Once a funding opportunity has been identified, it is important to lay a foundation for successful proposal submission. You will need to begin the mandatory approval process and make a plan for meeting all of the proposal requirements to ensure a punctual submission by OSP.


This section will guide you through the process of initiating a proposal, budget preparation, and coordinating with partners and UVU offices. First, you need to understand your responsibilities when you commit to the role of Principal Investigator (PI) or Project Director (PD) on a grant. You will need to notify your administrative authorities of your intentions and obtain their permission to proceed. You must also notify the Office of Sponsored Programs of your intent to prepare a proposal by filling out and submitting aNOIlocated inRequired OSP Formsand work with its staff through the process. You will need to meet with either theOSP Program Director of Sponsored Research(for federal and state grants) or theOSP Program Director of Contracts and Foundation Grants (for federal/private contracts, and/or foundation/private grants) on the budget, project timeframe, and OSP involvement. You should coordinate early with any partners to your project so that they have input and buy-in to your project. Depending on the nature of your proposal, you might also need to coordinate with or request services of other UVU offices, such as Institutional Research and the Institutional Review Board. Promptness in addressing these critical issues can make the difference between a proposal being submitted or not.


Preparing a grant proposal takes a considerable amount of time. Contact OSP early in the process, especially if grant preparation assistance is needed. Please be cognizant that all proposals must be completed and submitted to OSP at least five (5) business days prior to the proposal submission deadline. This allows sufficient time to gain administrative signatures and for OSP personnel to do a thorough review of the final documents and budget prior to submission as well as allow the time needed to make any required corrections, if necessary.


Note: Some proposals may require more time to gain approvals. For instance, a proposal that has subcontracts or requires the President’s signature may take additional time. (A signature or letter from the President, takes a minimum of ten business days).


Late Proposals

Failure to comply with this deadline policy may result in your proposal NOT being submitted. Please note that additional time may be required to address funding for research, new curriculum construction, external sub-awards, contractual relationships, revenue generating activities, cost sharing or match, or indirect cost modifications. Please contact OSP early in the proposal development process for assistance and direction in these matters.

Please understand that proposals that do not meet the five business day deadline will not be given priority, and will be reviewed and/or submitted only if time allows. We will do our best to work with individuals needing additional time, however, it is imperative that you notify OSP in advance if more time is necessary and that you continue to communicate with OSP throughout the process.

If a late proposal is not submitted due to errors discovered during a late review, notification may be sent to the PI, department dean, chair or administrator informing individuals of any errors or crucial items omitted in the proposal that compelled the decision to reject submission. A department supervisor or area administrator may also choose to withdraw a proposal from a competition at any time in the development or submission process at their discretion. It is usually wise to discuss this proposal early with supervisors to avoid last minute conflicts.


  1. Understand Your Responsibilities as PI

    The Principal Investigator (PI) or Project Director (PD) is the individual assigned and named in a proposal and in the award document as the person responsible for the proper conduct and management of a project. According to University policy, the PI/PD must be a UVU employee (full-time exempt), since there must be direct accountability to the University for the conduct of the project, in addition to accountability to the external sponsor and any governmental regulators.

    In a legal sense, externally sponsored programs/projects are actually contractual agreements between a sponsor and the University. In order for the University to fulfill its obligations under such agreements, it relies on the PI to fulfill his/her role responsibly. Please note the following distinctions:

    • While the PI/PD coordinates the preparation of the proposal and supporting documents, proposals are submitted by UVU through the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP).
    • While the PI/PD holds primary responsibility for conduct and management of an award, UVU is the recipient of the award and holds fiduciary and legal responsibility. UVU provides oversight on issues of federal, state, and University compliance, laws and regulations through OSP.

    The PI/PD has the pre- and post-award responsibilities described below. You should be fully aware of what these responsibilities entail before you prepare and submit a proposal. (Note, however, that if a grant is awarded, OSP will provide training to help you understand your responsibilities.) Please review the following sections carefully.

    1. Grant Proposal Preparation

      The PI is responsible for proposal preparation. S/he may request the assistance of others, including OSP, but the PI is ultimately responsible for the research, planning, writing, and editing of the document; for assembling all supporting documents, including the budget; and for submitting these documents to OSP in time for proper review and submission.

