Proposal Overview

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Michigan State University's College of Engineering PIs work together with the Division of Engineering Research (DER) Office to submit research proposals to internal MSU programs, industry partners, and government agencies. DER focuses on preparing budgets, completing necessary forms, and reviewing compliance requirements allowing the PI time to focus on preparing a superior technical piece. Planning ahead is crucial to accomplish a quality, successful proposal.


Proposal Processing Steps

Find Funding

  • DER offers resources to assist with finding funding opportunities
    1. Funding Database- a searchable list of engineering funding opportunities
    2. Funding Resources- offers a list of links to funding organizations
    3. Weekly Newsletter- sent to engineering faculty email
  • Talk to colleagues
  • Visit funding organization's websites/ sign up for their listserv
  • Connect with program managers
Develop Your Proposal
  • Read the solicitation.
  • Contact the program manager.
  • Complete the Proposal Processing Form 12+ business day before the agency deadline per the DER Proposal Processing Timeline. Once a completed PPF is received, a research administrator will be assigned to work with you through the proposal submission.
  • Notify your department chair of any special considerations, request cost share if required by solicitation.
  • Send your budgetary needs to your research administrator. Based on those needs, solicitation requirements, and agency guidelines a draft budget will be started for your review.
  • DER will work with you and the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) to come together on a finalized budget that meets your projects needs and the agency's submission guidelines.
  • Your research administrator will work with you on a list of documents needed for submission (budget justification, biographical sketches, current and pending documents, facilities and equipment, subaward documents, data management plan, etc.). These documents are completed by the PI and sent to your research administrator for review.
  • PIs are responsible for the technical portion of the proposal. Work with your chair and/or colleagues for feedback. The University offers grant writing assistance to help with the grammar and format of these pieces.
Submit Your Proposal
  • DER will complete an eTransmittal for PI, department, college, and university level approval signatures. Your research administrator will need an OSP approved budget, budget justification, title, near final project summary, and subcontract documents (if applicable) to attach before routing. This needs to routed 8+ business days before the agency’s deadline.
  • Send your proposal documents to your assigned research administrator. These will be reviewed for compliance requirements and uploaded/attached for proposal completion.
  • The completed proposal will be sent to the PI for final review and approval to release to OSP for review and submission.
  • Once OSP has a fully routed e-transmittal and final proposal (required 3+ business days before the deadline), one last compliance review will be completed.
  • OSP has signature authority for the University and will submit your completed proposals to the funding agency.
Award Process at MSU
  • Review Sponsored Programs Administration's page for step-by-step details of award negotiation/ account setup/ award management/ award closeout
  • Please notify OSP, DER and post-award office as soon as award notification is received.
  • Post-award assistance is offered through each individual department.