review

The Final Step to Avoid Grant Rejection

I have received funding for the majority of the grants that I have submitted. One of the main reasons for my success is the pre-review process which, I believe, is a must before proposal submission. This process involves asking three different types of colleagues to provide feedback on your grant. The pre-review steps are: A… read more

fatal

Five Lethal Research Grant Flaws

The success rate for scientific proposals can be as low as 12%. Poor writing, insufficient preliminary data, and a deficient literature review can all contribute to rejection, but are fixable. On the other hand, the five most fatal flaws which follow are very difficult to overcome even with multiple submissions. Lack of significance To help… read more

plug

10 Errors That Will Disqualify Your Grant

Poorly written proposals often contain small issues that could have easily been remedied if one had paid close attention to detail. On the other hand, there are other major errors that can immediately disqualify a proposal from being funded, such as the lack of research depth, a bad idea, weak institutional support, and unqualified personnel…. read more

fail

20 Ways to Fail at Grant Proposal Writing

I have seen numerous proposals fail during my grant reviewing career. The reasons for this vary greatly. Some grantees fail due to a lack of understanding of the purpose of the grant, others due to time constraints. Although the following directions are of course meant ironically, it is not uncommon to see them in practice…. read more

first step

Your First Step: Understanding the Request for Proposal

Before you start writing, you absolutely must thoroughly read and understand the Request for Proposal (RFP). My very first experience with the RFP was so intimidating that I almost did not want to proceed with the submission. However, when I realized that much of it contained boilerplate information about the agency and their legal requirements,… read more

obstacle

Seven Obstacles That Kill Your Proposal

The seven most common issues that I encounter from grantees in my workshops emerge from desperation, a false sense of security, or intellectual doubt. I hear comments such as “I thought I would get it done, but time just flew by,” or “we need the money to survive.” I also frequently take notice of statements… read more

NSF

Why Did My Research Proposal Fail?

The success rate for research proposals submitted to the National Science Foundation (NSF) is in the teens. So why do more than 80% of submissions fail? The reasons vary from poor writing, to not following directions, to a lack of examples. The major cause, however, is that many submissions are not research projects at all. For those that are,… read more

resubmission

Prepare for Rejection

Above All, Don’t Get Discouraged You are not alone. Even seasoned researchers have only a 50 percent chance of winning a grant. If you are new to grant writing, the success rate is much lower. Statistically, new grant writers submit between 2.2 – 3 proposals before being funded. In some cases, the award rate might… read more