The Office of Research & Commercialization (ORC) Proposal Managers assist faculty who are pursuing funding from external and/or internal sources of support for their research projects.
The Office of Research & Commercialization is the only office vested with the authority to sign research proposals and contracts on behalf of the University of Central Florida. The Office of Research & Commercialization must verify that a proposal is current, complete, and accurate. Therefore, ORC must review, approve, and sign all proposals, including those when UCF will be a subcontractor, prior to submission to the funding agency. Faculty members are not authorized to submit proposals without prior College, Department, Center, Institute, and ORC review and approval. This is done using the UCF proposal transmittal form (PTF).
The Office of Research & Commercialization is located in Suite 501 of the University Tower in Research Park. The office is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and all business must be conducted during these hours unless advanced arrangements have been made with your assigned Proposal Manager and approved by your Department Chair/Dean. Only exceptional circumstances will be considered.
A completed and signed hard copy version of the ORC Proposal Transmittal Form (download in MS Word and PDF) or an electronically signed proposal through My Research must be submitted to ORC with each proposal in order to receive endorsement from the University of Central Florida. This process must be completed prior to actual proposal submission.
To receive official endorsement, proposals should include at a minimum:
- A completed and signed ORC Proposal Transmittal Form .
- A statement of work.
- A detailed budget and budget justification or narrative.
- A copy of the solicitation or request for proposal, if applicable.
- If a subcontract is involved, a statement of work, budget, budget justification, and signed letter of commitment by the subcontractor's institutional representative is also required.
- Signed compliance paperwork that may include Special Hazards, Cost Sharing, Materials Transfer, CAS exemption, etc. Please check with your Proposal Manager for specific details.
Each endorsement on the form indicates that the signer believes that the proposed research or sponsored activity will be beneficial to all concerned (department, university, sponsor) and that his/her unit assumes responsibility for commitment of resources or persons under the unit's jurisdiction as indicated by the proposal.
- Principal Investigator (PI) or Project Director (PD)
Your endorsement of the proposal certifies that you are the author of the proposal and that the workload of other research or teaching faculty has been or can be arranged to meet the specifications of the project. It also indicates that you have determined that the requested time, facilities, equipment, and funding are sufficient to accomplish the proposed project or task. Furthermore, you agree to be responsible for the proper conduct of the proposed program and to abide by all applicable laws and the policies and regulations of UCF and the proposed funding source.
- Department Chair
The endorsement of the Department Chair certifies that he or she has reviewed the proposal and concurs with the representations of the Principal Investigator or Project Director. It also certifies that the PI/PD's teaching load will be compatible with the postulated time requirement of the project and that adequate space, equipment, and facilities are either already available or required modifications or new additions have been approved and the funding source identified. Finally, the endorsement of the Chair ensures that, to the best of his or her knowledge, all other departmental requirements have been met and there will be no other resource requirements generated by the award which have not already been accounted for in the proposal.
The endorsement of the Dean certifies that he or she concurs with the representations of the PI or PD and Department Chair and attests that the proposed activity contributes to the attainment of the goals for the college. Furthermore, the Dean's endorsement signifies approval of any identified college funding commitments. For multi-disciplinary proposals, Deans and Department Chairs of all affected units must review and endorse the proposal.
- Office of Research & Commercialization
The endorsement of ORC certifies that the budget is complete and accurate and that the proposal meets the requirements of the sponsoring agency as well as UCF. ORC's endorsement also certifies that the proposal is, to the best of ORC's knowledge, complete and accurate, has the appropriate prior approvals, and meets the requirements of the sponsoring agency as well as the University. ORC also reviews the proposal to see that the University is recovering the maximum allowable Facility and Administrative (F&A) costs except in those cases where F&A rates are being limited by the sponsor or a Service Fee is used in lieu of F&A.
It is necessary to establish internal proposal processing deadlines to ensure timely review and completion of the all internal and external proposal requirements. In addition, these deadlines assist the ORC pre-award staff in organizing and prioritizing their individual workloads. Lastly, it will allow time for the Proposal Manager to interact with UCF and external agency staff as necessary.
Completed proposals, with all required signed internal documents, should arrive at the Office of Research & Commercialization no less than 48 hours prior to the agency required mailing date. If no due date is required by an agency, every effort will be made by the pre-award staff to process your proposal within 48 - 72 hours of proposal receipt. If extenuating circumstances dictate that a proposal be submitted before this internal deadline or on the same day of receipt into ORC, please promptly notify your assigned Proposal Manager as these will be handled on a case-by-case basis and should not be misconstrued as a standard operating procedure.
