Proposal Submittal Process

Dear UC Merced Investigators,

ORED launched its new, web-based Cayuse Research Suite of contracts and grants software in July 2014. The suite is now the official system for submitting proposals for federal, extramural research grants at UC-Merced.

Use Cayuse424 to submit all your proposals to federal agencies unless the proposal is one of the following:

  • a collaborative submission to NSF—submit this type of proposal through FastLane
  • a proposal to a non-federal agency that requires submission through the sponsor's submission system
  • a proposal requiring a application package not supported by Cayuse424
  • a standard proposal to NSF—you may continute to prepare and submit these through FastLane.  

In addition, every proposal—regardless of submission method, including paper—must have an accompanying CayuseSP record which is the campus's system of records for grants and contracts. 

To facilitate creating Cayuse424 applications and SP records, RDS has implemented new guidelines for providing assistance with proposal preparation. Please observe these guidelines to enable us to provide our best level of support:

  • Request RDS assistance well in advance of the submission deadline.
    RDS requires a minimum of 19 business days, which includes 5 days for SPO review prior to a sponsor deadline
    to provide assistance preparing proposals
  • For assistance with large complex proposals, contact RDS at least 30 days in advance of the sponsor deadline.
    Large complex proposals have budgets over $1 million and/or 2 or more subawards.
  • Send requests for RDS assistance with your proposal to:
    Include the following information in your request: Name and URL for funding opportunity, submission deadline, project start and end dates, project title, whether budget will include subawards or will be a collaborative submission. 
  • Specify what type of assistance you want from RDS in your initial request.
    For proposals submitted at least 14 business days prior to a sponsor deadline, RDS will provide you with as much or as little assistance as you require. We can help with: proposal development and document preparation; completing Cayuse 424 application forms; and assistance during the SPO review.
  • Assistance with last minute requests: If RDS receives your proposal with less than 19 business days notice, we may not be able to provide assistance beyond forwarding the proposal to SPO for review and submission, depending upon workload.

The Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) continues to be the authorized institutional entity that reviews and submits all complete proposals to extramural agencies.

More information on Cayuse424:

We are confident that these changes will improve the process of proposal preparation and submittal, and provide you with better service.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Vice Chancellor for Research and Economic Development Samuel J. Traina and/or RDS Director Susan Carter. Susan may be reached at and Sam can be reached at