Certified Grant Writer® Workshop Series

The Certified Grant Writer® professional credential is the industry standard for grantseekers in government and philanthropy.  The professional credential is valid for a period of 5 years and documents that the professional has demonstrated proficiency in grant researching, proposal writing, budgeting, and professional ethics. 

The CGW Workshop Series includes the following components:

  • Grantseeker Basics Online Course (12 hour online course)
  • Program Development and Proposal Writing Workshop (4 day workshop)
  • Certified Grant Writer® Review Course (1 day workshop)
  • Certified Grant Writer® Examination (1 day exam)
  • Annual Individual Membership in American Grant Writers' Association

This series is appropriate for staff from nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, health organizations, government agencies, and native tribes seeking to write competitive grant applications and proposals for Foundation, Corporation, and Government Grants.

Grantseeker Basics Online Course
This course is designed to  help students pass the CGW Exam.  Assignments are individual study and self-paced.   Students are assigned an Online Instructor who will send course materials and assignments by e-mail. Most students spend 12 hours to complete the 3 assignments, although 90 days is given to complete the assignments.  The 90 days begins on the date of purchase. Students receive course materials and assignments one section at a time.  Assignments must be completed in one section before proceeding to the next section.  The course covers the following topics:
     Section 1:  Researching Grant Opportunities for Foundation, Corporate, and Government Grants
     Section 2:  Online Resources for Grantseekers
     Section 3:  Glossary for Grantseekers and Regulations for Federal Awards
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.  Students will also need an e-mail address.

Program Development and Proposal Writing Workshop
The four day workshop is offered in several locations across the US each year; students will decide which location/date when making the purchase.  Students receive course materials upon arrival at the workshop.  This workshop is an intensive hands-on experience where each student develops a program using a logic model, practices pre-writing exercises, writes sections of a proposal, practices preparing budgets, and reviews peer's writing and budget exercises.  The student learns the finer points of grant writing, enabling a proposal or application to be more competitive.  The focus is on seeking program support, program development support, capital support, and general operating support.  Research grants and construction grants are mentioned, but not discussed in detail.  Scholarships and fellowships are not discussed during this course.  The course is taught from the employee's perspective who works for the grant applicant. 

Syllabus for the PDPW Workshop follows:
     Grantseeking and the Development Office
     Nonprofit Organizations - Exempt Status and Charitable Status
     Standards of Charitable Accountability
     Program Development using a Logic Model
     Understanding a Foundation's 990 PF
     Evaluating Foundation RFPs and Government NOFAs
     Researching statistics to document the Problem Statement
     Writing goals and measurable objectives and outcomes
     Planning program evaluations
     Writing Letters of Inquiry, Proposals, and Applications for Foundation and Government Grants
     Writing Government Grant Applications
     Planning Nonprofit and Government Grant Budgets
     Professional Standards and Ethics of American Grant Writers' Association

We recommend bringing the following to the workshop:

  • a sweater or jacket because meeting rooms often feel chilly,
  • a pillow for your chair,
  • a laptop computer with a working USB port and installed Word software for the writing exercies 
The workshop begins at 8:00 AM and concludes at 5:00 PM each day, with a one hour break for lunch on your own.  Morning and afternoon breaks are provided.  Dress is Business Casual.  Please do not bring an RFP, Notice, or Grant Applications Guidelines to work on during the workshop.  

Certified Grant Writer® Review Course
This one-day workshop is on the 5th day.  The review covers study tips as well as content for all 5 sections of the examination.  Course materials are distributed in the meeting room on the afternoon prior to the course.  The course begins at 8:00 AM and concludes at 5:00 PM with a one hour break for lunch on your own.  Morning and afternoon breaks are provided.  Students should bring a sweater or jacket; laptop computers are not used during this course.

Certified Grant Writer® Exam
On the 6th day the Certified Grant Writer® Exam is administered in a group setting.  The exam is administered in 3 sessions:
     Session 1:  Section 1)  Program Development & Proposal Writing
                        Section 2)  Researching Grant Opportunities
                        Section 3)  Professional Standards and Code of Ethics
     Session 2:  Section 4)  Preparing Budgets
     Session 3:  Section 5)  Writing Samples

The exam is administered from 8:00 AM until 4:30 PM.  Students should plan travel arrangements so that they are scheduled to depart the hotel no earlier than 4:30 PM.  We recommend scheduling airline flights after 7:30 PM.   Morning and afternoon beverages are provided.  Dress is Business Casual.

Students are required to provide the following for the CGW Exam:

  • Laptop computer with a working USB port and installed licensed Microsoft Word software for the Writing Sample Section,
  • State Issued Photo ID (such as a driver's license) or Passport as proof of identify and minimum age

Recommended Reading:
All of the course materials for the online course, 4-day workshop, and review course are provided.  We recommend reading the following books prior to attending to enrich your learning experience: 

  • The writing reference is the APA Publication Manual of Style.  Some writers use the Concise Rules of APA Style as a desk reference.  To learn APA Style we recommend using the APA Style Workbook.  All are available from American Psychological Association's online store  


  • A Bachelor's Degree is strongly recommended, but not required. 
Requirements and Prerequisites:
  • A strong command of written English language is required.
  • A strong math aptitude incuding Algebra I is required.  
  • Knowledge of APA style (grammar, puntuation, and references) prior to attending the Review Course is required.
  • The minimum age to sit for the CGW Exam is 21 years old by the date of the exam.
  • Proof of identity and minimum age must be shown to the proctor prior to sitting for the exam. 
  • Only members of American Grant Writers' Association may sit for the Certified Grant Writer® exam.
  • Participants must comply with the following Meeting Guidelines and Testing Guidelines while attending:

Regular Price:  $ 899.00 per person   

Please note that assignments at the workshop are individual assignments, and groups will not be able to work together on a group project.  There is no group discount at this time.


