2:056 Grant Proposal, Application Preparation, and Award Policy
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2:056 Grant Proposal, Application Preparation, and Award Policy


Austin Peay State
Grant Proposal, Application Preparation, and Award Policy

Issued:  March 8, 2017

Responsible Official:  Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Responsible Office:  Office of Research and Sponsored Programs


Policy Statement

It is the policy of Austin Peay State University that all proposals submitted to any external funding agency first must be submitted to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs for review, routing, and administrative approval.


Given the complexity of University operations and budgets and ever changing policies at the University, State, and National/International levels, this policy provides a process to maximize efforts and resources while minimizing unintended consequences. APSU employees seeking external funding should follow this policy to work collaboratively.


-Routing Process and Signatures



APSU employees seeking external funding should notify the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) of their intentions to submit a grant as soon as possible, even prior to actually writing the grant. It is possible that other APSU employees are also seeking the same funding and/or collaborations and support could be leveraged beyond the awareness of the grant-applicants. Completed proposals must be submitted to ORSP a minimum of seven (7) days prior to the required submission date. Exceptions to this requirement are exceedingly rare but may be made by administrative approval. 

The grant narrative (and all accompanying materials, including appendices and references) must be submitted with a “Routing Form” completed by the grant-applicant(s). The Routing Form will be available at the ORSP website, or will be provided to the grant-applicant(s) by ORSP personnel. The Routing Form must be clear, concise, and fully accurate at the time of routing. Routing Forms must identify the start and end date of the grant cycle; the project director’s name and contact information; the name of all partners; the funding agency(ies); all appropriate solicitation information; the grant title; identification of appropriate assurances/compliances; and a budget synopsis.


Budgets for proposals and, if approved, final agreements, shall be prepared using the cost categories and cost classification system used by APSU’s accounting system. Exceptions will be made only when a sponsor’s written policy requires a prescribed format. A copy of the sponsor’s requirements must be on file in ORSP. 

The grant-applicant(s) will work with ORSP and Finance and Administration to bring a non-conforming budget items into alignment with the institutional accounting system cost categories. This must be completed prior to routing and final submission to funding agency. 

When exceptions are made to the budget, the grant-applicant(s) must prepare fiscal reports reflecting these exceptions and provide additional documentation to support the expenditure classifications. 

Project budgets, for proposals and final agreements, must include entries for indirect costs if such costs are allowable by the agency. These costs will be included at the maximum allowable rate and may be modified only by the Director of Research and Sponsored Programs. Employee benefits must also be included at the appropriate APSU rates if personnel expenses are present in the budget. If the sponsor has a written policy or instructions disallowing benefit costs, an internal funding source for employee benefit expenses must be identified and approved by Finance and Administration.  A copy of the sponsor’s written policy and/or grant proposal guidelines must be on file in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs indicating these as non-allowable costs by the funding agency. 

Salaries, travel, and equipment items will be budgeted to conform with APSU policies and guidelines or with the sponsor’s written requirements, if the latter are more restrictive.

Routing Process
and Signatures

The ORSP is authorized to make revisions to the grant proposal and/or budget related to compliance, format, presentation, delivery, accuracy, conformity to APSU standards, and/or agency guidelines. The applicant will be made aware of all revisions, as time allows. Following the initial review by the Director of Research and Sponsored Programs, the proposal will be routed through the appropriate administrative review. 

Prior to submission, the Routing Form and full proposal must be reviewed and approved by the following personnel (or their designees):  1) grant-applicant(s), 2) Department Chair or supervisor, 3) Administrative Dean (or non-academic administrative director), 4) Director of Research and Sponsored Programs, and 5) Associate Vice President for Finance. In appropriate situations, signatures or administrative approval must also be obtained by the Provost and/or President, or their designee. 

By approving the “Routing Form”, signatory agents give complete approval; assume appropriate responsibility; attest to the technical merits of the proposed work and the ability of the APSU employee(s) to perform the task; assure the University’s upper-level management that existing equipment, facilities and services are adequate for the proposed scope of work; and that no additional funding for equipment, space or facilities will be required, unless specifically noted and attached to the proposal.  

The signature of the Director of Research and Sponsored Programs on the Routing Form attests that the proposal meets at least the minimum requirements of the potential sponsor and that the budget proposal and any budget for internal review only are presented in a way that facilitates review by the funding agency and APSU. In addition, the grant-applicant(s) attests that the personnel costs in the budget are in accordance with APSU’s personnel policies and guidelines and that all other expenditures can be made within the University’s purchasing and procurement guidelines. The grant-applicant(s) also attests that all grants/contracts will comply with all internal, state, and federal regulations related to the compliance and assurance issues identified on the Routing Form. The Director of Research and Sponsored Programs will provide assistance in implementing and maintaining any required compliances.  

The signature of the Director of Research and Sponsored Programs indicates that the proposal conforms with generally accepted research principles, including human and animal care protocol, conflicts of interest, genetic research, security of material sensitive to national security (and security clearances), and hazardous waste. 

The signature of the Associate Vice President for Finance indicates that the proposal budget is in agreement with general University budgeting guidelines and that all financial obligations in the proposal can be discharged within the University’s personnel and purchasing guidelines and policies. 


Upon completion of the above reviews, the grant application is approved for submission. The grant-applicant(s) will be notified of the final status of the approval. If the proposal is not approved, the principal investigator may make corrections; however, the project must be re-routed to ensure compliance and the final project must be received within seven (7) days of the submission deadline. 

Approved proposals will be submitted by Research and Sponsored Programs personnel only. In unique cases, the grant-applicant(s) may submit directly to the funding agency (or partners) with prior and written approval by the Director of Research and Sponsored Programs. 

Some projects may require approval from APSU’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) or Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). External funding requests may generally be submitted without such approval; however, approval must ultimately be obtained by the respective committee prior to beginning any grant activities. Approval may require that the grant-applicant(s) and additional grant personnel obtain certification or recertification of Responsible and Ethical Conduct of Research training (which is one part of the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative which is located at: http://www.citiprogram.org/Default.asp). 

Revision Dates

APSU Policy 2:056 (previously 7:002 – Rev.: March 8, 2017
APSU Policy 2:056 – Rev.: May 8, 2014
APSU Policy 2:056 – Issued: August 5, 2011

Subject Areas:

Academic Finance General Human



President: signature on file