    2. PI/PD Assurances

      Prior to submission, the PI is required to certifying that the proposal is accurate and free from falsification, fabrication, or plagiarism; the PI accepts responsibility for the conduct and reporting of the project; assures participants are not debarred; agrees to comply with the terms and conditions of the external funding agency; and makes other assurances related to UVU policies and procedures. The PI signature on these assurances is part of theGrant Proposal Submission Approval Routing Form (GPSR) that the PI submits to OSP.

    3. Award Management

      Programmatic Aspects

      If a grant is awarded, the PI is responsible to:

      • Manage the technical/scientific and programmatic phases of the project and assure that expenditures are made for the intended purpose of the project, and are in accordance with sponsor requirements, University policy and procedures, and any governmental regulations.
      • Understand and meet the grant or contract terms and conditions, including any special or unusual conditions.
      • Strictly comply with the scope of work unless changes are agreed upon in writing by the sponsor and submitted to OSP.
      • Oversee the training and work of students and other personnel working on the project.
      • Ensure appropriate management of lab, space, or instrumentation needed to complete the project.

      While a PI may delegate administrative responsibilities to another individual, ultimately the PI remains fully responsible for all charges, changes, and conduct of the funded project. Please note, when a single research award possesses more than one PI, each PI in a multiple PI award shares the responsibility and authority for leading and directing the funded project as "equals." The presence of more than one identified PI diminishes neither the responsibility nor the accountability of any individual PI. The first PI serves as the contact PI to the sponsoring agency.

      Fiscal Aspects

      The PI is responsible to understand the fiscal requirements as stated in the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (2 CFR 200, Sub-part E) to:

      • Ensure that funds are spent appropriately and within the sponsor, college, and/or state guidelines.
      • Initiate the necessary documents/forms for travel, purchasing, employment, contracted services, extra compensation, etc., in conformity with established institutional policies and procedures.
      • Supervise expenditures and charges in conformity with the budget approved by the sponsoring agency and guidelines in the budget.
      • Provide care and maintenance of property procured with project funds in accordance with the sponsor’s guidelines.
      • Work with OSP on any changes in the budget, scope of the project, change or absence of the PI/PD, period of performance, etc.
      • Write and submit progress reports as stipulated by the sponsor in the award agreement.
      • Review the financial status and closely monitor the project expenditures. If corrections are needed, notify the OSPAccountant II Post-Award Financial Services.

      In the event a PI (or an individual designated by the PI to be responsible for expenditures on an account) fails to follow appropriate cost accounting standards and/or University policies, the PI and his or her cognizant department/vice president will be responsible for covering the cost of any disallowed costs and/or over-expenditures incurred on the account. Additionally, if a PI requests a project index prior to receipt of an award agreement or grant, and the project is not fully funded, or if costs are incurred outside the start or end date of a grant agreement resulting in cost disallowances, the PI and his/her cognizant department/vice president will be responsible for covering the disallowed costs of the sponsored program.

      Compliance Aspects

      The PI of awarded grants and contracts are responsible for all compliance aspects of the award. The failure to do so can penalize the institution as a whole, making the institution ineligible to receive new awards.

      • PI’s are expected to conduct the project using the highest ethical standards following policies relating to integrity in research and declare any potential conflict of interest for themselves or any individual involved with the project.
      • The PI must comply with the technical requirements of awards such as any and all approvals (e.g. Institutional Review Board (IRB), Human Subjects, Animal Use, Environmental Health & Safety, Conflict of Interest, etc.)
      • PI’s must submit a timely completion of periodic and final narrative reports on the progress of the project and overseeing others who participate on the project, including University personnel, consultants, and subcontractors. Failure to submit technical reports on time can jeopardize continuance of the grant, damage the institution’s reputation, and penalize the institution as a whole.

  1. Submit Required OSP forms

    The first form is theNotification of Intent (NOI). Please submit this form as soon as you have identified a funding source. This form requests basic information about the proposal, including the estimated amount of funds being requested, and requires preliminary administrative approval. The purpose of the form is to notify OSP that you intend to prepare a grant proposal and have department approval to begin the process. In compliance with University policy, the form facilitates campus-wide coordination and appropriate oversight. It also helps avoid multiple requests from the same funding source and may allow collaborative opportunities to be explored. Please submit this form before proposal preparation.



    The second required form is theGrant Proposal Submission Approval Routing Form (GPSR) which requests detailed project information, PI/PD assurances, and UVU endorsements from the Dean, Chair, and other responsible or impacted individuals or departments. The completed proposal should be attached with this form and submitted to OSP 5 business days before the grant proposal deadline. Please allow sufficient time to obtain administrative signatures to ensure compliance with OSP’s 5-day requirement.