Specifically, this timeline allows a Proposal Manager adequate time to ensure the proposal follows agency guidelines; complete and sign necessary assurances, certifications and representations; verify the budget; initiate or receive subcontractor documentation; receive or initiate UCF internal compliance documentation; and have sufficient time to implement last minute proposal changes.
In some instances, a contract, legal or export control review may be required due to the inclusion of specific contractual language provided by the agency as part of the RFP or proposal submission process (i.e. intellectual property, data sharing, FAR and/or DFAR clauses, materials transfer, non-disclosure agreements, etc). Information concerning access, dissemination, foreign national participation and export control requirements are available at the Office of Export Compliance website.
There are two ways to submit a completed proposal to ORC: (1) using My Research or (2) hard copy format. When using My Research, please also notify the Proposal Manager via email or phone to avoid any confusion in notification or external submission.
Additionally, there are two ways to submit a proposal to an external sponsor: (1) Utilizing predetermined sponsor electronic submission process, or (2) hard copy format via Federal Express (ORC preferred method for mailing). It is not recommended that the researcher submit his or her proposal directly to the sponsor.
The Principal Investigator is responsible for submitting the proposal to the Office of Research & Commercialization at least two (2) full working days prior to the proposal mailing/electronic submission date. For example, if a proposal must be mailed on Thursday, it should be completed and delivered to the Office of Research & Commercialization by Tuesday.
Proposals requiring special binding (comb, three ring, etc.) should arrive at least three (3) full working days prior to mailing.
Proposals received within these guidelines will receive a Full Level of Service. Proposals not received within these guidelines may receive an Expedited Level of Service. In all cases where a thorough review of the proposal did not take place prior to proposal submission, the Proposal Manager will then review after proposal submission and follow-up with an email explaining any inconsistencies, possible corrections, and/or internal compliance issues for resolution.Full Level of Service (at least 2 full working days prior to the agency deadline)
If the proposal is delivered within ORC's internal deadline, the Proposal Manager will:
- Assist with budget preparation
- Assist with forms management
- Prepare and sign agency required certifications, assurances, and representations
- Prepare and sign cover letter and proposal face page (if applicable)
- Review completed proposal for conformance with agency requirements
- Review completed proposal for initiation of specific compliance requirements
- Copy proposa
- Prepare and sign the institutional endorsement letter
- Process proposal mailing, as required to meet agency guidelines
If the proposal is delivered after UCF's internal deadline, the Proposal Manager will:
- Review budget for accuracy
- Prepare and sign the institutional endorsement letter
If time permits:
- Make corrections/suggestions to budget data and agency forms
- Prepare and sign agency required certifications, assurances, and representations
- Prepare and sign proposal face page (if applicable)
Under expedited level of service, the complete proposal package may be returned to the faculty member to complete the proposal copying and mailing unless the submission is done electronically.
- Go to MyResearch.
- Make sure your internet browser is enabled to receive pop-ups for this site only.
- Insert user name and password (If you do not remember your user id or password, please click on Forgot your password?). Enter your user or email address and the system will automatically send you your user id and password. If the system indicates this is an invalid email address, then contact your ORC Administrator to update your email address in the My Research database.
- On the left side menu under "Admin," place the mouse over "Submission Forms" then click on "Research Proposal" from the drop down menu. Follow the instructions. There are several tabs to complete so please access each one and complete all areas with a red [R] that apply. At this point, you can submit the proposal for signature or save as an incomplete draft and access it at a later time to submit or delete. (If you would like group or individual instruction on how to submit an internal proposal transmittal form electronically, please contact your Proposal Manager). It is important to upload all necessary documentation so the reviewers who are approving this proposal submission will have access for evaluative purposes (i.e., budget, abstract, etc.)
- Click the save button for an incomplete draft version or the submit button to complete the proposal. (After submission is completed, the proposal will automatically be routed to all college, department, Center, Institute, and ORC personnel as listed in the workflow management for approval. To change the workflow management, please contact your Proposal Manager). This signature process must be completed prior to submission to the sponsoring agency.
