Certified Grant Writer® Candidates in Orlando, FL in Februrary 2015
Certified Grant Writer® Candidates in Las Vegas, NV in April 2015

Certified Grant Writer® Series 

Online Review and Exam

If you would prefer to read the Spanish Version, then Click Here.

The Certified Grant Writer
® Series Online includes the following components:

  • Program Development and Proposal Writing (PDPW) Online Course  
  • Certified Grant Writer® Review Online
  • Certified Grant Writer® Examination Online
  • Annual Individual Membership in American Grant Writers' Association sm

The online CGW Series is appropriate for staff from nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, health organizations, government agencies, for profit business, and native tribes seeking to write competitive grant applications and proposals for Foundation Grants, Corporate Grants, and Government Grants.  No previous experience in grant writing or grant budgeting is required.

Students who learn by reading are well-suited for these courses.  To reinforce the reading, the student then completes an assignment to practice the concepts presented in the reading material.  It is very important that the student read the course material for each section before attempting to complete an assignment.

Price for CGW Series:  $999.00 US per person.    Sale price available thru 7/28/2024


  • First, students take the PDPW online course. 
  • Once all of the online assignments are complete, then student sends an e-mail to to select the date to take the online CGW Exam and attaches a copy of his/her driver's license to the e-mail.
  • The Review will be available the 7 days prior to the exam. 
  • Students take the onine CGW Exam
  • Exam results are sent to students 3-4 weeks after the CGW Exam.   

Details:  Program Development and Proposal Writing (PDPW) Online Course

  • This course teaches students the finer points of grant writing enabling proposals and applications to be more competitive.  Students will design a program/project, practice pre-writing exercises, learn how to research grant opportunities, gather statistics and write the Problem Statement, Project Narrative, Letter of Inquiry, and prepare budgets for Foundation Grants and Non-Construction Project Grants.  The emphasis is on program / project support and general operating grants.  Construction grants, research grants, scholarships and fellowships are outside the scope of this course..  (If interested in Research Grants then click here)
  • This online course is individual study and self-paced.
  • Students who learn by reading are well-suited for this online course.
  • Students receive Course Materials and Assignments as an e-mail attachment from the online instructor.  If a student has a ny questions about the section's reading material, or the section assignment, then he/she may e-mail the instructor with questions.  Instructors are not available for phone support.
  • Most students spend at least 50 hours over 4-6 weeks to complete the 6 course assignments.
    • Students are strongly encouraged to throughly read the section material before beginning to to work on a section assignment!
    • The writing assignments may need to be rewritten one or more times in order to meet the "competency-based standard".
    • Budget assignments may need to be resubmitted until the budget is correct.  
    • So, if a student needs to resubmit writing assignments and budget assignments multiple times, then the student will spend more than 6 weeks to complete the assignments. 
    • Therefore, we strongly recommend students begin working on assignments shortly after purchasing the CGW Series.
  • Students have 90 days to complete all of the online assignments.  The 90 days begins on the date of purchase.  A 90-day extension is available by online purchase only for $100 when students need additional time (for any and all reasons). An extension may be purchased up to one year after the original purchase on the Marketplace page.  A student may purchase two extensions, if needed.
  • Students receive course materials and assignments one section at a time.  Assignments must be completed in one section before proceeding to the next section.  One section must be completed before the student will receive the next section's course materials and assignments.
  • For the online course, the student will need a computer (with any operating system) that has internet access.  Software needed is MS Word, Excel, and Adobe Reader. 
  • Student's E-mail Account:
    • Students may use any e-mail provider (except
    • Note that the student's e-mail account must be capable of accepting 8mg attachments
    • Student's should update the "Allow" feature so that e-mail from * will arrive in the INBOX.
    • Students must use a computer, not a phone, for student assignments.
  • Online Course Syllabus:
  • Section 1:  Grantseeking and Exempt Organizations
  • Section 2:  Program Development, Researching Grant Opportunities from U.S. Grantmakers, and Online Resources for Grantseekers
  • Section 3:  Proposal Writing for Foundation and Corporate Grants  (2 assignments)
  • Section 4:  Preparing Government Grant Applications for Non-Construction Projects
  • Section 5:  Professional Standards and Code of Ethics
  • Section 6: 
    • Part I:  Preparing the Budget for a Foundation Grant and Budget Narrative
    • Part II:  Preparing the Federal Non-Construction Budget for a Project Grant and Budget Narrative

Details:  Certified Grant Writer® Exam Online

  • The student will take the exam on the requested date between 8 AM and 8 PM. The AGWA Membership must be active.  Exams can be scheduled on any day.
  • The online CGW Exam takes about 5 hours to complete.  All 5 sections of the exam must be taken on the same date.
  • The maximum attempts to pass the exam is 3 attempts.
  • If a student does not complete all of the 5 sections, then the sections not attempted on that day will receive a grade of "0" and this will count toward the three maximum attempts to pass the exam.
  • If a student does not take the exam on the scheduled date, then this "no show" will count as one of the three maximum attempts to pass the CGW Exam.
  • Passing the exam:  All sections must earn 80% to pass, except the Ethics section must earn 90% to pass.
  • When taking the exam you will need the following:  1)  Laptop computer with a working (enabled) USB port and installed Microsoft Word software for the Writing Sample Section, (other software is not acceptable) and 2)  Handheld calculator
  • The minimum age to sit for the CGW Exam is 21 years old by the date of the exam.
  • Completion of the Program Development and Proposal Writing online course is required to register for a location/date to sit for the CGW Exam
  • Only current members of American Grant Writers' Association may sit for the Certified Grant Writer® exam.
  • 5 Sections on Certified Grant Writer Exam
    • ​Program Development and Proposal Writing
    • Researching
    • Professional Ethics
    • Budgets
    • Writing Sample
  • A Bachelor's Degree is strongly recommended.
  • A strong command of written and verbal English is strongly recommended.
  • A working knowledge of (APA Style) grammar, punctuation, and references are recommended.
  • A working knowledge of Word, Excel, and Adobe Reader are recommended

Registration for Certified Grant Writer Review and Exam Online

  • First complete the Program Development and Program Writing (PDPW) online course.
  • Then send a e-mail to
    • attach a copy of your driver's license to the email (as proof of age and identity)
    • select the date that you want to take the Exam.
    • Note that you will have access to the Review Questions 7 days prior to your exam date.

