CVM Seed Grant Proposal

CVM Seed Grants

Through one annual call for proposals, small-sized grants are awarded through two different funding portals - USDA Capacity (Formula) Funds and CVM funds.  The goal of the CVM Seed Grant program is to increase potential for research funding from extramural sources. There are no restrictions on research areas or topics; however, successful proposals contain innovative ideas, foster multi-disciplinary team research, have significant merit, and are competitive for funding at the national level.  Funds may also be used for travel to establish collaborations or to learn new techniques.  FY18 funding supported 6 Animal Health and Disease Research projects (USDA Capacity) and 7 basic CVM research projects.  FY19 seed grant funding totals have not been determined.

Deadline for submission of FY19 CVM Seed Grants is April 2, 2018.  


  • The principal investigator (PI) must be a faculty member or research scientist (P37 or higher) with a regular appointment at the ISU College of Veterinary of Medicine. However, faculty members in other colleges, graduate students, postdocs, or any other qualified researcher are permitted and encouraged to serve as co-investigators or collaborators.
  • Researchers may serve as investigators/collaborators on up to two proposals, but as PI on only one.
  • PI's are limited to one seed grant award per cycle, which includes both new and continuation (second year) awards.
  • Preference will be given to early career faculty, established faculty changing directions, or projects that foster collaboration between clinical and basic sciences.

Funding Amounts

$20,000 limit per year for one- or two-year projects.  Second year of funding is awarded based on progress, as determined by review of the continuation proposal, and availability of funds.

New Proposal Guidelines

Proposals must include the following:

A.  Cover Page (one page; suggested template here)

  1. Project title
  2. Names, departments, and signatures of investigators and collaborators
  3. Funds requested for the first year ($20,000 maximum)
  4. Duration of project (1 or 2 years)
  5. Box checked for projects focusing on Animal Health and Disease Research as defined by USDA NIFA.  All others leave blank.
  6. Signatures of respective department chairs and dates signed

B.  Project Summary (one page) a 200- to 300-word summary of the project which includes a statement of the problem, hypothesis to be tested, research plan, and expected results.

C.  Body of Proposal (maximum of six pages, single-spaced) including:

  1. Statement of the problem/hypothesis and objectives/aims
  2. Relevant background information and preliminary data (where available)
  3. Significance and innovation
  4. Plan of work:  approach, methodologies, and timetable
  5. Plan for extramural grant submissions and potential for successfully competing for extramural funding.

D.  References (one page, single-spaced)

E.  Biographical Sketch (maximum of one page for each investigator, single-spaced) including name, title, education (undergraduate, professional, graduate, postdoctoral), research and professional experience, and up to 10 recent publications.

F.  Budget and Budget Justification (one page total; no indirect costs)


Continuation Proposal Guidelines

Proposals must contain the following information:

A. Cover Page (one page; suggested template here)

  1. Project title
  2. Name, department, and signatures of investigators and collaborators
  3. Proposal Type: Continuation
  4. Funds requested for the next year ($20,000 maximum)
  5. Overall duration of the project (including starting year)
  6. Signatures respective department chairs and date signed

B. Project Summary (one page) 200-300 summary of the project including a statement of the problem, hypothesis to be tested, accomplishments made during the first year, plan for the second year, and the overall impact.

C. Progress-to-date (maximum of two pages) including progress on each objective/aim, list of extramural grants submitted and status (funded, not funded, or pending; include review scores if applicable), presentations and publications.

D. Plan for the next year (maximum of two pages) including objectives, research approach, expected results and outcomes, and plans for extramural grant submission.

E. Budget and Budget Justification (one page total; no indirect costs)



Proposals will be reviewed by an ad hoc committee composed of members of the CVM Research Advisory Committee and other CVM faculty members.  Two reviewers will perform a comprehensive review of the proposal, rating it according to review criteria and providing a written evaluation.  Reviewers then present the proposal at a panel review session where all proposals are ranked.

Review Criteria

  • Significance Does this study address an important problem that is relevant to the funding program?
  • Approach Are the conceptual or clinical framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well-reasoned, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the project have a reasonable chance to succeed?
  • Innovation Is the project original and innovative? For example: Does it challenge existing paradigms or clinical practice or address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to progress in the field? Does the project develop or use novel concepts, approaches, methods, tools, or technologies? Is the project of high risk and is there enough justification to pursuing the risk?
  • Investigators Are the investigators appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work?  Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the principal investigator and other researchers?
  • Evidence of Progress (continuing projects only) Has satisfactory progress been made in the previous year? Have efforts been made for seeking extramural funding? If not, is the delay justified?



Principal investigators are expected to submit a grant application to extramural funding agencies in the first year.

All necessary compliances must be in place before project initiation.

A termination report is required when the project is complete; due on July 1.


Termination Report

Submit electronically to on or before July 1.

1. Cover Sheet (one page) including title, investigators/collaborators, departments, and date of project completion.

2. Research Summary (one page) including a description of the problem, the original objectives/aims and the results achieved toward each, conclusions drawn from the results, and the impact of the study.

3. Scientific Report (up to three pages) 

  • Materials and methods used in the study. Should be in sufficient detail to allow for repeatability. If new techniques or tests have been developed as part of the objectives of the project, the specific protocol for the technique or test should be included
  • Results and discussion
  • Tables and figures (can be inserted into the text where appropriate)
  • References

4. List of Presentations and Publications (one page)

5. Evidence for seeking extramural funding (number of grants submitted, outcomes of the submissions, review scores if available).