Carnegie Mellon University

GuSH Additional Tips 

General Tips

  1. Be sure to comply with all the basic requirements, eligibility rules, and application procedures. Inattention to this basic information is evidence of a lack of seriousness on the part of the applicant to ANY selection committee.
  2. Neatness and clarity matter. Remember to write your GuSH proposal at a general interest level rather than a discipline specific level.
  3. A section on Research Design and Methods should appear in every funding proposal. This section differs, according to what field of study you are in, but it is always critical to the success of any proposal. In general, it should contain the following:
    • An overview of the research design; a detailed description of specific methods to be employed to accomplish the specific aims; a detailed discussion of the way in which the results will be collected, analyzed, and interpreted;
    • A projected sequence or timetable (work plan);
    • A description of any new methodology used and why it represents an improvement over the existing ones;
    • A discussion of potential difficulties and limitations and how these will be overcome or mitigated;
    • Expected results, and alternative approaches that will be used if unexpected results are found;
    • Precautions to be exercised with respect to any procedures, situations, or materials that may be hazardous to personnel or human subjects.
  4. A Budget-and-Justification Section is required for all funding proposals. The purpose of the budget and justification is to present and justify all expenses required to achieve project aims and objectives. A few tips: Clearly delineate costs to be met by the funder and all other funding sources. Outline both administrative and program costs.

Additional Positive Criteria for Successful GuSH Applications

  • Convincing statement of potential general value of a successful effort to society.
  • Case for potential contributions to advancing knowledge and/or the state of the art in your own, and related, fields of study.
  • Cost-sharing with department/college or other sponsors (list these funds in the budget) Very clear budget, budget justification, itemization of GuSH funds allocation
  • Detailed projection/hypothesis about what your findings will be Thesis/hypothesis/theory clearly explained
  • Project timelines
  • Good advisor letter/specificity about financial need