National Network of Libraries of Medicine
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Technology Improvement Award

Description of Award

To support infrastructure that improves access to biomedical and health information.


The National Network of Libraries of Medicine Pacific Northwest Region (NNLM PNR), under cooperative agreement with the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), announces the availability of funding through Technology Improvement Awards to support infrastructure that improves access to biomedical and health information.

Specifically, the Technology Improvement Award seeks to address Aims 1-5 in the Support Access to Biomedical and Health Information Core, to ensure that the variety of users, such as affiliated and unaffiliated health professionals, researchers, librarians and the public, will have equal access to biomedical and health information.


Applicants must be members of the NNLM PNR. Network membership is free and open to institutions interested in providing health information. To apply for membership, submit an online membership application. Applicants who have not previously received NNLM funding for an outreach project, or have only received funding once, are especially encouraged to apply.

Potential Projects: 

Potential projects may include the following (other creative ideas are encouraged):

  • Upgrading equipment in a computer lab or learning center to facilitate hands-on computer-based instruction.
  • Establishing a mobile workstation (i.e. with laptop, printer, and projector on a rolling cart) to be used when providing information services outside of the library.
  • Using mobile devices to support access to health information at the point of need, such as for emergency responders or patient care teams on bedside rounds.
  • Creating unique Web-based health information literacy tutorials, learning modules, mobile applications or data mashups.
  • Installing adaptive hardware and software to better enable individuals with disabilities to access computer-based health information.
  • Implementing or improving Web-based document delivery service.
  • Installing or improving wireless internet in the library.


Funding Period: 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 to Tuesday, April 30, 2019
up to $5,000
Number of Awards Available: 
Additional Funding Information: 

During Year 3 of the cooperative agreement (May 1, 2018-April 30, 2019) funding is available for five awards—each up to $5,000.

Applications submitted by Wednesday, August 15, 2018 will receive fullest consideration and will be reviewed on a first come first serve basis.

Period of Performance
The project should be completed by April 30, 2019.


Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 - 8:00pm
Application Instructions: 

Applicants should inform NNLM PNR of their intent to apply at least three weeks before submitting the application, by emailing

The completed application should be sent as an email attachment to NNLM PNR at The PNR staff will acknowledge your application when received, and notification of awards will be given within four weeks.

Required forms for submissions (templates included in downloadable application):

  • Cover Sheet
  • Project Information and Plan
  • Budget (including detailed narrative budget justification)
  • Direct Beneficiaries / Populations Targeted
  • NNLM Goals

Attach or send separately:

  • Letters of support from applicant’s institution

Budget Guidelines

Maximum fixed price award is $5,000. A payment for the full amount of the award will be made when the agreement is signed.

For a detailed budget justification template, please see the Award Application.

Allowable expenses: Personnel, equipment, supplies, travel and other costs such as reproduction of materials, software, Internet service provider fees. These are examples only and are not meant to be all-inclusive.
Expenses are also allowed to publicize a health information service, event or resource, including NLM or NNLM resources or services, but the allowable costs are limited to educational materials or publicity, such as posters, displays, flyers, bookmarks, or brochures. Please consult the policy at

Non-allowable expenses: Furniture is not allowed and food is not allowed unless certain circumstances apply. Please consult the policy under Meals at

Indirect Costs (IDC) or Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Costs: Indirect cost (IDC)/F&A can be included based on your institution's federally approved IDC agreement (non-research rates apply). A 10% MTDC rate may be used if no IDC agreement exists.

Evaluation of Proposal

Applications will be reviewed by PNR staff and Network member volunteers.

Applicants will receive a copy of reviewer comments along with a final decision regarding funding from NNLM PNR staff by email.

Reviewers will score applications based on the following categories and criteria.


  • Preference will be given to organizations that have not previously received NNLM funding for an outreach project, or have only received funding once.

2. SIGNIFICANCE (30 points)

  • Significant contributions to NNLM goals checked by applicant on page 8 of Award Application.
  • Information provided supports the need for the project, such as information about the target population (worksheet provided in the Award Application), information resources or services available, information resources or services which are needed, and relevant barriers to be addressed.  Estimation of the program’s potential impact on future information services to this group or population is discussed.


  • Logic and feasibility of plan and activities for technology improvement.
  • Ability to execute the milestones and overall project within the timeframe specified.
  • Clear evaluation plan to measure indicators of desired outcomes.

4. KEY PERSONNEL (10 points)

  • Qualifications and time commitments of key personnel.
  • If applicable, do project partners bring experience to the team?

5. BUDGET (10 points)

  • Is the budget reasonable and within funding limits?
  • Is the budget justification sound?

6. IMPACT SCORE (10 points)

  • Application does not fit in the NNLM mission.
  • The project will not sufficiently advance the goals of NNLM.
  • Limited impact or there are concerns about the proposed plan or quality.
  • Has strong potential.
  • Excellent application. Will have major impact on NNLM goals.

Additional Information

508 Compliance: 

If web-based resources are developed using NNLM funding, developers are asked to ensure accessibility for the greatest possible number of people by adhering to standards described in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. For information on Section 508-compliant website development, see National Library of Medicine Web Pages & Accessibility and HHS Section 508 policy.

Reporting Requirements: 
  1. If an organized training session or presentation on NLM resources takes place as part of the project, an Activity Report must be submitted in Outreach Applications and Online Contract Reports System within 14 days of the session.
  2. A minimum type of data must be collected and submitted to describe activities and measure results.  Please see NNLM Evaluation Materials and forms for training or technology. Proposals to obtain NNLM funding will need to include plans for how and when this information will be collected, and any additional (optional) evaluation planned for the project.
  3. Sharing results and lessons learned from the project with other members of the NNLM will be requested, such as a brief article about the project for the NNLM PNR blog, the Dragonfly, or presenting information about the project as part of an NNLM PNR webinar.
NIH Public Access Policy: 

Final peer-reviewed journal manuscripts resulting from funded projects must be submitted to the digital archive PubMed Central (PMC) upon acceptance for publication. For more information, see NOT-OD-08-033 and the Public Access website.

Data Sharing and Development of Training Materials: 

In order to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge and information associated with the NNLM Cooperative Agreement Award, all awardees are required to share any data or training material resulting from funding. This information must be submitted to the following collection sites as applicable:

In addition, award recipients are expected to use or adapt existing training materials before developing new materials. Consult with the PNR and also the NNLM Training Office (NTO) prior to developing materials. Training materials developed as part of the award will be submitted to the MLA Educational Clearinghouse.

Publication and Copyrighting: 

NIH must be given a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and irrevocable license for the Federal government to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use the material and to authorize others to do so for Federal purposes, i.e. the ongoing development of the NNLM.

NIH Acknowledgement: 

Any resource developed with project funds must include an acknowledgment of NIH grant support and a disclaimer stating the following:

“Developed resources reported in this [publications, press releases, internet sites] are supported by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), National Institutes of Health (NIH) under cooperative agreement number UG4LM012343. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health."

Need Assistance: 

Cathy Burroughs, Associate Director, NN/LM PNR,, Telephone: (206) 543-9261.

For assistance with writing proposals, please see Grants and Proposal Writing course materials.

See also previous projects funded.