The Principal Investigator is responsible for selecting or allowing the appropriate Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) in the UCF Office of Research & Commercialization (Proposal Manager) access to the completed and ready-to-submit proposal at least two (2) full working days prior to the deadline date. For example, if a proposal must be submitted on Friday, access should be provided by at least Wednesday. The Office of Research & Commercialization must receive all required signed internal documents before a proposal can be electronically submitted.
The number of federal, state, local, and nonprofit agencies requiring electronic submission of all or a portion of a proposal is increasing. It is very important to contact your assigned Proposal Manager when submitting proposals to agencies electronically early in the process. ORC is the responsible division within the university to register for all electronic proposal submission systems.
Grants.gov allows organizations to electronically find and apply for more than $400 billion in Federal grants. Grants.gov is the single access point for over 1000 grant programs offered by all Federal grant-making agencies.
Once you have located a grant opportunity for which you wish to apply, check to see if it is required to be submitted online through grants.gov. In most cases, the solicitation will have direct access by using a web link such as "Apply Now." This is very important to know as many competitions may have multiple CFDA numbers. If you choose the incorrect mechanism, it may be returned without review. You will need to enter a competition identification, funding opportunity, or CFDA number to access the application package and instructions. In order to view application packages and instructions, you will also need to download and install the PureEdge Viewer.
Please do not register the organization, as an individual, or as an AOR. UCF has completed all necessary registration requirements to enable a grant application to be submitted.
What if there is an agency-imposed limitation on the number of proposals permitted under a specific program announcement?
The Limited Submission Programs for upcoming grant programs that have a limit on the number of proposals that can be submitted by UCF is published on the ORC website under "Funding Opportunities."
When a specific program limits the number of proposals permissible from one institution, the Office of Research & Commercialization will institute the following internal university procedure:
- A notice will be published by the ORC Grants Development Office to notify each Center, College, Department, and Institute about the opportunity to submit a limited number of proposals under a specific agency announcement.
- The notice will contain an internal deadline for receipt of a brief statement of work or abstract, as well as a budget, from interested faculty members.
- The ORC Proposal Development Office will coordinate the review of summary proposals with the Vice President for Research and members of the UCF Research Council.
- Select which proposals will be submitted to the sponsoring agency and notify each potential Principal Investigator, in writing, of whether he or she was selected to represent the University for a specific limited submission competition.
|Principal Investigator||Departmental/College/Center Personnel||Office of Research & Commercialization|
|Complete a Faculty Profile to obtain potential funding opportunities.||Promote faculty preparation and involvement in research.||Assist in identifying funding agencies and obtaining guidelines.|
|Notify ORC of intention to submit a proposal and forward copy of guidelines||Encourage new faculty members to attend workshops and to schedule a meeting with ORC staff.||Review and interpret guidelines|
|Contact Program Manager at the agency to discuss the proposal||Ensure adequate space requirements are available or committed for the project.||Serve as liaison between the university and external funding sources.|
|Contact the Department/ College/Institute to notify of submission and request assistance.||Provide assistance in preparing proposals.||Complete standard Assurances and Certifications and Representations on behalf of the University.|
|Obtain cost share/match commitments from Department Chairs and Deans, if applicable||Review requests for cost share/match commitments and provide preliminary confirmation regarding level of commitment.|
|Write technical component of proposal.||Confirm all investigators are capable of conducting the proposed research.||Check for discrepancies between budget and statement of work, as time permits.|
|Follow agency guidelines and format to complete proposal; use correct forms.||Reinforce University requirement that ORC must review and approval all proposals prior to submission.||Ensure proposal meets university and agency requirements.|
|Prepare preliminary budget and/or coordinate with Department/College/Institute/ORC for assistance.||Advise faculty that ORC is the "authorized representative/organization" for all proposals and the only office with authority to sign on behalf of the University president.||Review budget for accuracy and assist with corrections as necessary.|
|Submit preliminary and final budgets to ORC in sufficient detail to enable review prior to submission date.||Remind faculty of the ORC internal receipt deadlines for processing complete proposals.|
|Provide a subcontractor's statement of work, budget, budget justification and signed letter of commitment, and agency required forms, if applicable.||Review and verify subcontractor's proposal documents.|
|Complete the Proposal Transmittal Form (PTF) and obtain all approval signatures prior to submission.||Verify the proposal transmittal form is complete and accurate.||Review, approve and sign PTF.|
