School of Medicine

About the Research Development Unit

The Research Development Unit (RDU), an entity within the UCI School of Medicine Office of Research, designs and implements services and other resources to help investigators succeed in obtaining and maintaining extramural funding and — once successful — to share their expertise and help their colleagues do the same. Our services include: 

Funding Opportunity Support

  • Orient investigators to grant agency funding priorities and trends to develop a strategic approach to apply for funding. To request a consultation, contact
  • Conduct targeted funding opportunity searches via an online request form.

Grant Proposal Support

  • Project management support for large, multidisciplinary proposals (e.g. U54, P50, P01)
  • Assistance with NIH training grant data tables
  • Technical editing of grant proposals
  • Assistance with drafting letters of institutional support and boilerplate content
  • Connecting investigators with collaborators across campus & core resources
  • Facilitate proposal pre-reviews by subject matter experts

For specific support requests, please contact

UCI NIH Boot Camp

The RDU administers this campus-wide program designed to help UCI faculty researchers successfully apply for their first research grants from NIH. For more information, please refer to the Boot Camp website.

In addition to the services above, the RDU administers a number of intramural funding programs, including the school’s process for proposals to the VCR’s Bridge funding program. Click here for a list of upcoming funding opportunities. For other inquiries, please contact

Editorial Assistance »

School of Medcine researchers may request assistance from Tara Massimino, director of the school's Research Development Unit, and Beth Riley, editorial director of the university's Office of Research.

The Foundation Relations office provides similar assistance for proposals to private foundations and corporate philanthropic arms.

Supporting Materials Assistance  »

Facilities and Other Resources

Many units on campus have prepared descriptions of shared facilities and resources that can be used for grant applications:

Rigor & Reproducibility in Research

The School of Medicine's Office of Research also has a one-stop shop for resources to comply with requirements set by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for addressing scientific rigor and reproducibility in grant proposals, including relevant literature, examples of R&R from funded grant applications, and templates of authentication of key biological/chemical resources.

Learn how to enhance rigor and reproducibility in your research ›

Fact Sheets

Should you require facts and figures about our institutions for your proposal, view:

Proposal Pre-review Assistance »

The School of Medicine's Office of Research offers proposal pre-review services to investigators applying for NIH research project grants. This service emulates NIH peer-review process, in which a local expert who also has study section experience provides a blind review.

At least six weeks in advance of the sponsor's deadline, interested applicants should submit near-final versions of the following:

  • Project abstract
  • Introduction (if applicable)
  • Specific aims
  • Research strategy

Please note that all sections must conform to current NIH guidelines and merged as a single file.

To request services and submit proposal drafts for review, please submit an online form.

Proposal Development Tutorials »

Other tutorials to help your proposal development include:

  • NIH Peer Review Revealed — This video offers a front-row seat at an NIH peer-review meeting. Real scientists review fictional yet realistic grant applications for scientific merit.

  • 8 Ways to Successfully Navigate NIH Peer Review and Get an R01 Grant — The Center for Scientific Review (CSR) recently hosted this webinar to give different groups of applicants useful insights into CSR application submission and peer review processes.

  • National Science Foundation CAREER Workshop — This workshop, led by the Delta Program at University of Wisconsin-Madison, presents strategies for writing a successful education plan. A panel of faculty members who have submitted successful proposals also share their tips and insights on the review process. The workshop is designed for new faculty preparing to submit proposals in all fields of science, engineering and mathematics.

For more information, contact Tara Massimino at