This page outlines University of Newcastle processes for applying for research funding. As well as the information here, the Research Office can help you navigate the process of preparing and submitting your application for funding


Funding Opportunities ||  Preparing Research Budgets ||  Online Booking System ||  Application Coversheet

Finding Research Funding

As a University of Newcastle researcher, you have access to a number of resources to help you locate funding opportunities. These include:

Preparing your Research Budget

The Research Office has put together a toolkit to assist researchers in preparing their research budget. You can access this toolkit through the Preparing Research Budgets page (staff/student login required).

Indirect Costs

It is important to note that all external grant budgets should include Indirect Costs (Overheads) at a rate of 25% unless an exemption applies. More information regarding Indirect Costs for Research is located on the Preparing Research Budgets page.

Budget Resources Quicklinks
External Resources

Eligibility and Compliance (E&C) Checks

The Research Office can provide an Eligibility and Compliance (E&C) check of your research grant application. This check will look at your application to make sure it meets the grant guidelines and ensure that you won’t be ruled out due to an ineligible proposal. We do not review the science of an application.

While an E&C check is not compulsory, it is highly recommended.

The Compliance Check Period

The Research Office sets an E&C Check period for each scheme. For External/Miscellaneous grant applications, a booking must be made on or before five (5) working days prior to the internal deadline. Deadlines for advertised schemes, are listed on the Funding Opportunities page.

For ARC/NHMRC schemes, the E&C check period for each scheme varies and will be advertised by the Research Office when the scheme opens. The booking system for a scheme is opened for booking soon after the scheme opens.

How to book an E&C Check

The Research Office uses an online booking system for eligibility and compliance checks on applications to external funding bodies.

Checks are completed electronically. You do not need to attend your appointment in person.

Using an online booking system means that applications are released back to researchers on the same day as the E&C check booking giving you more time to work on your application.

Please note: To enable the allocation of appropriate resourcing, bookings must be made prior to the defined scheme E&C Check period. Access to book an E&C Check will no longer be available once the Check period has commenced. This does not apply for schemes with continuous rounds (i.e. ARC Linkage Projects and NHMRC Partnership Projects).

Making a booking

A Chief Investigator (CI) can make a booking for an ARC or NHMRC application during the scheme specific E&C Check period by using a valid RMS/Sapphire Application ID for an application where the University of Newcastle (UON) has been selected as the Administering Institution.

An RMS/Sapphire Application ID can only be used to secure one E&C Check booking. If multiple bookings are made for one application, we will cancel all but the earliest date for the E&C Check in the system.

For all other external schemes, bookings are made via External/Miscellaneous Grants tile on the online booking system.

Submitting your application to the Research Office for your E&C Check

Applications must be submitted to the Research Office before 9:00am (AET) on the day of your booking. Instructions on how to submit are detailed below.

In order to obtain the most value from your Eligibility and Compliance Check, we recommend you submit an as-close-to-complete as possible version of your application on your booking date.

Please note: No secondary eligibility and compliance checks will be undertaken by the Research Office. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure their application meets all the requirements of the relevant scheme.

ARC applications

Select the ‘Submit to Research Office’ button in the application screen in RMS.

NHMRC applications

Select the ‘Certification’ page in Sapphire, select ‘Certify and submit to RAO. You will then be able to download a copy of your final application by clicking on the ‘All application forms and attachments’ link in. Once you have downloaded, select ‘I have downloaded all of the available files that I require’ and click ‘Next’.

Tutorials are available on the NHMRC Sapphire page

NHMRC affiliated (e.g. Cancer Australia, Cancer Council NSW) applications

Submit as per NHMRC applications and send additional application material to

You will need to provide ALL separate applications to the Research Office before 9:00am on the day of your booking given the eligibility overlap of these applications.

Other External Funding Body schemes

Email a PDF of the application as well as any relevant supporting documentation to before 9:00am on the day of your booking.

Please read our External/Miscellaneous Grant Submission Procedure page for further information on the External/Miscellaneous application procedure regarding Eligibility and Compliance Checks and submission.

Application Coversheet

All external research grant applications, including ARC and NHMRC, require a completed and signed External Grant Application Coversheet (DOC). This is to be provided to the Research Office by the advertised University Deadline for Final Application for the scheme (by 9:00am at least 5 working days prior to the funding body deadline unless otherwise specified).