|Obtain approval for Matching Funds for Federal Agencies (MFFA), if applicable.||Verify MFFA requests meet eligibility requirements.|
|Obtain final signatures for cost sharing/matching funds from College Dean or Department Chair or designees.||Sign approvals for Department/College/Institute cost share and match commitments.||Review match/cost share commitments for accuracy and approval signatures.|
|Review and cooperate with ORC to determine whether any technical information or technology involved in the proposed research is subject to export control law or regulations.||Cooperate with ORC to determine whether any technical information or technology involved in the proposed research is subject to export control law or regulations||ssist faculty member with export control review regarding technical information or technology involved in the research project.|
|Negotiate with Co-Principal Investigator(s) the F&A costs distribution.||Duplicate and mail proposals.|
|Prepare a memorandum on how F&A costs and credit will be split when multiple departments/ colleges or institutes are involved in the project.||Follow up consultations for revisions and resubmissions.|
|Obtain required signatures for technical effort or release time for each investigator.||Prepare and schedule workshops and training for faculty members.|
|Complete Form AA-21 if a conflict of interest is anticipated.|
|Complete and provide a Request for Service Fee in Lieu of F&A costs at least five (5) days before submission for internal approval.|
|Provide ORC with application checklist, if applicable.|
|Complete all internal processing forms as required.||Advise faculty about the need to submit internal processing forms.||Ensure all internal forms are completed, as applicable.|
If a proposal is not funded, you should request a copy of the reviewers' comments from the sponsor/agency. These can be quite informative and helpful for a resubmission. Considering the criticisms of one reviewer or a set of reviewers does not guarantee that the proposal will be accepted when or if it is resubmitted. However, using the reviewers' comments can make your resubmitted application a better proposal.
The following list presents typical shortcomings of proposals which may represent why some proposals are not funded.
- Program guidelines, priorities, and literature have not been thoroughly reviewed.
- The significance of the project or program is inadequately documented.
- The plans for evaluating the effectiveness of the project or the program are inadequate.
- Continuance of the program is not explained.
- A target group is not clearly identified.
- Objectives are incomplete.
- The proposal is not well organized.
- Excessive jargon is used in the proposal.
- The budget does not add-up correctly.
- Budget items are not explained or referred to in a narrative.
- The proposal lacks a professional appearance.
- Application forms and items requested are incomplete.
- Appendices are used excessively or incorrectly.
- Vitae are not up-to-date.
Keep in mind that denials are far more common than awards and are often not necessarily a reflection of a poor proposal or a bad idea. They may simply result from limited funding available from the sponsor. Try again!
Here are several points to remember if you resubmit your proposal to a different agency than the primary submission:
- Submission requirements between agencies often vary widely, and a proposal written to conform to the standards of one agency may need major revisions to fit the guidelines of another agency.
- The funds available from a second agency may differ from those offered by the original agency.
- Some revision to the overall plan of your project and its budget may be necessary in order to meet the funds offered by a second agency.
As with the original proposal, ORC personnel are available to assist with a resubmittal. Resubmissions may be a much swifter process than the original submission, depending on several factors. If the proposal is resubmitted with only minor changes to the same agency, the process may be very quick indeed. If you need to make major revisions and then decide to submit to a different agency, the process will be significantly longer. When a proposal is denied, ORC staff will attempt to help you locate another agency to whom you may submit your proposal.
- General Information
- Internal UCF Proposal Submission Procedures (All Proposals)
- UCF Proposal Processing Deadlines
- Hard Copy Proposal Submissions (Federal Express)
- ORC Electronic Proposal Submissions
- Limited Submissions
- Proposal Preparation Responsibilities
- Unfunded Proposals and Resubmissions
- Role of ORC in the Resubmittal Process
The ORC serves UCF scholars as the official liaison between UCF and funding sources and by helping faculty work through the proposal and contract management process.
This site includes information to assist university scholars through the announcement, application and post-award stages and to familiarize prospective partners with the breadth of funded research conducted at the university.
Sponsored research at UCF is growing exponentially. In 2011 the university surpassed the $100 million dollar mark in external funding for the seventh straight year with $106.6 million. And UCF's pioneering efforts to commercialize technology continued to stimulate local economies throughout the state. The UCF Business Incubation program expanded to nine locations and multiple governments and communities served with the opening of a center in Volusia County, its ninth location. As a 2011 Carnegie Foundation "very high research activity" university, UCF is committed to the pursuit of excellence and intellectual growth and seeks to excel at moving ideas to innovation and realization.