Preparing Proposals for Research Grants and Funding

Guidelines from the Office of University Grants and Sponsored Research for faculty preparing proposals for research grants or subcontracts.

Proposals for funding that will be administered by the University (funds are paid to and disbursed by Colgate), must be reviewed and approved before being submitted to the funding agency.

Colgate faculty preparing a new proposal: Please contact us at the email addresses listed below to coordinate the Grant Application Approval Process. We have developed an electronic process that is managed from the Grants office.

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Download the yellow Grant Application Approval sheet, and fill it out in as much detail as possible.
  2. Email the PDF to
  3. Grants office staff will work with you to complete the form and distribute for signatures via DocuSign to the following when appropriate: (Note: The signature indicates acknowledgement of the proposal for purposes of submission, but is not to be considered formal approval. The PI/PD is responsible for understanding and ensuring compliance with all institutional policies and procedures, and with funding agency terms and conditions if an award is made.)
    • Associate VP for Human Resources — for projects including new positions
    • Institutional Review Board — for projects requiring the use of human subjects
    • Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee— for projects requiring the use of laboratory animals
    • Chemical Hygiene/Biosafety Officer — for projects requiring the use of hazardous substances
    • Radiation Safety Officer — for projects requiring the use of radioactive substances
  4. For government grants, include the following additional forms when circulating proposals:
  5. Obtain signatures of:
    • Department chair
    • Division director
    • Associate provost
    • Provost and dean of the faculty
    • At least five business days before your submission date, take proposal to the Grants Office (G6 James B. Colgate Hall) for review by the director of University Grants and Sponsored Research, assistant controller, and controller. The Grants Office will proofread your proposal, check the budget, and obtain the remaining signatures. We will contact you when approval is complete and let you know if additional information or corrections are needed before the proposal is submitted.
    Learn more about grant application approvals
  6. For electronic submissions, complete or upload the proposal and budget according to the agency's guidelines. If required, the Grants Office will complete the electronic submission when approvals are complete and the faculty member confirms that the proposal is ready to submit.
  7. For hard-copy submissions, send copies of the final proposal to the Dean/Provost and the Grants Office.

Submitting Federal Proposals

Legal name: Colgate University

County: Madison

Zip code + 4: 13346-1398

Employer Identification # (EIN): 150532078

Unique Entity Identifier (UEI): D4P7H8NWZER7

Organizational DUNS: 002253615

Congressional District: NY-022

OLAW Assurance Number: D23-01180

NSF proposals are submitted via and require one-time registration of principal investigators / project directors and affiliation with Colgate by the Grants Office.

NIH proposals are submitted via and require one-time registration for the project director / principal investigator in eRA Commons, through Colgate's Grants Office.

For NEH fellowships and summer stipends, individual applicants must register with We recommend that faculty allow plenty of time to complete the registration. Contact University Grants and Sponsored Research if you need assistance.

Tips for Facilitating Approval

Contact University Grants and Sponsored Research to let us know your plans and your deadline. We function as the pre-award Sponsored Research Office (SRO) and can:

  • Advise on proposal preparation
  • Interpret agency guidelines
  • Assist with required documents and letters of support

Follow Colgate's guidelines for preparing proposal budgets.

Send a draft budget to the Grants Office for review well in advance of the deadline. Nearly all delays in the final routing of proposals are due to budget errors.

Make appointments with the necessary individuals early in the process. Consider:

  • Division director
  • Associate provost
  • Dean or associate dean of the faculty

At these meetings you may discuss aspects of the project that involve university funds or space, such as

  • Cost-sharing
  • Release time
  • Equipment needs
  • Hiring personnel
  • Construction or renovation of facilities
  • Needs for space

Proposals that include any new positions – temporary or permanent, full- or part-time – require additional approvals by Human Resources and the VP for Finance and Administration. Consult with the Grants Office early in the process if you plan to include new personnel.

Allow sufficient time to circulate the proposal and obtain signatures on the yellow Grant Application Approval Cover Sheet (PDF).

The Grants Office will obtain the signature of Colgate's Authorized Organizational Representative: Thomas A. O'Neill, associate vice president and controller.