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University of Colorado Denver

Office of Grants and Contracts

How to Submit a R01, R03, and R21 Grants-The SF424

Office of Grants and Contracts

  1. Once you have an idea for a proposal and wish to submit a research type grant, you should develop a draft budget. Grants in the amount of $250,000 or less will use the modular format, however, the OGC still needs the detailed budget informaiton. Grants in excess of $250,000 will used the detailed budget format. If your proposal is $500,000 or more, you should contact your program officer for presubmission approval. This budget should be prepared in consultation with your Department administrator.
  2. NIH grant proposals must be submitted electronically through by the UC Denver Authorized Official in OGC. You must have an active eRA Commons Account in order to submit an NIH grant electronically. Contact PreAward in order to obtain an eRA Commons account,
  3. To submit a grant electronically, you must use the Forms set available from Grants.Gov. To access the set  Adobe Reader software is required. has a page for Testing your Adobe Reader Compatibility,
  4. If you are responding to a specific Funding Opportunity Announcement, complete the electronic form set provided in the Announcement. If you are submitting an Investigator-Initiated Research project, Use the appropriate Parent application: 
  1. The SF424 (R&R) form of the electronic application package includes specific information about UC Denver. Check out this sample application includes relevant UC Denver information which must be included in the application.  Complete the Face Page first, as it will auto populate fields in other forms in the application package. See the NIH application guide for assistance with completing electronic application package.
  2. As part of the application process, you will need to write specific sections to attach to the application. Write the proposal using standard word-processing software, e.g., Microsoft. The attachments must be converted to a PDF document for submission. Failure to convert to a PDF will result in errors upon submission to  See Item 3 above for a link to test your version of Adobe Reader for submission compatibility.
  3. The application must be routed to the Grants and Contracts PreAward section for institution review twelve (12) business days before the electronic application is due to A PreAward specialist will review your application and note any changes that need to be made to the application.
  4. Once you receive the reviewed application back from PreAward, submit the final electronic application to by the end of the fourth business day before the application is due. An authorized institutional official will submit the electronic application to The application will be downloaded to eRA Commons and you will be notified if there are any errors which need to be fixed in the application.

Remember to:

  • Be sure that all attachments are in PDF format
  • Check that all require forms are under in the Mandatory Complete Forms box are completed for submission
  • Select the “Check Package for Errors” button and make any revisions noted

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