  1. Make a Plan to Meet Funder's Requirements

    Study the program solicitation carefully to see that you understand all of the funder’s objectives for this program. That is, why is the funder giving money? What are their purposes? What do they want you to accomplish? The funder’s objectives may be different than your own. You will need to focus on their objectives to prepare a successful proposal.

    Note: Do not overlook objectives or requirements that are not a good fit with your project. If you cannot meet all of the mandated objectives and requirements, you should rethink your project or the appropriateness of this funding opportunity.

    The responsibility lies with the PI/PD to assure that the proposal meets the sponsor’s guidelines and requirements. OSP shares in this responsibility as it pertains to budgets, institutional certifications, and submission guidelines, so it is important that PIs communicate their understanding of sponsor’s requirements to OSP. If there are questions about federal proposals, you may contact a program officer for clarification if contact information is provided in the solicitation.

    1. Identify Cost Sharing, if Required

      Cost sharing is generally the portion of the total project costs that are committed by the institution receiving an award rather than the funding agency. Some grant programs require cost sharing or matching as a condition of receiving an award. Other grant programs suggest that cost sharing, in some form will be advantageous to the proposer. University policy allows for cost sharing only when it is required by the funding agency. You should determine the following from the program solicitation:

      • Is any form of cost sharing or matching required or suggested by the funder? (Please see Budget Elements – Cost Share, Match, and Leveragefor an explanation of types of cost sharing.
      • Is this form of cost sharing allowed by UVU? (If not required by the funder, it is not allowed by UVU.)
      • If cost sharing funds are required, are such sharing funds available? Is the project worth the cost to the institution?
      • If cost sharing is voluntary (which is not allowed by UVU), are there work-arounds that would allow you to demonstrate institutional contribution without directly committing funds? Please talk with the appropriate Program Director about options.

    2. Identify Specific Requirements and Essential Resources Needed

      The funder may have specific requirements that must be met, such as a PI who is a teaching member of the faculty; partnerships with school districts, business and industry, stage agencies, etc.; letters of commitment from partners; an external evaluator; vendor quotes for equipment purchase; travel to program conferences, etc. Make a list of all of these requirements and a plan for meeting them.

      You may have additional needs specific to your project, such as specialized equipment, space or facilities on or off campus, project personnel, consulting services, subcontracting services, travel, etc. (seeDetermine Needed or Required Resources). Make a list of these needs specific to this grant project and a plan for meeting them.

    3. Understand the Required Submission Process

      Almost all funders now require an electronic submission process. Federal agencies are required to use Grant.gov, but several agencies, like NSF, have their own submission portals. Some few organizations or foundations request paper copies of proposals, but this is rare. The submission process for a proposal is usually explained in detail in the program solicitation. Please follow these requirements to the letter. The most common forms of submission are:

      Grants.gov– an online portal used by all federal grant-making agencies and their applicants to find and apply for federal funding. The basic steps are provided below. If you have problems, please contact the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research.

      1. Register withgrants.gov. Fill in the required information and create a username and password, and then create a profile that includes Utah Valley University as the organization.
      2. Once you have created a profile, click on the Applicants tab and click on Apply for Grants. Then click on the bottom right hand corner on the red box Get Application Package. Once you have done so, you will need to data enter your Funding Opportunity Number or CFDA which is usually found on the cover page of the Request for Proposals or grant guidelines.
      3. You will now have the ability to create a Grants.gov WorkSpace which will enable you to access the forms you need for your specific grant application.
      4. Grants.gov WorkSpace provides a number of online tutorials and helps for using this system to work collaboratively with your project team members. All team members to whom you desire to give access to the WorkSpace will need to be registered with Grants.gov as well.
      5. With the Program Director of Sponsored Research, complete the required program and budget forms and upload the required pdf documents (i.e. Abstract, Narrative, Budget Narrative, etc.).
      6. After the application has been completed, it must be submitted by OSP.

      Note: UVU’s OSP maintains all institutional registrations with the Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number), federal System for Award Management (SAM), Grants.gov, and other required submission systems. Please do not attempt to re-register UVU for any of these systems.

