Finding Funding

Questions to ponder before you look for opportunities:

  1. What are you passionate about, i.e., where do you think you can make a uniquely significant contribution to your field?
  2. What is the need, problem, or issue you want to address and why is it important?
  3. If present knowledge or practice is inadequate, why do we need to know more and do better?
  4. In what sense is your idea innovative, i. e., how does it differ from what has already been done?
  5. What makes you think your idea or approach will have better outcomes?
  6. What will your research contribute and who will benefit from it?

From R. Porter (2015) Six Critical Questions to Launch a Successful Grant Proposal. NCURA Magazine May/June.

Who has a similar idea?

Search databases for funded projects:


Grant Opportunities for New Faculty

Equipment Grants

  • J. Murdock Charitable Trust Equipment Grant and NSF Major Research Instrumentation Program (limited submission)
  • NIH Shared Instrumentation Grants
  • The Faculty Excellence Grants and Scholarship & Creativity Grants can also be used for equipment

Early Career Grants

  • Burroughs Wellcome Fund - Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease
  • NSF CAREER Grant
  • NIH Research Career Development Awards
  • Young Investigator Award, Beckman Foundation
  • Young Faculty Award, DARPA
  • Searles Scholars Program (limited submission)
  • Pew Scholars Program in Biomedical Sciences


MSU and/or Montana Grants

Grant Submission Systems

Important Links

OSP Website:

CFE Website

CFE Research & Creativity section:

OSP Info Sheet:

OSP Forms

NIH Reporter / Federal Reporter

NSF Award Search

USDA Current Research Information System (CRIS)

DOE Portfolio Analysis and Management System (PAMS)

DOD Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs

Science and Engineering Indicators:

 Watch the video of the panel session

Links to MSU Organizations that do Broader Impacts work:

  • Academic Technology & Outreach - assist MSU in advancing excellence in teaching, learning, research and public engagement.
    • Outreach - an academic outreach arm of Montana State University, dedicated to sharing MSU's vast resources with the citizens of our communities at the local, state, regional, national and international level.
  • Native American Education and Outreach Projects - This site includes a list of programs that are offered through MSU with the support of our many partners, including Montana's tribal colleges.
  • American Indian Research Opportunities (AIRO) - consortium of Montana's seven Tribal Colleges and Montana State University in Bozeman, dedicated to providing opportunities for American Indian students in career fields where they are significantly underrepresented.
  • EMPower - promotes the success of underrepresented minorities and women in engineering and other fields of STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics).
  • Montana IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence - a collaborative network of Ph.D.-granting institutions, baccalaureate schools and tribal colleges that invests in Montana's biomedical research capacity and workforce pipeline.
  • Center for American Indian and Rural Health Equity (CAIRHE) - CAIRHE investigators educate MSU undergraduate and graduate students and tribal college students by involving them as research assistants in project work, including fieldwork and service learning in Montana's rural communities.
Wednesday, May 17 ||Presenters: Brittany Fasy, Computer Science, Aurélien Mazurie,Research CyberInfrastructure Group (part of University Information Technology), and Nika Stoop, CFE

Graphic abstracts and figures are valuable ways to communicate your ideas, both in grants and in publications. The workshop focused on principles of graphic/figure design, peer feedback on the participants' figures/graphics, and software demos.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017 || Facilitators: Leslie Schmidt, OSP, Jamie McEvoy, Earth Sciences and Nika Stoop, CFE
Guest Faculty: Bok Sowell, Animal & Range Sciences, Mary Cloninger, Chemistry & Biochemistry, Suzanne Held, Health & Human Development
This workshop is designed to help those who are first-time PIs navigate the world of grants management. Guest faculty will talk about student mentoring/coaching, budget management, reporting, and other PI responsibilities.

The NSF Broader Impacts Puzzle: Strategies to develop a plan and ideas of activities

Tuesday, November 15, 2016 - Presented by Suzi Taylor ([email protected]) and Jamie Cornish ([email protected]), Extended University

Learn more by visiting the Broader Impacts website of Academic Technology & Outreach.

Communicationg Your Science Workshop

Schimel, J., (2012) Writing Science: How to Write Papers that Get Cited and Proposals that Get Funded.  Oxford University Press, USA.

Schimel, J. Writing Science: How to Write Papers that Get Cited and Proposals that Get Funded Blog.

Porter, R.  (2007) Why Academics Have a Hard Time Writing Good Grant Proposals. The Journal of Research Administration. Volume XXXVIII, Number 2, 37.

Williams, J.M., and Bizup, J. (2015). Style : lessons in clarity and grace, Twelfth Edition. edn (Boston, Pearson).

Giddings, M.C., (2015) 8 Concepts Every Grant Writer Must Master For A Successful Proposal!

Pinker, S. (2014) Why Academics Stink at Writing. The Chronicle of Higher Education: The Chronicle Review.

Pinker, S. (2014). The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century. New York, NY: Penguin.

Sword, H. The Writer’s Diet Blog - Use the online WritersDiet Test to identify paunchy prose, then follow the no-nonsense advice in the book to strengthen and tone your verbal muscles.

Sword, H. (2012) Stylish Academic Writing. Harvard University Press, USA.

R. Porter (2015) Six Critical Questions to Launch a Successful Grant Proposal. NCURA Magazine May/June.

Randy Olson:

 Edward Tufte, The Visual Display of Quantitative Information 

Marc J. Kuchner, Marketing for Scientists: How to Shine in Tough Times