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Prepare Proposal Development Document

Proposal Development documents are e-Docs that are part of the Kuali Research (KR) Proposal Development module and are linked to Budget documents in the system. The Proposal Development document serves as MSU's approval for the sponsored research proposal/project to proceed with submission of an application and/or award negotiation. For proposals, the Proposal Development document will accommodate all the information required by the sponsor and the institution for a System-to-System submission.

Creating a Proposal Development Document

A Proposal Development document may be initiated by anyone with access in Kuali Research (KR). Typically, they are initiated by Department or College Research Administrators and routed to Principal Investigators for review and approval; check with your College/Department to determine internal processes. To initiate a Proposal Development document, please go to the KR portal.

 View How to Create and Save a Proposal in KR.

Sponsor Naming Conventions and Adding New Sponsors

Certain words within sponsor names have been abbreviated in the KR Sponsor Table in order to stay within character limitations and to promote consistency between sponsors. For a list of the naming conventions that should be used when searching by Sponsor Name in KR, view the .  If you don't find the sponsor in the KR system, please use the Sponsor webform to request the sponsor be added.

Certain words within sponsor names have been abbreviated in order to stay within character limitations and to promote consistency between sponsors. When searching by Sponsor Name in KR please use the following naming conventions:

Sponsor Name Includes: Naming Convention in Kuali Research:
Administration Administration
America America
American Amer
And &
Associates Associates
Association Assoc
Company Co
Corporation Corp
Department Dept
Foundation Foundation
Government Govt
Incorporated Inc
Institute(s) Inst
Institution Institution
International Intl
Limited Ltd
National National
United States US
United States of America USA
University University

Activity Type and Proposal Type Definitions

For definitions of the Activity Types, and guidance on what Proposal Type to select for your Proposal Development document, view the Activity Type Definitions and Proposal Type tables below.

The table below provides definitions for the Activity Types in Kuali Research.

Activity Type Definition
Research An investigation aimed at discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories in light of new facts, development of new analytical and experimental protocols, or practical applications of such new theories, analysis, data gathering and experiments.
Public Service A project where the primary purpose is to provide a service rendered in the public interest or geographically extends the resources of the institution to entities or persons otherwise unable to take advantage of such resources.
Education/Instruction Proposals with the primary purpose of training or providing instruction.
Fee-for-Service These are service projects for which an external client requests a deliverable generated using known practical applications of standard procedures and established theories, methods and standard experiments using special or unique MSU research capabilities. The results of such work are of specific interest to the client and normally involve a set fee according to a published rate schedule routinely charged to all potential customers, off-the-shelf tools and established protocols. Fee-for-service work does not require original, creative, or scholarly analyses or non-standard interpretation of data sets by MSU faculty, staff or students engaged in the work.
Construction A proposal to undertake, or manage the undertaking of a construction or renovation project.
Fellowship A mechanism to provide institutional research training opportunities to trainees at the undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral levels. Typically the fellow is not an employee of the university throughout the period of their fellowship.
Student Services The intent of the proposal is to request financial assistance for students or student programs. Some examples are programs designed to:
  • Broaden students’ perspectives related to diversity,
  • Improve student resources or student life, e.g., computer resources, high tech film equipment for student projects, exposure to arts, humanities and different environments,
  • Provide financial aid.

The table below provides guidance on selecting the appropriate Proposal Type in Kuali Research.

Proposal Type Used when...
Award Revision Gathering approvals for revisions that take place after a proposal is submitted and throughout the lifetime of an award. This Type is used to gather approvals only and does not create a new Institutional Proposal or make changes to an active award.
Continuation Submitting S2S non-competing applications for additional funding/budget period for awarded projects. Currently, this Proposal Type should only be used for USDA progress reports that are submitted System-to-System.
New New proposal submission.
No Money Agreement Routing an agreement for approval that does not include awarded funds (e.g. cost share agreement).
Pre-Proposal A pre-application or Letter of Intent that is required by the sponsor and the requirements of the pre-application must have institutional approval (e.g. cost share). Also used for pre-proposals submitted System-to-System.
Renewal A new application requesting additional funding for a period subsequent to what was provided by the current award. Used for System-to-System applications.
Research Gift Funds are transferred to MSU without any valuable consideration or compensation to the donor. Gifts of more than $5,000 for the support of research should be routed through a PD document.
Resubmission Resubmitting a previously unfunded proposal. Used for System-to-System applications.
Revision Submitting System-to-System for the following reasons: changes to financial award obligations; competing revisions; non-competitive administrative supplements; and NIH transfer requests.
Task Order Submitting a proposal or receiving an award under a master agreement.