      NSF FastLane– is the online portal used by the National Science Foundation. FastLane provides a page for uploading all the documents of a proposal and a mechanism for reviewing and checking them. While proposals to NSF can be submitted through Grants.gov, NSF recommends using the FastLane site because it checks grant applications for compliance to the specific program before they are submitted, which Grants.gov cannot do. This compliance check may alert the submitter to problems for which the proposal may otherwise be rejected. To prepare to submit a proposal through FastLane, please follow the general steps below. (NSF is in the process of changing from FastLane to Research.gov. Some services described here may become a function of Research.gov while the changeover is in process.)

      1. If you are not already registered on FastLane, you must contact the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research to become registered and set up an account through UVU. (If you have been previously registered through another university, you must repeat this process again at UVU.)
      2. The Program Director of Sponsored Research will give you a temporary NSF password. You should login to NSF and create a permanent password.
      3. As a registered PI, you will need to set up a proposal workspace through your FastLane account. During this process, you will receive a Proposal ID#. You may share this ID with Co-PIs and others to whom you wish to allow access to the proposal workspace.
      4. With the Program Director of Sponsored Research, complete the required program and budget forms and upload the required documents. Although there is some variation in requirements among programs, there are standard elements of an NSF proposal, which are described inComponents of an NSF Grant Submission File.
      5. After the application has been completed and checked for compliance, it must be submitted by the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research.

      Online submission of electronic formssome state agencies and foundations have online submission forms. Often, the text boxes of an online form can be prepared in a Word document and then cut and pasted into the form. After the application form has been completed, it will be submitted by the appropriate OSP Program Director.

      Email – some small federal agencies, state agencies, and foundations ask that proposals be submitted by email, either as an MS Word file or a PDF file. The program solicitation will give complete instructions and an email address. After the submission has been reviewed by OSP and prepared as an email, it may be submitted by the appropriate OSP Program Director, or, with approval, by the PI or PD of the project.

      It is good to know in advance how your proposal must be submitted and what role you will play in the submission process. Please review the submission requirements for your program in advance and then discuss them with the appropriate OSP Program Director during your meeting (see Step 3e).

  1. Draft the Project Budget

    As you make your plan to prepare the proposal and to meet all the funder’s requirements, you should begin to plan the project budget. You need to know that you have sufficient funds to do all that will be required. Preparing the budget for a proposal is generally a multi-stage process as depicted below.

    Drafting Project steps

    The current section explains Stage 1. Stage 2 is explained in the following section. Stage 3 is described in Step 4 of the Grant Life Process. Stage 4 is described in Step 5.

    The proposed budget should be an accurate reflection of the necessary expenses associated with the planned project. The budget should be considered as you are developing the project itself – not something hastily put together at the end. This is important for two reasons:

    1. Developing the budget alongside the narrative assures that the budget items are specifically related to activities described in the proposal.
    2. Reviewers often examine the budget in the context of the program narrative, evaluate whether sufficient and appropriate personnel to perform the work have been included, and match the overall budget to the work proposed.

    Remember that the final budget must be detailed and avoid vague estimates. You will probably need to do some research to determine how much necessary items will cost.

    Note: Sponsors often have specific budget requirements and restrictions. Review the sponsor guidelines thoroughly for requirements or restrictions regarding the proposal budget.

    1. OSP Budget Worksheet

      For federal and state proposals, use theOSP Budget Worksheet.This spreadsheet places expenditures in the categories required for federal proposals. There are tabs for up to years five years of a project and a summary page. The lines for personnel, fringe benefits, and indirect costs are self-calculating based on current rates and formulas. The spreadsheet totals expenses for each category. Most individuals find it useful and time-effective to review the form with the Director of Sponsored Research before beginning. If you have any questions or problems as you work with the worksheet, please contact this individual. For foundation proposals, it may be necessary to use the OSP Budget Worksheet, or a spreadsheet of your own design. Please check with the Program Director of Contracts and Foundation Grants.

    2. Budget Principles for all Grants and Contracts

      The budget should be carefully developed following UVU and federal policies. Since UVU receives federal funding, it is required to follow federal rules, guidelines, and procedures when administering grants, contracts, cooperative agreements, and other sponsored agreements. All sponsored activity whether federal, other governmental, or privately funded should be given consistent treatment through application of generally accepted accounting principles appropriate to the circumstances and comply with the appropriate Uniform Administrative Requirements of the Federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations. These standards and circulars must be followed when formulating a budget for a federal grant or contract. When you meet with the Program Director of Sponsored Research (Stage 2), you will be advised about any aspects of your budget that may not comply with UVU and federal policies.

