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Frequently Asked Questions

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General Proposal Development

What is a proposal coordinator?
OOR proposal coordinators are experienced in writing, editing, and strategizing for the development of compelling proposals. They do not write the technical portions of your proposals but are qualified to help you address key components of your submission and ensure responsiveness to the funding solicitation.

What projects qualify for proposal coordination services?
We try to help to at least some degree with all requests from Purdue PIs, but we do have two types of coordination services. PIs with larger, higher complexity proposals (typically over $1 million budget and multidisciplinary) can request the more extensive large proposal coordination by emailing Include in your email key details such as PI name, name of funding opportunity (or even better, an attachment with the solicitation), due date, and budget amount. PIs on smaller proposals (typically single investigator and under $1 million) can request consultation help by emailing Details on services provided for large proposal coordination vs. smaller project consultation are found on ( For both of these arrangements, however, the sooner we are aware of your proposal needs, the better we can accommodate you.

Do I pay for proposal coordination services?
No, this service is free.

Cost Share

Is there an automated or online interactive way to request cost share?
You can access an online form to request cost share funds from the OOR at ( However, cost share from your department and college must be sought from the appropriate head and/or associate dean for research since each unit evaluates the strategic value of your project to their unit and makes their cost share decisions accordingly. The cost share process at the college level is not uniform and precludes an overall automated system. If you submit the online form to the OOR, we can alert your department/college that you will be initiating discussions with them but will only do so after consulting with you first. You can read more about the OOR philosophy on cost share and process details at

Limited Submissions

What is a limited submission?

If a sponsor puts a limit on the number of responses it will allow from an institution, the OOR initiates an internal limited submission competition. The process requires potential applicants to submit an internal preproposal. You can find out more about the limited submission process by downloading the Limited Submission Proposal and Review Process document at:

Why do I need to do a preproposal for internal limited submission competitions?
A preproposal lets OOR staff know how many individuals/groups are interested in submitting a proposal to a sponsor and, if needed, to initiate an internal review to deterimine which individuals/groups will move forward. If the number of preproposals submitted is equal to or fewer than the number allowed, submitters are notified to proceed with their proposal to the sponsor. If more preproposals are received than the number allowed, reviewers are asked to determine the strongest preproposals based on the criteria of the sponsor. Submitters are then notified if they can proceed or not.

How do I write an effective internal preproposal?
OOR tailors preproposal templates to the goals and review criteria of each opportunity. You should read the entire RFP, and answer template questions based on the sponsor's criteria. Avoid using abbreviations, acronyms, and technical jargon but do write at the level of a highly educated lay person. It is also important that the project description explains the critical need for your research. Consider describing: what is the problem? What has been done so far? What is the gap that remains? How will you address that gap?

I missed the internal deadline for a preproposal. Can I still be considered?
Only if the number of submissions received is less than the number allowed. The internal competition officially starts upon receipt of preproposals, and we enforce the deadlines in the interest of fairness, consistency and transparency. Following a competition where we receive fewer responses than the number of submissions allowed, the remaining submissions are filled on a “first to notify us” basis.

Do I need a COEUS budget for an internal preproposal?
No. Preproposals should tell how much funding will likely be requested and an idea of how that money will be used/justified. The numbers should be as realistic as possible but are not final or binding for the actual proposal.

I want to add a faculty member to a preproposal but haven't been able to confirm their interest since they are traveling. Can I just write them in and confirm with them later?
No. Please confirm the interest of all participants mentioned by name in a preproposal before submitting. If you are unable to get in touch with someone, you can note that you will pull in certain expertise from a person yet to be identified (e.g. – Chemical engineer with expertise in polymers – TBD).

How much consideration is put on the team members during an internal review?
All team members should have a well-defined role in the project and appropriate expertise. Build meaningful partnerships with potential collaborators prior to proposal submissions whenever possible.

How do I find the deadlines and contact information for limited submissions?
You can find a list of open competitions, including deadlines and contact information, on our limited submission website at:

What do I do if your website doesn't list a limited submission opportunity that I am considering?
Contact  as soon as possible. Depending on the proximity to the deadline, we will either initiate an internal competition or determine if you can be allowed to proceed as “first to notify.” If you fail to notify us, you may waste a great deal of your hard work if someone else already notified us and received the permission to proceed.


How do I subscribe to the OOR Weekly Funding e-mail?
The OOR sends the e-mail to the associate deans for research and department heads and asks them to distribute to their faculty.  You can ask those offices how the list in distributed internally in your department.  Alternately, email Leave the subject blank and in the message body type: subscribe Weeklyfundingopps [your_first_name] [your_last_name].  Only e-mail addresses will be accepted. The emails are sent every Wednesday and are posted on the web at shortly thereafter at

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