After initiating a Proposal Development document please send an email to OSP with the assigned Proposal Number as well as pertinent details related to the upcoming proposal submission (e.g. solicitation, PI’s name, deadline date). (S2S) Proposals

This system-to-system (S2S) application submission is only available for certain federal funding opportunities. The S2S feature facilitates submission of certain federal proposals created in Proposal Development directly to

The S2S suboption in KR provides a system-to-system connection between KR and You can search for and select an eligible funding opportunity announcement via KR using an Opportunity ID or CFDA Number. When you select a funding opportunity, KR loads the S2S suboption (in KR) with details and submission forms for that grant opportunity. KR will automatically run a validation check before the proposal is submitted to the website. This validation process identifies errors and omissions in your application. You may also track your submission on the Submission Details tab within the S2S suboption in KR.  If the proposal is successfully retrieved by, KR will pull in a zip file of the application forms from

User Attached Forms

Some application packages pull in the complete list of forms when you retrieve the opportunity from the S2S Lookup. However, other application packages have forms that do not automatically pull in, and will need to be attached as User Attached Forms. For instructions on how to attach User Attached Forms, go to the User Attached Forms page or watch the Uploading S2S Forms video.

S2S Agency Checklists

NIH R-series Checklist for S2S Proposals (Summary) Proposals

Summary proposals are Proposal Development documents used for all proposals except those being submitted via as described above. It is necessary to enter a minimal amount of data in KR to support routing, approval and reporting, and a majority of the information will be contained in the Internal Attachments section of the document rather than entered in KR. For more information, see the Preparing a Summary Proposal job aid.

Routing for Approval

Once a Proposal Development document is completed, it must be routed for approvals. This is accomplished by clicking the Submit for Review button at the bottom of the Summary/Submit option and can only be completed by someone with the Aggregator role on the document.

Data validations will automatically be engaged when a Proposal Development document is submitted into route, which will provide errors and warnings that may need correcting before the document can begin routing.    

Required approvals depend on the F&A Allocation of the Investigators listed in the Credit Allocation suboption of the proposal, and at a minimum, include approval by the PI's and Co-I's, the departments and colleges associated, any special approvers, and the Office of Sponsored Programs/Business Connect/Contract and Grant Administration. Special approvers may be added depending on the responses to questions in the Standard Proposal Questionnaire.  For example, the Office of Planning and Budgets is added to the route if the Additional Space question is marked “yes”. 

Copying a Proposal

Copying a proposal allows you to copy an existing Proposal document into a new Proposal document for the purposes of starting a new (and very similar) proposal, resubmitting a previously submitted proposal, creating a revised budget at the Just-in-Time stage, or routing approvals for an Award Revision. You can elect to copy the proposal with or without the attachments, with or without all budget versions, or merely the final version of the budget. The copy function also provides you with a mechanism to change the Lead Unit by way of copying an existing proposal and selecting an alternate lead unit for that new proposal document. See the Copying Proposals video or Copy a Proposal job aid for more information.


Is a KR Proposal Document (PD) required when submitting a pre-proposal (also generally referred to as "Letter of Intent to submit a proposal", "Preliminary Proposal", "White Paper", "Concept Paper")?

A pre-proposal does not require a PD, except in the following situations:

  • Line-item Restrictions: Budget must be submitted with the pre-proposal and we are held to the budgeted amounts for the full proposal submission
  • Large Subawards: The subaward category is more than 75% of the total budgeted direct costs
  • Mandatory Budget Review or Substantial Cost Share: The sponsor requires OSP budget review, or cost share commitments must be disclosed in the LOI/Pre-proposal submission
  • IP or Export Control: There are intellectual property ownership and/or export control issues
  • Binding Terms & Conditions: Submission of the LOI/white paper/pre-proposal binds MSU to terms and conditions
  • S2S: The pre-proposal is submitted via System-to-System submission
  • C&P Forms: The solicitation requires the submission of Current & Pending/Other Support forms

When a PD is required, it should be fully-routed and approved three business days prior to the pre-proposal submission, in accordance with the MSU Proposal Deadline Policy.

For pre-proposals that are submitted by OSP, or require OSP signature, please notify/provide documents to OSP one business day in advance of the sponsor deadline.

Please contact your OSP representative for more guidance and never assume that an on-line submission will be automatically released to the sponsor by OSP. This is a common misunderstanding for the National Science Foundation pre-proposal submission process.

OSP recommends that the PI seek Research Dean concurrence before pre-proposal submission if the PI doesn’t meet MSU's PI eligibility requirements.

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