The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust


10 Top Tips: For Writing a Research Funding Application

10 March 2020

IMG 7902Hello, my name is Rebecca Savage, Research and Innovation Funding and Development Manager for Leeds Teaching hospitals NHS Trust.
Developing a research funding application is exciting! However, it takes time, preparation and it should be a collaborative process.
Below are some top tips for preparing and submitting a strong research funding application from our very own LTHT R&I Funding Development Manager. 

  1. Take your time to choose the funder and the call that you are going to apply to. Find out what types of funding are available, then understand the different purposes and criteria for applying to the call.

  2. Think about the timing of your application. Is now the right time in your career to be applying? Do you have enough time to prepare a high-quality application? Is your research idea current and realistic?

  3. Make sure you know how many times you can apply to the same scheme. Do not waste an opportunity by submitting a rushed or poor quality application.

  4. Give yourself plenty of time to prepare your application. Some stages of the application process will take longer than you think! The reviewers will notice that you have put time into preparing your application.

  5. Be sure that you meet the eligibility criteria and that your proposed research is within the remit of the scheme. If you do not meet both, do not waste your time applying!

  6. Explore the sources of support, guidance and advice available. Contact your local Research and Innovation department, speak regularly with your supervisors/research team, utilise webinars, information sessions, information on the funder websites (they have hints and tips for applying to their schemes).

  7. Establish a strong team around you, including a network of support including collaborators, co-investigators, support staff, supervisors and mentors and involve them in the application process.

  8. Be realistic about what you can achieve within the duration of the research funding. Don’t be over-ambitious!

  9. Demonstrate enthusiasm and a commitment to the proposed research throughout your application. Sell yourself!

  10. Before you submit, ask your research team or peers to proof-read your application. Make sure your application is clear, easy to understand and check the grammar and spelling

Finally….. (10.1) Once you have submitted your application, become familiar with the time frames and the different requirements of the application process. Is there a stage 2 application form? Is there an interview process? When can you expect to hear the outcome of your application?