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[Dec. 10, 2009] Why are Principal Investigators required to submit a Routing Form before their sponsored funding application can be approved for submission? The Routing Form assists and protects investigators and their institution. Used to document mandatory assurances for all proposals and other activities involving sponsored support, the Routing Form facilitates compliance with federal, state, sponsor, and university policies. The Form, also serving as a checklist of regulatory requirements for the investigators and institutional reviewers, enables the systematic, streamlined and cross-departmental oversight of human and animal subjects work, laboratory safety, SFI, and other areas as needed. A sponsored funding application can be submitted only after a Routing Form is completed and signed with all required signatures. More>>

[Dec. 7, 2009] From NIH ARRA FAQ: What are the future submission options for an ARRA application that was reviewed but will not be funded? After the initial peer review process has been completed and summary statements are available in eRA Commons, applications that were submitted to RFAs and are not selected for funding may be submitted in response to another funding opportunity announcement (FOA).  These applications must be submitted as new applications, not resubmissions.  Therefore, the application should not include an introduction, should not make references to the previous review, and should be submitted for the appropriate due date for new applications as noted in the FOA. More information on this policy can be found in Guide Notice OD-09-100. Revision applications received in response to Notice OD-09-058 were not submitted to an RFA and, if submitted again, must be submitted as a resubmission of the revision with an introduction that responds to the previous review.

[Dec. 4, 2009] Does NIH have a formal process to dispute the results of an initial peer review? NIH offers a formal appeal process to its applicants. Results of an initial peer review may be disputed based on an error in the review process such as reviewer bias, factual error, or reviewer conflict of interest but not a difference of scientific opinion. Program officers, either alone or with scientific review officers (SROs), usually resolve issues with applicants before reaching the formal appeal stage.  I/Cs normally advise strongly against appeals and most appeals result in revising and resubmitting an application. Also consider Should You Appeal? More from NIAID>>

[Nov. 23, 2009] When will the new application instructions and forms for both paper-based PHS 398 applications and electronic SF 424 (R&R) applications be available? On November 23, 2009 NIH announced the availability of new application instructions and forms for both paper-based PHS 398 applications and electronic SF 424 (R&R) applications. The new application instructions and forms must be used for applications intended for due dates on or after January 25, 2010. More>> [Res Admins and Faculty 12/03/09]

[Nov. 23, 2009] Does the 75% effort requirement for the K99 portion of an NIH K99/R00 award preclude K99 awardees from devoting effort (no salary) on other grants, e.g. on the mentor’s R01? Candidates for all Career Development Award (CDA or “K”) programs must have a “full-time” appointment at the applicant institution both at the time of application and award. Mentored CDA candidates (including K99) are required to have a minimum commitment equivalent of 9 calendar person months (75% or their full-time appointment at the applicant institution) to be devoted to the career development and research objectives of the program specified in each Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). The remaining 3 person months (25% effort) can be divided among other research, clinical, and teaching activities only if these activities are consistent with the goals of the mentored CDA, i.e., the candidate’s development into an independent investigator. Mentored awardees are allowed to devote complementary effort without salary support on other research grants that include related research between the CDA and the research grant (e.g., a mentor’s R01). In such cases where there is scientific overlap, the percent effort on the research grant is subsumed within the required effort of the CDA. The related research must be consistent with the goals and objectives of the CDA. (11/23/09 NIH/OER email to CF)

[Nov. 23, 2009] What is the renewal process and timeline for a modified two year ARRA award? Investigators are encouraged to discuss their individual situations with their Program Officials to obtain guidance. Keep in mind that the final year of the ARRA award can be extended for a period of 12 months to help prevent a gap in funding. (11/19/09 NIH/OER-ARRA email to FY)

[Nov. 22, 2009] Does the Buy America provision under Section 1605 of ARRA apply to  the construction, alteration, maintenance, or repair of a facility undertaken with ARRA funds? Per OMB calrification: If the facility is/will be privately-owned, then the ARRA Buy America provision will not apply to it, because it will not be a "public building or public work." However, if the facility is/will be government-owned, then the ARRA Buy America provision will apply to the facility (as a "public building or public work") unless such application would not be "consistent with United States obligations under international agreements" under Section 1605(d) of ARRA or another exemption under Section 1605 applies. More>>