      1. Direct Cost Principles and Justification

        The University is required to comply with the Federal Cost Accounting Standards which require that the University maintain consistency in budgeting and expending, and in allocating costs to activities, accounting for unallowable costs and cost accounting periods. These standards – along with 2 CFR 200 of the OMB and State and University policy – dictate how the University budgets and expends externally funded projects, including both government and private sponsors. To meet these requirements, it is critical that all costs charged to a grant are:

        Allowable Costs – Those categories of costs that can be charged to a grant or contract. Certain types of costs are not allowable and may not be charged to a contract or grant.

        Reasonable Costs – A cost may be considered reasonable if a reasonable person would have taken the same action given the circumstance.

        Allocable Costs – Those allowable costs that actually benefit the grant or contract to which they are being charged.

        Consistently Treated – Similar costs are treated consistently in similar situations within the grant award and within the institution.

        Unallowable costs are not allocable to sponsored programs either as a direct cost or as an indirect cost. These include alcohol, lobbying, fundraising, and goods and services for personal use, among others.

      2. Supplanting

        Supplanting is the act of reducing consistent state or local funds for an activity specifically because federal funds are available (or expected to be available) to fund that same activity. That is, supplanting is replacing any consistent, budgeted funds that have been allocated for an existing activity with federal grant funds. Existing funds for a project and its activities may not be displaced by federal funds and reallocated for other organizational expenses. This is illegal. On the other hand, federal agencies encourage supplementing—that is, adding federal funds to what is available in state, local, or agency funds.

      3. Funding Overlap

        It is often necessary to have multiple funding sources for a project. Sometimes, a project will have a combination of federal and private sources or multiple federal and private sources. It is critical that each sponsor be fully aware that other entities are providing funding; that is, all funding support is fully disclosed to each funding source. This becomes even more important if the funding has or may generate patentable intellectual property.

        When soliciting federal support, it is acceptable to submit essentially the same proposal to more than one agency; however, funding cannot be accepted from more than one federal agency for the same work. In order to leverage the funding, the project must be separated into discrete sections. Another option is to work with the agencies to jointly fund the project either through the transfer of funds or a memorandum of understanding.

    3. Budget Elements – Direct Costs

      Direct costs are those costs that can be directly attributed to carrying out the work of the proposed project and can be documented by record keeping mechanisms. Direct costs are generally organized into the categories listed below. These categories are described briefly here and in more detail in the documentProposal Budget Line-Item Guidance.

      1. Personnel Costs
        • Faculty – payments made to UVU faculty for work performed, based on the individual faculty member’s base salary (see Budgets for explanation of rules).
        • Staff – payments made to UVU staff for work performed, based on the individual staff member’s base salary, or if a new hire, on HR rates for job descriptions.
        • Hourly Personnel – payments made to hourly personnel employed or hired by UVU, including undergraduate researchers, based on HR rates for equivalent jobs.
      2. Fringe Benefits – a fixed institutional rate based on the type of employment included for all personnel listed in (a) above (see Budgets for fringe benefit rates).
      3. Equipment – an item of tangible property to be purchased, rented, or leased that has a value of $5,000 or more and a useful life of two or more years.
      4. Travel – all foreign and domestic travel, including costs for airfare, transportation, lodging, and food.
      5. Participant Support – costs associated with student participants, including tuition, scholarships, travel, and other. Does not include student wages.
      6. Supplies & Materials – expendable items including laboratory materials, information technology items (computers and printers less than $5,000), training materials, and materials for project advertising or participant recruitment.
      7. Publication & Dissemination – fees charged by journals for publication and other costs associated with dissemination of project findings (not travel).
      8. Consultant Services – costs of professional and consultant services rendered by non-UVU employees of a particular profession or specialized skill. Includes the cost of external evaluators.
      9. Computer Services – generally research-specific services, such as reserving computing time on supercomputers or getting specialized software to help run statistics.
      10. sub-awards and Subcontracts – sub-awards are program awards to sub-recipients for a specified scope of work; subcontracts are payments to contractors for goods or services.
      11. Other – other direct costs that do not fall into one of the above categories. Check with the Director of Sponsored Research on these items.

