Checklist for Career Development Award (K)

Always read the specific FOA to see if it deviates from the standard requirements. View the most recent Parent Funding Announcements.

  File Type Comments Page Limits
  Cover Letter Must include a cover letter that contains a list of referees (including name, departmental affiliation, and institution). No page limit, not more than 2-pages
  Abstract A succinct description of the proposed work, informative and understandable to the scientifically literate. ½ page or 30 lines.
  Narrative In lay language. ¼ page or 2-3 sentences.
  Facilities and other resources For GW info, see Cores, Facilities, and Other Resources. No limit.
  Bibliography & References Cited If you are the author or co-author of the cited material, the PMCI or PMC number needs to be included. No limit.
  Biosketches Use the most current form. All Mentors are key personnel. 5-page limit.
  Current and Pending Support Include current and pending support as separate uploads for each mentor/co-mentor. 3-page limit.
  Candidate Information and Goals for Career Development Organized: Candidate’s Background, Career Goals and Objectives, and Candidate’s Plan for Career Development/Training Activities During award period. 12-page limit for this and the Research Strategy combined.
  Specific Aims See tips for organizing Specific Aims page. 1-page limit.
  Research Strategy Organize Research Strategy in order: Significance, Innovation and Approach. 12-page limit for this and Candidate Information combined.
  Training in the Responsible Conduct of Research Plan must address the five required components: format, subject matter, faculty participation, duration of instruction, and frequency of instruction. 1-page limit.
  Plans and Statements of Mentor and Co-Mentor(s) Check FOA to see if required. Mentors document their role and willingness to participate, and how they will contribute to the development of the candidate’s research career. 6-page limit.
  Description of Institutional Environment Describe the institution’s research and career development opportunities; names of key faculty members relevant to your plan, necessary facilities and other resources. 1-page limit.
  Description of Candidate’s Contribution to Program Goals Only for diversity K01 or K22 applications. Oninstitutional letterhead, explain how candidate’s participation will further the goals of the program to promote diversity; signed and dated by chair or dean. No limit, use not more than 1 page.
  Institutional Commitment to the Candidate’s Research Career Development On institutional letterhead, document commitment to the candidate and the candidate’s career development, retention and advancement, independent of the receipt of the CDA. This letter must be signed by the chair or dean. 1-page limit.
  Vertebrate Animals Should only be uploaded if working with Animals. No limit, but there are specific items that need to be addressed.
  Candidate’s Plan to provide Mentoring Include only when required by the specific FOA (K24 and K05). 6-page limit.
  Letters of Support from Collaborators, Contributors & Consultants Note that letters of support are not the same as letters of reference. Letters of support from collaborators, contributors, and consultants are required for any person who will contribute to the CDA project. 6-page limit.
  Resource Sharing Plan Mandatory. Includes Sharing Model Organisms and Research Tools. No limit, but normally not longer than a page.
  Other Plans Mandatory. DMS Plan describes how the applicant will manage and share scientific data generated from NIH funds. NIH has provided templates for this document.
  Authentication of key biological and / or chemical resources   No limit.
  Introduction Mandatory for resubmissions 1-page limit.
  Budget   Work with Res Admin to complete required forms.

Things to keep in mind when submitting a Career Development (K) Award

  • Always read the specific FOA to see if it deviates from the standard requirements. See if any other files or appendix material are allowed or required.
  • Contact GW Research Administration/ Pod3 with your intent to submit early-two months ahead of time.


  • For K proposals you MUST use the detailed budget form.
  • Only your salary information should be included as senior/key. Although most ICs limit the amount of salary awarded, applicants should include information on actual institutional based salary and fringe benefits and the actual amount of salary and fringe being requested.
  • The maximum MTDC based IDC is 8%.

General Items