Last modified: Oct 19, 2017

1) Are you eligible to be a Principal Investigator?

The privilege to act as a Principal Investigator (PI) or a Co-Principal Investigator (Co-PI) on an externally-funded project is automatically conferred upon all Northeastern faculty members as outlined in the PI Eligibility Policy. As defined at Northeastern, the Principal Investigator or Project Director:

  • Directs the scientific aspects of the project
  • Authorizes all expenditures of project funds to assure that costs charged are appropriate and benefit the project
  • Oversees the budgetary management of the award
  • Completes required technical reports
  • Is responsible for compliance with applicable University policies and federal regulations and laws


Faculty with the following titles are automatically eligible:

  • Professor
  • Research Professor
  • Associate Professor
  • Associate Research Professor 
  • Assistant Professor
  • Assistant Research Professor

Those without the aforementioned titles must use the Temporary PI Status Request Form above

2) Get familiar with the proposal requirements:

  • Read the directions, most proposals are rejected simply because the directions were not followed correctly!
  • Is it being submitted electronically? Make sure you download any application forms (note that the Download Legacy PDF Application Package option to apply retires December 31, 2017).
  • Apply using Grants.gov Workspace.
  • Need help? Check out our fact sheet NU Quick Facts on our webpage Policies & Guidelines.

3) Proposal Submission Tools