    4. Budget Elements – Indirect Costs

      The practice of reimbursing indirect cost to recipients of research, training, and other sponsored activity grants originated with the U.S. government, which recognized that it is extremely difficult for grantees to accurately proportion an organization’s overhead costs among its various, and often numerous, activities and funded projects. Indirect costs are those costs incurred by an organization that are not readily identifiable with a specific project, program, or activity but are necessary to the general operation of the organization. These are costs of operating the facilities and may include the costs of maintenance, depreciation, general and departmental administration, utilities, janitorial services, purchasing services, research and grants administration, accounting services, and library operations, etc.”

      Indirect costs are costs associated with providing and maintaining the infrastructure of the University. Indirect costs are sometimes called facilities and administrative (F&A) or overhead costs. Indirect costs are not readily identifiable or specifically attributed to an individual project. Examples include utility costs, depreciation of buildings and equipment, operations and maintenance, grant and contract administration, and utilization of classroom or lab space to name a few. UVU’s federally negotiated indirect cost rate must be calculated into the budget on all federal grants. Grants from the State of Utah, local government, and most private or corporate foundations also have an associated indirect rate which are usually different from the federal negotiated rate and must be used if allowable. Please contact the OSP to identify the applicable indirect rate for your specific project. This rate is non-negotiable unless otherwise restricted by the grant guidelines.

    5. Budget Elements – Cost Share, Match, and Leverage

      Cost share, match, and leverage refer to the costs of a project not borne by the sponsor or granting organization. Cost share/ match/leverage includes the portion of the total project cost which the University is required to expend in order to meet the terms and conditions of the sponsored project. The sponsor will list its cost share/match/leverage requirements in the solicitation. Voluntary cost share or match will not be approved by the UVU OSP or Budget Office.The Grant Proposal Submission Routing Formrequires you to explain and receive administrative permission for any cost sharing and use of institutional resources required toward a grant project. Please note the following definitions:

      Cost Share: is the financial contribution of the university toward the project, which could be either cash or in-kind as specified by the sponsor. Cost share can include salary, fringe benefits, supplies, equipment purchases.
      Match: is a type of cost-share wherein the sponsor requires the University to share in the cost of the project dollar for dollar.
      In-Kind Contributions: is the verifiable value of contributed goods and services (other than cash) to the project, generally from sources outside the University (non-government). The method of valuing in-kind services and the eligibility of specific in-kind services varies by funding program.
      Leverage: is the value of other resources the university brings directly to bear for the success of the project such as the use of existing student services, data systems, facilities or other resources internal or external to UVU that multiply the outcome of the project without incurring direct costs to the program. If required or expected by the sponsor, leverage may be allowed to be described in the proposal narrative if the dollar amount is not specified and if the leverage is not discussed as a part of the budget.

      Note: Whenever the University agrees to provide cost share on a project, the University incurs financial obligations during the term of the project. Often these costs can be significant. Cost share can also have a long-term and extensive negative impact on University reimbursements for sponsored projects even after the project is over. Thus, the University prohibits including voluntary cost share on projects and allows cost share only when it is a required criterion from the sponsor.

      DO NOT include cost-sharing amounts in the budget, the budget narrative, or any other part of the proposal unless required by the sponsor and approved by the OSP. If cost-sharing funds are included in the proposal budget and the proposal is awarded, they are considered mandatory and the institution is accountable under audit for the provision of these funds.

  1. Meet with an OSP Program Director

    Meet with an OSP Program Director on the budget, project timeframe, and OSP involvement. The type of funding organization you intend to apply to will determine which OSP Program Director you will work with to help prepare your entire application. For federal or state applications, please contact theDirector of Sponsored Research. For all non-federal, private or foundation organizations, please contact theDirector of Contracts and Foundation Grants. The Program Director will:

    • Provide guidance on registering in online submission programs such as Research.gov, FastLane, or in accessing Grants.gov applications required for federal grant submissions.
    • Review your preliminary budget and make suggestions for completing the final budget and budget narrative.
    • Provide technical information needed to prepare federal grant applications and review with you the application requirements as per the solicitation and agency requirements. (For NSF proposals, the document Components of an NSF Grant Submission File will be useful).

      We strongly recommend that you create a checklist with all the required elements of your proposal as described in the current program announcement, and/or guidelines and regulations (as applicable) and make assignments to your project team for responsible person(s) with specific assigned completion dates.

    • Review the project timeframe and establish deadlines to meet OSP requirements.
    • Connect you with other resources of the OSP.
    • Answer questions you may have about the grant application process.

