Jul 23, 2009
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Hi Folks-

I put in an NRSA earlier this year, which was just reviewed last week. I got a 29 (on the new 10-90 scale), but my institute doesn't do percentiles. A labmate got a priority score and percentile for another institute and I was trying to figure out a rough estimate of my percentile (for my score).

I realize percentiles are often done within each institute, but currently I am in, as many have termed it, the "funding crapshot range" (e.g., it isn't def funded, it isn't out of fundable range). I was just trying to get a sense of recent meetings and what a 29 might amount to, percentile-wise.

Did anyone get scored in this recent Scientific Review Group for an F31... that would be willing to disclose their impact score and percentile (preferably someone below 29).

Thanks much!
 
OP
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Jul 23, 2009
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thanks much, but those threads don't quite get at my question. i read them (and a few other posted scattered in google searches) and know the general lay of the land re: the new scoring system.

i am more trying to triangulate an approximate percentile for the SRG meeting my fellowship app was reviewed at. my PO wasn't at the meeting and i just wanted to get a sense of things before my pink sheets are released. (i just need to get a jump on dissertation planning and didn't want to lose a few weeks).

best.
 
Jul 24, 2009
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I got a 31, and my percentile was 24. I think we are both probably on the border, depending on our respective institute's paylines. Let me know if you find anything else out and I will do the same. Thanks!
 

ADDICTED2STATS

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From what I have gathered by the people around here, I think you're scores are going to be competitive. These scores are different since no one has gotten funded yet on the new scoring system. That said, I think 29 & 31 are probably fundable (this comes from my PO). There is a lot that goes into the process, including how many really good apps were reviewed with yours.

Here's a few things to keep in mind:

1) Always go all the way into your application when checking your status. NIH doesn't post an "update" when your pink sheet is added to your commons account. One prof here never bothered to go into his status info b/c his status date never changed. His pink sheet sat for three weeks on his account before he realized it. On my first app it sat for 2 days.

2) Pink sheets come faster for NRSAs. I got my priority score on March 26th, I got my Summary Statement on April 9th, exactly 2 weeks later.

3) When you get your statement, immediately start revising your application. Chances are, you won't know if your applicaiton is funded or not by the next submission deadline. So get it ready and resubmit. You guys both have good scores so I don't expect the revisions will be all that daunting.

If you guys have any questions from someone that's negotiated the process, feel free to pm me.
 

LM02

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As a general rule, for NIMH, grants that fall between 1-10 percentile are funded and half of the grants between the 11-20th percentile are funded at the discretion of the Council (eg, a grant that was at the 16th percentile could get funded before a grant in the 14th percentile if the topic was a high priority area for the institute at that time).

With that said, other NIH institutes typically have more generous pay lines *and* they may fiddle with things a bit to push NRSAs through. Based on my experience talking to people who sat on study sections this last cycle, a 29 or 31 would be competitive scores but likely on the bubble (for NIMH, anyway). I would call your program officer - they can't give you a definitive yes/no, but they can give you a general idea of where you stand. They are a resource that is available to you, as an investigator, so take advantage of their feedback.

Good luck - I hope you guys get the money!!
 
Jul 24, 2009
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Yes, I heard similar numbers for NIMH. However, in those percentages, I think one must also take into account whether you have already confirmed your application to fit within your respective institute's priority area of interest prior to submitting your application. This is an extremely important - and underemphasized- step in the process, IMO. Some institutes won't fund you, even if your app is very strong, if your research doesn't fit within these identified areas. You can tailor your application to their interests, if you know what they are, maximize your chances of getting funded if you get a decent score and save everyone (you, reviewers, etc) time by talking to the appropriate POs well in advance of submission deadlines. I would imagine that in the event you got the green light from a PO of institute beforehand, you are more likely to be in the 50% of individuals in 10-20 percentile range who get funded.
 
OP
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Jul 23, 2009
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great info! thanks everyone.

the topic of my fellowship fits really well with the institute (i applied to)'s current priority. my application actually looks akin to one of the challenge grants that institute was seeking to fund w/ stimulus money (the RC mechanism / challenge grants). my PO was assigned late and wasn't at the SRG meeting my fellowship was reviewed at (sadly)... but i will trying to talk to NIH staff next week / the week after once i know my pink sheets are released.

two last questions, i think i have seen 2007 stats for paylines / success rates for applications, but:

-does anyone know of institute by institute breakdown of payline X application type for 2008 (or even better, 2009)?

-and will stimulus money likely bump any paylines (i have heard so many varying things about this)?

thanks again!
 
Jul 24, 2009
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I just spoke with my PO, and it's pretty clear I won't get funded this time around. He says that currently, applications really need to be in the 10th percentile in order to get funded! Depending on the budget, they may even go up to the low teens, but that cannot be expected.
He agreed that it is best to wait for comments prior to revising and resubmitting. But he also said that if I receive comments in time (and indicated this was a possibility) and I can address the concerns easily, it doesn't hurt to resubmit ASAP. It will not, however, help secure funding for this last submission. I'm not even on the border for them, even though I might have been funded at a different institute with less conservative paylines.
 

Ollie123

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Sorry to hear that, but I guess getting rejected is good practice in this field. VERY few grants are funded on the first try, just like VERY few papers are accepted without any revisions.

From what I have seen from POs (and this is secondary since I haven't submitted a grant of my own yet) - they tend to err on the conservative side. Meaning, they will not give good news unless its absolutely certain to be funded. We don't go through NIMH for anything though (usually NIDA, NIAAA or NCI), so it might be different.

Hopefully the revisions will involve "lots of little things" where some minor tweaking can get you a significant boost. We had a similar situation recently - it was not really competitive for this round, but I think we have a great shot on round #2. 2 reviewers had almost no comments, and one reviewer had a bunch of pretty minor, easily correctable comments that added up to a significantly reduced score, but are MUCH easier to address than a "Do a completely different study" kind of comment.
 

LM02

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To follow-up on Ollie's post, POs are actually forbidden from giving good news unless the grant has been officially approved by Council. Until Council meets, even for a very competitively scored grant, the best they can say is that it looks promising but there are no guarantees. However, on the flip side, if they are really certain a grant isn't going to get funded, they have more latitude to tell you that prior to Council.

With all of that said, it is very rare for a grant to get funded on the first submission. Take a look at those pink sheets - given your score, I have a feeling that the changes you will need to make are minor. Perseverance is a key element to grantsmanship, especially in these lean times! Stick with it, and resubmit - it sounds promising!!

CogNeuroCentric - I have a feeling that stimulus money will not bump paylines for regular grants, as that money is being earmarked for specific projects: challenge grants, existing grant supplements, and contracts. But who really knows?!
 
OP
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Jul 23, 2009
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great! this was all very helpful. now, one more question, anyone get back their pink-sheets yet? i am waiting w/ bated breath to get my feedback.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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It's hard to compare between institutes and even between SRGs. My labmate and I both had NRSA's reviewed for NINDS, but in two different study sections. I got a 25 with a 13th percentile, and she got a 28 with an 11th percentile. It depends on who else is being reviewed in your study section, what types of scores they normally give, etc. My PO said that there is a good zone, a gray zone, and a bad zone--for NINDS the gray zone is between 15-20 percentile and either side of that is more certain, but that nothing is set in stone. Each institute has its own payline, so I don't know if this will help you, but maybe...

Good luck!
 

veighnkman

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bump....

Just got my priority score for an F30 to NINDS. Needless to say, I'm still trying to decipher it. Anyone from this round or previous rounds care to share a bit more on your score and percentiles?