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Friday, June 15, 2012

Grant-Writing Tips for Graduate Students

Grant-Writing Tips for Graduate Students
By Lisa Patrick Bentley
Financial pressures have shifted grant writing to the forefront of skills that graduate students need to survive academic life. Some students receive instant gratification and get a grant the first or second time they apply. Far more common are repeated rejections.
With any luck, the agency or foundation that denied your grant proposal sent along comments from reviewers along with the rejection letter. But what if you take their advice, revise your proposal, and it still gets turned down? Is there a secret to grant-writing success as a graduate student? In the hope that one exists, and as a postdoc myself, I surveyed 104 graduate students with 2009 fellowships in the life sciences from the National Science Foundation, 64 postdocs with 2009 NSF fellowships in biology, and 22 graduate students who applied for grants unsuccessfully.

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