Resources for Proposal Writers

Proposal writing is always challenging. Writers must argue for why their project is so important and so likely to succeed that it deserves a substantial investment of time and money. Writers developing their proposals will find a range of resources available at Princeton to support their writing.

Pitching your Project: A Workshop on Writing an Effective Proposal

Writing a winning proposal can be a catch-22: Even though the best way to learn how to write a proposal is to be a reviewer, in order to review proposals, you must have already written a successful one. In this workshop, we’ll circumvent this paradox by using readers’ expectations of language, science, and argument to analyze the elements of effective proposals. How do proposals compare to other scientific documents? How do the various parts fit together? How can writers ensure that every page of the proposal develops and supports their overall argument?

Presented by Judy Swan, Ph.D (and former NSF Fellow)
Associate Director for Writing in Science and Engineering
Princeton Writing Program

September 19, 2017 4:30-6:30 pm

Writing Center Conferences for Proposal Writers

Writers working on proposals are welcome to meet with Writing Center Fellows specifically trained in responding to draft proposals. During the months of October and November, appointments may be booked directly with the Writing Center. To arrange for a conference at other times of year, please send an email to requesting a “proposal conference."

Writing Groups for Proposal Writers

Writing groups are a well-established strategy for writing effectively; they provide momentum, routine, colleagues, feedback, and insight into the revision process. If you’re interested in joining a writing group specifically for proposal writers, please email

NSF day at Princeton University

The National Science Foundation visited Princeton on November 3, 2010 to provide information about funding opportunities and submission guidelines.  You can view the session Proposal Preparation 101.

Other on-line resources for Proposal Writers