A joint Faculty-Research Services initiative, the coversheet must be signed by the:

  1. First named Chief Investigator (CIA),
  2. Head of School (or delegate nominee) and
  3. Faculty Assistant Dean (Research).

It is the applicant's responsibility to complete this form, arrange for it to be signed by the Head of School and Faculty Assistant Dean (Research), and to submit the completed document, along with the application, to the Research Office by the specified University Deadline for Final Application.

As School and Faculty processes may vary, we encourage you to make contact with your School/Faculty support staff early on to determine any additional internal requirements or deadlines.

University Deadline for Final Application (Internal Deadline)

For an application to be submitted to the Funding Body, a complete, submission ready application and all associated documentation must be provided to the Research Office by 9:00am on or before the university's Deadline for Final Application (the internal deadline).

Associated documentation includes but is not limited to:

  • A fully signed External Grant Application Coversheet (DOC)
  • Certifications for all Internal and External Personnel, and Participating Organisations (ARC applications only)
  • Draft institutional letters of support (for review and signature by a university delegate)
  • Evidence of support for cash or in-kind contributions from a University of Newcastle source (i.e. School/Faculty/Central) which are not aligned with the approved central standard support package
  • CV(s) as required as part of the application

When is the internal deadline?

The University Deadline for Final Application (the internal deadline) is 9:00am five (5) working days before the Funding Body scheme closing date (unless otherwise stated – see note below regarding ARC/NHMRC application timelines).

What happens once the Research Office receives my application?

After the internal deadline, the Research Office will ensure all required documentation is received for each application and perform pre-submission checks that are required by the institution prior to submission.

Receiving applications by the internal deadline means that the Research Office has adequate time to perform the necessary pre-submission institutional checks on your application. These checks may require further information from you or changes to your application. Consequently, late applications will have less time for these checks and a reduced opportunity for the Research Office to work with you on making any amendments necessary to obtain approval for submission and ultimate submission.

This time is also necessary given the volume of applications we process, the overlap of schemes, and past history of online submission system failure during the crucial final hours before the funding body deadline.

ARC/NHMRC Timeline for Applications

Shortly after scheme opens Bookings open in Online Booking System
Eligibility and Compliance check dates advertised via relevant mailing list
Two weeks before Funding Body closing date Final date for E&C Checks*
One week before Funding Body closing date Final, completed application and associated documentation  due to the Research Office
Funding Body closing date Research Office submits applications to Funding Body

*To enable the allocation of appropriate resourcing, bookings must be made prior to the defined scheme E&C Check period. Access to book a Check will no longer be available once the Check Period has commenced. This does not apply for schemes with continuous rounds (i.e. ARC Linkage Projects and NHMRC Partnership Projects).

Institutional Approval for Applications

All external research applications require institutional approval prior to being submitted to the funding body. This includes the submission of first stage applications, Expressions of Interest or pre-applications. This process is managed by the Research Office.

In order to seek institutional approval, the Research Office requires researchers to submit their completed application as well as a signed application coversheet by 9:00am on the the internal deadline.

If this deadline is missed, the Research Office can not guarantee that institutional approval can be obtained in time.

Applications involving HNELHD Patients/Sites

For applications involving Hunter New England Local Health District (HNELHD) patients, sites and/or HNELHD Chief or Associate Investigator(s) it is important to ensure that the appropriate HNELHD manager(s)/Executive Director approval has been obtained prior to the University internal deadline.

  • If a HNELHD letter of support is required and the university requires evidence of governance arrangements for existing projects

The HNELHD process for approval requires the completion of the HNELHD Brief Approval Template signed by the appropriate HNELHD manager(s)/Executive Director. HNELHD recommend that applicants commence this process as soon as possible to ensure approvals are obtained prior to the University internal deadline.

Please contact the HNELHD Research office if you have any questions relating to their processes or research involving HNELHD patients or sites.

  • If NO HNELHD letter of support is required and the University of Newcastle does not require evidence of of HNE approval

Please contact the HNELHD Research office if you have any questions relating to research involving HNELHD patients or sites.

Please note: Applicants who are proposing to access HNELHD patients or sites but who do not have a formal affiliation with HNELHD, will need to ensure the application team includes a HNELHD investigator in accordance with HNELHD requirements.

Other Important Information for your application

  • Indirect Costs should be included in all external grant budgets. Please see the Preparing Research Budgets page for more information.
  • The required Head of Institute signature is arranged by the Research Office. The applicant is responsible for obtaining all other signatures.

Application Documents

Additional Application Resources

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