During the proposal submission process, you will work closely with the Office of Sponsored Programs to ensure that all of the funder’s and the University’s requirements for grant submission are met. Some of the steps described below may be in progress simultaneously, and the order of steps may need to be adjusted for some proposals, but your OSP Officer will help you determine when adjustments are necessary. This process should begin at least five working days in advance of the grant submission deadline, and for complex submissions, it should begin earlier.

  1. OSP Review

    The Office of Sponsored Programs is required to review and approve all proposals before they are submitted for external funding. The two components of this review process are the budget review and the proposal review. To facilitate these processes, you should submit your completed proposal to OSP at least five working days before the grant submission deadline. Please submit federal and state proposals to the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research and foundation proposals and contract bids to the OSP Program Director of Contracts and Foundation Grants.

    1. OSP Administrative Budget Review and Approval

      Your budget will be reviewed by the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research or the OSP Program Director of Contracts and Foundation Grants to ensure that it is accurate and that it meets the federal OMB, UVU, and sponsor’s requirements. Please give the OSP Officer a copy of these requirements when you submit your budget.

      The budget should include any Cost Share, Match, and Leverage required by the solicitation. As defined in UVU Policy 139 and explained previously, cost sharing and other forms of institutional contributions are only allowed if required by the sponsor and approved by UVU. This approval includes the department or unit head responsible for the budget, the dean, the Vice President of Planning, Budget, and Human Resources, and the respective vice president or their designee, prior to submission of a proposal to a potential sponsor. These signatures are part of the Grant Proposal Submission Approval Routing Form (GPSR). These administrators will not approve a cost share unless it has first been reviewed by OSP.

    2. OSP Proposal Review

      Your proposal will be reviewed by an appropriate member of the OSP staff to see that the application guidelines and requirements have been met, that it complies with University policies, and to ensure a high quality of proposal submissions on behalf of the University. The review may take several days. Please give the reviewer a copy of the proposal requirements when you convey your proposal. The proposal should be in Word format rather than PDF format to facilitate the review.

  1. Compliance Review and Approval

    Issues requiring compliance review and approval before a proposal is submitted are discussed under Step 3 and are listed in the table below. Each have requirements that must be met before a proposal is submitted. If there is a compliance review issue for a proposal you are submitting, please submit the required documentation to OSP at the time you submit the GPSR. You should anticipate that some of those signing the GPSR, particularly chairs and deans, may also require to see this documentation before signing.

    1. Conflict of Interest

      If you have a conflict of interest, you should submit a Conflict of Interest Management Plan to OSP before proposal submission as evidence that the conflict has been handled appropriately.


    2. Human Subjects in Research

      If you are proposing research that involves human subjects, your proposal should include the IRB approval letter, IRB exemption letter, or indication that such is in progress.


    3. Animal Care and Use

      If you are proposing research that involves animals, your proposal should include the IACUC approval letter, exemption letter, or indication that such is in progress.

      See: https://www.uvu.edu/compliance/research_compliance.html

    4. Export Controls

      If you are proposing a project that requires export controls, you will need to submit an approval letter or exemption letter from UVU’s Chief International Officer to OSP before your proposal can be submitted.

      See: https://www.uvu.edu/compliance/research_compliance.html

    5. Environmental Health & Safety

      If your proposed project will have environmental health and safety issues you will need to obtain written approval from the Director of Sponsored Programs before you submit the proposal. Grant-specific forms may be required.

    6. Intellectual Property

      If your proposal contains intellectual property that must be protected, you must obtain written approval from the Director of Sponsored Programs before you submit the proposal. Some funding agencies have other specific requirements that will be described in the solicitation.

      See: https://www.uvu.edu/compliance/research_compliance.html

  1. Routing for Final Approval

    1. Complete the OSP Grant Proposal Submission Routing (GPSR) Form

      The Grant Proposal Submission Approval Routing Form (GPSR) is an internal document that gives final institutional approval for a proposal to be submitted by OSP. The GPSR requires more detailed information than the NOI in preparation for submission. It requires, for instance:

      • Identifying information about the funding agency and proposal to facilitate submission.
      • The time and effort of the key project personnel and their signatures.
      • A list of resources to be provided by the University, a complete budget, and an indication of any planned cost sharing.
      • Administrative signatures approving the proposal and the planned use of institutional resources (generally the department chair and the dean; see below).
      • PI assurance that the proposal is original work (is not plagiarized), that the information in the proposal is true and accurate, and that the PI accepts responsibility for the project if funded.

    2. Obtain Administrative Signatures on the GPSR Form

      1. Signatures of senior project personnel – the PI and any Co-PIs
      2. Impacted departments and colleges – Generally, the PI’s department chair and dean should sign the GPSR form in addition to the chairs and deans of any UVU Co-PIs or collaborators on the project. The PI is responsible for obtaining these signatures.

      Sometimes the signatures of Vice Presidents or other administrators must be obtained, depending on the requirements of the proposal and the PI’s role at the University. The OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research will help determine which signatures are required and who will obtain the signatures. (Note that the GPSR form may include places for more signatures than are required for your proposal.)

      You should present any signing administrator with all the information s/he will need to make an informed decision about approving the proposal. This may include a project summary, a full proposal, a full budget, and/or a list of facilities, resources, personnel being contributed by the institution, written resolution of any compliance issues, and possibly a memorandum explaining these issues.

