1. Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP)

The Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) is the office authorized to submit proposals on behalf of the University for sponsored programs. It helps faculty obtain external funding from government agencies, private industries, and private foundations to support their creative and scholarly activities. Numerous resources and guides are available at: https://www.research.psu.edu/.

2. College Grants and Contacts Office (Grants Office)

The College Grants and Contracts Office has responsibility for processing proposals for external funding agencies through the College and appropriate University channels. In addition, if we are a subcontractor, the proposal and budget also needs to be submitted through university channels.

3. Getting Started

The Principal Investigator (PI) should contact the Grants Office early in the process to discuss intent to submit a proposal and to prepare the initial budget. If the proposal is in response to a program announcement or RFP, a copy or the web address should be provided.

4. Budget

The PI should meet with the Grants Office at least 10 working days prior to the deadline to develop the budget in accordance with sponsor and university guidelines and policies. The budget needs to be clear and realistic and be reflective of the scope of work being proposed. Some items to consider when developing a budget are indicated below.

Estimated Start Date; length of project
Personnel needs:
Salaries - identify by name, percent of effort or number of days/year
Wages - hourly rate and number of hours per year
Equipment items $5,000 and greater - must be identified by item
Materials and Supplies
Communications (telephone, postage, fax, etc.)
Photocopying and Printing
Purchased Services
Rental Costs (facilities, equipment, etc.)
Other (identify)

5. Clearance Data Form (CDF)

This is an internal review form used in order to facilitate proposal administrative reviews and summarizes key administrative and fiscal information about the project. The CDF is prepared by the Grants Office at the time the budget is developed. The PI(s) need to complete the Assignment of Credit page of the CDF.

The CDF requires signatures of the PI(s) and Department Head(s). It is the responsibility of the PI to obtain these signatures. Faxed signatures are acceptable. Signatures of the authorized officials for the College and the University are also required and will be obtained by the Grants Office after all other signatures have been obtained by the PI. All signatures are required prior to submittal of the proposal.

6. Proposal Development

The proposal should be in the format indicated by the program announcement/guidelines. Read the proposal guidelines and instructions. Pay attention to the page limitations, margins, font sizes, section breaks. Print out proposal and review page breaks, number of pages, margins.

7. Submittal of Complete Proposal to College Grants and Contracts Office

One original (with blue ink signatures) of the complete proposal (cover page, table of contents, narrative, budget, vitae, attachments, etc.) must be received by the Grants Office at least 4 working days prior to deadline for submission of proposal. The signed CDF and completed College Checklist also need to accompany this proposal. If colored pages are being submitted, these pages also need to be provided by the PI. If the proposal is submitted electronically, the signed CDF and a hard copy of the proposal must be received in the Grants Office prior to the release of the proposal for electronic submission.

After review of the proposal for compliance with sponsor and university guidelines, the proposal will be submitted, on behalf of the University, by the Grants Office or Office of Sponsored Programs.