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CORE Grant Tips for Principal Investigators

CORE Grant Tips for Principal Investigators

Prepare to Apply - Start Early!

Get informed
The process requires close coordination between investigators and grants administrators. Work with your institution’s central grants office early to learn how your institution is managing the submission process.

Get registered
All Principal Investigators must have a proposalCENTRAL account. If your institution is not already listed in the proposalCENTRAL system, you will need to work with your grants administrator to get your institution registered in order for you to link to it.

Your proposalCENTRAL account will stay with you throughout your career. The same account can be affiliated with multiple institutions. You are responsible for maintaining your account information.

Talk to your institution to find out if you will be relying on proposalCENTRAL forms or an alternate solution specific to your institution.

You will need a way to convert your text documents into PDF format. This format is required by proposalCENTRAL for all text attachments.

Find Funding Opportunity Announcements and Download Package

All funding opportunities announcements (FOAs) are posted here and on the proposalCENTRAL website, when you select ‘American Academy of Otolaryngology from the GrantMakers drop down menu.

IMPORTANT: All electronic applications must be in response to a funding opportunity announcement (FOA). Application packages are specific to individual FOAs. Always be sure to read the grant FOA document in full and refer to it often to ensure you are meeting all of the requirements of the funding organization.

Work with your central grants office to determine what parts of the application package you are responsible for completing and what parts they might be able to assist with or facilitate.

Develop the research plan and other text documents as usual using a word processing program. Once finished, convert the document into PDF. Check the PDF files carefully to ensure graphics and legends, etc., are as intended. The research plan can be no more then ten pages in length (excluding appendices which might include graphs or tables).

Follow ALL instructions within the FOA. Instructions in the FOA “trump” those found in proposalCENTRAL. 

Once your application is received by proposalCENTRAL, our systems will automatically generate the table of contents, page numbers, headers and footers. We do recommend you use section headings in your documents to make sections easy to identify for reviewers.

proposalCENTRAL will send any email notification confirming your applications has officially been submitted.

Errors are fatal – your application will not be accepted until all errors are resolved. No one cares more about your application than you! After your error-free application is assembled in the system, you will want to view/print the application so that you can see just what a reviewer will see. This is your last opportunity to make edits to the application prior to officially submitting.

Finding Help

proposalCENTRAL Customer Service Hotline
If you have any questions about registration on proposalCENTRAL, how to apply for a particular grant, or anything else, please contact their customer support hotline at 1-800 875 2562 (Toll-free U.S. and Canada), +1 703 964 5840 (Direct Dial International) or by email at

AAO-HNSF CORE Grants Program Administrator
For general questions about the CORE grants program, please contact Sarah O'Connor 1-703-535-3745 or Julia Quintero 1-703-535-3719

Other Helpful Sites

Planning to use animals in your research?
Refer to the PHS Policy on the Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals.

Planning to use human subjects in your research?
Read the Belmont Report, a summary of the ethical principles to be used in research with human subjects, developed by the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research.

The Office for Human Research Protections offers many resources including:

The NIH offers a new course entitled Protecting Human Research Participants. This is a new course, with new content and replaces the previous Protecting Human Research Participants (PHRP) course as of March 1, 2008.