Administrative Approval Process

Prior to submitting a grant proposal to or entering into a contract or cooperative agreement with any external agency, the proposed funding request must be approved by the University. This is a relatively simple process, though the review can take some time. In particular, the Legal Office must review all relevant Certifications and Assurances or other contractual obligations. These are essentially any “strings” which the funding agency may place on ACU should an award or agreement be accepted. This is sometimes a very brief process, but it can also take a great deal of time. It is therefore very important that the administrative review process be initiated in a timely manner.

Tips for the Administrative Review Process:

  1. As soon as a definite decision is made to apply for external funding, contact Megan Roth in ORSP.
  2. You will need to initiate an External Funding Approval Form through Adobe eSign Services. Complete the fields and electronically sign the form. Once you sign, the form will be sent to all other individuals who are required to sign. You will need to enter the email addresses for each administrator in the following order:
    1. Person 1: PI
    2. Person 2: PI's Chair
    3. Person 3: PI's Dean
    4. Person 4: Megan Roth, ORSP (
    5. Person 5: Slade Sullivan, University Counsel (
    6. Person 6: Katie Longley, Controller (
    7. Person 7: Susan Lewis, Vice Provost (
    8. If funds are from a private foundation, add Person 8: Jim Orr, Advancement (

If you require assistance in initiating the form through eSign, please contact Megan Roth in ORSP.

  1. The form should be completed and signed by the PI at least 2 weeks prior to the deadline for grant submission and prior to signing any contracts or agreements. However, the legal review of certifications and assurances can be conducted well in advance of submission. This will ensure that there is enough time to conduct an adequate legal review. Further, should there be problems in this area, it is far better for this to be identified as early in the process as possible than to make this discovery after a great deal of work has been invested in the project.

If you anticipate applying for or receiving a gift from a private foundation, you will still complete the External Funding Approval Form, and it will be routed to the Advancement Office for approval. Please note that if you are asking a private foundation for $100,000 or more, then you must receive approval from the Senior Leadership Team before applying. You must attach this approval to your External Approval Form upon submisison.

Tool: What is a gift versus grant versus contract versus cooperative agreement?

New in Reasearch

Dr. Ryan Jessup, Assistant Professor of Marketing

Dr. Jessup is interested in decisions.  What causes people to choose poorly?  How do learning and contextual factors influence choice?  In seeking to answer these questions, his research uses psychological models of motivation to distill the computational properties of decision making.  Computational modeling enhances research by requiring precision in theory formulation and constraining predictions.

One of Dr. Jessup’s primary streams of research concerns the behavioral differences between decisions when options are completely described vs. decisions when options must be learned about via experience.  Prior research found that individuals choose quite differently between the two paradigms but the reasons underlying the difference are poorly understood.  One of Dr. Jessup’s studies demonstrated that the reception of feedback overwhelms descriptive information, driving the behavioral differences between paradigms.  This work has led him and his colleagues (including Dr. John Homer and undergraduate researcher Allison Phillips) to build a new model that merges sophisticated decision making mechanisms with reinforcement learning in order to successfully predict behavior in both paradigms better than existing models. Dr. Jessup has previously received Cullen awards for this work and is currently seeking external funding to continue this fascinating line of research.

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