Steps for Submitting Proposals (Excluding NIH) via Grants.gov
Step 1 - Prepare
- Download a Grants.gov compatible version of Adobe Reader
(version 8.1.3 or higher) onto your computer, if you have not
previously done so. You may
click here to verify if your Adobe software version is
compatible with Grants.gov. The compatible version of Adobe
Reader is available to download for free on the Grants.gov
Software page. Note: If you have Adobe Acrobat
Professional software, it may be used; however, it must be
comparable to the Grants.gov compatible version of Adobe
- Please note that UCR has already completed the Grants.gov
registration process, so you don't need to complete that step.
Step 2 - Locate Grant Opportunity and Download
- Locate grant opportunities offered by the twenty-six federal
grant-making agencies on Grants.gov at
and then download the complete Grant Application Package and proper
application instructions for the grant opportunity. There are two
ways to find and download an application package:
- Find the grant opportunity for which you wish to apply by
entering specific search criteria, and click the
Application button in the grant opportunity
synopsis to download the complete Grants Application Package and
proper application instructions; or
- Click the Apply for Grants link found under
For Applicants in the left-hand navigation bar and
choose Step 1 - Download a Grant Application
Package. Enter the appropriate Funding Opportunity
Number (FON) or Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CDFA)
Number to download an application package.
Instructions on how to open and use
the forms in the Grant Application Package are on the application
package cover sheet. Agency specific instructions are
available for download when you download your Grant Application
Package, which will include required information for your
- Save the downloaded Grant Application Package and proper
application instructions to your desktop.
Step 3 - Complete
- Read all of the application specific instructions and complete
the application offline. Be sure to save any changes to your
application as you go since Grants.gov will NOT automatically save
- Enter a name for the application in the Application
Filing Name field. This name is for use solely by
the applicant for tracking the application through the Grants.gov
submission process. It is not used by the sponsoring
- Open and complete all of the documents listed in the Mandatory
Documents box. Complete the component titled SF424
(R&R) first. Data entered in this component
populates other mandatory and optional forms where applicable.
- As required documents are completed, move the document(s) from
the Mandatory Documents box over to the Mandatory Documents for
Submission box by clicking on the document name and then click
Move Form to Completed.
- As optional documents are completed, move the document(s) from
the Optional Documents box to the Optional Documents for Submission
box by clicking on the document name and then click Move
Form to Completed.
- The name of a pdf file attachment must be less than 50
characters and shall not contain any special characters (e.g.,
ampersand, dash, or asterisk). The file name should contain a
period or space within it; and an underscore may be used.
- After you have completed all of the required and optional
documents in the Grant Application Package, and attached any
required documents, click the Check Packages for
Errors button to ensure that you have successfully
completed all required data fields in the Adobe Reader forms.
If any of the required fields are not completed, you will receive
an error notice which will indicate where revision is needed within
- When no errors are present, click the Save
button at the top of the application cover page.
- Complete UCR's electronic Campus Approval Form (eCAF).
The eCAF is used for the routing, approval and submission of
proposals to Sponsored Programs when seeking extramural
funding. The eCAF contains critical information needed by
several UCR constituents, such as PIs, Co-PIs, Chairs, Deans, and
Research and Economic Development staff. It also documents certain
mandatory PI certifications and assurances.
- Note: An eCAF can be initiated by either a PI or a
Contract & Grant Analyst. Whichever the case, preparing
an eCAF is a joint endeavor by a PI and a Contract & Grant
Analyst, both of whom have an important role in the process (see eCAF Approval
Process). You may create an eCAF by selecting it from your
Authorized Applications section in R'Space. For further
assistance and information, see eCAF.
Step 4 - Submit
- Submit your eCAF, FON, and electronic application file to
- Sponsored Programs reviews the full proposal package and may
provide comments and/or request corrections. It is
recommended that you provide Sponsored Programs with such documents
for review at least three (3) full business days prior to
sponsoring agency's deadline (or seven (7) full business days in
the event this is a non-standard proposal involving subcontracts or
mandatory cost sharing), and work with the office on clarifying
issues during this time.
- Sponsored Programs submits final application to Grants.gov and
a confirmation screen will appear on the computer screen of the
authorized institutional official once the submission is complete.
Sponsored Programs e-mails the confirmation (including the
Grants.gov tracking number) to the Principal Investigator.
Step 5 - Track Status of Submitted
- Once your application has been submitted, you can check the
status on the Track
My Application page using the tracking number.
- The system will return a status with details for VALID tracking
- Until status is available for valid tracking numbers, the
following message will be returned by the system: Tracking
number(s) entered currently being processed, please check back
- For invalid tracking numbers entered, the system will return
the following message: The tracking number(s) entered are not
valid. Please make sure you entered the correct tracking
- The following status information is provided:
- Date/Time/Files Received - The date and time
Grants.gov received your application and, if hyperlinked, the list
of forms and files received by Grants.gov for your application
- Status - (Application Status Messages
- Received - Grants.gov has received the
application, but the application is awaiting validation.
- Validated - Grants.gov validated the
application and it is available for the agency to download.
- Received by Agency - The agency has confirmed
receipt of the application package.
- Agency Tracking Number Assigned - The agency
has assigned an internal tracking number to your application. This
is the last status that Grants.gov tracks. Updates beyond this must
be checked with the sponsoring agency directly. Note: All
agencies do not assign tracking numbers. If you do not see an
agency tracking number, this does not infer that the agency did not
receive or process your application. The assignment of tracking
numbers is based on the policy of a particular agency.
- Rejected with Errors - Grants.gov was unable
to process your application because of an error(s) and cannot
accept the application until you correct the errors and
successfully resubmit the application. You will receive email
notification with information on how to address the error(s).
- Status Date - The date and time, your
application status was updated.
- Agency Tracking Number - A Tracking Number
assigned by the agency, if applicable.
- Submission Name/Files - Includes the
Application Filing Name and a listing of the forms and files
Step 6 - Review/Correct
- If the application contains errors, the applicant must make
required changes/corrections to the original Grants.gov application
- If the application contains warnings, decide whether or not the
warnings warrant submission of a corrected application.
- Repeat Steps 3-5 for submission of corrected applications
prior to the proposal submission deadline.
Error-free applications must be submitted to Grants.gov by 5 p.m.
local time (of the applicant institution/organization) on the
submission/receipt date. If the submission/receipt date falls on a
weekend or Federal holiday, the date will automatically extend to
the next business day.