Required and Offered Courses:
Scientific Writing & Grant Proposal Preparation

Course Number: MICR 6255
Course Description

Time: Tuesdays, 2 - 4 PM
Location: Levin Hall 3.320


Must have declared Microbiology & Immunology as their graduate program

Required Text:

The Grant Application Writer's Workbook

Course Coordinator:
Aneth Zertuche
MRB Rm. 4.102
Route 1019

Course Description:

This 16-week course will introduce the principles of scientific writing and grant proposal preparation in the NIH format. The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the individual parts of an NIH-style grant application, to help students in acquiring scientific writing skills, and to prepare students for the qualifying exam in the M&I graduate program.

The course will consist of weekly lectures and small-group sessions during which experienced faculty mentors present didactic instruction on planning, organizing, and writing a hypothesis-driven grant application. Students will also work individually and in small groups on an original grant proposal. Using examples from successful grants in the area of the students' specialization, the instructors in the course will discuss the individual parts of well-written grant proposals. The students will be required to write a grant proposal with precise deadlines for submission of individual parts. All submissions will be critiqued and graded.


Grading will be based on the assignments & class participation (30%), oral presentation of the hypothesis/ specific aims & research strategy (10%), the final grant application (40%), an oral defense of the proposal (20%).

The final course letter grade will be determined using the GSBS grading scale:

  • 90-100 = A
  • 80-89 = B
  • 70-79 = C
  • 69 or below = F

*Students are strongly encouraged to complete an overall course evaluation form at the end of the term. The constructive comments and critiques will remain anonymous and will be released to the course directors after all the grades are finalized.

* Any appeals for grading changes must be submitted to the instructors responsible for the writing and grading of the question within 5 business days after the return of the graded assessment to the student. The instructors must report any grade changes to the course director.

Excused Absences:

Attending all classes scheduled is required, including lectures etc. Excused absences must be obtained in advance. Contact the course directors for absences. If absences are excused, appropriate make-up work will be provided for students at the discretion of the course directors.

Students missing more than 10% of class (2 hours for a 1-credit hour course, 4 hours for a 2-credit, 5 hours for a 3-credit, 7 hours for a 4-credit) will reduce your overall course grade.

The course directors must notify the Graduate School Student Affairs Dean once a student misses 3 days. Arrival 10 minutes into the lecture will constitute an absence. You are allowed 1 unexcused absence. Two unexcused absences will result in loss of 5% of the final grade. No participation points will be awarded if a journal club or critical thinking discussion is missed.

Professional Etiquette:

Please come to class prepared, ready to participate, and on time. Class begins promptly at 8:30 a.m. and students will not be allowed to enter the room once the lecture has begun. To ensure an environment for constructive academic dialogue, the use of electronic devices (e.g. laptops, cell phones, MP3 players) is not allowed during class time.


Refer to Blackboard to obtain articles and presentations:

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

All work submitted in this course is to be done entirely by students. This includes all process work, drafts, and final works, whether in group or individual work. The following are violations of academic honesty: using generative AI tools such as ChatGPT,,, having other people or entities do any portion of a graded assignment, whether for hire or not.

MICR 6255 SWGPP Topics

Course Co-Director:
Jiaren Sun, MD, PhD
MRB Rm. 3.158
Route 1070
Phone: (409) 747-0186

Course Co-Director:
Tian Wang, PhD
Keiller Building 3.118B
Route 0609
Phone: (409) 772-3146