      1. Chief Financial Officer – If there is matching in the amount of $10,000 or more, or if the budget amount is over $100,000, a signature is required from the Vice President of Planning and Human Resources. The OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research will seek this signature after reviewing and approving the budget and after the appropriate Dean(s) or Vice President(s) has reviewed and approved by signing the GPSR.
      2. UVU Authorized Official – After all other signatures have been obtained and the GPSR form has been submitted to your OSP Officer, that Officer will submit the GPSR form to the Senior Director of Sponsored Programs (the Authorized Signatory for all sponsored programs) for final approval.

      Before an agreement can be enforced, it must be signed by a person delegated by policy with specific statutory authority to sign on behalf of the University. Only a limited number of individuals/positions are designated by Policy 247 to execute legally binding agreements on behalf of the University. For sponsored program grants and contracts, this authority has been delegated to the Senior Director of Sponsored Programs.

      Please note that a sponsored program grant or contract is a written agreement or other formal instrument where there is mutual agreement to terms that bind the University to any legal obligation related to funding or resources from an external source to UVU. A contract may be in the form of an agreement, proposal, statement, notice, resolution, letter, memorandum of understanding (MOU), memorandum of agreement (MOA), grant, cooperative agreement, amendment to an agreement, etc.

      Principal Investigators, Department Chairs, Deans, or other University employees should never sign or submit a sponsored program agreement or award. If a sponsored program proposal or award is NOT signed by the Senior Director of OSP or an authorized individual designated by Policy 247, the contract or grant is void and unenforceable against the University. Unauthorized employees signing sponsored program grants, contracts or other written agreements may be personally liable for any resulting liability or obligation and may also be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

      Please note: Occasionally, a funder will request that the President be the signature authority on a submitted proposal. The President will not sign until OSP has reviewed and approved the proposal. This process will require at least 10 business days.

    3. Obtain Administrative Signatures on Letters of Support

      Some proposals require letters of support or collaboration from University administrators (see Letters of Collaboration, Commitment, and Support). These are separate documents that will be submitted as part of the proposal, but the PI may choose to obtain signatures on such letters at the same time the GPSR is signed. These letters should be printed on UVU letterhead and scanned as a PDF file. The PI should retain the original copy of the letter in his or her files.

      Occasionally, a letter or document with the President’s signature is required by the funding agency or is necessary for the success of the project, such as multi-institutional grants. The Program Director of Sponsored Research will advise when this is necessary and will be responsible for obtaining the President’s signature. The President will not sign without OSP review and the prior signatures of other appropriate administrators. Please allow the required time of 10 business days for a Presidential signature.

  1. Proposal Submission

    1. Work with the Authorized OSP Officer to Complete the Grant Submission Documents

      Most proposals submitted to the federal government are submitted through Grants.gov or FastLane (NSF). These organizations have their own submission workspaces and processes. Grants to state organizations and foundations have varied formats from simple email to online forms (see Understand the required submission process). (internal link) You should work with the appropriate OSP Officer to complete whatever grant submission documents are required. You should also convey to this officer any special requirements for submission as stipulated by the funder. It will be useful for you to create a written list of required forms and documents for a submission to serve as a checklist.

    2. The Authorized Institutional Officer within OSP Will Submit the Proposal

      The completed, approved proposal will be submitted by an authorized OSP Officer, generally by the OSP Program Director of Sponsored Research or by the OSP Program Director of Contracts and Foundation Grants.

      Please note: A PI, Department Chair, Dean, or other UVU employee should never sign or submit a sponsored programs proposal, contract or grant on behalf of the University. This policy does not preclude PIs, Department Chairs, Deans, and other individuals from signing internal processing documents. However, to legally bind the University, the OSP Senior Director must sign sponsored program proposals, contracts, and grants on behalf of the University before they are submitted to any funding agency.

      Key reasons behind the policies relating to signature authority and submission include:

      • Protecting UVU and individual University employees from legal liabilities.
      • Maintaining UVU compliance with internal, Board of Regents, state, federal, and private contract regulations and requirements while performing program activities inherent in sponsored programs.

      Any Principal Investigator/Project Director or other unauthorized University employee who signs a grant proposal, contract or agreement that s/he is not authorized to sign is acting outside the scope of his/her employment and may be personally liable for any resulting liability or obligation, and may be subject to disciplinary action, including termination of employment.

  1. Revise and Resubmit Your Proposal if Needed

    Many proposals that are not funded on their first submission are funded on subsequent submissions. Here are some suggestions that may help you to get finding if your submission is unsuccessful:

    • Now that you have done the work to complete a full proposal, make full use of that proposal by submitting to other agencies or funders as appropriate. This may take some revision of the proposal to fit the new agency, but may be well worth the effort. (While you cannot send the same proposal to different programs within the same agency, you can adapt the proposal to fit other programs within an agency.)
    • Some funding agencies return reviewer’s comments to PIs/PDs of unfunded projects. Review these comments carefully and consider how these concerns can be addressed in your next submission. Work to refine both your project and the written proposal to make them more fundable.
    • Keep a calendar of upcoming submission deadlines so that you can begin the resubmission process well in advance.
    • Review your proposal again after some months with a fresh eye. You will see things you overlooked the first time. Review the solicitation and consider how your proposal might have better addressed each requirement.
    • Have your unsuccessful proposal reviewed by an experienced reviewer.
    • Speak with a program officer or other person knowledgeable about a funding source to which you are applying to see if your project really is a good fit for that funder and/or to determine an approach that would be more effective.
    • Break the project into stages or separate components and seek funding for these.
    • Don’t give up. It often takes several attempts to get funding for a project.