University of Southern California


Steps for a PI to Submit a Proposal

  1. Identify funding opportunity by following solicitations on www.grants.govCommunity of Science, or other sources.

  2. Notify the research administrator in your school, department or center. Tell him/her: (1) solicitation you intend to apply to, (2) funding source, (3) due date, (4) who will work on the proposal, (5) your budget parameters, (6) period of performance and (7) any requirements for regulatory review. (If your solicitation limits the number of proposals that can be submitted from USC, also contact the Office of Research to request permission to submit your proposal.)

  3. If applying to a Health and Human Service (HHS) agency (such as NIH, AHRQ or CDC), make sure that you have a current financial disclosure submitted through diSClose(annual disclosure is required). In addition make sure that your conflict of interest training is current (must be within four years). These are required to submit a proposal to HHS.

  4. Write your proposal, trying to finish a first draft at least several weeks in advance of the due date. Give your draft to others for review; edit and revise.

  5. Simultaneously, your research administrator should prepare your budget, enter information onto a Proposal Approval Record (PAR) or into the Pre-Award Research Information System (PARiS), and collect supplementary proposal materials required by the solicitation or guidelines. (If your proposal includes multiple investigators, and you are the Primary Contact PI, ask your research administrator to take the lead in developing a master budget and collecting satellite budgets from other investigators.)

  6. Your research administrator should route the proposal for any needed approvalsonce you have completed your initial draft and the budget is finished (at least one week in advance of due date).

  7. Your research administrator should submit your complete proposal to DCG,accompanied by a signed PAR or PARiS approvals, at least three business days in advance of the proposal due date.

  8. DCG will review the proposal, check for errors and work with you or your research administrator to make corrections. DCG will submit the proposal to the sponsor once corrections are made and you indicate the proposal is complete and ready for submission.

  9. DCG will provide confirmationto you and your research administrator when the proposal has been received by the sponsoring agency, for digital submissions.

  10. To expedite proposal awards, submit protocols for regulatory review(e.g., IRB or IACUC) during the period in which proposals are under sponsor review. Awards often cannot be made until regulatory reviews are complete.

Checklist for Submitting a Proposal to DCG

Additional Items Needed If Applicable to the Proposal