[Nov. 22, 2009] Should individuals with multiple appointments involving support for research activities include separate information from each in their NIH Other Support documentation?
Per PHS Special Instructions for Individuals with Multiple Research Appointments: When an individual holds multiple appointments involving support for research activities, information from each appointment must be included separately in the Other Support documentation. The support from each funding source should be clearly and separately delineated so that the separate appointments can be considered independently when determining any potential overlap. More>>

[Nov. 21, 2009] If an applicant accepts a two-year ARRA award that covers only a portion of the original aims, can a new application be submitted for the withdrawn aims now?
Yes. If the award or other official communication from NIH specifically reduced the aims and budget and was documented in the Notice of Grant Award, other official correspondence, or as a changed abstract, an applicant can submit the withdrawn aims in a new application. More>>

[Nov. 19, 2009] Is prior approval required for balances greater than 25% to be "carried over" into a no-cost extension period on NIH grants? Per NIH Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration:  'Since this is a no-cost extension, there is no additional budget period for the money to be “carried-over” into.  Instead this extends the final budget period of the previously approved period. So the prior approval requirement for carryover greater than 25% would not apply.' (11/19/09 email to MG) [Res Admins 11/19/09]

[Nov. 13, 2009] How do I find information on the study section assignment for my NIH proposal? Specific information about your assignment is available on the NIH eRA Commons website.  Log in with your username and password.  Then select the "Status" menu item, retrieve the grant application, and click on the Application ID link available in the result set. [Res Admins 11/19/09]

[Nov. 13, 2009] How do I find information on NIH study sections and Special Emphasis Panels? A roster the Scientific Review Group membership, access to information on Special Emphasis Panels and other useful data are on the NIH/OER website. [Res Admins 11/19/09]

[Nov. 9, 2009] What are the new changes to the NIH biosketch format?  Changes to the new format of biosketsches of senior/key personnel include a new Personal Statement that explains why their experience and qualifications make them particularly well-suited for their role on the project, and a shortened list of up to 15 peer-reviewed publications that are most relevant to their proposed work and contributions. The new biosketch requirements apply to all progress reports starting 10/01/09 and to all competitive submissions starting 1/25/10. More>>

[Oct. 18, 2009] What is the NIH continuous submission policy  for appointed members of NIH review and advisory groups? Per NIH Notice from 10/1/09, 'This continuous submission process will now cover appointed members of chartered standing NIH Study Sections, NIH Boards of Scientific Counselors, NIH Advisory Boards or Councils, the NIH Peer Review Advisory Committee, and peer reviewers who have served as regular or temporary members six times in 18 months and is limited to their R01, R21, and R34 applications that would normally be received on standard submission dates (but not special receipt dates). This extension of the continuous submission process will enable non-appointed reviewers who have performed substantial peer review service to submit their applications as soon as they are fully developed. The applications will be reviewed no later than 120 days after receipt.' More>>

[Oct. 15, 2009] How can I submit my application within the InfoEd system for SR-PD review and submission? If you have completed your application and successfully built the proposal, go to the Finalize section in the proposal and do the following:
- Click on to build a Routing Form
- Click on and continue with submission steps
This will generate an email alerting your assigned SR-PD Grants Management Specialist that your proposal is ready for review.  [Res Admins 11/06/09]

[Sep. 16, 2009] What are the revised NIH progress report forms (2590 forms) and the new requirements and policies for submission of non-competing continuation applications and eSNAPS? Per a recent NIH notice, the newly revised "Continuation Progress Report for a DHHS Public Health Service Grant" (PHS 2590, rev. 06/09) instructions and forms are now available and will be accepted immediately for all progress reports and are required for all annual progress reports due on or after October 1, 2009.  Corresponding enhancements to the eSNAP module are forthcoming for eSNAPS due October 15th.  Some of the progress report sections affected by new policies are Personnel Report Page; Biographical Sketches for new personnel; Progress Report Summary.  For a complete description of all new requirements read the above NIH Notice or go to the NIH application forms on the SR-PD website. [Res Admins 10/01/09]

[Sep. 16, 2009] What is an Early Stage Investigator (ESI) and how will the NIH determine if an investigator should be classified as an ESI?  New Investigators within ten years of completing their terminal research degree or within ten years of completing their medical residency are designated Early Stage Investigators (ESIs).  Traditional NIH research grant (R01) applications from New Investigators and ESIs will be so identified and the career stage of the applicant will be considered at the time of review and award.  To implement this new policy, the NIH requests that investigators update their eRA profiles to include Degree and Residency Completion Dates.  See NOT-OD-08-121, NOT-OD-09-013 and NOT-OD-09-134.  [Res Admins 09/17/09]

