Write Winning Grant Proposals
Phase I Seminar 2020 and Phase II Workshop 2021

Presented by John D. Robertson, Ph.D.
Managing Member, Grant Writers' Seminars & Workshops

The Research Development Office in the Office of the Vice President for Research is pleased to announce that Dr. John Robertson from Grant Writer's Seminars & Workshops (GWSW) will conduct the Write Winning Grant Proposals seminar in two, half-day virtual sessions on Thursday, October 15 and Friday, October 16, 2020. The deadline to register is 11:59 PM on Sunday, September 27.

The Phase I Seminar is a pre-requisite to the Phase II Workshop scheduled for February 11-12, 2021. Faculty must contact their collegiate associate dean for research no later than Monday, September 7, 2020 (extended deadline), with their interest in attending the  2021 Phase II workshop. Please see details below.

Phase I Seminar

Title: Write Winning Grant Proposals (Pre-requisite for the Phase II workshop)
When: Thursday, October 15 (1:00 – 4:30 PM) and Friday, October 16 (8:30 AM – Noon)
Where: Zoom Webinar
Registration Fee: $150 (includes two-part seminar with 30-day access to recorded presentation, workbook, and supplemental materials) There are a limited number of college specific sponsored registrations complimentary to faculty on a first-come, first-served basis.
Seminar Agenda (updated) (pdf)

Dr. Robertson

This two-part virtual presentation is the cornerstone of GWSW's seminar programs. It comprehensively addresses both practical and conceptual aspects that are important to writing competitive grant proposals. It is appropriate for faculty members, postdoctoral researchers and administrative staff who have had some exposure to writing grant applications, either through training / mentoring or personal experience. Each presentation is tailored to meet the needs of the audience, e.g., to focus on the funding agency or agencies (federal, private, and/or industry) that is / are of greatest interest to the attendees. Emphasis is given to doing the “extra” things that can make the difference between success and failure.

At the University of Iowa, the main focus of previous seminars has been on the NIH and NSF; however, regardless of the agency, participants are taught to write with a linear progression of logic, which leads reviewers through an application without them knowing that they are being led. Coping strategies to overcome the fact that applicants are writing for two different audiences – the assigned reviewers, who read the application in its entirety, and non-assigned reviewers who may have read little, or nothing, of the proposal before the meeting of the review panel – are emphasized. The seminar is in a lecture format.

Seminar Registration

Deadline: 11:59 PM on Sunday, September 27, 2020

To register on behalf of someone else, call: 319-335-8599

Self-Registration: Sign-in and register using your HawkID and password: https://uiowa.cloud-cme.com/Form.aspx?FormID=1784

Sponsored and General Registrations: There are a limited number of college specific sponsored registrations complimentary to faculty on a first-come, first-served basis. Under "Registration Type," select the college you are affiliated with. If your college is not listed, sponsored seats are not available. In that case, please select "General Registration for University of Iowa Faculty & Staff" to register.

Workbook Choice: Select a workbook where indicated in the form. Click here for workbook descriptions (pdf)  

NEW For 2020: Workbooks will be mailed directly to registrants so be sure to provide a complete and clear mailing address in the registration form. If mailing to your department or office on campus, please provide a street address and spell out the building and/or office name. Do not use acronyms.

Payment Method and Confirmation: 

  • If sponsored registration was chosen, select "College-Sponsored Registration" as the payment method. Click "Finish." Your registration is now complete and you may print or email your invoice.
  • For general registration (non-sponsored), select "Pay by Credit Card."
  • You will receive confirmation of your registration by email. 

If you do not receive a confirmation email, please call 319-335-8599 to make sure you are registered.
Only registered participants will receive access to the webinar.


Phase II Workshop (pre-requisite: Phase I Seminar)

Title: Phase II Workshop (Pre-requisite: Phase I Seminar)
When: February 11-12, 2021
Where: TBD
Consultations:  4-6 months ongoing virtual consultations
Tuition: $4,000/participant (capped at 25); split equally between the participant’s college, department and OVPR

Up to twenty-five faculty members may participate in this workshop. Some of the activities are group based; however, ample one-on-one time is included to ensure that the specific needs of each participant are addressed. The program has three objectives for each participant:

  • To write and submit the best application of which s/he is capable
  • To better understand the dynamics and psychology of the review process
  • To develop an appreciation that constructive criticism from colleagues can make the difference between an application’s success and failure

Faculty interested in attending the Phase II workshop must be nominated by their collegiate associate dean for research and submit an application. Participants will be selected based on a review of applications. Selected participants are required to attend the Write Winning Grant Proposals seminar (Phase I) and one additional on-site or virtual meeting scheduled for February 2021. Virtual consultations extend over the subsequent four-to-six months.

Off-site interactions with consultants are conducted by email, telephone, and virtually, as required, to ensure that the specific needs of each participant are addressed. The final draft is critiqued for grantsmanship by a GWSW consultant, after which it is reviewed for scientific and technical errors by members of a pre-submission review committee that is set up by the workshop participant. By the time it is submitted, a proposal has gone through three rounds of rigorous internal review, which is what helps to ensure maximal competitiveness of the resultant application. New, renewal and resubmitted applications are eligible.

If you are interested in attending the Phase II Workshop, contact your collegiate associate dean for research no later than Monday, September 7, 2020 (extended deadline).

Contact cheryl-a-ridgeway@uiowa.edu with questions.

The Write Winning Grant Proposals Phase I Seminar and Phase II Workshop are hosted by The Research Development Office 

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa–sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Cheryl Ridgeway in advance at 319-384-3332 or cheryl-a-ridgeway@uiowa.edu.