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Lynch School of Education

Grant Proposal Process

lynch school of education

Grant Proposal Process

Pre-Award: Submitting a Proposal  
Responsibilities During Proposal Process    
Post-Award: First Steps When a Grant is Awarded   
Spending Grant Funds    
Tuition, Stipends, and Work Studies    
Budget Management
Contact Fiscal Officers   
Administrative Support

Recommended Strategies

Proposal Schedule  
Cost-sharing/Matching Funds 
Graduate Research Assistants  
Indirect Costs (“F&A”) 
Summer Salary 
Human Subjects  

Grant Proposal Process

Pre-Award: Submitting a Proposal

The principal investigator (PI) should meet with the Associate Dean of Faculty and Academic Affairs as soon he/she plans to write a grant proposal.

The Dean’s Office requests a minimum of 5 days to review a completed proposal and the Office for Sponsored Programs (OSP) requires an additional 5 days.

The Associate Dean of Faculty and Academic Affairs will review such items as:

  • Human subjects
  • Buy-outs
  • Space
  • Technology
  • Graduate research assistants
  • Tuition remission
  • Indirect costs
  • Summer salary
  • Cost sharing
  • Matching funds
  • Proposal schedule
  • Departmental support needed (proposal coordination of copies, fed-ex etc.)

OSP can work with the PI to identify a potential funder.

Each faculty member has been assigned either Bill Crowley, Rosemary Brady Panza or Christine Hoage (International Study Center) as their fiscal officer.  See the attached list and contact your fiscal officer as soon as you’ve met with the Associate Dean of Faculty and Academic Affairs to alert them that a proposal is forthcoming. Identify your fiscal officer. It is likely that they will be working on multiple proposals at the same time and will have to schedule accordingly.

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Responsibilities During Proposal Process

The fiscal officer is responsible for:

  • Developing a schedule for proposal submission in conjunction with the PI
  • Notifying OSP of your intention to submit a proposal 
  • Helping PI interface with OSP
  • Preparing the budget for your proposal
  • Identify your fiscal officer

The PI is responsible for:

  • Providing the fiscal officer with the proposal guidelines and RFPs
  • Collecting required documents for the proposal (institutional statement of resources, CVs, background information, etc.)
  • Preparing the narrative
  • Collecting any sub-contract narratives, budgets or related materials
  • Requesting technological assistance for the proposal from your TC if necessary for shared files, server space, etc.
  • Receiving approval from their department chair and their signature on the transmittal form

OSP is responsible for:

  • Institutional certificates
  • Reviewing proposal to insure all submission requirements are met and proposal documentation has been provided by the PI
  • Final sign-off of proposal

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Post-Award: First Steps When Grant is Awarded

Some agencies notify the PIs directly and some agencies notify OSP.

The PI should alert their fiscal officer as soon as they have been notified about an award. The fiscal officer will contact OSP.

OSP will then initiate the following:

  • Send an official notification to the PI with a preliminary budget and project number with copies to the Dean’s office and  the fiscal officers.
  • Send the PI an authorized signature form.  In order to access your account, this form must be completed and signed. PIs should sign and bring to your fiscal officer. The fiscal officer will discuss with you who needs to be authorized to work on your account.

Terry Poillucci, Mary Howard or Marcie Bligh will collect the necessary signatures for the authorized signature form and submit to OSP.

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Spending Grant Funds

The department support staff will process, as needed:

  • Expense reimbursements for faculty & grant personnel in their department
  • Travel for faculty & grant personnel in their department

The administrative officer will:

  • Approve expense and travel reports
  • Process requests for equipment & consultants
  • Work with the business officer on issues of space, technology and network services
  • Maintain procurement cards when applicable for a grant
  • Process research hires

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Tuition, Stipends and Work Studies

The PI should notify the fiscal officer of any graduate student hires and submit a completed Faculty Designation Form to Terry Poillucci or Mary Howard

The administrative officer will:

  • Process grad research assistant stipends
  • Process graduate tuition remission that is funded through the grant and notify Eileen Sullivan about this so that this can be entered into Associate Dean for Graduate Student Services database
  • Notify Eileen Sullivan in the Graduate Student Service Center if tuition remission is to be provided by the Lynch School or the university per the grant proposal so that Eileen can process the tuition or so instruct the appropriate university officer
  • Process undergraduate student hires in conjunction with business officer

