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K Grant-Writing Tips

Click here for the most recent K workshop slide presentations and video recordings to assist with grant writing and development.

K-to-R Grant-Writing Tips

Click here for the most recent K-to-R workshop slide presentations and video recordings to assist with grant writing and development.

What Is a Diversity Supplement?

The NIH provides funding to attract minority trainees and faculty to research careers. NIH Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supplement) PA-18-906 provides additional funding for trainees and faculty to work on an existing NIH-funded project in a particular area of interest.

  • The application information (which can be accessed via the link above) describes the requirements for all levels of trainee, from high school through college, graduate school, and postgraduate studies to the investigator level.
  • Trainees must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States or to individuals who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States (i.e., in possession of a Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551).
  • Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
  • Due dates may vary by awarding IC. See Table of IC-Specific Information, Requirements and Staff Contacts for more details.
  • Administrative supplements are much less competitive than peer-reviewed grant funding mechanisms, and can provide an excellent entry point for a research career.
  • Budget requests must follow the budget cycle of the existing grant.
  • Supplemental funding may not extend beyond the existing grant’s project end date.
  • Timeline: ongoing

Key Points About Diversity Supplements

  • NIH Diversity Supplements are an important approach to supporting under-represented minority and disabled trainees and young faculty who are interested in research.
  • These supplements are also a great way to obtain added resources for funded research projects.
  • An application for a Diversity Supplement, which can be submitted by the Principal Investigator of any existing NIH-funded grant or contract, is short and easy to write.
  • Diversity supplements do not require peer review—they can be approved by NIH Project Officers and are supported using funds specifically set-aside for this purpose.
  • Thus, Diversity Supplement applications have no set deadline, have a quick review and a relatively high probability of funding.

Who Can Apply?

Principal Investigators who hold an active R01, R10, R18, R22, R24, R35, R37, P01, P20, P30, P40, P41, P50, P51, P60, U01, U10, U19, U41, U42, U54, or UL1 grant are generally eligible to submit a request for an Administrative Supplement to the parent grant. Principal Investigators holding an Academic Research Enhancement Award (R15), an Exploratory/Developmental Grant (R21) or a Small Grant Award (R03) also may apply for a supplement under this program. See a complete list of eligible grants.

UPDATE: S06 is now an eligible activity code (NOT-OD-18-226).

First step: Principal Investigators interested in submitting an application for a diversity supplement should begin by contacting the NIH staff (Table of IC-Specific Information, Requirements and Staff Contacts) who are administering the parent grant. Some institutes have specific application instructions and requirements.

Who Is Considered an Under-Represented Minority in Biomedical Research?

The NIH definition is included in "Section I. Funding Opportunity Description" of PA-18-906, and is summarized here:

  • The following racial and ethnic groups have been shown to be underrepresented in biomedical research: Blacks or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders. (See more information).
  • Individuals with disabilities, who are defined as those with a physical or mental impairment
  • Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. Eligibility related to a disadvantaged background is most applicable to high school and perhaps to undergraduate candidates, but is difficult to justify for individuals beyond that level of academic achievement. Awards under this program are limited to citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States or to individuals who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States (i.e., in possession of an Alien Registration Receipt Card or some other legal evidence of admission for permanent residence at the time of application).
  • Individuals who come from a family with an annual income below established low-income thresholds. (Find more information.)
  • Individuals who come from an educational environment such as that found in certain rural or inner-city environments.

Who Should Be Considered for a Diversity Supplement?

The NIH believes that by providing research opportunities for qualified individuals at various career levels, the number entering and remaining in health-related research careers will increase. Accordingly, Principal Investigators are encouraged to consider administrative supplements under this program for candidates at the following career levels:

  • High School Students who have expressed an interest in the health-related sciences.
  • Undergraduate Students who wish to pursue graduate level research training in health-related sciences.
  • Post-Baccalaureate Students and Post-Master's Degree Students who have recently graduated and wish to pursue further graduate training in health-related research.
  • Pre-doctoral Students who wish to develop their research capabilities in the health-related sciences.
  • Individuals in Postdoctoral Training who wish to participate as postdoctoral researchers in ongoing research projects and career development experiences in preparation for an independent career in a health-related research.
  • Faculty who wish to participate in ongoing research projects while further developing their own independent research potential.
  • Established investigators who become disabled may be eligible for additional support or special equipment that will facilitate a continuing contribution to the goals of the parent grant.

Research Training for Supplement Awardees

To enhance training and education of supplement awardees, consider inclusion of fees or tuition costs in the supplement budget for pertinent courses or workshops.

Examples of Successful Diversity Supplements

Examples of Successful Diversity Supplements can be found in the CTSI Online Grant Library. Access can be requested here.

The Guide to CTSI Grant Writing Resources provides a collection of CTSI resources that can assist with grant writing. This includes references to:

  • Online tools
  • Writing consultations
  • Drop-in biostatistical consultations
  • Biostatistical consults by appointment
  • K and R grant workshops
  • Pre-submission grant reviews
  • Project-specific consultations
  • Cohort-finding tools
  • Community engagement consultations
  • Research Go

NIH Resources and Grant-Writing Tips

NIH Application Guide

Click here to see the NIH's Application Guide.

UCLA's Commonly Needed Information

The UCLA Office of Contract and Grant Administration has compiled a helpful guide which lists commonly needed items for grant applications. View this helpful list here.

UCLA Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research: Research Enhancement Materials

Research Enhancement Materials and Events Archive

This series provides information, presentations, and materials for events related to proposal development, resources to facilitate research at UCLA, handouts, and more.

The Research Enhancement series is a component of UCLA Grand Challenges. For information or to propose topics for future events, please contact us: grandchallenges@ucla.edu

Funding Search Tools

Grants.gov provides central access to more than 1,000 different grant programs across for federal grant-making agencies that award more than $500 billion annually.

Spin is the world's largest database of sponsored funding opportunities. Spin has the ability to conduct customized searches based on an investigator’s profile, save searches, and create funding alerts.

NIH Career Development (K) Awards
The NIH Career Development (K) Award site provides institutional research training opportunities (including international) to trainees at the undergraduate, graduate, postdoctoral, early career and established investigator levels.

UCLA Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research (OVCR) Funding Opportunity Resources
There are a number of funding opportunity resources available to UCLA community members including internal funding mechanisms, newsletters, databases, and graduate and postdoc search engines.

UCLA Corporate, Foundation and Research Relations
The Corporate, Foundation and Research Relations (CFRR) team in Health Sciences Development is here to support you in establishing and strengthening relationships with private institutional funders. Our goal is to increase the amount of funding received by UCLA Health and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA from corporations and foundations in order to advance faculty-initiated projects, departmental priorities, and the university mission.