Instructions and Proposal Guidelines


Fund seekers are requested to the newly developed "application packet" for requesting FRCAC funds (refer to FRCAC Forms).  For the Fall 2016 session, the old format would be accepted, but the applicants should bear in mind that the new form was designed to address the commonly raised review questions that arise during the FRCAC review process.  The requests must be sent only by email to  Try to attach all of the supporting documents into the application packet except final reports for previous FRCAC grants.  

To be considered for a review, the application must adhere to the following guidelines and it should include all of the required documents:


  • The applicant must satisfy the eligibility criteria.
  • Applicants must submit ONLY one original electronic copy with all endorsements and supports.
  • Please note that new signage provisions have been implemented when using the new application packet (FRCACF100/101). NO INK SIGNATURES ARE REQUIRED when using the new form.  
  • FRCACF100/101 contain space for including several single-page support documents.  Therefore, submit the entire packet in a single-file in its original MS Word format.
  • Please DO NOT CONVERT  FRCACF100/101 TO PDF.

Format Specifications for the Proposal


The request for FRCAC funds must be made through the designaged application packet found in the "FRCAC FORMS" tab.  The salient features of the newly released application packets (FRCACF100/101) are as follows:

Proposal Information Page (FRCACF001): Contains project information along with PI profile and project personnel.  Also contains space electronic endorsements and support statements by the PI's host department Chair and the College's Dean.  

Abstract FRCACF002): Provide a technical abstract, not exceeding 1,200 characters, in the space provided.  Since FRCAC consists of diverse members with a variety of expertise, a new section for a non-technical abstract has also been added.  Provide a simplistic version of your proposed research which is suitable for all audiences in less than 1,200 characters.

Proposal Narrative (FRCACF003): Provide specifics on your study in less than five pages.  Use either Arial (11pt) or Times New Roman (12pt) with a minimum line spacing of 1.5.   The narrative should follow this outline:
  • Introduction/Background - Brief Introduction including a problem statement if applicable; briefly review the literature to provide a context for the project's significance to current scholarship/research in your field. 
  • Specific Aims  - Include the objectives and the significance of the proposal research or creative activity; describe the contribution your project will make to the field; discuss the hypothesis to be tested or the specific thesis of the project.
  • Design and Methodology of Research or Creative Activity - Describe the methodology for the project, including data collection, sampling, or other procedures that will be used. Provide evidence of the efficacy of your methodology. Describe any survey instruments that will be used and provide copies of those instruments in the attachments. Describe, in detail, the activity to be carried out in the realization of your project. For example, discuss the specific methods of production or performance including details of construction, composition, editing, etc., using media appendices as examples where appropriate.
    Statement on the Use of Human Subjects and/or Animals in Research: Research that involves human subjects or animals must secure the appropriate approvals. Indicate where you are in the process of obtaining written approval from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for use of human subjects and /or the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) for use of animals or the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) AND provide the respective ID issued by the Office of Compliance. The Committee will review proposals for which the required approvals may be pending, but funding will not be released until the approvals are complete.  Short summaries for faculty are provided the IRB and IACUC websites.  Please contact the Compliance Office for more details or use the quick links provided in the bottom of this page.  
  • Milestones and Timeline - Outline your schedule for completion of each of the major components of the project, from beginning to completion including potential challenges and alternative strategies.  
  • Resources - Describe the resources necessary to carry out the project, including those already available and those requested in the budget. Click here to see Budget Guidelines.
  • Other available funding - Indicate your attempt to determine whether there are additional or alternative sources of funding for the project and describe your results and any strategies you have for seeking external funding for the project. The Committee is particularly interested to know how a grant from the FRCAC can serve as seed funding for a project that will later be competitive for external funding.
  • Dissemination & Potential External Funding Requests -  Describe how the results of the project will be disseminated (e.g., the publication of a book, a chapter, a journal article, a public performance, an art exhibition, or a production).
    • Length of the narrative - Limited to five (5) 1.5 line spacing or more.
    • Illustrations (FRCACF003A): Provide figures and charts that correspond to your narrative as images.  Four images that can fit within 2 pages are allowed. Write a suitable caption for each figure in the space(s) provided.  Images can be uploaded into the application packet using the links provided.  

Bibliography (FRCACF003B): Space is provided to list up to 35 references.  Refer to for formatting.

Significance (FRCACF004): Justify the significance of the research or creative activity using the following outline. Use 1.5 to 2.0 pages to make your case.
  • Innovation
  • Significance to the PI's field
  • Benefits to the applicant's long-term research goals
  • future plans for the proposal including external funding
  • potential impact on MTSU

Budget (FRCACF008): There are three components to the budget: (1) Proposed Expenses; (2) Cost Justification; and (3) Personnel Justification.

  1. Budget - List of proposed expenses
    1. Stipend - for PI(s)
    2. Salaries - for co-investigators and GAs
    3. Research-related travel
    4. Equipment Purchase (over $500)
    5. Operational Expenses
  2. Cost Justification - Give an explicit justification for the funds requested under each item of the budget. Click here to learn more about the budget justification section
  3. Personnel Justification - Provide details on the profiles and research roles for all key personnel in the project regardless of whether funding is requested for them or not. 
Biographical Sketch (FRCACF009): Space is provided supply biosketch for one PI.  Attach biographical sketches using the "Attachments" section of the packet for Co-PI and key co-investigators.
  • Must include final reports from ALL previous FRCAC funding
  • It is not the responsibility of the FRCAC office to provide previous reports for new incoming applications.
  • Copies should be maintained by the faculty member.
Response/Rebuttal to Reviewers' Comments (FRCACF010): When resubmitting a previously unfunded proposal, the applicant can now directly respond to the reviewers' comments using this section when request for funding is sent using FRCACF101 Resubmission Packet.  The applicants will be given free-format text boxes to restate the reviewer questions and respond to their comments. 
Attachments: Locations to upload 20 single-paged documents as images has been provided.  The PI can load documents such as, price quotes, IRB/IACUC approval notifications, co-investigator/co-PI biosketches, certifications, and etc. in an image format such as, TIFF, JPEG, GIF, PNG or BMP). FRCAC requires applicants to send the following documents (but not limited to):
  1. Written approval from the IRB, and/or IACUC .(REFER BELOW) - attach
  2. Proposed Survey instruments that will be used in the research - attach if possible but send as a separate document if too big
  3. Collaborative Agreement documentation with external entities - attach
  4. Letters of support from collaborator(s) - attach
  5. Price quotes from vendors for any proposed purchases.  Please note that FRCAC follows the MTSU guidelines for purchasing equipment and supplies.  Consult with your Department's accounting specialist - attach
  6. Permission letters and certifications if applicable - attach
  7. Letter of publisher interest for book proposals - attach
  8. Final reports from all previous FRCAC grants - SEND AS A SEPARATE FILE



Submission Instructions:

  • Prepare final reports from previous FRCAC grants.
  • Attach the single-file application packet and final reports and send all the files to
  • Proposals must follow the format and style presented on this page.
  • FRCAC will attempt to work with applicants if any documentation should be missing as long as the application is received well before the deadline.
  • Once the deadline is passed, no changes will be allowed to the application and no further addition or removal will be entertained
  • Click here to read the commonly used review criteria by FRCAC

Research Requiring Oversight:


Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee

IRB Seal2 

ING Building G014C
Phone: 615-494-7600
Fax: 615-898-5028

Types of Grants
Proposal Guidelines
Review Criteria
Recipient's Responsibilities