If you are considering submitting a research grant application, there are some secrets to success that you should know. First, make sure that your proposal is well organized and that all the required information is included. Second, be sure to tailor your proposal to the specific funding opportunity that you are applying to. Third, be prepared to provide documentation of your research project and explain how it will benefit society. Fourth, be succinct in your writing and make sure that your proposal is easy to read.
As academics, we are rarely at a shortage of ideas for research topics within our disciplines, but having the money to execute the research of those ideas – that’s a different story.
Research funding generally comes from one of three sources: corporations, government, or charitable organizations. According to an article in Science, referencing data from the National Science Foundation (NSF), federal agencies provided for only 44% of research funding in 2015 representing a significant decline from over 70% less than half a century earlier.
Throughout my journey as a grant writer, reviewer, and mentor to aspiring grant writers, I have had multiple opportunities to read grant proposals that received funding—and many more that did not. One question I often get from novice grant writers is: “How do I get my proposal funded?” To address this question, it is helpful to examine strategies that successful grant writers have in common. Here, I highlight seven basic strategies that I consider “musts” when it comes to preparing grant proposals.
Three new templates have been added to TAA’s Templates & Samples Resource Library – a grant requirements matrix template and writing collaboration planning and progress templates.
The grant requirements matrix template was contributed by Erin Comeaux, a grants coordinator with Pasadena ISD, and Jennifer Travis, a professor of mathematics at Lone Star College-North Harris, who use it to keep track of each grant requirement, as well as the solicition/RFP page number or URL, paragraph number or URL, and who is responsible for drafting each requirement, to make sure all the grant’s instructions are being followed.
A grant is a great tool to help you build or enhance your project or program, said Erin Comeaux (the pro), formerly a professional grant writer for Lone Star College System, and now a grants coordinator for Pasadena Independent School District in Pasadena, Texas, and Jennifer Travis (the rookie), a professor of mathematics at Lone Star College-North Harris, during their presentation at the 2016 Conference in San Antonio in June. The two recently partnered to write Travis’ first grant proposal.
TAA offers two forms of grants to assist members and non-members with some of the expenses related to publishing their academic works and textbooks. Publication Grants provide reimbursement for eligible expenses directly related to bringing an academic book, textbook, or journal article to publication. Contract Review Grants reimburse eligible expenses for legal review when you have a contract offer for a textbook or academic monograph or other scholarly work that includes royalty arrangements. The deadline for submitting a grant application is October 31 (grants are awarded December 31). Visit the TAA Grants page for more information or to apply.