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Budget Management

After the grant is set up, the PI should:

  • Meet with their fiscal officer on a regular basis
  • Alert their fiscal officer if they need fiscal/program progress reports for their funders
  • Consult with fiscal officer on any budget changes they may be considering

The fiscal officer will check to see what is allowable and if appropriate, process a budget transfer request

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Budget Support/Fiscal Officers

Bill Crowley
Campion 338
Phone: 617-552-2157,

Rosemary Brady Panza
Campion 340B
Phone: 617-552-9254

Christine Hoage (International Study Center)
Manresa House
Phone: 617-552-1505,

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Administrative Support

Jean McDonald (Collaborative, TAMS, REGs, RIGs, and Argyelan)
Campion 138
Phone: 617-552-2226,

Terry Poillucci (LSOE Grants)
Campion 340 A
Phone: 617-552-3278,

Salina Kopellas
Campion 207D
Phone: 617 552-1061,

Carolyn Looker
Campion 309
Phone: 617 552-4710,

Jim Mahalik, Associate Dean of Faculty and Academic Affairs
Campion 101, Phone: 617-552-4077,    

Mary Howard
Campion 322
Phone: 617-552-4556,

Marcie Bligh (TIMSS & PIRLS)
Manresa House
Phone: 617-552-1134,

Kristie Thayer
Campion 110
Phone: 617 552-8431,

Kathleen Flaherty
Campion 318
Phone: 617 552-2482,

Mary Ellen Fulton
Associate Dean for Finance, Research and Administration
Campion 101  Phone: 617-552-4201,

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Recommended Strategies for Success in Submitting Grant Proposals

It is strongly suggested that the Principal Investigator (PI) meet with the Associate Dean for Faculty and Academics (AD) and Department Chair as soon as he/she decides to write a grant proposal. This initial meeting will help to guide the PI’s proposal planning and will enable him or her to work with the AD to determine adequate levels of resources to request and how these resources can be obtained. The AD may also help in identifying potential collaborators or resources within LSOE or beyond of potential benefit to the PI.

At this time, it is helpful for the PI to explain to the Associate Dean the nature of his or her affiliation with the grant sponsor and the estimated likelihood of success given this relationship. When possible, this meeting should take place at least 2 months prior to the grant deadline. In the case of grants that do not allow a full 2 months of lead time, the PI should bring the Associate Dean into the proposal process as early as possible. LSOE and OSP administrators will do their best to work with PIs whose sponsors compel them to produce proposals under compressed deadlines.

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Proposal Schedule

  • Providing the Associate Dean with all the appropriate documents will help to ensure that grant proposals are processed in a thorough and timely manner. Research transmittal forms and copies of the proposal should all be provided to the Associate Dean’s Office as soon as they are available to the PI.
  • After the initial meeting has occurred, the Dean’s Office requests a minimum of 10 days to review a completed proposal which has already been reviewed by the department chair, and the Office for Sponsored Programs (OSP) requires an additional 5 days. (Please see OSP’s - Guidance on Sponsored Projects Administration page). While the Associate Dean recognizes that it is not always possible to submit all documents within this timeframe, it is helpful for PIs to follow these guidelines whenever feasible. This allows the Dean’s Office more flexibility in meeting the needs of PIs who are under exceptional deadline circumstances. Subcontractors, illness, travel, and questions about the proposal can delay this process, so it is important to allow time to resolve these unanticipated problems.
  • PIs should consult their Department Chairs (if appropriate Center Directors should be consulted) regarding any administrative support that they may require during the grant proposal process, including the coordination of copies, sending Fed-Exes, etc. All deadlines should be communicated to the Department Chair as early in the process as possible.
  • The PI should notify the Fiscal Officer and Associate Dean upon hearing the results of an award application (i.e., whether it is funded or funding has been denied).

