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Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences

Developmental Sciences  (DS)

Name Email Phone Room
David  S. Moore - Program Director (703) 292-7804  995  
Kenyatta  Johnson - Pgm. Specialist (703) 292-4850   


Apply to PD 08-1698 as follows:

For full proposals submitted via FastLane: standard Grant Proposal Guide proposal preparation guidelines apply.
For full proposals submitted via the NSF Application Guide; A Guide for the Preparation and Submission of NSF Applications via Guidelines applies. (Note: The NSF Application Guide is available on the website and on the NSF website at:

Important Information for Proposers

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 16-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 25, 2016. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 16-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.


Full Proposal Target Date

    January 17, 2017

    January 15, Annually Thereafter

    July 17, 2017

    July 15, Annually Thereafter


DS supports basic research that increases our understanding of cognitive, linguistic, social, cultural, and biological processes related to human development across the lifespan. Research supported by this program will add to our knowledge of the underlying developmental processes that support social, cognitive, and behavioral functioning, thereby illuminating ways for individuals to live productive lives as members of society.

DS supports research that addresses developmental processes within the domains of cognitive, social, emotional, and motor development across the lifespan by working with any appropriate populations for the topics of interest including infants, children, adolescents, adults, and non-human animals. The program also supports research investigating factors that affect developmental change including family, peers, school, community, culture, media, physical, genetic, and epigenetic influences. Additional priorities include research that: incorporates multidisciplinary, multi-method, microgenetic, and longitudinal approaches; develops new methods, models, and theories for studying development; includes participants from a range of ethnicities, socioeconomic backgrounds, and cultures; and integrates different processes (e.g., memory, emotion, perception, cognition), levels of analysis (e.g., behavioral, social, neural), and time scales. 

The budgets and durations of supported projects vary widely and are greatly influenced by the nature of the project. Investigators should focus on innovative, potentially transformative research plans and then develop a budget to support those activities, rather than starting with a budget number and working up to that value.

While there are no specific rules about budget limitations, a typical project funded through the DS program is approximately 3 years in duration with a total cost budget, including both direct and indirect costs, between $100,000 and $200,000 per year. Interested applicants are urged to explore the NSF awards database for the DS program to review examples of awards that have been made.

The DS program also accepts proposals for workshops and small conferences. These typically have total cost budgets, including direct and indirect costs, of approximately $35,000.

 In addition to consulting the NSF awards database, it is often useful for interested applicants to submit (via email) a summary of no more than one page so that the Program Director can advise the investigator on the fit of the project for DS prior to preparation of a full proposal. New Investigators are encouraged to solicit assistance in the preparation of their project proposals via consultation with senior researchers in their area, pre-submission review by colleagues, and attendance at symposia and events at professional conferences geared towards educating investigators seeking federal funding.


Facilitating Research at Primarily Undergraduate Institutions:

Faculty Early Career Development Program

What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)

Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program