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Guidelines for Pre-Proposal Funding Requests for
Large Research Grant Proposals

Division of Research, Texas A&M University
September 2014

The Division of Research (DOR) encourages submission of large, multidisciplinary grant proposals to federal agencies. Understanding the need for pre-planning of these complex proposal efforts, the DOR accepts, at any time, requests for funding by PIs seeking to develop interdisciplinary research teams. Teams are expected to create a strategic plan and timeline for submission of a targeted proposal, or series of proposals, leading to the larger effort.

A request may include funding for team development, strategies, and efforts that will assist the team in gaining information to build a competitive proposal. This program is not designed to fund research to gain preliminary results; though, if requested by a program officer from the agency, this will be considered. An effort should

  • Build a new, or support an existing, multidisciplinary team to develop and execute a plan for proposal development and submission.
  • Seek to submit new proposals, or resubmit a proposal based on reviewer or study section comments and scores.


The leader of the multidisciplinary team will receive a response from the DOR within approximately three weeks from receipt of the request. To develop a request, PIs should consult with the DOR’s Research Development Services by contacting Dr. Jorja Kimball.

Requests should include a one-page Description, a one-page Budget, a Cover Memo, and reviewer or study section comments if applicable.

Descriptions should

  • List the federal funding sponsor(s), Program(s), Institute(s) or Directorate/Division(s), and funding mechanism(s) targeted, including any that build toward the larger proposal.
  • Specify the topic of the team’s research interests and areas (e.g., diabetes).
  • Indicate who will lead or coordinate the team and serve as contact with his/her email.
  • Include a two to three year timeline. Consider the possibility for proposal revision and resubmission and incorporate that into the timeline.
  • Provide a synopsis of discussions with the Program Officer or Manager at the agency.
  • Attach bio-sketches of team leader and critical researchers to the Description. Use NSF or other format of no more than 2 pages.


Budgets should

  • Include items related to the planning team efforts.
    This is not the application process for mandated cost-share required by federal grant funding agencies, nor is it meant to support the individual research activities of group members. See
    Cost Sharing for background, implications, and policy on cost sharing.
  • Be commensurate with the two to three year timeline.
  • Itemize activities, support, and other requests with explanation/justification.
  • Attach any additional supporting documentation (e.g., vendor bids).


Cover Memos should

  • Include signatures from the PI, the department head, and the associate dean for research in their College or School.
  • See the Funding Request Guidelines for general guidance on the Cover Memo.

Upon completion of the documents, submit your request in PDF form to with a copy to Please refer questions to Dr. Kimball, or 845-1811.