COVID-19 UPDATE: All courses are currently taught remotely.
Please get in touch if you have any questions about how training from Blue Eagle Academic Services can benefit your faculty, department, school, or research group. I am always happy to discuss creating a bespoke course or workshop based on your specific needs.
The peer review process at the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) can sometimes feel like a maze. And it’s no wonder: there is a lot of information to consider each step of the way, and a lot of misinformation has been handed down over the years. It can be challenging to know which way to turn.
The Demystifying EPSRC Peer Review course was developed to provide a behind-the-scenes map for researchers: see who does what at EPSRC, learn potential pitfalls to watch out for, and explore what happens after a proposal is submitted for a new investigator award, standard mode grant, or fellowship proposal.
Throughout the journey, we will also tackle the most common myths so that incorrect assumptions and mistaken beliefs can be avoided, and your proposal can start from a solid foundation of clarity and understanding.
This course enables participants to:
- Look behind the scenes to see what happens when a proposal is submitted
- Discover where they can potentially have more of an influence when writing their proposal
- Avoid common pitfalls and mistakes
- Understand the internal organisation and who does what at EPSRC
- Get tips about how not to write a PI response
- See what happens at a prioritisation panel
- Explore common myths that are held about the EPSRC funding process
- Consider both sides of the review process, as an applicant and a reviewer
- Ask questions or get clarification about the process through live Q&A sessions
Writing a proposal for the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council can be a daunting prospect: a lot of time and energy is spent developing a project where the funding outcome is far from certain and much of it can feel outside of the Principal Investigator’s control. As a former EPSRC portfolio manager, I’m afraid there is nothing I can say to guarantee a successfully funded grant proposal … but I can discuss seven aspects of writing a proposal that are often overlooked but which can have a potential impact on your application. These include:
- Keeping all readers of the proposal in mind: A proposal is seen by a number of people on its way to a funding decision. Ensuring that each person (portfolio manager, reviewer, and panel member) is considered during the writing process can be beneficial.
- Avoiding conflicts: PIs have the chance to nominate reviewers they believe can fairly assess their proposal. However, conflicted reviewers cannot be used, potentially wasting this opportunity.
- Writing a strong PI response: Panel members use the reviewer comments and the PI response to determine how well a proposal meets the assessment criteria. A well-written response—one that is not angry, aggressive, arrogant, dismissive, or petty—can help a proposal move up the rank order list.
These topics and more are highlighted in this free, self-guided session.
Academic Writing Toolkit
This session helps PhD students and post-docs become aware of the common problems encountered in academic writing. It provides a foundation that can be used during their dissertation and beyond, encouraging students to consider the impact of clear communication throughout their academic career.
At present, this course is only available for remote teaching, but a self-guided version will be available soon.