[Sep. 11, 2009] Is there a useful resource for reliable clarifications on the  American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) reporting and other requirements? A joint working group from the Council on Governmental Relations (COGR), an association of U.S. research universities, and the Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP), a cooperative initiative among federal agencies and federally funded institutions, created an invaluable FAQ resource regarding ARRA requirements. The FAQs are driven by questions and concerns being gathered on an ongoing basis from the COGR and FDP memberships. Questions are answered to the best of the authors' knowledge and careful reviews of all available ARRA information, as well as discussions with Federal representatives. More>>  [Res Admins 09/17/09]
[Sep. 11, 2009] What are the ARRA definitions of a job “retained” compared to that of a job “created” and how to report on them? The interpretation and implementation of the ARRA job reporting requirements may differ across institutions. A COGR-FDP joint working group is offering the most reliable clarifications on this and other associated matters. More>>  [Res Admins 09/17/09]

[Jul. 27, 2009] What information should be included in the Broader Impacts section of my NSF application? Investigators should describe the broader impact of their research project, and address topics such as:
• How will the activity advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training and learning?
• How will the proposed activity broaden the participation of underrepresented groups (e.g., gender, ethnicity, disability, geographic, etc.)?
• To what extent will the project enhance the infrastructure for research and education, such
as facilities, instrumentation, networks and partnerships?
More details and sample text at NSF Merit Review Broader Impacts Criterion: Representative Activities [Res Admins 08/20/09]

[Jul. 17, 2009] What does my NIH peer review summary statement mean under the new system? Implementation of many of the Enhancements to Peer Review began with the May 2009 review meetings, and applicants are receiving summary statements with new features, such as scores determined under the new system. More>> [Res Admins 08/20/09]

[Jul. 13, 2009] What are the NSF's 'target dates', 'deadline dates' and 'submission windows'? According to the NSF Grant Proposal Guide: Target dates are dates after which proposals will still be accepted, although they may miss a particular panel or committee meeting. Deadline dates are dates after which proposals will not be accepted for review by NSF. The deadline date will be waived only in extenuating circumstances. Submission windows are designated periods of time during which proposals will be accepted for review by NSF. More>> [Res Admins 07/16/09]

[Jul. 13, 2009]
Am I allowed to resubmit an application I prepared for the NIH Challenge Grants opportunity? According to the NIH: If you wish to resubmit an application prepared for the NIH Challenge Grants opportunity, you must wait to receive your peer review summary statement and submit your revised application for the October deadline or any deadline thereafter. When you do so, be sure to submit it as a new application and appropriately modify the application to meet the requirements of the new FOA or activity code. Do not include an Introduction describing changes and improvements or mark text to indicate changes. More>> [Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 07/30/09]

[Jul. 13, 2009] Are NIH/ARRA-related rebudgeting, carryforward, and no-cost extension requests  allowed?
According to NIH: Administrative Supplements and Competitive Revisions funded under ARRA present a unique challenge because of the ARRA requirement to separately award, track, monitor, account for, report on, audit and closeout ARRA funding. Answers to these  ARRA challenges include:
Rebudgeting between ARRA and non-ARRA funds is prohibited.
Carryover of any unobligated funds from a budget period funded with regular IC appropriation funds into a budget period funded with ARRA is prohibited.
Carryover of any unobligated ARRA funds at the end of the ARRA-funded project period into the parent grant is prohibited.
Carryover of any unobligated funds from an ARRA-funded budget period into a budget period funded with regular IC appropriations is prohibited.
ARRA grants are being awarded under the general NIH Terms of Award, and therefore, are eligible for a one-time no-cost extension (up to 12 months) of the ARRA project period. This extension is allowable regardless of the status of the parent grant and will not impact the continued funding of the parent grant. (More in NOT-OD-09-080)
[Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 07/30/09]

[Jul. 9, 2009] Are reporting requirements under ARRA the same as those associated with non-ARRA awards? Reporting Requirements for awards under ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) are more stringent and complex than for non-ARRA awards. Recipients of federal awards from funds authorized under Division A of the ARRA must comply with all requirements specified in Division A of the ARRA (Public Law 111-5), including the reporting requirements outlined in Section 1512 of the Act. Recipients must report on the use of Recovery Act funds no later than 10 days after the end of each calendar quarter. Information from these reports will be made available to the public. The first deadline is now October 10, 2009 (OMB Memo). The implementation guidance and mechanism for submitting these reports are still under development (NIH ARRA Award Terms), and will be posted as they become available. More>> [Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 07/30/09]

