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Proposal Preparation

Writing a Biosketch


The NSF and NIH require a biographical sketch (limited to two pages) for each individual identified as senior personnel. The NSF now requires an approved format for preparation of the biographical sketch. Approved formats for creating biographical sketches are:

Science Experts Network Curriculum Vitae (SciENcv)


NSF has partnered with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to use SciENcv as an NSF-approved format for use in preparation of the biographical sketch section of an NSF proposal. Adoption of a single, common researcher profile system for Federal grants reduces administrative burden for researchers. SciENcv will produce an NSF-compliant PDF version of the biographical sketch. Proposers must save these documents and submit them as part of their proposals via FastLane, Research.gov or Grants.gov.
FAQs on using SciENcv

Marketing Your Proposal


Reviewers will quickly determine whether or not they like a proposal. Therefore, it is critical that your proposal catch reviewers’ interests as soon as the review process begins. The resources provided below describe techniques to make your proposal interesting and compelling so it will stand out in the minds of reviewers.

  • Crafting a Winning Title - A paper that describes how to create an attention-grabbing and effective title for a proposal.
  • Crafting a Sales Pitch - A paper that outlines how to create an efficient and convincing sales pitch for a proposal.
  • Toot Your Own Horn - A paper that discusses ways that scientists can recognize and improve the things they already do to market ideas and proposals.
  • Why-marketing-is-education-Grant-Writing
  • Can We Talk- A paper by Robert Porter that provides guidance for initiating and conducting conversations with program officers and program managers from funding organizations.
  • Giving Presentations - A presentation by David Long and Randy Beard describing an effective process for preparing technical presentations.
  • Just because you’re eligible doesn’t mean you’re competitive - A presentation from In4Grants for developing and writing competitive proposals. The presentation uses an NIH proposal as an example, but the principles described – know your competition, what the agency is looking for, etc. – apply to any funding organization.