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Criteria for Proposal Evaluation

The URC will evaluate proposals according to the following criteria:

  1. Design and feasibility of the study or project:
    1. The proposal is written so that a person with no prior knowledge of the subject may make an informed judgment as to the scientific or scholarly merit of the proposed project.
    2. The proposal clearly describes what is intended by the PI, how the PI intends to reach objectives, and anticipated implications of the project’s findings.
    3. The proposed project clearly exhibits application of sound investigative methodology.
    4. When the research requires statistical analyses, procedures are specified AND are demonstrably linked to the research questions/hypotheses being investigated.
  2. Significance of expected results and identification of expected products:
    1. Whether for basic or applied research, the proposal demonstrates evident value. The project has potential for producing a quality scholarly product or publication.
    2. The project enhances the PI’s ability to obtain external funding or elevates institutional image.
    3. The proposal indicates the extent to which new ideas may be generated or established concepts may be reexamined.
    4. The proposal is supported by relevant scholarly literature.
  3. Approval from the appropriate Review Board (IRB or IACUC), if applicable.
    1. All proposals using human subjects or experimental animals must have appropriate Review Board approval. Approval forms may be submitted concurrently with the grant application.
    2. Forms for IRB/IACUC review can be found at the Office of Research and Innovation's website for faculty resources. Approval forms are submitted to the Office of Research and Innovation.
    3. Grant funding will not be released until URC receives appropriate Review Board approval.
    4. Proposals that require use of animals must clearly describe how animals will be handled during and at the conclusion of the study. If animals are purchased with URC funds and are to be sold at the end of the project, sales proceeds will be returned to the University Research Committee. For animals not sold, the department responsible for the maintenance of the animals must be stated.
  4. Principal Investigator and other personnel
    1. Specific attention will be given to the PI’s performance with respect to prior ORG awards, if applicable, and to the quality of resulting reports and research products.
    2. The research and publication record of the PI will be considered.
    3. The PI is expected to submit results from one ORG project for publication or presentation before requesting funds for a new project.
    4. Special consideration will be given to new faculty who are engaged in their initial research effort and to established faculty who wish to change their research focus or begin new research efforts.
    5. Although applications will be accepted from all faculty, tenure-track faculty may receive an award each year through their tenure decision year. Following the granting of tenure, faculty will be restricted to one award per three-year period.
  5. External Support
    1. PI’s are expected to apply for external funding to support on-going research.
    2. Proposals which have an enhanced probability of external funding will generally be favored.

Fiscal and Other Conditions

  1. Principal and Co-Principal Investigators may request partial summer salary support in a proposal with approval of the Department Head. The sum of an investigator’s partial research salary and any teaching salary cannot exceed 100% of the applicant’s institutional base salary on a monthly basis.
  2. Other proposed personnel salaries also should not exceed University-approved standards. If grantees wish to pay above the approved rates, an appropriate justification must be included with the application and salary or wages must remain within the guidelines of the Tarleton Comprehensive Pay Plan. For additional information, see the Employee Services website.
  3. Faculty salary requests are capped at a 25% summer load equivalent per award.
  4. Those wanting to engage students in the research effort should concurrently apply for student funding through the Office of Research and Innovations or the Applied Learning Experience program.
  5. Travel expenses will be critically examined. Travel funding can only be requested for
    research data collection, not for attending scholarly meetings or conferences.
  6. The PI should first attempt to provide for equipment through the department, college, or by
    other means rather than as a budgetary request within the proposal.
  7. Any equipment purchased with ORG funds becomes the property of Tarleton State University and normally becomes part of the PI’s departmental inventory. However, the URC reserves the right to determine the disposition of equipment.
  8. Project funding commitments from all sources must be documented, as appropriate.