Useful Links


Beginning in January 2023, all new proposals must be prepared and submitted in or FastLane will no longer be a preparation and submission option.

New biographical sketch format and submission

Use NSF-approved formats for the biographical sketch and current and pending support . The National Science Foundation (NSF) has designated the National Institutes of Health’s SciENcv (Science Experts Network Curriculum Vitae) as an NSF-approved format for submission of biographical sketch(es) and is encouraging its use to prepare a biographical sketch for inclusion in proposals to NSF.  

Multiple training resources are available on the SciENcv website.

How to Generate an NSF Biosketch

Current and Pending Support FAQs

CONFERENCE SESSIONS AVAILABLE: All recorded conference sessions from the NSF virtual conference held in Spring 2022 are available on NSF’s Policy Office Outreach website: in the Resource Center. Recordings can also be viewed on the NSF YouTube page.

Application Guidelines

While some NSF solicitations may require you to submit your application through the NSF system or through the federal system, most will allow you to choose between the two systems. When given the option, please use NSF; it's an easier system and provides a direct submission path to NSF.

System Registration
  • Registration

Whether using to submit the application, you'll need an NSF account. To establish an account, please go to, Click on Register in the upper right to establish your account. Once you register DSP will validate your registration. After validation you can initiate your proposal, check your proposal status; and complete a number of other critical tasks.

  • Registration

The system requires an institutional, rather than individual, registration. The DSP maintains the UI's registration. You need not, and should not, register as an individual investigator to use the system.

Proposal Preparation

To initiate a proposal in by following the steps outlined below: 

  • Open and click “Sign In” located at the top right of the screen;
  • Enter your NSF ID and password and click “Sign In;”
  • From the "My Desktop" page, click "New! Prepare Proposals (Limited proposal types)" in the "Prepare & Submit Proposals tile" or go to this option from the top navigation bar by selecting the "Prepare & Submit Proposals" tab and clicking on "New! Prepare Proposals (Limited proposal types);"
  • Select the "Prepare Proposal" option in the "Prepare New Proposal" tile on the left side of the Proposal Preparation page; and
  • Follow the five-step proposal wizard to set up the proposal. 

After completing the initiation steps, you are ready to complete all required and optional sections of your proposal and then submit it to NSF.
Normally the specific solicitation guidelines supplement, rather than replace, the general NSF guidelines. If, though, the two sources conflict, the solicitation guidelines prevail. 

Common application errors

  • Make sure you use the correct Collaborators & Other Affiliations template. (Table 1, 2, 3. NOT Table A, B, C)
  • Check that your grant title doesn’t need a special prefix.
  • Create an NSF biosketch here so you’re sure of the format. 
  • Include this statement on your budget justification: For NSF purposes The University of Iowa defines a year as January 1 – December 31.
  • Remember font size and margins.
  • Remember page limits where applicable.
  • Remember that the funding announcement overrides the PAPPG but you need to use both to build your application.
  • Be sure to include the grant your applying in your Current & Pending support page.
  • Remember you need to show effort on all listings on your Current & Pending support page.
  • If you have a postdoc you’ll need a Postdoc plan.

NSF Project Reporting

Where should PIs go for help with project reports?

Announcing the launch of the Demo Site in order to further improve the project reporting process. The Demo Site provides National Science Foundation (NSF) awardees (specifically PIs, co-PIs and Sponsored Project Office staff) the opportunity to explore and familiarize themselves with preparing, submitting, and reviewing NSF project reports without actually submitting a real report.

Since the transition of project reporting from FastLane to, the Team has been working diligently with NSF Staff and Awardees to identify and implement solutions to the challenges faced by the research community when submitting project reports. As part of this effort, the Team heard how helpful awardees find the FastLane Demo Site and has prioritized and developed a Demo Site. The Demo Site will help reduce user confusion around submitting a project report by providing a platform for practicing how to use the tool. Additionally, the Team is developing an instructional video tutorial on submitting project reports to assist NSF awardees.

While NSF awardees can practice preparing, submitting and reviewing NSF project reports on the Demo Site, not all functionality available in is available in the Demo site, including:

  • Project Outcomes Reports and previously submitted reports will not be accessible
  • Submission confirmation emails will not get sent
  • The search performed against Thompson Web of Science will only produce sample results
  • The Check Report Completeness link will produce a sample list of missing information (will not display missing fields from the demo report).
  • Updates you make to the example reports will be saved but can be overwritten by other user sessions,  and the example reports are reset nightly

Application Review

Award Administration