National Science Foundation (NSF)

On June 1, 2020, NSF implemented the Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 20-1) for proposals submitted or due on or after this date. The revised PAPPG implements a variety of changes and clarifications, the highest profile of which requires use of an NSF-approved format for the preparation of the biographical sketch and current and pending support.

Effective October 5, 2020, the National Science Foundation (NSF) will begin enforcing the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 20-1) requirement to use NSF-approved formats for the preparation of the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support proposal documents.

Webinars covering the use of NSF-approved formats as well as all of the significant changes to the PAPPG are available on the NSF Policy Outreach website .  The NSF Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support websites include links to the NSF-fillable PDF formats, updated FAQs, and instructions.

NSF will continue to implement all other changes to the PAPPG beginning June 1, 2020, including the following:

  • New requirement for proposing organizations to submit government-wide representations and certifications in the System for Award Management (SAM);
  • New requirement for providing e-mail documentation of Program Officer approval for the submission of RAPID and EAGER proposals; and
  • Clarifications to current and pending support coverage as well as other changes throughout the document.

You are encouraged to review the by-chapter summary of changes provided in the Introduction section of the PAPPG. If you have any questions regarding these changes, please contact the DIAS/Policy Office at



Fastlane and

All NSF submissions prior to 4/30/18 were submitted through the Fastlane portal. Fastlane is currently in the process of being replaced by  As of 4/30/18, non-collaborative submissions may be prepared and submitted through either Fastlane or   Additional modules will be migrating over to over the next few years. notice: “Effective April 30, 2018, proposers can now prepare and submit full, research non-collaborative proposals in The initial release of this new capability is running in parallel with existing proposal preparation and submission capabilities in FastLane. As a result, proposers can choose to prepare and submit full, research non-collaborative proposals in or in FastLane.”

The Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG – June 2020) is the most important document to have on-hand when working on an NSF proposal.  It contains all of the information, including formatting, fonts, page limits, budget guidelines and narrative structure, that you will need to reference when building your proposal.  It is meant to be used in conjunction with the program solicitation.  If there is a discrepancy between the PAPPG and the specific solicitation to which you are applying, the solicitation trumps the PAPPG.

Other helpful resources include: