Fish swimming up a fish latter with steps labeled 'request for proposal', 'proposal review', etc.

Proposal Review

Tip: In reviewer orientation webinars/workshops, include slides, such as the ones below, to remind reviewers what the evaluation plan needs to include and to give them some questions to use to review the evaluation plan.

Slide 1: Evaluation Plan Components Required of All Proposals

Slide 2: Some Questions to Ask When Reviewing an Evaluation Plan

Tip: Have a section of the panel review summary, entitled “Evaluation Plan” where comments and questions on the overview of the evaluation plan are included.
Tip: Include at least one reviewer for each review panel with expertise in evaluation.
Rationale: Currently in the initial review process, evaluation plans get short shrift. They tend to be short (1-2 pages) and most reviewers have little expertise in evaluation. By having at least one reviewer with evaluation experience on a panel and providing reviewers with some basic questions to ask about an evaluation, more attention will be paid to the quality of the plan. Having a separate section of the panel review summary focus on evaluation will provide program officers suggestions for possible questions and/or clarifications to be asked for proposals that are competitive for funding.

While there are many possible questions to ask of an evaluation plan, it is recommended that reviewers focus on questions about the evaluation plan's potential to determine if the project's objectives are met and if the evaluation team is qualified to conduct the evaluation. Because there is so little data available on STEM workforce development and people with disabilities, it is suggested that attention be paid to this in the review of the evaluation plan.

1 Adapted from