Frequently Asked Questions

Please note: You’ll often hear your ORSP specialist begin to answer questions by saying, “it depends.” This is because your specialist wants to respond in the most helpful way and has to balance the demands of sponsor and university policies and procedures as well as the laws of the land. What follows are some frequently asked questions about working with ORSP; please do not hesitate to contact ORSP with questions that you have in general or in regard to a specific project or funding opportunity.

  1. What is a "sponsored program"?
  2. When do I need to contact OSRP tp notify them of my intention to submit a grant proposal?
  3. Who can assist me with budget preparation?
  4. What is the time frame for a proposal submission?
  5. My Institute/Center is about to receive an award and my funding agency would like to give us an agreement. Can that agreement be between the agency and my institute/center and can I sign the agreement as Director?
  6. What do the terms F&A, Indirect Costs and Overhead mean and why do I need to include these costs in my budget?
  7. I would like to hire a graduate student for my project but still keep the budget low. Do I have to include tuition for the student in my budget?
  8. I will be spending the summer doing research in the field. Does my project qualify for the off-campus rate of 26%?
  9. Do I have to charge the F&A rate?
  10. My grant has been funded. Now what?

 


1. What is a "sponsored program"?

Sponsored programs are scholarly, professional and creative activities that University faculty, staff and students participate in with the support of external grants, contracts, or cooperative agreements or internal grant funding. Funded activities can include research, training and instruction, public events and community outreach.

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2. When do I need to contact ORSP to notify them of my intention to submit a grant proposal?

Please contact ORSP as soon as you have decided to submit a grant proposal. ORSP can be most helpful if your intention is known early in the process. ORSP can help guide you to additional resources if needed and share important information about the sponsor and University policies that you need to be cognizant of as well as work with you and your departmental administrator to complete the proposal. All administrative items are required in their final version with placeholders for the final science/project narrative by 12pm noon five (5) business days before the sponsor deadline. The proposal in its final form for submission to the sponsor, including the final narrative, is due by 12pm noon two (2) business days before the sponsor deadline. Use of the Research Administration and Proposal Submission System (RAPSS) is now mandatory for all submissions of research proposals, corporate contracts, and associated items.

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3. Who can assist me with budget preparation?

Your Department Administrator/Business Manager will help you draft the budget for your proposal. If you do not have a Department Administrator/Business Manager please contact the ORSP Research Support Specialist, Reuel Mebuin. Your ORSP grant specialist will review and approve your budget.

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4. What is the time frame for a proposal submission?

ORSP requires at least all administrative components including the final budget 5 days before the sponsor deadline, but your department or School may require more notice so please check with the Dean’s Office of your School. This is especially important for electronic submissions which can encounter unforeseeable obstacles that might prevent the application from being transmitted and result in your proposal not being submitted. See submission guidelines for a detailed schedule. *predicate on above 5/2 policy for RU-N.

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5. My Institute/Center is about to receive an award and my funding agency would like to give us an agreement. Can that agreement be between the agency and my institute/center and can I sign the agreement as Director?

No. All agreements are between the funding agency and Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. The University accepts on behalf of the institute/center or individual. In accepting the award, the University assumes responsibility for financial reporting and project completion. Only Authorized Institutional Officials are permitted to accept and sign on behalf of the university.

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6. What do the terms F&A, Indirect Costs and Overhead mean and why do I need to include these costs in my budget?

These are terms often used interchangeably. F&A (Facilities and Administrative) is the federal terminology. Indirect Costs/overhead are those expenses essential to the performance of sponsored activities but which cannot be readily attributed to a single project and cannot be charged as direct costs. The result is that these expenses are pooled and a percentage derived based on the federal government formula.

Indirect costs provide necessary support for sponsored projects. The types of costs charged under indirect costs include laboratory space, office space, libraries, equipment, utilities (such as the cost of lights and heat in a building used for research) and administrative personnel costs. The University negotiates its applicable rates each year with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Negotiated rates (http://costanalysis.rutgers.edu/federal-rate-agreements) should be applied to all projects. Exceptions are: those federal agencies that establish an indirect costs percentage cap for their programs; foundations that indicate as part of their published policy that indirect costs are unallowable or limit the percentage to be applied; and state agencies that do not allow or limit the percentage of indirect costs. Any exceptions will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

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7. I would like to hire a graduate student for my project but still keep the budget low. Do I have to include tuition for the student in my budget?

It depends. If the student has a full time appointment, then the costs of tuition must be included. refer to RU-N tuition waiver initiative here. If the student is hired on an hourly basis, then tuition expenses are not required.

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8. I will be spending the summer doing research in the field. Does my project qualify for the off-campus rate of 26%?

It depends. Each budget line is evaluated as to whether it qualifies as on-campus or off-campus. If the off campus costs are more than 50% then your project is considered to be off campus.

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9. Do I have to charge the F&A rate?

Only the RU-N Office of Vice Chancellor may approve a waiver or reduction of F&A for RU-N proposals. Please download the form and send it along with all the required documents and rationale to Vice Chancellor Dr. Piotr Piotrowiak prior to proposal submission.

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10. My grant has been funded. Now what?

Contact your Grant Specialist immediately.
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