[Jul. 9, 2009] Can an ARRA-funded NIH grant be transferred to a new institution if the PI moves?  Because the HHS Payment Management System requires to have a unique Document Number schema for ARRA awards, NIH is unable at this time to use established business processes to accommodate such a transfer.  While a transfer may be accomplished before an ARRA award is issued, the ability to transfer already awarded ARRA grants is still unavailable.  Therefore, NIH expects PD/PIs to be forthcoming in advising IC staff of the possibility of upcoming transfers when contacted about possible funding of an application with ARRA dollars so that options can be discussed before an ARRA award is issued. (More in NIH ARRA FAQs) [Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 07/30/09]

[Jul. 9, 2009] When and how to acknowledge external support/resources? Any deliverables - publications, posters, abstracts, presentations, press releases, reports, other public communication - that have benefited directly or indirectly, fully or partially, from external support/resources (through salary, equipment, supplies, travel, etc.) will appropriately acknowledge the sources of support and comply with the sponsor's requirements. In all instances, if more than one source supported the described work, all shall be specified. Support mechanisms that must be acknowledged include research, training and instrumentation awards. More>> [Res Admins 07/16/09]

[Jun. 4, 2009] When submitting eSNAP Progress Reports, what do I do if the NIH eRA Commons displays an error message indicating that there is a field in the Senior/Key Personnel section with a zero value? NIH eRA Commons advises users to take the following steps:
     1.  Cut figure from the "Cal.Mos." field of the PI.
     2.  Paste figure to "Academic" field of the PI.
     3.  Click "Save & New."
     4.  Cut figure from "Academic" field of the PI.
     5.  Paste figure to "Cal. Mos." field of the PI.
  &nb sp;  6.  Click "Save & New."
[Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 06/11/09]

[Jun. 2, 2009] What are NIH Policies on Similar, Identical, or Essentially Identical Applications, Submission of Applications Following RFA Review, and Submission of Applications with a Changed Activity Code?
1) submissions of identical applications to one or more components of NIH or the Public Health Service are not allowed (see NIH clarification);
2) NIH will not review any new or resubmission applications containing one or more of the specific aims contained in a similar, identical, or essentially identical application until after the peer review process for the original application has been completed and a summary statement has been provided to the PD/PI(s);
3) Resubmitting unfunded RFA applications and applications with a changed grant activity code shall comply with NOT-OD-03-019;
4) an application must be modified appropriately to fit the application requirements of the new FOA or activity code.
For more details on this and for special information for pending Challenge Grant (RC1) applications go to NIH Notice NOT-OD-09-100.

[Jun.1, 2009] Are special characters allowed in NIH application forms?  It is not advisable to include special characters in NIH SF424 forms and names of attachments.  Special characters often translate as garbled text in the assembled application at the NIH Commons.  This could generate unnecessary errors and rejections that would delay and potentially put your application at risk.  Therefore, do not include special characters, such as in file names for pdf attachments, project titles and investigators' names listed on the sponsor's forms.  Use only A-Z, 0-9 and underscore '_'.  (The use of special characters and symbols in the body of your research plan is allowed and expected as needed.) [Faculty/Postdocs/Res Admins 06/11/09]

[Mar. 25, 2009] What is the difference between Research Support and Other Support and when is each requested?  From the DHHS/NIH Grant Application Instructions Guide: Do not confuse "Research Support" with "Other Support." Though they sound similar, these parts of the application are distinctly different. As part of the biosketch section of the application, Research Support highlights yours and your collaborators’ scientific accomplishments. This information is provided BEFORE submission and will be used by the reviewers in the assessment of each individual's qualifications for their specific role in the proposed project, as well as to evaluate the overall qualifications of the research team. Other Support information is required for all applications that are selected to receive grant awards and includes details on direct costs and individual effort in calendar months. NIH staff will request complete and up-to-date "Other Support" information AFTER peer review. This information will be used to check that the proposed research is not already funded through other sources. More in Section 4.6 of Instructions for Preparing an Application.

