3.2 Federal Funding for Research

This lesson provides an overview of federal funding sources, and discusses the differences in contracts and grants, as well as the process involved for obtaining research funding. Some questions to consider while completing this lesson include:

  • Why must multiple people be involved in a submission for federal funding?
  • Which federal agencies are most likely to sponsor health care projects?
  • What is meant by indirect costs?

Learning Objectives

  • Explain how the process for research funding works
  • Cite the difference between a contract and a grant
  • List some of the organizations that offer research funding opportunities

Video Tutorial

Presented By: Sobha Jaishankar

Practice Activity

Instructions: After watching the video tutorial, complete the following practice assessment. Choose the best answer for each question, and check your response for immediate feedback.



What advice would you give to new Citizen Scientists?


Additional Resources

  • Funding: Compliance Offices
    Described in this handout are different offices that help a university manage its compliance with funding requirements. This content may differ by institution, but will help you understand the major components to this process.
  • Funding: RFA Example
    This handout is an example of a Request for Applications (RFA) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a major funder of health research. Reviewing the content required in a submitted grant application will allow you to have a greater understanding of what goes into the process of applying for a federal grant.