Proposal writing advice

A key part of science is seeking funding to support your ideas. We have a tradition of proposal writing for many reasons:

  1. Proposal writing forces you to clarify your ideas
  2. Funding support allows you to do your work in a more effective way
  3. Funding helps all of us, freeing up lab resources and contributing equipment to the group
  4. Successful funding builds your CV, growing your track record of accomplishments
  5. Successful proposals can promote your confidence (although let’s remember that most proposals are not funded)

Proposal writing is a different art than other types of writing that you may have experience with. So throw away everything you know about scientific writing at this point.

So here is some advice:

  1. Plenty of people have written on the subject. See Bradshaw’s 20 tips for proposal writing. All are relevant for graduate students with perhaps, the exception of 12 and 18.
  2. Following this, look at proposal examples on our Box folder: Examples > Proposals