Objective Panel Review

(also known simply as "Panel Review")

About Panel Review

Each year, ANA convenes panels of experts to objectively analyze and score eligible grant applications. These scores are used to rank eligible applications which help ANA decide which eligible tribes or native organizations will receive funds. Being a panel reviewer is an integral part of ANA’s funding process and affords participants the opportunity to have a significant impact in native communities.

ANA recruits experienced professionals who possess subject matter expertise and qualifications relevant to ANA’s program areas to serve as panel reviewers and panel chairpersons. Panel reviewers should have knowledge and direct experience working with the Native communities and populations that ANA serves. Panel reviewers objectively analyze, score, and comment on ANA grant applications. Panel chairpersons assist the panel in coming to a consensus on comments and scores that accurately reflect the quality of each application as it is applied to the evaluation criteria prescribed in the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA).

For more information regarding the roles and responsibilities of panel reviewers and chairpersons, please download the following job descriptions.

What is an Objective Review?

Objective review involves the thorough evaluation of the technical aspects of the grant application through an objective review process. The evaluation is based on an unbiased appraisal of the merit of the application’s response to the criteria published in the respective FOA. Objective review is an advisory assessment of applications conducted by a minimum of three unbiased peer reviewers. Objective review is essential to ensuring selection of applications that best meets the needs of the program consistent with established criteria and providing assurance to the public that the evaluation and selection process is impartial and fair.

What is it like to be an ANA Panel Reviewer?

Panel review is hard work and challenging but an incredibly rewarding process. ANA uses the recommendations produced from the panel review process to help determine which grant applications receive funding. Because of this reliance, important decisions rest in the hands of each panel reviewer. As an ANA panel reviewer or chairperson, you may be assigned seven to ten grant applications per review session. In addition to working independently to read, analyze and score each assigned grant application, you will participate in team discussions requiring critical thinking and writing skills while working with a panel consisting of three reviewers and a chairperson.

What are the qualifications ANA looks for in a reviewer or chairperson?

  • Experience in community-based projects
  • Good communication skills, verbal and in writing
  • Attention to detail
  • Analytical skills
  • Experience working with native communities or other distressed communities
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Independent thinker that can also work collaboratively with others

Where is the ANA Panel Review held?

Panel Review is held off site. Chairpersons and reviewers are required to have constant reliable Internet access, a contact phone number which allows ample opportunity and time to participate in lengthy conference calls, and be flexible with their time during each session.

Are panel chairpersons and reviewers compensated for their time?

Chairpersons and reviewers are compensated for each application which is read, commented, scored, and a report completed. They also receive a flat printing and supply stipend. Compensation is provided at the end of the Panel Review session.

When will the Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) be published?

ANA's Fiscal Year 2016 FOAs were published in the early part of 2016, and are now closed. Visit ANA’s funding opportunities page to learn more about ANA's FOAs.

How do I apply to be a Panel Reviewer?

ANA is not currently accepting applications for reviewers. However, we expect to begin recruitment in early 2017. Check back on this page for more information as it becomes available.

If you are interested in serving on application review panel, please complete the Panel Reviewer Questionnaire (download the latest version of Adobe Reader) and return it to anareviewer@acf.hhs.gov. Note that you may be asked to complete a new form once official recruitment starts.

What if I Have Questions or Need Help with the Application Process?

Call the ANA Help Desk at 1-877-922-9262
8:30 am to 6:00 pm EST (M-F)


Last Reviewed: November 15, 2016