Pre-Award Administration & Services

All requests or proposals for external funding must be approved through the Office of Research

SIGNATURE AUTHORITY: Delegated Authority to sign documents on behalf of the university resides solely in the U-M Office of Research and Sponsored Projects (ORSP) regardless of whether funding is being requested. Items requiring signature must be routed to ORSP through the eResearch system. This includes non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements (NDA), memos of understanding (MOU), data use or data sharing agreements, certain licensing agreements, equipment loan agreements, etc. The UM-Dearborn Office of Research Administration (ORA) provides support for this process. If you are asked to sign something, contact ORA so we can help.

Our goal is to provide the highest level of service possible in assisting you with assembling all the elements of your proposal package and ensuring there are no administrative errors that could result in a proposal being turned down or returned without review. 


  1. Submit our Proposal Request Form at least 20 business days prior to your sponsor's deadline. ORA's ability to provide services depends on the available lead time. Read about Timelines and Service Levels. This applies to full proposals, pre-proposals, and letters of intent (LOIs)
  2. Once we receive your request form, a proposal specialist will connect with you to provide a summary of requirements and a timeline for submission of documents to meet internal and sponsor deadlines. Your proposal specialist will guide you through the internal process and assist you with the sponsor's application.

REGARDING PRE-PROPOSALS: UM-Dearborn requires the internal approval process for any pre-proposal that includes budgetary information, commitments of cost sharing, time/effort, or space, or third party commitments. This applies to concept papers, letters of intent, letters of inquiry, white papers, pre-applications, etc. This allows the administrative home unit, which has overall responsibility for the project, to review and approve what is being proposed. A PRE-PAF must also be completed if submission or signature by an authorized institutional representative is required, even if no budgetary information is included.

Proposal Services

Services we offer, contingent on the lead time provided by faculty and adherence to our timeline, include the following:

  • review sponsor guidelines to identify key requirements and confirm eligibility
  • review of budget and budget justification for appropriateness and compliance, and delivery of a basic budget template
  • preparation of the internal Proposal Approval Form (PAF) and obtain required signatures and approvals
  • review of documents for completeness and compliance with sponsor's guidelines and U-M policies
  • a PDF copy of the complete proposal package for PI review prior to submission
  • request for sponsor approval to submit as a separate campus if necessary (full service only)
  • advice on cost considerations, estimates for anticipated expenses, and development of cost rationale (full service only)
  • completion of sponsor application/forms and assembly of required documents (full service only)
  • uploading of documents to the sponsor's system (full service only)
  • contacting the sponsor with non-technical questions related to proposal requirements (full service only)
  • communication with subcontractors to obtain required information and documents (full service only)
  • assistance with obtaining letters of support/commitment if needed (full service only)

Due to the administrative nature of ORA's services and the obligation to provide services to the entire campus, we are unable to provide maintenance of individual faculty CVs, biosketches, and/or current and pending support documents.

Office of Research

1060 - Administration Building
4901 Evergreen Road
Dearborn, MI 48128
View on Map
Phone: 313-593-5468
Fax: 313-593-6790