Submit A Proposal

All proposals for external funding should be received by Research Administrative Services at least 5 business days prior to the agency submission deadline. Submission of proposals through a single office enables Howard University to review proposals for consistency with University policies and compliance with external regulations.

Learn how to submit proposals through the electronic signature and routing process here.


Most sponsors require that proposals are submitted and administered by the institution and will not accept submissions from an individual researcher. Research Administrative Services has the authority to submit proposals for Howard University on behalf of the Principal Investigator (PI) or Project Director (PD).

By submitting the proposal, both Howard University and the PI/PD agree to follow the sponsor's guidelines that include, but are not limited to, the monitoring of expenditures, invoicing, and the submission of financial reports. PI/PDs are strongly encouraged to notify their assigned Research Administrator (RA) if they are planning to submit a proposal in the near future.

Please note: Research Administrative Services may turn down an award for a proposal submitted without prior approval.


It is important to provide Research Administrative Services with adequate time to review and prepare all proposal documents prior to the submission of the proposal. The proposal and all supporting documents should be received by Research Administrative Services at least 5 business days prior to the submission deadline date, in the same format required by the sponsor. When proposals are submitted to Research Administrative Services for review, the documents must be in final form. A proposal in "final form" is complete and contains all necessary sponsor and internal University forms and documentation.

Please make sure to obtain and utilize a proposal submission checklist. Incomplete proposals WILL NOT be accepted for review!

The Six Steps in Proposal Submission

  1. Once the proposal, and all necessary documentation, is received by Research Administrative Services, the Administrative Aide (AA) assigns an identification number to the proposal and conducts an initial review to ensure that all required documents are included.
  2. The AA logs the proposal into the Pre-Award Database and then distributes the proposal to the appropriate Research Administrator (RA).
  3. The RA reviews the proposal and required documents to ensure they are complete and accurate.
  4. The RA works with the PI/PD to resolve any outstanding issues prior to proposal submission.
  5. The authorized signatory performs the final review of the proposal and signs the proposal on behalf of the University.
  6. The Vice President for Research approves the proposal.
  7. The RA submits electronic proposals to the sponsoring entity.

    However, the PI/PD submits hardcopy proposals to the sponsoring entity with a request to have the award notification sent to Research Administrative Services.