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How to Review and Become a Reviewer Best professional development in higher education!

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Presentation on theme: "How to Review and Become a Reviewer Best professional development in higher education!"— Presentation transcript:

1 How to Review and Become a Reviewer Best professional development in higher education!

2 Linda Mason, OSRHE

3 Grant proposals usually reviewed by several people in the field and related fields Reviewers may be peers of the writers Not necessary to have received a grant to be able to contribute to the review process

4 Guidelines vary by entity Selection criteria and scoring Published in the solicitation and federal register Peer review Agencies train new participants for review panels

5 How does it work? Go to a location, usually DC Become very familiar with guidelines Stay for 2-3 days to review Debate your opinions with a panel of peers Work hard, maybe 12 hours/day Read and critique 10-12 proposals Total confidentiality Expenses paid, usually no or little stipend

6 How does it work? Review by mail/email Receive a month before due Include it in your existing schedule Total confidentiality No stipend

7 How does it work? Local agency or corporation Go to a location, usually the agency Read during the day Work with a panel of peers Total confidentiality No stipend

8 Questions reviewers ask? Who is affected by this request/who is the target audience? Are these project goals and objectives realistic? Can the timeline realistically be met? Is the submitting organization capable of carrying out the project?

9 Questions reviewers ask? If the project duplicates others in the field, what makes this one stronger? Is the cost of this project justified/realistic? If the project is to be continued after this grant cycle, where will the organization get its funding? Do the submitters have external support aside from the granting organization?

10 Questions reviewers ask? Is there collaboration involved in the project? Has the organization shown prior success? Is the staff of this organization capable and accountable? What is the organization's board or support composition and how involved are its members?

11 Why be a reviewer? Learn to write better proposals Learn about the programs of the agency Learn about the funded grants of the agency Network with others like you Provide a service

12 Why be a reviewer? Learn the process and improve your funding odds See what us usually missing or unclear in proposals Clarify your communication Simplify your writing

13 How do I become a reviewer? The agencys website Recipient of a grant The funder, program director, head of agency Apply online – provide a vitae and short synopsis of why you may be of help Need not have grant experience, just content or program expertise

14 Dear Program Director, I am an assistant professor of biology at Northeastern Oklahoma State University and have 10 years of experience in teaching undergraduate students. My research interests are with amino acids produced by toads as possible use in treating obesity. Oklahoma has the highest child obesity rate in the nation. NSU has a student population of 28% native Americans. My experiences may be of help in reviewing grant proposals for the Summer Institute Program to Increase Diversity in Health-Related Research.

15 Agencies – NSF Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems - Phillip Westmoreland - 703/ Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences - Kaye Husbands - 703/292-7276 Engineering Education and Centers - Mary Poats - 703/ Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings - David Ucko, - 703/ Advanced Technological Education (community colleges) – Elizabeth Teleseiteles – Alliances for Broadening Participation in STEM – A. James Hicks - 703-292-8640 Communicating Research to Public Audiences – David Ucko, 703-292-8616 Course, Curriculum, and Laboratory Improvement – Myles Boylan - 703-292-4617…….and more!

16 Agencies – NIH – NIH Grant Review Process Video - Video.htm Bridges to the Baccalaureate Program - Cathleen Cooper – 301-435-3566 Behavioral and Social Science Research on Understanding and Reducing Health Disparities – Dr. Gabriel Fosu – Summer Institute Program to Increase Diversity in Health-Related Research - Chief, Review Branch, Division of Extramural Research Activities, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute – 301-435-0270…and more!

17 How to Review a Grant Proposal

18 Questions You Will Ask When You Review Grants 1. Does the application respond to the criteria? 2. Is the project clear and specific (not obscured by jargon)? 3. Do the ideas flow logically? 4. Are activities consistent with each other? 5. Does the application explain the need for assistance? 6. Are the project objectives measurable? 7. How will success or failure be evaluated?

19 How to Read Proposals 1. Read the entire proposal before beginning to match the criteria against the application. 2. Make your comments specific. This is a good program, is not helpful. Too many good programs dont get funded. 3. Write your comments in complete sentences. 4. Dont restate what the applicant wrote evaluate what it says. 5. Make comments tactful and constructive.

20 Why do reviewers supply comments about the proposal? To help the writer make the proposal better. At NSF, only 20% of first time grant proposals are funded. 50% of re-submissions are funded.

21 Constructive Comments When you find Weaknesses Useful: The proposed budget categories lack sufficient detail to determine reliability. (p.41) The travel budget does not delineate the locations of the conferences. Less useful: The budget is missing key items. (This comment is not supported with details).

22 Common Errors Reviewers Find 1. Trying to fit a program into an unsuitable grant opportunity. 2. Failing to answer all criteria in the RFP. 3. Using old data or insufficient data 4. Poor evaluation 5. Unqualified staff. 6. Missing budget items.

23 7. Unallowable, inappropriate budget items. 8. Budget items not explained in the project narrative. (Why do you need to go to the French Riviera?) 9. No plans for sustainability or explanation for why not. 10. No commitment letters to document proposed activities, partners, and resources Common Errors Reviewers Find

24 Thank you. 2008 OSRHE Summer Grant Writing Institute Linda Mason, Ed.D. Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education 405-225-9486 Thanks to Gerry Cherry for her slides.

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