Research Topic

National Science Foundation


The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 “To promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; to secure the national defense.” NSF is the University of Illinois’ leading funder, and we have received more NSF funding than any other university in the nation for six consecutive years.



FastLane is an interactive real-time system used to conduct NSF business with researchers and potential researchers, reviewers, and research administrators and their organizations. In collaboration with NSF, more than 400,000 people use FastLane each year.

FastLane provides grants management for the research community. will eventually become a full replacement for FastLane, providing quick access to research information and grants management services, all in one location.

  • Overview
  • NSF still has no announced plans for administrators to initiate applications
  • Instructions within override the PAPPG
  • Once the application is initiated, the following items on Cover Sheet cannot be changed (a new application must be initiated):
    • Funding Opportunity
    • Directorate/Division/Program
    • Proposal Type (Research, RAPID, etc.)
    • Submission Type (Full Proposal, Renewal, LOI, Preliminary, etc.)
    • Proposal Details (not collaborative, collaborative from one organization, collaborative from multiple organizations)
    • NOTE: There is a workaround to change PI by adding a Co-PI and then removing the original PI.
  • Separately-Submitted Collaborative Proposal:
    • When the non-lead institution submits before the lead institution, a permanent proposal number is not assigned until the lead submits its proposal. Until that time, the application can still be edited.
    • When a non-lead application is linked to the lead application, the applicable items on the Cover Sheet are replaced (Funding Opportunity, Title, etc.)

Sponsor-Specific Guidance


The Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) contains policies and guidance relating to the Foundation's proposal and award process for the assistance programs of NSF. The PAPPG, in conjunction with NSF’s Grant General Conditions, serves as the Foundation’s implementation of 2 CFR § 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. PAPPG (NSF 22-1)

Additional Resources

Senior Personnel Templates

Link Template Name
Biographical Sketch (Biosketch)
Collaborators and Other Affiliations Information (COA)
Current and Pending Support (C&P)

  Webinar on NSF-approved formats for the biographical sketch and current & pending support documents


Related Documents and Resources

Revised Date