The information on this page is taken from the NIH website.
Start each section with the appropriate section heading – Significance, Innovation, Approach. Cite published experimental details in the Research Strategy section and provide the full reference in the Bibliography and References Cited section.
- Explain the importance of the problem or critical barrier to progress in the field that the proposed project addresses.
- Explain how the proposed project will improve scientific knowledge, technical capability, and/or clinical practice in one or more broad fields.
- Describe how the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field will be changed if the proposed aims are achieved.
- Explain how the application challenges and seeks to shift current research or clinical practice paradigms
- Describe any novel theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation or interventions to be developed or used, and any advantage over existing methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions.
- Explain any refinements, improvements, or new applications of theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions.
- Describe the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses to be used to accomplish the specific aims of the project. Unless addressed separately in (Resource Sharing Plan), include how the data will be collected, analyzed, and interpreted as well as any resource sharing plans as appropriate.
- Discuss potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success anticipated to achieve the aims.
- If the project is in the early stages of development, describe any strategy to establish feasibility, and address the management of any high risk aspects of the proposed work.
- Point out any procedures, situations, or materials that may be hazardous to personnel and precautions to be exercised.
- If an applicant has multiple Specific Aims, then the applicant may address Significance, Innovation and Approach for each Specific Aim individually, or may address Significance, Innovation and Approach for all of the Specific Aims collectively. As applicable, also include the following information as part of the Research Strategy, keeping within the three sections listed above: Significance, Innovation, and Approach.
- Preliminary Studies for New Applications
For new applications, include information on Preliminary Studies. Discuss the PD/PI’s preliminary studies, data, and or experience pertinent to this application. Except for Exploratory/Developmental Grants (R21/R33), Small Research Grants (R03), and Academic Research Enhancement Award (AREA) Grants (R15), preliminary data can be an essential part of a research grant application and help to establish the likelihood of success of the proposed project. Early Stage Investigators should include preliminary data (however, for R01 applications, reviewers will be instructed to place less emphasis on the preliminary data in application from Early Stage Investigators than on the preliminary data in applications from more established investigators).
- Progress Report for Renewal and Revision Applications
For renewal/revision applications, provide a Progress Report. Provide the beginning and ending dates for the period covered since the last competitive review. Summarize the specific aims of the previous project period and the importance of the findings, and emphasize the progress made toward their achievement. Explain any significant changes to the specific aims and any new directions including changes to the specific aims and any new directions including changes resulting from significant budget reductions. A list of publications, patents, and other printed materials should be included in (Progress Report Publication List); do not include this information here.