Perception, Action & Cognition (PAC)

Important Information for Proposers

A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 22-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after October 4, 2021. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 22-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.

Supports theoretically motivated research aimed at increasing understanding of typical human perception, action and cognition and their interactions.


The PAC program funds theoretically motivated research on a wide-range of topic areas related to typical human behavior with particular focus on perceptual, motor, and cognitive processes and their interactions. Central research topics for consideration by the program include (but are not limited to) vision, audition, haptics, attention, memory, written and spoken language, spatial cognition, motor control, categorization, reasoning, and concept formation. Of particular interest are emerging areas, such as the interaction of sleep or emotion with cognitive or perceptual processes, epigenetics of cognition, computational models of cognition, and cross-modal and multimodal processing. The program welcomes a wide range of perspectives, such as individual differences, symbolic and neural-inspired computation, ecological approaches, genetics and epigenetics, nonlinear dynamics and complex systems, and a variety of methodologies spanning the range of experimentation and modeling.  The PAC program is open to co-review of proposals submitted to other programs both within the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences Directorate and across other directorates.  

Note: Proposals may be returned without review if the major focus is 1) the organization of neural activity or brain networks; 2) understanding clinical populations; or 3) non-human animals without a clear and direct impact on our understanding of human perception, action, or cognition. Investigators are encouraged to send the program director a one-page summary of the proposed research before submitting a proposal, in order to determine its appropriateness for the PAC program.

Collaborators and Other Affiliations Information: Note that a single-copy document that accompanies the proposal but technically is not part of the proposal must be submitted to provide information about the collaborators and other affiliations of all individuals serving as a PI, co-PI, or senior personnel. This information should be prepared in accordance with the PAPPG Chapter II.C.1. For additional information about the submission of information about collaborators and other affiliations, refer to .

Additional Funding Opportunities for the BCS Community may be found at

Individuals interested in serving as ad hoc reviewers for the PAC program are encouraged to complete a brief survey to be entered into a database of potential reviewers.

Individuals interested in receiving periodic updates on program developments, new solicitations, and other opportunities relevant to the PAC community should use this link to be entered into the PAC mailing list. 

Program contacts

Betty K. Tuller - Program Director
Program Officer (703) 292-7238 SBE/BCS
Michael Hout - Progam Director
Program Director (703) 292-2163 SBE/BCS
Angelica T. Brewer - Prog. Specialist
Program Specialist (703) 292-4636 SBE/BCS

Awards made through this program

Browse projects funded by this program