  • To purchase online at the regular or sale price by credit/debit card, click on "add to cart" on this page for the date/location of your choice.  In the "Ship To" section of the Order Form please enter the student's name, mailing address and e-mail.  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 should be forwarded.  If making an online purchase for more than 1 student, please enter the additional names, mailing addresses, and e-mails in the "Remarks" section of the Order Form.
  • If paying by personal check or business check, please mail the check and Registration Form to:  AGWA, 13801 Walsingham Rd A-410, Largo FL 33774..  We encourage students to send your registration form to AGWA by fax or e-mail and let us know that a check will arrive later by mail.
  • If your organization requires an Invoice from AGWA, then please fax your Purchase Order and Registration Form to 727-240-0637 or e-mail it to  Students will be registered for the CGW Workshop Series upon receipt of the purchase order.  Payment must be received prior to the student sitting for the CGW Exam.

On the next business day after receipt of your online order, check, or purchase order AGWA will send each participant the CGW Series Confirmation by e-mail and  the New Member Welcome E-mail with the Members Only Login password. Also, on the next business day after receipt of your order, the online instructor will send to each participant by e-mail the Section 1 Course Materials and Assignments for the "Grantseeker Basics" online course.  If you have not received both of these e-mails with 2 business days after your purchase, please contact Customer Service.  

Passing the 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 their grades and Certified Grant Writer Credential by mail within four weeks after the exam.

The CGW Workshop Series entitles the student to sit for the Certified Grant Writer® Exam two times in an attempt to pass all 5 sections of the exam.  For the second sitting, the student needs to only retest in the sections that did not receive a passing score during the first sitting.  There is no additional fee to sit for the exam a second time, or to attend the CGW Review Course a second time.  The second sitting may not be sucheduled until the CGW candidate has received the exam results from the first sitting.  A private sitting is available for the second sitting for an additional $299 plus travel expenses of the proctor.  The private sitting must be administered by American Grant Writers' Association and proctored by a person holding a valid Certified Grant Writer® credential.  

To sit for the CGW Exam a third time, a student must wait a period of 12 months after the second testing and purchase the CGW Review and Exam as well be a member at the time of the exam date.  The maximum number of attempts to pass any section is four.

CEU Certificate
As an IACET Approved Provider, AGWA offers CEUs.  Students may earn 5.9 CEUs by completing all online assignments, attending the entire 4-day workshop and completing assignments, and attending the 1-day Review Course.  The CEU certificate must be purchased before the first online assignment is turned into the instructor.

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

Students are eligible to reschedule the CGW Workshop Series to a different date/location a  maximum of two times.  To reschedule, send written notice by e-mail two weeks prior to the first day of the workshop, and the rescheduling will be free of charge.  If the written notice to reschedule is provided less than 2 weeks prior to the first day of the workshop, or no notice is provided at all, then the rescheduling fee  will be $250.00.  The rescheduling fee may be purchased on the Marketplace page.

Persons with Disabilities

Disabled persons may request accommodations.  Requests should be in writing (mail or e-mail) and need to be received two weeks prior to the first day of a workshop or course.

If a prospective student, or current student, has questions on scheduling, technical support, coursework, or the exam please contact AGWA's Customer Service by phone or e-mail.

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 Workshop Series.

            Grant Consulting Workshop Upgrade

            Grant Consulting Workshop Upgrade

            When you register for the CGW Workshop Series you are entitled to purchase the Grant Consulting Workshop for just $49, a $249 value.  The 2-hour workshop is held on Wednesday evening from 6-8 PM.
            Dates and Locations

            Dates and Locations

            Registration for the CGW Workshop Series closes 2 weeks prior to the first day of the workshop.
            June 19-24, 2017 in Cincinnati, OH / Northern KY

            June 19-24, 2017 in Cincinnati, OH / Northern KY

            Location:  Holiday Inn Cincinnati Airport

            • Workshop registration available through June 5, 2017 as long as seats are available.
            • Hotel Address:  1717 Airport Exchange Blvd, Erlanger KY  41018
            • Phone:  859-746-5608
            • Hotel rooms have been reserved for American Grant Writers' Association at the group rate of $95.00 + taxes per night. The group rate is only available until May 28, 2017, as long as space is available.  To make your hotel reservations please call 888-294-6057 and ask for the American Grant Writers group rate.
            • If you are flying into the Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky Airport, transportation to the hotel is available outside the baggage claim area by complimentary hotel shuttle.
            • If you are driving to the hotel, parking is complimentary.