Preparing Your Application
The preparation of any sponsored research proposal requires both following the requirements of the sponsoring agency as well as the requirements of the University. Sponsor requirements vary from sponsor to sponsor, and therefore becoming familiar with, and strictly adhering to, the application instructions of the sponsor in question is essential to preparing a successful research proposal. In order to fulfill the University’s requirements, all Principal Investigators must utilize the RAMSeS electronic proposal routing system for all grants and contracts to external funding agencies. By using their University username and password, the Principal Investigator can log in to RAMSeS and click on “Start New Proposal” to begin filling out the necessary information for, and uploading the pertinent attachments of, the proposal. All of the information entered into RAMSeS will be used by different administrative departments to review, evaluate, revise and approve the proposal on behalf of the University. As the information is entered into the system and routed prior to the submission deadline of the sponsor, the Principal Investigator should allow for enough time for the following stages of preparation and routing to be completed:
- The Principal Investigator represents the first stage of this process. They will (with assistance from research administrative departments as requested) fill out the technical and fiscal information required to complete a RAMSeS proposal.
- The Departmental Administrators prior to the RAMSeS and sponsor submission provide expertise and assistance to the Principal Investigator in preparing a proposal’s budget and reviewing the funding agency’s guidelines for any special terms and conditions to ensure that the proposal is both accurate and processed in a timely manner.
- The Department Head of the Principal Investigator is consulted to authorize the availability and use of space and personnel and secures. Any research involving human subjects, animal subjects, or hazardous substances, will require the approval of the relevant committees, which should be obtained prior to submission to the Dean for approval. If the proposed project involves investigators from multiple departments/units, the department of the Lead Principal Investigator is selected to administer the award, but each department/unit must still provide approval for the use of space, personnel, and/or equipment to be used on the project.
- The Dean of the administering department or unit will review the application to confirm that the Principal Investigator is capable and qualified to perform the project, that it is an appropriate activity for the department to pursue, and that the Dean can and will provide any resources identified as necessary for the project. When applicable, these resources could include cost sharing and the responsibility for reimbursement of costs to the University, so that research expenses will be covered should the sponsor be unable to pay the University during the period of performance of the project.
- The Office of Sponsored Programs is the final stop for proposal preparation. After being reviewed by the Departmental Research Administrator, Department Head, and Dean, OSP will evaluate all proposals, awards, agreements, or contracts prior to submission to the sponsor in order to ensure that all commitments that were made in the proposal can be honored, and verify the accuracy and completion of the information and requirements. All applications are reviewed and evaluated for compliance with University policies, agency guidelines, and federal regulations when they are applicable. OSP works with other previously mentioned departments throughout the process in order to ensure the accurate completion of the research application. Under the authority of the Vice Chancellor for Research, OSP has signatory authority to enter into legal commitments for the University for all proposals, grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts associated with research and training activities.