Grant Workshop Notes 1-16-19

10 tips and 10 questions for proposal writing
suad Joseph website – helpful?
humanities – using common research proposal language
maximal proposal – all pieces of project, all your ideas (for personal use)
Targeted proposal – adapted from maximal proposal to specific proposal
Music – translate into social sciences
Money is shifting from federal to foundations – foundations are socially oriented
-Avoid jargon from discipline, write clearly, accessibly
-use language of agency or foundation
First paragraph is most important, needs to be condensed and drive straight to the point
15mins vs. 1 hour
-very clear about point of departure
-1 key concept that drives problem statement, ties everything together
-reader needs to know key concept in very beginning, and used consistently throughout
the proposal. Do not change language
General Tips
-value added:
-why is it important?
-what makes it special
-Social usefulness
-what social good is it addressing? Make it clear
-Be aware of what the founders mission is
-mission statement
-annual report
-list of grants funded in previous year
-program officers are evaluated on the projects they funded
-“Will this person make me look good?”
-Passion and dispassion
-do something you care about
-avg. road to tenure: 15yrs
-dispassion – willing to change your mind about your project, flexibility
-how are you going to get your data?
-Logically coherent
-know what you’re asking for
-make sure it looks professional
-expect rejection
-ask program officer for feedback, revise and resubmit
What = the research problem
1.The question you want to answer is your research problem
-clearer the question, more convincing the project
-objective should be specific, researchable, measurable, declarative and prioritized
-what you expect to find should build on respected theory
-point of departure needs to be utterly clear – point that will not drop out of the picture
-what is the concept that is driving you?
-summary of proposal
(Like questions asked in Travel award proposal)
Literature review
Gaps/needs statement
-capture attention of the reviewer
-create urgency, we need to answer this now
-drama – something that needs resolution
-genuine question, genuine doubt, genuine curiosity
-scholars crave uncertainty
-understandable, logical, timely
-needs to be connected to a recognized view of literature
2. How the research question has been answered before by others is your literature review.
-Theory is argument to the answer of the question with logic , answer to question is that which
will lead you to your theory
-answer to questions clearly identifiable and recognizable
-criteria by which you define terms you are using – measurability
-relationship between sets of concepts, how its related, and its transformation from something
-your theory will explain these relationships
-expect to go back and constantly revise
-alternative hypothesis – maybe be worth looking into, willingness to show that there may be
other data
-defining your terms?
Literature review – alternative hypothesis
-literature review needs to be synthetic, related to your point of departure
-demonstrate maturity as a scholar
-should be one of strongest portions
-sets it up by showing reviewers what is missing
-be careful to criticize work that you do not offer better solutions to
-emergency significance
3. Significance to the question
5.Theory -The set of logically connected assumptions that are necessary to make your answer
to the question plausible is your theory
-clearly outline your theory, model, perspective, or conceptual framework
-statement of hypothesis (projected answers to the questions)
-Optional: statement of alternative hypothesis
-articulating, formulizing, and rationalizing the question
-why are you coming to this answer?
3 components to theory:
1. Concepts – has assumptions already built into it
2. Assumptions
3. Propositions – hypothesis, statements about relationships between concepts generated
by the assumptions generated by the way we define those concepts
VI. Methods- the steps you take to answer the question is your methodology
-specify the research site
-specify kinds of data/research information needed
-Analysis of data
-every term needs to be fined and operationalized
-IRB – confidentiality, subject protection
Addressed in methods sections:
-“track record A” – preliminary research
-“Track record B” - Qualifications that make you a better candidate
Maximal CV
Targeted CV
Strategy – don’t choose someone that is well known who wont write you a strong letter
Contacting a program officer – don’t do it prematurely! Contact only after you know what
you’re doing
Budget – amount needs to be reflected in the methodology
Timetable Abstract –
You need to find your research.
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