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The Basics

SPIN is the world's # 1 online database for funding opportunities, and offers active searching, automated opportunity matching, and daily/weekly opportunity notifications.

You do not need a profile to conduct searches in SPIN. All NKU faculty and staff have access to SPIN’s search functions while they are on campus or connected to NKU's VPN. You will need a profile if you want to save your searches and if you want to receive automated emails alerting you to opportunities relevant to your saved searches (SMARTS).

SPIN has three types of searches — text, keyword, and advanced. The text search interface is displayed by default when you first access SPIN. The keyword and advanced search interfaces can be accessed by hovering over Search in the black menu ribbon near the top of the screen and then selecting the desired interface from the drop-down menu.

Text Search

Text search works just like searching for something on Google or another search engine.  Simply type in your search terms and then click the Locate Funding button to the right of the search box.

You can use operators to help ensure your search returns more relevant results. The following “Text Search Help” information can be found by hovering over Help in the black menu ribbon near the top of the screen and selecting Search Help and then Text Search from the drop-down menus.

SPIN’s Text Search allows you to search all the text associated with opportunity records by simply typing the word(s) you want to search for in the search box and clicking Locate Funding. Your search criteria will be matched against opportunity title, sponsor name, synopsis, objectives, funding opportunity number, contact email
address, keywords, and several other fields. Inflectional forms of search terms are automatically included.

For example, if you type in ‘test’, programs will be searched for ‘test’, ‘tests’, ‘tested’, and ‘testing’ by default. You can also build complex searches using various logic and grammar parsing. The commands can be combined together, along with parenthetical logic to dictate the order of operations, to build complex queries to precisely define your search. For example, you might search for: “science education” OR STEM –cells to find all opportunities (based on your preferences and filter settings) that include the words science and education adjacent to one another in that order as well as opportunities that have the word stem in them but will exclude opportunities that include stem cell.

SPIN/SMARTS/Search Directions