Skip to main content

Effective Grant Writing Workshops

Karl Keller from Communication Partners

The Offices of Faculty Affairs and Mentoring Programs has teamed up with Karl Keller from Communication Partners, to provide a five-week workshop on Effective Grant Writing to all Rush faculty members and postdoctoral fellows. Within the first 15 workshops, Karl has helped Rush researchers secure over $17 million in funding with a 69% successful grant rate. 


This workshop is geared towards people who are currently working on drafts – please sign up ONLY if you are currently in the process of writing a grant for submission soon.
Spaces are limited and will be allocated on a first-come-first-serve basis to eligible faculty.


Each session will have some lecture component, but participants are expected to be prepared to come and write. In these sessions, participants work on peer reviewing, writing, and editing. They will work on drafts of various sections of their actual grant applications. Each participant should be in the process of writing an actual grant application and come to the first class with at least a draft of an aims page or research proposal summary. If you are interested in participating in the Effective Grant Writing Workshop, you can register by using the following link: 2023 Effective Grant Writing Workshop - Registration. The registration deadline for this workshop is on April 10, 2023 (Monday). After you register, we will send you the Zoom calendar invitations to block your calendar.


Sessions will be held on Zoom from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. If conditions permit, some sessions could be held in-person/hybrid platform. All sessions will be held on the following dates:

April 17, 2023 (Monday)

April 24, 2023 (Monday)

May 1, 2023 (Monday)

May 9, 2023 (Tuesday)

May 15, 2023 (Monday)


Course Logistics

Week 1 - The Components and Structure of an Aims Page

An in-depth analysis of the key components of an aims page - the context, the complication, long and short-term goals, the hypothesis, and the path to the hypothesis, etc. Participants read each other's aims pages and identify missing or incomplete components.


Week 2 - The Logic Flow of Aims

Understanding the "logic flow" of specific aims. Are they separate and independent? Does each aim have its own sub-hypothesis? Each participant creates a logic flow chart for both his/her aims page and the aims page of a colleague. These flow charts are compared.


Week 3 - Live Critique and Edit

In this session, the instructor does a real time critique and edit on portions of a submission from one or two participants in the workshop who have upcoming near-term submission deadlines. This "real time" close reading may address an aims page or other parts of the submission.


Week 4 - Best Practices in Writing Sentences and Paragraphs

In this session, we review critical best writing practices to create document flow - topic sentences, old-to-new, light-to-heavy, and echo words. Participants will identify issues in their own writing and will correct their text. (Note: At this stage, participants should have completed a draft of their aims page and have begun working on the major body of the application.)


Week 5 - Matching Your Grant Application With NIH Criteria

In this session, we examine the NIH criteria for significance, innovation, and approach. (Does the application meet the criteria established by the NIH in these areas?) Participants critically examine their own research plan section and the application of others to see if criteria are met.


If you have any questions about the Effective Grant Writing Workshop, please feel free to email us at