Limited Submission Guidelines

Funding agencies are increasingly restricting the number of applications an institution can submit in response to many funding opportunities. Utah State University (USU) designates these as Limited Submission Programs.

If more applications than the sponsor allows are submitted in response to a Limited Submission Program, ALL applications from the institution may be disqualified from review. Therefore, complying with sponsor guidelines is critical.

If a sponsor contacts USU to report that a program application limit has been exceeded, all unauthorized proposals will be administratively withdrawn.

Identifying Limited Submission Programs

Information on currently identified Limited Submission Programs can be found in USU’s GrantForward database.

While the Office of Research will make every effort to identify Limited Submission Programs that may be of interest to USU faculty, finding every possible opportunity is unfeasible. Therefore, faculty members who wish to apply to a program for which submission is limited and the funding opportunity is not listed in the GrantForward database should email Jerilyn Hansen at immediately with the sponsor, program title, due date, and URL to determine whether an internal selection process is necessary.

If there are less than 15 working days to the sponsor deadline, proposals will be approved for submission on a first come, first served basis. Proposals received by the Office of Research after USU has reached its maximum number of submissions will be rejected and cannot be submitted. If there are more than 15 working days to the sponsor deadline, and the Office of Research receives more interest than the maximum number of submissions allowed, an announcement from the Research Development Division will provide instructions regarding the internal selection process, including requirements for an internal preproposal, internal deadlines, and contact information for the Office of Research personnel (or designee) coordinating the process.

Completing the Internal Selection Process

Office of Research has established the following procedure for selecting the proposal(s) that will be submitted in response to a Limited Submission Program.

  1. Upon announcement of a Limited Submission Program, faculty interested in submitting a proposal will be required to complete an online Notice of Intent (NOI).
  2. When the number of NOIs does not exceed the sponsor’s application limit, Office of Research will notify the internal applicants that they have received institutional approval to submit their proposals to the sponsor.
  3. When the number of NOIs exceeds the sponsor’s limit, an internal selection process will be required. Research Development will notify faculty who submitted NOIs of the need for an internal selection, which will include the completion of a Limited Submission application for review. Research Development will provide the deadline for completion of the Limited Submission application in the internal competition announcement.
  4. The Office of Research will form an internal review committee of faculty members who have expertise in the program’s subject area to evaluate the Limited Submission applications and select USU’s applicant(s). The criteria used for evaluating the internal applications will reflect the criteria stated in the program announcement. Faculty should clearly address the sponsor’s objectives and funding criteria, including how cost-share requirements will be met (if applicable).
  5. The Office of Research will evaluate the recommendations of the internal review committee and make a final decision on the proposal(s) to be green-lighted for submission to the sponsor.
  6. Research Development will notify all applicants of the results of the internal process. Research Development will also provide the names(s) of the approved candidate(s) to Sponsored Programs. Reviewers’ comments will be provided to all applicants. Throughout this process, the anonymity of the reviewers will be maintained.

NOTE 1: Some internal competitions begin with a selection process within the colleges (the Research Development announcement will indicate if this is the case). It is the PI’s responsibility to find out if his/her college or school has set an internal college review deadline.

NOTE 2: Certain program announcements may be specific to a college or department. In these cases, the Office of Research will ask the respective college(s) or departments(s) to coordinate the internal selection process. The Office of Research will work with the college(s)/department(s) to ensure that appropriate contact information and internal deadlines are included in the internal competition announcement. After the internal selection process is completed, it is the responsibility of the college/department to provide the name(s) of the successful candidate(s) to Research Development.

NOTE 3: If the Office of Research receives NOIs or internal applications for a Limited Submission Program after the internal deadline, they will be rejected unless:

  • The Office of Research did not receive any NOIs or internal applications by the original specified deadline, or;
  • The Office of Research received fewer NOIs or internal applications than the maximum number of applications allowed by the sponsor. NOIs or internal applications received under these circumstances will be treated on a first-come, first-served basis until the maximum number allowed is reached.

AN IMPORTANT NOTE ON SUBMISSION: In order for USU faculty to effectively capitalize on limited submission opportunities, it is imperative that all applications selected to go forward by the internal review committee result in timely proposal submission. Failure to realize this objective may result in a PI’s loss of eligibility for consideration in the next internal competition round for the same opportunity and a one-year loss of eligibility for consideration in any other limited submission internal competition round.