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Professors Ziebland and Pope have extensive experience of writing research grants for the NIHR, research councils and charities, puzzling over feedback from hundreds of reviewers, celebrating successes, and coping with rejection.

They have also served on a range of national and international grant funding committees as panel members and chairs, as well as spending many years teaching and writing about research methods. Professor Sue Ziebland also brings along her experience as an NIHR Programme Director for Research for Patient benefit (which involves observing around 14 funding committee meetings a year).

100% of previous course attendees have said they would recommend this session to a colleague, and nearly everyone thought that early, mid, and senior colleagues would benefit from attending it.


This course will include

  • an overview of the application process
  • Tips for writing successful proposals
  • How to deal with committee and reviewers’ feedback
  • Introduction to a charting approach to grant writing
  • Group workshop activity 
  • Small group work developing a set of objectives and methods for an application
  • Feedback from experienced researchers/tutors.


By the end of this workshop you should be able to

  • structure and develop a grant proposal
  • respond to feedback from the committee or reviewers
  • understand the role of the multi-disciplinary grant committee in decision-making 
  • Be aware of (and be able to avoid) common pitfalls for qualitative researchers when applying to health research funders.