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College of Education


Grants and Contracts

Grant Proposal Process

The OGC staff are here to assist faculty with the proposal and budget development process to help secure grant funding.


Proposal and budget development

Faculty should develop the proposals to including the budget and budget justification. The budget can be included in the proposal document, or can be prepared using an electronic spreadsheet.

All proposals, including fixed-cost proposals, must include a budget for internal accounting purposes. Budget proposals typically include full time or summer salaries, equipment, supplies, travel, subcontracts, indirect costs, cost sharing, budget justification, and consultant costs. Graduate assistants who are hired to work on externally-funded projects are not provided tuition credits unless these credits are included in the project budget.

Proposals should be prepared for electronic submission. If you wish, you can convert these to PDF documents prior to submission.


Submission of proposals

The OGC submits all proposal information for faculty.

Faculty must provide their USCERA (USC Electronic Research Administration) login information and electronic copies of the proposal budget, budget narrative and proposal narrative to the Director of Grants and Contracts. The OGC will upload and submit the proposal through USCERA for internal approvals. All proposals must be submitted through USCERA for internal approvals.

Once the form has been submitted, it is automatically routed through an approval chain that includes the department chair, the dean, and the University designee in Sponsored Awards Management (SAM). The proposal can only be changed by the originator, so if any changes are needed, the proposal is denied, with comments about the reason, so that the proposal can be modified and resubmitted. All communications regarding proposal disapprovals or other matters will be coordinated through the Director of Grants and Contracts.

Once the proposal has been approved, SAM creates a cover letter to send or submit to the funding agency along with the proposal. The SAM liaison for the college will contact the Director of Grants and Contracts directly when the letter is ready and the proposal has been approved.

The principal investigator (PI) will work with the OGC to submit the complete proposal along with the cover letter to the funding agency. If the proposal is funded, this information will be conveyed to SAM and an account will be set up for the project. SAM will then notify the college administration about this new account and this information is sent to the PI.

Since the university SAM liaison is the only official authorized to request grant funds or to submit proposals, faculty or staff members should never request funds without going through the above process.