Get answers to common questions about steps to take once an application has gone through the review process. Use the links above to quickly navigate to a section on this page.
How do I know if my application will be funded?
The only way to definitively know if an application will be funded is through a Notice of Award. However, applicants are encouraged to use the information below to gauge their potential for funding.
My application received both a percentile score and an impact score
For these applications, NINDS primarily relies on expert advice provided by peer review panels and follows our published paylines
to make funding determinations. Each fiscal year (FY), the Institute identifies a percentile score that serves as the funding cutoff (also called payline). With rare exceptions, NINDS funds all applications within the payline. Be mindful that there are different paylines for certain categories, such as Early Stage Investigators (ESI) and applications that fall under the Special Council Review policy.
My application did not receive a percentile score
Some applications do not receive a percentile score, and thus don't fall within the posted paylines. These applications are referred to as “non-percentiled” applications. Due to the heterogeneity of review for applications across Notices of Funding Opportunities, these applications are difficult to compare and the Institute does not establish a payline for them. In general, non-percentiled applications are funded in score order within a NOFO as funds allow, with occasional exceptions based on programmatic goals and other factors. The NINDS Paylines and Funding page
gives some examples of ranges that are typically considered for funding.
My application falls beyond the payline
NINDS supports a small number of applications beyond the payline in a process called "Select Pay
" to ensure the health of the neuroscience research community, and with the potential to expand the diversity of thought, experience, and/or perspective within the NINDS research or clinical workforce. Applications supported through this process include R01 applications from Early Stage Investigators, 1-year bridge awards (R56), and applications that meet one or more of the criteria to be considered High Program Priority (HPP). Applicants DO NOT need to apply or request consideration for select pay. ESI status is determined via your eRA Commons account and program staff automatically consider all applications beyond the payline for Bridge or HPP consideration.
To ensure that your application is considered for the ESI extended R01 payline, make sure your degree information is current and accurate in the "Education" section of your eRA commons personal profile.
When will I know the definitive funding decision?
This depends on a number of factors highlighted below. Be aware that while NINDS aims to issue awards by project start dates, there instances in which this may not always be feasible.
The NINDS Advisory Council review process
Most applications require completion of this process before final funding decisions are made. About eight weeks before each Council meeting, a subset of members performs an electronic expedited review for qualifying applications. The applications that undergo expedited review are a subset of R01s, R21s, and R03s with no administrative concerns. Even if your application undergoes expedited review, you may not receive funding early if other factors come into play.
Whether your application is in the funding gray zone
Many high-quality applications that score above the range where most applications are funded may be deferred for a funding decision until later in the fiscal year. These funding decisions are often made based on available funds for programs that have a fixed budget (e.g. SBIR/ STTR, BRAIN, HEAL, and AD/ADRD) that has to be closed out.
The complexity of your award
Many applications that are larger and more complex require additional negotiations prior to award
. These can include budgetary negotiations, as well as milestone negotiations and can take some time to negotiate before an award can be made.
Whether NINDS has all information needed for administrative review
It is important that you and the Business Official in your institution respond to requests from your PO and Grants Management Specialist in a timely manner. Such requests could include revised JIT, IRB or IACUC certification
, or revised milestones
. Delayed responses can significantly impact the release of your award, particularly towards the end of the FY. All official documentation for your grant award should be sent through your Institution’s Business Office.
Learn more about funding decisions by reviewing the application process overview.
Who can I contact with further questions?
When seeking additional information about the status of your award, it is usually best to start with the business official in the sponsored research office at your institution. Post review, your main point of contact is the Program Officer (PO) assigned to your application. The name of your PO is listed on your summary statement and within eRA Commons. Your PO can help you assess whether your application is likely to be funded, advise you on whether you should revise and resubmit, and provide an idea of when you might expect to receive your award.
Find your PO
What to do if my application is unlikely to be funded?
If your application seems unlikely to be funded, consider the options below.