  1. Coordinate with Partners and Others

    1. Coordinate with partners and request letters, if required or allowed

      You should coordinate early with internal and external partners. These may include faculty at UVU or other institutions, business and industry representatives, offices at UVU that will provide services, community organizations, state agencies, local school districts, or others.

      Some grant programs require partnerships, while many other proposals can be strengthened by them. Partnerships might include business or industry, local school districts, state agencies, non-profit organizations, other institutions of higher education, etc. Partners, however, do not like to be included as an afterthought. True partnerships should involve partners early on in the planning stage. Not only will your project likely benefit from the input of your partners, but also their early participation leads to more lasting commitment. Many agencies and organizations have protocols for formalizing partnerships or require time to obtain buy-in from administration and participants. It will be helpful to give intended partners a copy of your project summary so they can see your intent and share it with others in their organization.

      As evidence of a partnership, proposals often require or allow letters of collaboration, commitment, or support. Occasionally a proposal may require a memorandum of understanding (MOU) which is a more formal document describing the contributions of all partners and signed by all partners. Please see the sectionLetters of Collaboration, Commitment, and Support that describes these documents and explains the general differences among them. As you coordinate with your partners, consider what kinds of letters or documents you will require for the proposal. NSF, for instance, has requires letters with very specific wording. Begin as early as feasible to acquire these documents.

      If your partnership will involve another institution of higher education (even if a single faculty member), their institutional policies will require that their Office of Sponsored Programs, or equivalent, be involved. Their OSP will likely need to help draw up a Statement of Work for a Grant Subcontract (sometimes called a Scope of Work) and approve a budget for their institution’s portion of the project. This process may take three to four weeks. Begin early to allow their personnel time to do their work and address their institution’s protocols.

    2. Locate and work with an external project evaluator, if required

      Some funding programs require you to hire an external project evaluator to formally assess the outcomes of a project, especially if the project is a program that might serve as a model for other institutions of higher education. In these cases, they expect that an evaluator will work with the PI to design a program that can be evaluated effectively. Other projects would benefit from the assistance of an external evaluator even when not required. Effective use of an external evaluator requires their participation during the planning phase, not as an afterthought. Generally, proposal reviewers can tell if a project has been designed with the assistance of an experienced evaluator or not. Several options are available for external project evaluation:

      • Academician with Evaluation Experience – evaluators can be persons with academic experience in the field of the project who have previously managed similar projects or served as reviewers of peer-reviewed research publications. These might be UVU faculty, retired UVU faculty, or others completely external to the institution. PIs and PDs should be cautious not to appoint friends or colleagues to this position. Usually evaluators in this group volunteer their time to assist with planning the evaluation; but again, the budget should include money for the project evaluation.
      • Professional Evaluator or Evaluation Group – professional evaluators (individuals or groups) with experience specific to certain type of programs are sometimes required to be hired. This is particularly true for grants from the U.S. Department of Labor and some programs funded by the U.S. Department of Education. In these cases, the budget is expected to direct a substantial proportion of project funds to the evaluation. Recommendations for evaluators may be obtained through professional organizations associated with specific programs, or through other funded grants programs on campus. Many professional evaluators are willing to assist with grant preparation in the hopes that a grant will be awarded and they will, in turn, be awarded the contract. Note, however, that UVU procurement and state expenditure policy prohibit proposers from initiating a bid process for a contractor costing over $5,000 until after an award is received.

    3. Request data research from Institutional Research (IR), if needed

      UVU’s Office of Institutional Research has a plethora of institutional information available for proposal preparations, including the annual Fact Books, interactive dashboards with enrollment and completion data, and specialized surveys of UVU students, etc. If the information you require for your proposal is not available on theIR website, you may need to request customized data from IR. It could be that the data you require is available within IR, but not publicly available, or the IR staff may need to pull data or conduct research specific to your topic. This process is subject to IR willingness and availability, and may take considerable time. It should be initiated as soon as possible. IR’s website provides information on making a request for data. You may also wish to schedule a visit with a member of the IR staff.

    4. Initiate the compliance review process, if necessary

      UVU expects that professional standards be applied in the conduct of sponsored programs. All persons responsible for designing, conducting, or reporting on sponsored programs and related activities in the course of their work at UVU are governed by UVU compliance policies. These include policies concerning the disclosure and mitigation of conflicts of interest, and the ethical treatment of human subjects among others.

