and area dean. Endorsement forms can be handled via paper (forms located on ORSP website) or using the COEUS system (contact if you need assistance).
If the source of funding is a corporation or private foundation, the process is quite similar. You should contact the University Foundation's Office for Corporate and Foundation Relations for assistance.