[Feb. 26, 2009] How do I activate the Independent Phase (R00) of my NIH Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00)? An awardee must have been offered and accepted a tenure-track, full-time assistant professor position (or equivalent) at an eligible institution in order to activate the extramural independent scientist (R00) phase.  Transition from the mentored phase to the independent scientist phase is not automatic and requires administrative review of certain indicators. The application for the independent scientist phase of the award must be submitted at least 2 months prior to the proposed activation date of the R00 award by the R00 phase grantee organization using the PHS 398. More >>  [Faculty/Postdocs/Lab Admin 03/13/09]

[Feb 23, 2009] What is PMCID, who needs it, and how to retrieve it?
What: All publications submitted to PubMed Central are added to the PubMed citation database and are assigned a PMCID.
Who: NIH-funded authors are required to use the PMCID in their resulting publications citations (in reports, applications, etc.), in order to comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.
How: The Rockefeller Library can assist you in obtaining this number and/or you will be able to retrieve it at PubMed Central (PMC)  shortly after your article has been published. More>> [Faculty/Postdocs/Lab Admin 02/25/09]

[Feb. 23, 2009] Does the requirement for acknowledging federal funding apply to S10 awards? Yes, this requirement applies to S10 awards. Per NIH any NIH grant award that contributes to a project/publication/etc. should be acknowledged even if the grant’s project period has ended. For S10, the following acknowledgment language would be appropriate to use:
“This publication was made possible by Grant Number ________ from [name of awarding IC, NIH].  Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the [name of awarding office, NIH]” or “The project described was supported by Grant Number ________ from [name of awarding IC, NIH],” or “The use of the following equipment was made possible by Grant Number __________ from [name of awarding IC, NIH]: ______________”.

[Feb. 17, 2009] What is the new NSF policy regarding the inclusion of a mentoring plan in proposals? 'Since January 2009, all NSF grant applications that include funding support for post-doctoral fellows MUST include a mentoring plan. Per the NSF Grants Proposal Guide, Chapter II, Section C.2d(i): Each proposal that requests funding to support postdoctoral researchers must include, as a separate section within the 15-page Project Description, a description of the mentoring activities that will be provided for such individuals. Examples of mentoring activities include, but are not limited to: career counseling; training in preparation of grant proposals, publications and presentations; guidance on ways to improve teaching and mentoring skills; guidance on how to effectively collaborate with researchers from diverse backgrounds and disciplinary areas; and training in responsible professional practices. The proposed mentoring activities will be evaluated as part of the merit review process under the Foundation's broader impacts merit review criterion. Proposals that do not include a separate section on mentoring activities within the Project Description will be returned without review.' Beginning with proposals received on or after April 6, 2009 researchers must include a maximum one-page description of mentoring activities if the proposal includes post-doctoral researchers. You may use our mentoring plan boilerplate as your starting point. [Faculty/Postdocs/Lab Admin 02/25/09]

[Feb 02, 2009] What are the guidelines for late submission of grant applications to the NIH and NSF when the Principal Investigator has been assigned to an NIH review committee? Generally, the NIH expects applications to be submitted on time. However, the NIH recognizes that Principal Investigators (PIs) assigned to peer review study sections may need additional time to prepare their own grants for submission. For standard receipt deadlines only, the NIH distinguishes two types of peer review assignees by allowing them to submit their applications beyond the deadline date. P.I.’s who have been temporary or ad hoc members of NIH study sections (also special study sections), should contact the appropriate program official to determine the extension allowance to be granted. For appointed standing members who are “approved for service on the Study Section by the Director of NIH (typically for a four-year term”), a “continuous submission process” is allowed. Any extended submission deadline is always a receipt deadline by 5PM. A cover letter with an explanation must be included with the application. For complete details, refer to NOT-OD-08-026, NOT-OD-08-027 and NOT-OD-08-111.
Regarding NSF, in similar cases, the PI should contact his/her NSF program official.  [Faculty/Postdocs/Lab Admin 02/13/09]

[Jan 20, 2009] Are there any advantages to submitting an NIH application in response to a specific solicitation, i.e. Program Announcement (PA) or Request For Applications (RFA), instead of the Parent Announcement? Yes, if your research is an area described in a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) and your study aims meet most of the FOA research criteria, then it would be advisable to submit your proposal to a specific PA/RFA instead of the general Parent Announcement, since the RFA has specific funds associated with the program and applications will be reviewed by the same study section panel. The RFA success rate is determined by the number of submissions and the amount of set aside funds. Some Program Announcements also have set-aside funds (PAS), and in some cases submissions to a PA will be reviewed by a single study section (PAR). The PA success rate is determined by the overall payline of the NIH Institute, though high-priority applications may be funded beyond the payline, especially for PAS submissions. More>>  [Faculty/Postdocs/Lab Admin 01/23/09]

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