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Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP)

Prepare Proposal

Proposal Application Package

Before beginning your application, carefully read the Request for Application / Proposal or Program Announcement / solicitation. Use any sponsor-provided templates.

  • eGC1

    The eGC1 is the required internal compliance form that PIs and department can access via SAGE, the System to Administer Grants Electronically. The entire proposal package must be attached to the GC1.

    GIM 1 Section 1 provides guidance regarding the review and approval of proposals (GIM 1, Section 1).

  • F&A Waiver Request doc file format
    A PI (with concurrence of their Chair and Dean) may request a partial or complete waiver of F&A cost recovery when 1) a non-profit, charitable sponsor does not have a published, generally applicable policy regarding payment of F&A costs; and 2) application of GIM13 rates would result in a rare, unavoidable and adverse consequence to the University public mission. No F&A waiver is required for the University to accept a published, generally applicable F&A rate policy of a non-profit, charitable organization. The University does not waive F&A for for-profit entities. Waiver of F&A cost recovery for government entities will be considered but requires demonstration of a clear statutory provision or other official notice from the government agency.
  • Sponsor cover page or letter

    If the sponsor does not specify a particular format for the cover/title page, OSP will provide standard cover and include specific language if necessary.

    See Facts and Rates for institutional numbers, codes, contacts and addresses needed to complete the cover page.

    If the department would like to draft the cover letter, the letter should carry the university letterhead, be drafted and signed by the principal investigator, and be countersigned by an institutional representative, the Office of Sponsored Programs.

  • Budget

    The budget is the financial expression of the scope of work (i.e., science). The two are mapped together by the budget justification section of the application. Sponsors customarily specify how budgets should be presented and what costs are allowable. Note any restrictions that the sponsor indicates in the announcement.

    • OSP Guide to Budget Preparation (GIM 1 Section III)
      Includes guidance regarding salaries, excess compensation to faculty, provision for anticipated salary increases, employee benefits, direct operations costs, cost-sharing, facilities & administrative (indirect) costs, and unexpended balances.
    • Facts & Rates for Grant Applications
      Includes tuition, salary, stiped, rent, and facilities and administrative cost rates.
    • Budget Increases
      Often, proposals need to be submitted with multi-year budgets. OSP's guidance to PIs and departments is to use the current NIH Fiscal Policy for Grant Awards to determine an appropriate inflation and apply it to both salaries and other recurring costs. It is standard to use a 2% rate for federal awards unless a sponsor provides an alternate rate within a policy statement, program announcement or other guidelines for the program. If there is reason to expect a promotion, larger salary increase or other impact that would provide a reason to use a higher rate, and the sponsor does not cap the rate, please provide a justification for use of a higher rate.
    • SAGE Budget
      A comprehensive, easy-to-use, campus-wide budgeting tool that assists users in generating budgets for grants & contracts. Budgets can be imported into the eGC1 budget page and a pdf version with full detail is attached to the eGC1 for reference.
    • eGC1 Cost Sharing Addendum xls file format
      When applicable, this form must be completed and submitted to OSP at the time the application is reviewed. Cost sharing occurs when an application commits allowable expenses (i.e., personnel, tuition, equipment or services) for which the research grant will not be charged.
    • Person Months Conversion Chart pdf file format
    • Cell Phones and Mobile Devices
      The cost of cell phones and other mobile devices such as tablets is normally treated as an F&A cost and not as a direct cost to the project. This includes the cost of cell phone plans or the monthly allowance as described in the university Mobile Device Guidelines

      Per GIM 23, Cell phone costs are allowable on non-federal awards when permitted by the sponsor's policies or are otherwise approved by the sponsor. For federal awards the costs may be allowable if the award meets the exceptional and unlike circumstance exception policy in OMB Circular A-21. There are some exceptions to the basic rule outlined on the GCA Cell Phone and Mobile Device Costs on Grants & Contracts webpage.
    • Person Months Interactive Calculator xls file format
    • NIH Salary Cap
      NIH has announced the new salary cap in its Guide Notice NOT-OD-12-035; however, NIH applications with a detailed budget should continue using the actual institutional base salary of all individuals for whom reimbursements are requested. If the proposal is funded, NIH will adjust the salary to the salary limit in effect at the time of award.
  • Budget Justification

    The justification provides specific details about how the sponsor's funds will be spent.

    At a minimum, the following fields should be addressed, in the order that they appear in the budget: personnel, supplies, equipment, travel, other direct costs, F&A, and subcontracts/consortium (if applicable).

  • Narrative/scope of work/project description

    The narrative must contain specifics including details of experiments and/or applications, both to show that planning has been done and to help reviewers understand why the particular application you propose is better than other ideas. It is critical to respond to all sponsor requests for information about the project.

    For detailed guidance and tips on proposal writing in general, please see the following links under "Proposal Writing."

  • Other Proposal Items

    Depending on sponsor requirements and the nature of your proposal, the following items may be contained within your proposal.

    • Abstract
    • Table of Contents
    • Introduction (including Statement of Problem, Purpose of Research, and Significance of Research)
    • Background (including Literature Survey)
    • Description of Proposed Research (including Method or Approach)
    • Description of Relevant Institutional Resources
    • List of References
    • Personnel Section: an explanation of the proposed personnel arrangements and the biographical data sheets for each of the main contributors to the project.
    • Consultant Letters: All consultant letters of support provided by consultants who are working outside of their university or organization should not use their organization's letterhead.
    • Representations and Certifications
  • Outgoing Subcontracts

    Proposals that contain outgoing subcontracts must have 4 items included for each subcontract. This is documented in GIM 7, Preparing a Proposal that Includes Proposed Subrecipients:

    • Letter of Intent (LOI) or PHS398 Face Page signed by the Authorizing Official of the subcontract institution
    • Scope of Work
    • Budget
    • Budget justification