Group Price:  No group discount is available for the CGW Series.

An annual membership is included in the CGW Series.  The membership begins on the date of purchase and is valid for one year.  If you want to renew visit the "Membership" page or click here.

Why should I select American Grant Writers to be my certification provider?  click

To Purchase the CGW Series:

There are 2 options to purchase the CGW Series:
  • To purchase online at the sale price by credit/debit card, click on "add to cart" on this page.  Credit Cards from U.S. or banks will be accepted. Please use a secure internet connection.
  • In the "Ship To" section of the Order Form, please enter the student's name, mailing address, and e-mail.  
  • If placing an order for more than 1 student, enter the additional student's names, mailing addresses, and e-mails in the "Remarks" section of the Order Form
  • In the "Bill To" section of the Order Form, enter the information of the credit/debit card holder and the e-mail address where the order confirmation will be sent.
  • If paying by personal check or business check, please mail the check and Registration Form  to:  AGWA, PO Box 3546, Winter Haven FL 33885.  
    • Students will be registered as soon as the registration form and payment are received.  The check must be drawn on a U.S. bank​
    • If your company requires an invoice to generate a check, then click here for the CGW Series Invoice.   Then prepare the check and mail to AGWA along with the registration form. 
    • ​If your company needs to issue a purchase order and then needs an invoice, then click here for the CGW Series Invoice.  Then prepare the check and mail to AGWA along with the registration form.  The check must be drawn on a U.S. bank. The student will be registered and begin the course once the check and registration form are received.

After your Purchase of the CGW Series:
  1. The first step is to update your e-mail account by adding AGWA's domain to your Contact List, and Safe List, and Allow List so that you will be able to receive correspondence in your Inbox.   Be certain that the e-mail address you provided in the "ship to" section of the order form has the capacity of accepting e-mails with 8 mg attachments.
  2. On the next business day after purchase of your online order the student will receive an e-mail from the Online Instructor with attachments:  Section 1 Course Materials and Section 1 Assignments for the online course
  3. If the student has not received this e-mail by the end of the business day after purchase, then please send an e-mail to and we will resend our e-mail correspondence.
How to Purchase a 90-day Extension for the PDPW Online Course.
  • Visit the "Marketplace" page then click on the "90-day extension for an online course"  Proceed with your credit card payment.

Passing the online Certified Grant Writer® Exam
A score of 80% is required to pass each section, except a score of 90% is required to pass the Professional Standards and Code of Ethics Section.  Students receive his/her grades and Certified Grant Writer Credential by mail within four weeks after the exam.   

  • There is a fee to take the online CGW Exam a second time.
    • The fee to retake one section is $50.00
    • The fee to retake two sections is $100.00 
    • The fee to retake three, four, or five sections is $150.00
  • The online CGW Exam must be retaken no more than 90 days after the first online CGW Exam.
    • The schedule, simply pay the rescheduling fee then email with your requested exam. date.  All exam sections must be retaken on the same day.
  • The second attempt for students who failed one or more sections.  To schedule the second attempt the member should send an e-mail to AGWA requesting a second testing for a specific date.   The student's membership must be active on the exam date.  S/he needs to retest only in the sections that s/he did not receive a passing score during the first testing.   The second sitting must occur no more than one years after the first sitting.   Requests for specific disability accommodations must be provided to AGWA in writing at least 2 weeks prior.

Rescheduling the CGW Review and Exam Date 

  • A student is eligible to reschedule the date/location of the CGW Review and Exam a maximum of two times.  
  • To reschedule the CGW Review Course and Exam, please send written notice by e-mail at least 72 hours prior to the date of the CGW Exam. If written notice is received 2 weeks prior to the CGW Review Course date, then the rescheduling will be free.  If written notice is received less than 2 weeks prior to the CGW Review Course date, then there will be a $100.00 rescheduling fee.  The Rescheduling Fee may be purchased on the "Marketplace" page.
  • If a student is a "No-Show" for the CGW Exam, having provided no prior written cancellation/rescheduling notification to the association, this will be considered one of the three attempts and a score of "0" will be given for all sections that would have been tested.

Cancellation and Refund Policies
Prior to making your purchase we recommend you read our web pages:  Refund and Rescheduling, Professional Standards and Ethics, and Debit/Credit Card Purchases


  • If a prospective student has questions on scheduling, technical support, registration, or the exam please contact AGWA's Customer Service by phone or e-mail.
  • If a current student has questions about an online assignment or course material, then e-mail the assigned online instructor.
  • Once the PDPW online course is complete, then e-mail to let us know where you want to attend the CGW Review and Exam.

The Certified Grant Writer Series®
 is copyrighted by American Grant Writers' Association, Inc.  All rights reserved.

American Grant Writers Association received a trademark for the term "Certified Grant Writer" from the U.S. Trademark and Patent Office.

Training Funds
If your company is seeking training funds, you might want to contact the Workforce Development Board in your County.  Some of the boards offer training funds to employers to reimburse up to 50% of training registration expense. Unfortunately, AGWA does not provide scholarships for the CGW Online Series.