Grant Writing in the Sciences

This course provides a basic primer on grant writing, including learning about available resources, strategies, approaches for developing grants, and skills in grant planning and preparation.

Program highlights

At the end of this course, learners will be able to:

  • Define which type of National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant is most appropriate for a project, given:
    • Study goals.
    • Level of development of the research.
    • NIH requirements.
  • Identify the general procedures for preparing and submitting an NIH application, which reflects the process of grant preparation and review.
  • Locate resources and apply approaches related to the learner's individual fields to navigate the research landscape.
  • Demonstrate comprehension of the specific meaning of NIH "Scored Review Criteria" and how it contributes to the "Overall Impact Score of the grant," which translates to funding decisions.
  • Demonstrate how to relate each specific component and the overall structure of an NIH research grant to the NIH "Scored Review Criteria."
  • Define the purpose of the Specifics Aims (SA) page.
  • Identify the importance of preliminary data in supporting a funding application.
  • Define the components of an NIH biosketch and draft a working personal statement section.
  • List the components of the NIH concept "scientific rigor" and describe how this can be addressed in an application.


The course cost is $600 for non-Mayo participants. Mayo Clinical employee internal pricing is discounted and shown after logging in to the Executive Education registration page.


Grant Writing in the Sciences is available to all Mayo Clinic employees and the general public.


Registration is available anytime on our Executive Education registration page.


Course outline

  • NIH Grants — The Big Picture.
  • How Grants Are Scored.
  • Planning and Writing Specific Aims.
  • Preliminary Data.
  • The NIH Biosketch.
  • Scientific Rigor and Protection of Subjects.

Mark E. Sherman, M.D., is course director for this program. Since joining Mayo Clinic, Dr. Sherman has earned three R01s with multiple principal investigators (MPIs), a Funding Level 3 Partnering PI grant from the Department of Defense, a Fulbright Scholarship and a Komen Tissue Bank award. He has earned a diversity supplement to one R01 grant. Additionally, Dr. Sherman mentored an early career investigator at Emory University on a successful V Foundation grant application focusing on racial disparities in breast cancer outcomes. He also assisted another investigator on a funded K2R Program Award. With an H-index score over 100, Dr. Sherman has published more than 500 manuscripts.


Please contact the CCaTS Executive Education and Workforce team with any questions.