Submitting a Grant

Extramural proposals are submitted on behalf of the UC Regents, and therefore all proposals are subject to review prior to submission. ISBER works in coordination with the Office of Research to prepare and submit proposals for faculty and graduate students.

Only certain individuals have the authority to submit proposals and accept awards of extramural grants and contracts. Sponsored Projects has been entrusted with the authority, on behalf of the Santa Barbara campus and the University of California, to certify that proposals are consistent with University policies and promises made in proposals can be honored if the project is funded.

For research and proposal development, contact: Barbara Walker,

For budget development and proposal submission, contact:

Investigators should notify ISBER staff as soon as possible, but at least 4 weeks prior to agency deadline, when planning to submit a proposal. The review and institutional endorsement of a proposal requires time and should not be left to the last minute.

Link to complete the ISBER PI Proposal Information form

PI Eligibility

Principal Investigator’s are automatically eligible to submit a proposal if they are a member of the Academic Senate, Professional Researchers employed at least 50% time, and Adjunct Professors employed at least 50% time. Graduate students are eligible to submit dissertation, field research grants or fellowship proposals with a Faculty Advisor as the lead PI or Co-PI. All other appointments may be eligible by submitting an exception to the Office of Research. Approval must be granted prior to proposal submission. Please check with ISBER early in the proposal process to verify eligibility if not UCSB Faculty.

Important Timeline for Proposal Preparation and Submission

ISBER will help to prepare your proposal for submission meeting all internal and agency deadlines. The UCSB Office of Research (OR) requires that ISBER, as the administering department, submit a proposal to them for review and approval a minimum of seven (7) business days prior to sponsor deadline (5 days for pre-review and suggested submission 2 days before deadline).

All proposals, regardless of sponsor or submission method, should be submitted to the sponsor (i.e. push the button) at least 48 hours prior to the sponsor imposed deadline. This UCSB Proposal Deadline has been enacted to allow OR, departmental staff, and PI(s) adequate time to address any possible submission issues prior to the sponsor imposed deadline.

To help ISBER staff comply with OR's pre-review timeline, we would appreciate a minimum notification (via email) of intent to submit 4 weeks in advance of agency deadline. Please complete ISBER's PI Information form (including budget) shortly thereafter and send us all proposal documents (the scope of work, research plan, & references may be in draft form) at least ten (10) business days prior to agency deadline. During the Office of Research's review the PI can continue to edit the technical/science section of the proposal and ISBER will gather any final revised documents from the PI & assemble the final version of the proposal for electronic uploading, copying, etc. 1 day before submission date.

Proposal Preparation

Proposals are carefully reviewed by the Office of Research to ensure that they comply with university, federal, and/or state requirements. The Sponsored Projects Officer in the Office of Research is responsible for submitting proposals and accepting awards on behalf of UC Regents. UCSB faculty and students do not have authority to approve or negotiate an award on behalf of UC Regents. ISBER will help faculty and students prepare and evaluate the proposal for compliance, make copies and forward a complete copy to the Office of Research for review and submission.

When a Principal Investigator (PI) makes a decision to apply to a grant program, they should complete the online ISBER PI Information Form as soon as possible.

ISBER will review the program guidelines and assist the PI in making sure all required documents are included, collated correctly, and the application follows the program specific instructions. For proposals submitted electronically, ISBER will upload or help upload all proposal documents. ISBER will prepare a complete copy of the proposal for Office of Research review. If the agency requires hard copies of the proposal, ISBER will make the copies and mail to the agency by the deadline.

ISBER will help you plan and prepare your proposal budget & confirm all proposed costs are consistent with campus and federal cost principles. Particular care must be given to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Uniform Guidance (the UG) and the UC Santa Barbara Departmental Costing Guidelines requirement that costs incurred for the same purpose in like circumstances shall be treated consistently as either a direct cost or an indirect (F&A) cost. For specific budget help go to Budget Proposal guidelines.

ISBER will help you prepare the budget, including:

  • projected academic titles and pay scales (including faculty summer salary & release time);
  • projected benefit rates and tuition provisions;
  • equipment expense (above $5,000/ea);
  • projected travel estimates;
  • sub-contracts, service agreements, and appropriate payment mechanisms for services provided by non-UCSB program staff;
  • apply correct Facilities & Administrative rate (indirect costs) for the proposed activity and location of activities;
  • justifiable expenses and administrative/departmental considerations.

*Note: Proposal budgets apply projected costs using all available knowledge of expected pay rates, merits, current airfare and per diem, mileage, and software & hardware estimates but PIs should acknowledge that actual amounts may change by the time the grant is awarded, and agencies anticipate and make allowance for this in their award conditions.

A Budget Justification is required and provides the rationale for proposed expenditures. Each category in the budget should include an accurate justification for the value that cost will bring to the project. ISBER will offer guidance and sample templates. When costs are explicitly listed and justified in the sponsor accepted budget request, grant/contract administrators, auditors, and sponsoring agencies can easily understand the nature of the costs and the allowability under the regulations. The primary purpose of a justification is to provide support for the funds requested to ensure adequate funding. Experience has shown that including a detailed budget justification in the proposal increases the likelihood that the sponsor will award the cost. Click here for specific budget justification guidelines

ISBER will review and offer advice on the documentation of University commitments and matching costs from outside sources (i.e. cost share, UC Participation) if allowed. If the PI(s) need help in obtaining cost share funding for their project, ISBER will provide you the appropriate project contribution request form for submission to the Office of Research. Cost share should only be included when it is a requirement of the sponsor.

ISBER will assist in preparation of all University (i.e. Data Sheet and Assurance, Disclosure of Financial Interests, etc) and Agency forms (i.e., NSF, etc.).

ISBER will verify all Principal Investigator(s) eligibility; the correct use of institutional identifiers; appropriate cost-share commitments as needed; and collect and validate all documentation for subcontractors and/or consultants.

Proposal Submission

Many sponsors are developing and implementing electronic systems that allow the University to submit proposals electronically either through the online portals or via e-mail. Despite the method of submission, Sponsored Projects review and endorsement of proposals requesting extramural funding is required prior to submission to the sponsor. OR requires submission of all proposals 48 hours in advance of agency deadline.

For NSF proposals UCSB will submit via and for proposals UCSB uses Cayuse, a web-based software package that is designed to simplify the preparation and electronic submission of proposals. At UCSB, we use Cayuse as the submission portal for proposals that are sent to


ISBER staff will act as a liaison between the UCSB Office of Research and principal investigator.

ISBER will coordinate the review of the proposal and facilitate signature from the campus Sponsored Projects Officer.

After endorsement by appropriate UCSB officials, ISBER will ensure that the appropriate number of copies are forwarded to the funding agency for review or submit online on behalf of UC Regents.

Compliance Approvals

PIs are responsible for submitting all necessary compliance protocols (IACUC, IRB, etc.) in a timely manner. Compliance assurances may be listed as "pending" on proposals that are submitted, but must be finalized and approved before any research can begin on a sponsored award. All information about developing and submitting compliance protocols can be found on the Office of Research website: