REMINDER: Office Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 

Updates from the Director

 

Caution: December and January deadlines are closer than they appear!
Nature has given us a poignant reminder why it's always a good idea to start grant applications early and submit early enough to avoid unforeseen delays due to natural or other disasters (like hard-drive melt-downs.) We'd like to emphasize the importance of building in a bit of time cushion to complete the university approval cycle, knowing that it's sometimes difficult to coordinate signatures because of absences and that seasonal weather is a real potential disruption to submitting your proposal successfully.  Aside from the timing factors both within and beyond your control, providing your proposal to my staff a few days in advance of a deadline (5 business days being optimal), allows our team to do a thorough review for accuracy and compliance and even provide some editing assistance as time allows. We're here to serve you and provide a value to your proposal process. Observing sponsor deadlines and striving to submit early will only enhance your experience and your chances of funding success.

Jeffress no-cost extensions for existing funding must be mailed no later than November 30 to be considered by the sponsor! Contact our office for assistance.

New Funding Available from the Jeffress Memorial Trust
See the funding opportunity announcement in this newsletter for the NEW Jeffress Trust Awards Program in Interdisciplinary Research.  This new funding program provides a larger funding ceiling ($100,000) for one-year pilot studies in astronomy, biosciences, chemistry, computer sciences, engineering, environmental sciences, material science, mathematics and physics.  This is a limited submission; only four (4) submissions are allowed from each university in the state.  If you are interested in submitting a proposal, please notify our office using the limited submission form (.doc) by December 17, 2012.

New National Science Foundation (NSF) Proposal & Award Policies and Procedures Guide (PAPPG) Effective January 14, 2013
A new version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), (NSF 13-1), has been issued, effective for proposals submitted or due on or after January 14, 2013. According to an email from NSF’s policy office, significant changes in the new version include revisions to the NSF Merit Review Criteria, instructions for preparation of the Biographical Sketch, clarification of coverage on compensation of Indirect Costs, modification of the Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources section of proposals, and additional proposal certifications requirements. Numerous clarifications have also been made throughout the document. A summary of significant changes appears at the beginning of both the "Grant Proposal Guide" and the "Award & Administration Guide," which are part of the larger document.

While this version of the PAPPG becomes effective on January 14, 2013, in the interim, the guidelines contained in the current PAPPG (NSF 11-1) continue to apply.

Holiday Closing:
The University will close on December 21 at noon and it may be difficult to obtain signatures for the entire week of December 17-21, so please plan accordingly!

 
Timely Topics  

Logic models provide sketch for program layout

According to Dierdre McKee, director of Continuing Medical Education and Grants at National Comprehensive Cancer Network, "A logic model is a systematic, visual way to present a planned program with its underlying assumptions and theoretical framework." Furthermore, "Logic models are opportunities to think about plans, outcomes, and measurement, and they help everyone get on the same page before proceeding with a project." McKee offers the following advice on developing a logic model:

Reviewers are often swamped with a sea of text. Consider providing them with a graphical representation of the project in the form of a logic model. It’s a visually pleasing way to punctuate the work plan and lighten the reading load.

 
Compliance Corner  

When should you notify NIH of a change in an animal activity supported by PHS funds?

All changes in animal activities requires the review and approval of the IACUC, however, keep in mind they may also require approval by NIH. Any significant change or change in scope would require notification to the NIH funding component. As defined by the NIH Grants Policy Statement, a change in scope refers to a change in direction, type of research or training from the objectives, purposes, or aims of the approved work.  

Examples includes in the Grants Policy Statement include change in specific aims, shift of research emphasis, substation of animal models, application of a new technology such as changing assay methods. Ultimately, consultation with NIH grants management personnel may need to be sought since not every change in animal model or use represents a change in scope. Please be aware that the IACUC is not responsible for notifying NIH of any changes. The request should be made in writing to the funding component no less than 30 days before the proposed change. The NIH Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare addresses this question at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/faqs.htm#b13