      Compliance issues must be considered during the grant proposal preparation process and may take some time to address. These issues are described more fully on theUniversity Compliancewebsite.

      Conflict of Interest – Conflict of interest means any outside activity, commitment, or interest that has the potential to adversely affect, compromise, or be incompatible with the obligations of an employee to the University or to widely recognized professional norms. It includes, but is not limited to, situations where the designated University official reasonably determines that a significant financial or other interest could directly and significantly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of research technical or financial activities. In some cases, external activities of faculty and staff, such as consulting, outside employment, public service, pro bono work, or serving as an officer of an external entity, even without compensation, can result in real or perceived conflicts of interest.

      Federal and State of Utah regulations require the University to oversee any project that has a conflict of interest and to obtain approval from the office of University Compliance to ensure that a managed conflict is in the public’s best interest. The existence of a potential or actual conflict does not necessarily preclude funding or implementation of a project, it merely states that the College and the individual with the conflict will work together to modify, reduce, or eliminate the conflict if it has a strong potential for negatively impacting the employee’s position or research activities on campus.

      If you or any of the members of your project team have a conflict of interest or a potential conflict of interest, you are required to disclose this by completing theConflict of Interest Disclosure Statement. You will most likely be directed to complete a Conflict of Interest Management Plan with your supervisor and the General Counsel Office. This management plan will need to be submitted to OSP prior to proposal submission as evidence that the issue has been resolved.

      Human Subjects / Institutional Review Board (IRB) – All research involving human subjects carried out by faculty, staff, or students of UVU is under the review and approval jurisdiction of the University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). Human subjects research includes surveys, clinical studies, basic research, chart reviews, learning skills assessments, etc. Specific IRB paperwork must be submitted to the IRB office before research can be approved, and approval must be obtained before the actual research (data collection) can begin. Unless the research project is deemed exempt, all researchers on a project team are required to completeIRB Training online training.

      Some agencies, such as NSF, are now requiring that the approval process be completed before the proposal is submitted. This process requires taking IRB online training, completing an IRB application, addressing any concerns of the IRB, and receiving a letter from the IRB, all of which may take up to a month to complete. Begin on the IRB websiteto initiate this process.

      Animal Care and Use (IACUC) – Every institution that uses animals for federally funded laboratory research must have an Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). Each local IACUC reviews research protocols and conducts evaluations of the institution's animal care and use, which includes the results of inspections of facilities that are required by law. UVU’s IACUC oversees the institution’s animal programs, animal facilities, and policies ensuring appropriate care, ethical use and humane treatment of animals. Most research involving laboratory animals is funded by the United States National Institutes of Health or, to lesser extents, other federal agencies. If your research involves animals, please initiate theIACUC reviewprocess.

      Export Control – U.S. Export control regulations restrict the use of, and access to, certain sensitive or controlled technical information, materials, and technology for reasons of national security or trade protection. If you are partnering or collaborating with a foreign company, will be shipping to a foreign country, will be traveling to a sanctioned or embargoed country, performing research involving foreign national students, or any similar activities, you should read theExport Controlresources, take a short online training presentation, and complete the required forms as necessary. Assistance with other research compliance issues, such as animal care and use and the management and protection of intellectual property can also be found at the above site.

      Environmental Health and Safety – As part of a research proposal, funding agencies may require researchers to provide information related to environmental health and safety (EHS). Typically, these requirements come from sponsors such as the Department of Energy (DOE), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Department of the Interior (DOI). Each agency’s forms are unique, but the questions they ask may relate to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance findings, citations by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA), waste or pollution that will be generated by the project, or potential use of land, water or air resources and their impact. UVU’s Office of Sponsored Programs assists researchers in completing and certifying the information on such forms. The Director of Sponsored Programs should be contacted as early as possible by researchers who are preparing a proposal to allow time to gather the necessary information.

      Intellectual Property – By UVU policy, the University encourages the development of inventions and other intellectual creations for the best interest of the public, creator, and research sponsor. UVU’s Intellectual Property policy is intended to protect the respective interests of all concerned by ensuring that the benefits of such property accrue to the public, inventor, University, and to sponsors of specific research with appropriate degrees of protection, remuneration, return, and recognition. You should notify OSP whenever you believe your proposed project will develop intellectual property. The Director of Sponsored Programs will assist you in safeguarding intellectual property, both in the proposal and during the award period.