M8A1: Final Project: Grant Proposal

BIO300 – Excelsior College

Overview

The main project in Bio 300 is the writing of a grant proposal to fund a research project in a biological discipline. The grant proposal is due in Week 8 of class.   Grant proposal assignments in modules 5, 6, and 8 (combined) are worth 25% of your final grade.

You will be the main scientist applying for funds from Excelsior College. The maximum award is US $100,000.00 for a two year project. You will have a chance to discuss your research topic, hypothesis, and methods with fellow classmates. You will also prepare an annotated literature review and outline before submitting the final project. Ask questions about the project in the discussion forum for general questions. Most research efforts are collaborative and suggestions from fellow scientists (your instructor and classmates) will aid your efforts in developing an in-depth scientific project to investigate your research question.

Timeline:

  • M1A3: Grant Proposal Introduction
  • M4D2: Grant Proposal Topic Discussion
  • M5A3: Grant Proposal Annotated Bibliography
  • M6A3: Grant proposal Outline
  • M7D2: Grant proposal Research Methods
  • M8A1: Final Project: Grant Proposal

Resources:

  • UNC (2014) Grant Proposals or Give Me Money. Retrieved from http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/grant-proposals-or-give-me-the-money/  Step by step explanation how to write a grant proposal.
  • Baltimore County Public Schools (2015) Research process steps. Retrieved from https://www.bcps.org/offices/lis/researchcourse/steps.html. The website has several links about the research process, and preparation of proposals and sample proposals in a variety of disciplines, including biology. Click on each step (Encounter a Task; Explore an Issue or Problem, Literature Review, Develop a Research Proposal) for more information. Under “Develop a Research Proposal” you will find useful tools to guide your writing and examples of research proposals at https://www.bcps.org/offices/lis/researchcourse/develop_write_sample.html. Take a look at the biology examples. Your proposal will provide more depth and breadth than the “Analysis of historical retroviral contributions to the modern human genome” but will be considerably less involved than the proposals of doctoral students.
  • American Astronomical Society (1991) Hints to prepare research proposal. Retrieved from https://aas.org/hints-preparing-research-proposals.  I suggest you review and jot down useful hints which might help you along in this process.
  • A grant proposal is a research paper and the Purdue OWL will be very helpful to your writing.

Please search using your favorite search engines for additional help in the preparation of the grant proposal and post in the general question discussion forum.

Please utilize the template provided for this project. It will help with formatting.

Complete all parts of the grant proposal and provide sufficient detail to convince reviewers to fund the project. Rely on academic references and write in clear, concise, and informative sentences, explaining the importance of your research question in the context of present knowledge and research in the subject area. Demonstrate that your research methods are sound and will yield data that will test the validity of your hypothesis and answer the research question. Provide a realistic budget, including estimates for materials, payroll for personnel, and publication costs.

Parts of the Grant Proposal:

  1. Title page

List granting agency, title, and principal investigator

  1. An abstract (100 words or less)

Summary of the proposal

  1. Introduction

Describe the general background and significance of the problem. Provide a justification for the research proposal. (300 words or less)

  1. Research Questions

Develop and present succinct research question(s), not more than two.

  1. Hypothesis

Each research question should be addressed by one or more hypothesis statements.

  1. Literature review

Introduce the reviewer to the current understanding of the issue.  Present information from the general to the specific and point out what has been researched and learned, as well as what is missing and needs to be investigated. Include at least five original research articles published within the last five years and one or two recent review articles. (500 words or less)

  1. Materials and Methods

Be creative and invent a research scenario and location, along with the corresponding materials and support needed. Discuss the method for how you will research your questions and justify the scientific approach to the problem (think of the scientific methods). Include details on how you will get the data and analyze the data in order to accept or refute your hypotheses and answer the research questions. (500 words or less)

Resources:

https://www.hhmi.org/biointeractive/search?sort_by=created&redirect=1&field_biointeractive_topics%5B0%5D=26685
http://www.jove.com/science-education/basicbio
  1. Time – Table

Provide a time table to conduct the research (should be about 1-3 years). List milestones and time to each accomplishment. Table or bullet format.

Month/YearMilestone
Jul 2016Grant Funded
  
  
  
  
  1. Significance/Recommendations

Explain the importance of this investigation and how the results will add to our knowledge base and support important decisions in the field (management, treatment developments, etc.). (300 words or less)

  1. Distribution

Discuss the publication of your research (meetings/conferences, publications, media, etc.) – (100 words or less).

  1. Author C.V. (Brief)

This is a paragraph about yourself as a researcher (100 words or less)

  1. Budget

List budget items and estimated cost.

Invent a position. For example, you work for a public agency and have lab access.  Or you work for a University and lab space, vehicles, cages, computers etc. might be in-kind institutional contributions. Employ a lab assistant. Present your budget in table format.

Example:

YearBudget ItemCost
1Laboratory Assistant, 50% time25,000
1Lab materials10,000
1Transport of Samples  1,000
   
   
   
   
   
2Laboratory Assistant 50% time/ 6 mon12,500
   
   
 Total 
  •  References

   List references in APA format.

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