How to Understand Grant Guidelines!

Know how to make the most of the application guidelines

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iClick2Learn Team

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Grant Application Guidelines (1)

Grant Application Guidelines (2)

How Grants are Scored

How Grants are Weighted

How Grants are Judged

The Determination Process

Now, the first one is guidelines. Really critical, can’t stress enough how important it is to make sure that you know what the guidelines are. You’ve gone through. You’ve read them. You’ve pulled them apart. You’ve highlighted them, retyped them, whatever it is to make sure that you know things that, such as how much money are they giving away? Or what is the particular subject or focus that you’re responding to? And what specifically are their priorities? So there are key things to look out for in general terms.

Now, the first one is guidelines. Really critical, can’t stress enough how important it is to make sure that you know what the guidelines are. You’ve gone through. You’ve read them. You’ve pulled them apart. You’ve highlighted them, retyped them, whatever it is to make sure that you know things that, such as how much money are they giving away? Or what is the particular subject or focus that you’re responding to? And what specifically are their priorities? So there are key things to look out for in general terms.

One of the other things to think about is do you know how the submission is scored? Now, what you will find in some award submissions and tenders is they actually tell you how many points a question is worth, and this is really important information. It helps you understand how much information they need or they’re looking for, and it also helps you allocate roughly how many pages should you give to each question. 

You know, if there’s a maximum of say, 30 pages, and you’ve got an average question is worth about five points, but you’ve got three points that are worth 10 points, well obviously you double the amount of pages for those questions as opposed to the others. So this starts to give you some information. 

The other thing about scoring is if it’s not provided, you should actually look at the question and try and work that out yourself. If you’re looking at a question, how many questions are there, divide those up by a hundred. Have a look at how many parts there are to the question, and try and work out how much that question might be worth. And it gives you a little bit of an understanding.

The fourth point is about weighting, and weighting is about how they actually assess it. Now, tenders, some grant submissions, certainly awards, give you this weighting. And what that means is they’ll give you questions but then they’ll actually say, we’ll use this criteria to assess applications. So there may not be a specific question on that criteria, but it still means that you’ve still got to know about it because what you are looking at is, you’ve got to answer the questions. Without fail, you have to address the questions. 

But what you need to make sure of is you’ve considered that criteria that’s in the weighting. Because if there’s something in the weighting criteria and you haven’t made sure that you’ve expressed that in your responses, you need to go through the responses and try and incorporate that in your responses. This means when they get to the weighting stage, they’ve got further information and they’re able to make a more informed decision. But at the end of the day, make sure you answer the questions, and make sure that you incorporate some of the criteria of the weightings in the relevant question.

The other one is the judging process, and this is something for you ask. Do you understand how it’s actually judged? So is it a pool of two that are coming together, face to face? Who are you actually talking to? Are they internal judges, do they get an external person? Is there likely to be people on the panel that are either English as a second, third, or fourth language? So this is an important process. Is there stages, is there a first-stage expression of interest that’s charged and marked, and then then it opens up to a second stage. So you’ve really got to figure out what the judging process is and importantly, who you’re actually trying to talk to, as well.

And then the sixth point is, what is the process for determination? So does it go through a process whereby there’s a series of applications and then they have perhaps one on one interviews and that then determines with the finalists that determine who wins the award or who wins the grant. So for example, The Telstra Business Women’s Award, they have interviews, The Foundation for Young Australians grant. 

They have interviews with the decision making team. Some grants the determination process is actually doing a pitch to a group of decision makers. So it’s important to understand how is it determined, because this also adds waiting to when you look at how much content and what type of content you actually provide?


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