Completing an application package
An application package consists of a combination of mandatory and optional documents. Mandatory fields in the documents are yellow and must be completed.
It is critical that you read the application instructions given with each application package. On occasions the instructions ask for specific components of a proposal to be uploaded into a section of a form other than the section designated on the form.
Enter a name for the application in the Application Filing Name field
This application can be completed in its entirety offline; however, you will need to login to the Grants.gov website during the submission process. You can save your application at any time by clicking the "Save" button at the top of your screen. The "Save & Submit" button will not be functional until all required data fields in the application are completed and you clicked on the "Check Package for Errors" button and confirmed all data required data fields are completed.
Grants.gov auto-populates the following information:
- Opportunity Title
- Offering Agency
- CFDA Number*
- CFDA Description*
- Opportunity Number
- Competition ID
- Opportunity Open Date
- Opportunity Close Date
- Agency Contact
Please verify that the information as shown corresponds to the funding opportunity for which you wish to apply.
*Note: Many FOAs include multiple CFDA (Catalog for Domestic Assistance) numbers. When this is the case, the CFDA Number and CFDA Description fields will appear blank in the Grants.gov Grant Application Package screen shown above, and possibly in some CFDA fields on the forms. The appropriate CFDA number will be automatically assigned once the application is assigned to the appropriate agency awarding component.
The form sets
The documents in Grants.gov that are common to most federal agencies are the SF 424, SF 424 R&R or the SF 424 R&R Version 2*, cover page and budget pages. The SF 424, SF 424 R&R and SF 424 R&R Version 2 form sets are very similar - just a few fields differ. All agencies also include their own form sets. Any documents that are to be uploaded must be completed in accordance with the agency-specific program guidelines (e.g., font type, size, margins, page limitations, etc.) and uploaded in the format requested by the agency.
*Version 2 form sets are unique to NIH. If an application is using version 2 forms, the Competition Field ID on the application cover page will read "VERSION -2 -FORMS".
Open and complete all of the documents listed in the "Mandatory Documents" box. Complete the SF-424 form first.
It is recommended that the SF-424 form be the first form completed for the application package. Data entered on the SF-424 will populate data fields in other mandatory and optional forms and the user cannot enter data in these fields.
To open a document:
Click the document name in the Mandatory Documents box to highlight it.
- The forms listed in the "Mandatory Documents" box and "Optional Documents" may be predefined forms, such as SF-424, forms where a document needs to be attached, such as the Project Narrative or a combination of both. "Mandatory Documents" are required for this application. "Optional Documents" can be used to provide additional support for this application or may be required for specific types of grant activity. Reference the application package instructions for more information regarding "Optional Documents".
- To open and complete a form, simply click on the form's name to select the item and then click on the => button. This will move the document to the appropriate "Documents for Submission" box and the form will be automatically added to your application package. To view the form, scroll down the screen or select the form name and click on the "Open Form" button to begin completing the required data fields. To remove a form/document from the "Documents for Submission" box, click the document name to select it, and then click the <= button. This will return the form/document to the "Mandatory Documents" or "Optional Documents" box.
- All documents listed in the "Mandatory Documents" box must be moved to the "Mandatory Documents for Submission" box. When you open a required form, the fields which must be completed are highlighted in yellow with a red border. Optional fields and completed fields are displayed in white. If you enter invalid or incomplete information in a field, you will receive an error message.