The Associate Dean will consider the following elements when reviewing a proposal:

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Cost-sharing/Matching Funds

  • In accordance with the new Cost Sharing Policy and Cost Sharing Business Process, mandatory cost sharing will be allocated to a Fund 120 budget from a University budget that has been specified and approved on the Internal Proposal Transmittal Form. The sponsored project award budget will not be set up until the Fund 120 budget has been authorized and established in PeopleSoft. This will benefit the Principal Investigator in that the cost sharing budget will be available to spend immediately at the start of the project or budget period.
  • Mandatory cost sharing is defined as required contributions on the part of the University which are explicitly stated in the sponsor’s program announcement and are identified and/or incorporated by reference in the sponsored project award document. If the University volunteers cost sharing in the proposal or application (over and above the sponsor’s stated requirements) and the sponsor incorporates the proposal or application by reference in the sponsored project award document, the voluntary cost sharing becomes mandatory.
  • Institutional approval for voluntary cost sharing will be granted only in rare circumstances.

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  • Faculty Buyouts are written into grant proposals to allow time typically spent on teaching responsibilities to be re-allocated for research. The expected level of  teaching for an active researcher is typically a 2/2+ course load (before any buyouts).
  • LSOE practice is for active researchers to buy out to a minimum of a 1-1 course load.  Faculty are strongly discouraged from requesting below a 1-1 load or requesting a 2-0/0-2 course load.
  • The amount of the salary reduction is based on the percentage of the teaching load from which the faculty member is being released, not the part-time faculty replacement cost. Buyout of 1 course currently equals one-sixth of the annual contract salary.
  • Buyouts release faculty from classroom teaching but not from other teaching (i.e. supervising comprehensive exams or dissertations) or service (advising, committee work) activities.
  • Proposed buyouts should be discussed with the PI’s Department Chair. The chair oversees course scheduling and is in the best position to assess the impact of PI’s proposed buyout(s) on curricular and other departmental concerns. Any concerns expressed by the Department Chair should be communicated directly to the PI and the Associate Dean.

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  • Needs to be determined at time of submission of  the proposal.
  • We strive to provide full-time staff on a research project with an office, although this may be shared space. Part-time researchers and GAs typically share office space.
  • The Associate Dean for Finance, Research & Administration (Mary Ellen Fulton) coordinates this aspect of proposals in LSOE, in consultation with the Associate Dean for Faculty and Academics. Requests can be made to either of these administrative officers.

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  • Before submitting a proposal to OSP, it may be useful for the PI to meet with Mary Ellen Fulton and TC Campion to accurately assess the researcher’s technology needs. It is important to incorporate these requirements into the proposal request in order to avoid “hidden costs” that can cause problems later in the process.

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Graduate Research Assistants

  • In crafting proposals, PIs should realistically assess the number of students needed for a particular grant, since there are limited resources available to support these GA positions.
  • In order to maximize the contributions of each GA, it may be preferable to prioritize PhD students over MA students, since PhD students typically have more research experience.
  • To further extend grant resources, it may also be helpful to take on more advanced students rather than first-year students, since the former have fewer credit requirements to complete their degrees.
  • In order to maintain a certain number of Graduate Assistants, PIs may want to consider distributing fewer credits to more students (i.e., 8 credits to each of 3 students vs. 12 credits each to 2 students).

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Indirect Costs (“F&A”)

  • Indirect costs are those costs that are not readily identifiable with individual projects, including all facilities and administrative costs (building operation, electricity, copies, etc). These costs must be included in all budgets as a percent of total direct costs. The Fiscal Officer will help the PI calculate this figure.
  • It is useful for all PI’s to know BC’s F&A rate for grants - please refer to OSP’s website. However, some sponsors set a much lower rate of 8-10%; in these cases, BC will accept the foundation rate for F&A, but university policy is to expect  the BC rate unless otherwise specified. ANY REDUCED RATE MUST BE APPROVED BY THE PROVOST’S OFFICE.  The LSOE Associate Dean must approve any fixed rates set by the granting agency. In addition, if the agency has a varying rate, then both the AVP for Research and OSP must approve the request. These approvals must be in writing and forwarded to the LSOE Associate Dean.

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Summer Salary

  • Funding for summer salary for faculty may be written into a grant proposal. One month of summer salary is one-ninth (1/9) of annual contract salary.

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 Human Subjects

  • The university-wide Institutional Review Board (/research/oric/human.html) reviews and approves protocols submitted by faculty who intend to use human subjects in their research. Please note that all PIs and all others working on a research project involving human subjects must have a certificate indicating that they have completed the required training course before submitting a proposal to the IRB.

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