Proposal Preparation

There are many "Resources Supporting Research @ Western." In addition to this information, key elements of a well-written funding application include:

Know what kind of funding you are applying for?

Ensure your funding proposal:

  • speaks to the "flavour" of the sponsor, and the mandates of their funding purpose;
  • strictly adheres to the content and format guidelines of the sponsor, keeping within the indicated format;
  • answers all of the review criteria indicated in the guidelines; and
  • has a budget that aligns with the sponsors guidelines with respect to content and detail.

Ensure your funding proposal "reads well"

Make sure your funding proposal:

  • is well organized and is easy to follow. Don't make reviewers guess;
  • follows outlines provided within the guidelines for information to be easily followed;
  • includes some white space for ease of review;
  • includes, titles, consistent page numbers, headers and footers as defined in the guidelines;
  • uses visual materials effectively and for appropriate reasons; and
  • has been proofread by several individuals to avoid spelling, grammatical and detail-based errors that can otherwise be easily avoided.

Know who will review your request

Ensure your funding proposal:

  • is written with the audience in mind (will the reviewers be discipline specific or multi disciplinary?);
  • is written in a style that is concise, informative, and persuasive, is free of disciplinary
  • jargon and clearly indicates that you are capable of completing the proposed research.

Ensure that your funding proposal "answers the question"

Make sure your funding proposal:

  • clearly states the goals and objectives of the proposed research at the outset. Don't make them "find" the information they want to know;
  • indicates the reason this research is important, what will be solved by the proposed project and answers the question: "So what?"
  • responds to previous review statements in a professional and positive manner. Declaring your dissatisfaction with the review committee may feel good at the time; however, you may experience an expensive result to venting your frustration;
  • indicates the project's hypotheses rest on sufficient evidence and are conceptually sound;
  • clearly shows the ability of the individual(s) involved and that the project can be completed in the timeline indicated;
  • describes the work, who will do it, who will benefit, what methods and which facilities will be used, and includes a timeline for the project; and
  • has a budget sufficient to support the application, includes all major elements or indicates how budget elements not included in the funding request will be covered.

The Art of Grantsmanship is a great resource document that describes the proposal preparation process extremely well. If you still have questions, please feel free to contact us directly.