Advanced Draft Feedback

Advanced Draft Feedback (ADF) is designed to provide applicants with comments on early drafts of applications which can aid in preparation of a final proposal for a grant competition. Applicants can submit any portion of an proposal up to a cut off date. Submitting for ADF is entirely optional, but it is recommended for SSHRC and other Tri-Agency applications, and larger grant proposals where there are numerous inter-related documents and sections, as well as involved budgets, and teams. 

Completing a draft of the grant proposal and budget early enough for a GFO to provide ADF is a good idea for several reasons. The GFO’s feedback may involve commenting, re-structuring, re-wording, and drafting potential text with the aim to:

  • Research plan: situate the project within context of past research and put the proposal in a better position to setup future proposals and long-term research career plans.
  • Spin: closely align the proposal with the agency’s mandate, evaluation criteria and committee composition, and if applicable, Memorial’s strategic themes, policies, etc.
  • Feasibility: increase the robustness and feasibility of the research plans (objectives, theory, methodology, student training, knowledge mobilization, participant roles, budget, overall scope and depth, data management, etc.).
  • Budget: identify potential roadblocks or inconsistencies; ensure all expenses are appropriate, feasible and allowable.
  • Wordsmithing/style: increase clarity and logical flow of structural organization.
  • Leverage: show strategic leveraging of cash and in-kind commitments and offer guidance on obtaining proper documentation for contributions.

The objectives of an ADF are (depending on the documents you provide) to:

  • Confirm eligibility requirements of the Principal Investigator (PI / Applicant / Project Director), Co-Applicants (CI / Co-Investigator) and Collaborators (COLLs).
  • Consider how your research questions, methods, and objectives align with the competition’s objectives and scoring criteria.
  • Consider how your research questions, methods, and objectives are presented and structured within the application.
  • Consider which committee the application should be submitted to (including the new Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee)
  • Ensure draft length of documents or texts are approximate to the maximums determined by the competition.
  • Ensure consistency across all sections of the application.
  • Review your materials in light of any previous commentary you (or a funding agency) may have provided.
  • Review each component of your research project to ensure it adheres to Tri-Agency policies and best-practices regarding budgets, the training of highly qualified personnel, knowledge mobilization, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, open access, Indigenous research, and data management plans, as applicable.
  • Flag any commitments or contributions that will require confirmation and advise on how to obtain the necessary back-up documentation. We may also suggest other contributions that may be available at Memorial so you can demonstrate Memorial’s commitment to the project.
  • Assist in development of budget and budget justification, in particular reviewing that the budget adheres to Memorial’s Schedule of Reimbursable expenses, hosting policy, rates of pay, terms governing assistants, contractors, post-doctoral fellows, students, etc.
  • Ensure the application adheres to Memorial’s policies and best practices for topics such as: Memorial’s Research Impacting Indigenous Groups policy, Northern research, data management and security, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, etc.
  • Review your CV, research contributions, and relevant experience, providing suggestions so as to align these sections with the competition’s objectives and the research project.