Grant Research and Writing

Political Science 438W.01 (undergraduate version)

Fall 2006

Dr. Waggener


Office Location:       AB1 319B

Office Phone/Email:       (936) 294-1466,

Office Hours:   Ts/T 2:00 – 3:30, MWF 10:00 – 11:30 or by appointment


Overview of Course

This course teaches students grant research and writing skills and introduces students to various grant sources. The course content is arranged according to three general themes. First, the course introduces students to different types of funding sources and explains how to match funding sources and organizational needs. Second, the course teaches students how to plan and write grants. Third, the course introduces students to the “real world” of grant writing by requiring students to plan, write, and submit an actual grant proposal. The last objective provides students the opportunity to develop their resumes by adding grant writing as part of their professional experience.


Students will have the unique opportunity to explore these themes while working with Dan Phillips. Mr. Phillips is a Huntsville resident who has established the Sustainable Builders Guild of Huntsville, a non-profit initiative designed to encourage professionals and consumers in the building industry to achieve a sustainable built environment and to develop low income housing.


Course Objectives

  1. Developing specific skills, competencies, and points of view needed by professionals in the fields most closely related to this course.
  2. Learning how to find and use resources for answering questions or solving problems.
  3. Acquiring skills in working with others as a member of a team.


Required Readings

Ellen Karsh and Arlen Sue Fox, The Only Grant Writing Book You'll Ever Need (2006)


Assignment 1(35%): Written statement outlining organization's goals, objectives, and needs.

Assignment 2 (35%): Written statement identifying 4 grants applicable to the organization's needs and ranking the grants in terms of fit between grantmaker's goals and the organization's goals.

Pop Quizzes (10%): Quizzes are multiple choice/true and false format and based on reading and lecture material.

Final Exam (20%): The final exam is a multiple choice format and based on reading material and lectures.


Class Policies

Make-Up Exams

Make-up exams will be granted to students who can provide formal documentation of a medical or family emergency. If a student fails to provide this documentation, he or she will receive a zero on the exam. Please note that visitation slips issued by the University Health Center are not considered formal documentation, unless the slip clearly indicates that the student was too ill to attend class.


Extra Credit

Under NO circumstances will extra credit be offered in this course.


Please see for class policies regarding:

Academic Dishonesty , Classroom Rules of Conduct, Student Absences on Religious Holy Days, Students with Disabilities Policy, and Visitors in the Classroom.


Class Schedule


August 24-31     The Basics of Grant Language

      Readings : Lessons 1 – 3

September 5-7     Understanding Your Organization

      Readings : Lesson 4     

September 12-14   Getting Started

    Readings : Lessons 6 – 7

September 19 – 21   Defining your Organization's Needs

      Readings : Lesson 8

September 26 – 28   Defining your Organization's Goals and Objectives

      Readings : Lesson 9

October 12 – 19   Coalition Building

      Readings : Lessons 10 - 11   

October 24     Assignment 1 Due

Oct 26 – Nov 2   Searching for Grants

      Readings : None

      *Class will meet in a computer lab

November 7 – 9   Class does not meet. Students will complete online assignments.

November 14 - 16   Evaluation and Budget

      Readings : Lessons 12 – 13

November 16     Assignment 2 Due

November 21 – 24   Thanksgiving Break

November 28 – 30   Sustaining the Program

      Readings : Lessons 14 – 15

December 5 – 7   Professional Opportunities in Grant Writing


Dec 12 11:00 - 1:00   Final Exam