Pre-Award Functions and Proposal Basics

The ORSP is responsible for reviewing grants and sponsored projects prior to submission for compliance with Federal, State, local, and Institutional requirements.  The ORSP is also responsible for submitting grants or sponsored projects on behalf of the institution.  This office also procures internal approval for such submissions.  Additionally, staff in the office, as well as the Office of Business Affairs (OBA), are available to assist with budget development and to provide guidance on allowable costs.  Finally, the ORSP staff offer assistance with seeking appropriate grants and sponsored projects and grants-personship.

Make an appointment today and see what we can offer you!

Tina Allen
(304) 647-6216
Grants Administrator, ORSP
Quad A310A

Pre-award services offered (please contact Dr. Hanna and make an appointment for more information on any of these):

  • Identification of grants/sponsored awards relevant to your research or project area
  • Assistance with all aspects of proposal development, including budget, budget narrative, and insuring all the terms of the announcement are met in the other sections
  • Review of the final proposal for grammar, spelling, and typos, etc. 
  • Coordination of grant review services (for grantspersonship and for content), when available
  • Routing the application for internal approval, after all supervisors have provided approval
  • Training on grants management
  • Training on time and effort certification (required after award is received)
  • Training and check-ins for staying in compliance with the terms of the grant (required once awarded)

Ms Suzanne Adkins
(304) 647-6315
Grants Financial Officer, OBA
Quad A238

Pre-award services offered offered:

  • Assistance with budget and budget narrative development, particularly for salary information
  • Final budget review and accuracy check

Forms

  • ORSP-1 Research Project Initiation Request     
    • Use this form for initiating new research projects
    • This form is not required for programmatic projects, quality improvement/assurance projects or case reports
    • Typically, this form has already been completed prior to the grant preparation, e.g. for pilot data collection.  If this is the case, there is no need to submit an additional/duplicate version.
    • If the grant proposal involves a new species or additional procedures to a previously approved research project, an email to the ORSP describing this, along with submission of the ORSP-5, below, is sufficient.
  • ORSP-5 Internal Approval Form for Grant/Sponsored Project 
    • This form is an internal routing form for Sponsored awards (Grants or other)
    • Use this form for any grant applications or program applications for funding or tangible items
    • Use this form for subawards.  Subawards/collaborative grants should be submitted to WVSOM in conjunction with the primary institution's submission.  This is to ensure that WVSOM can commit to the subaward agreement when the other Institution's grant is submitted.

Proposal Routing Summary of Procedures

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) must review all research proposals and grant applications prior to submission.  Procedures for submission, timelines to ensure adequate review is completed, and both ORSP and PI responsibilities are available here:

Submission of Proposal for Extramural Support procedures

Submit the following to the ORSP at least 5 days prior to the proposal submission deadline:

  1. If research, the Research Project Initiation Request (ORSP-1) should be completed and available already.  If not already available, please provide with the ORSP-5
  2. The (Sponsored Award) Internal Approval Form (ORSP-5) already signed by yourself and your immediate supervisor.  The ORSP will secure additional required signatures on the ORSP-5 form
  3. The proposed budget and budget narrative
  4. The Request for Proposals, (RFP), Request for Application (RFA), Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), or other sponsored program document describing the required information for the proposal
  5. The ORSP will review the budget and descriptions provided on the ORSP-5 internal form to ensure WVSOM is able to commit to the terms in the RFP, RFA, FOA, or other announcement.
  6. The ORSP will also review the budget and descriptions for allowable/unallowable costs according to the applicable regulations.
  7. The ORSP will schedule a meeting to discuss the budget and any additional steps that may be required.
  8. The PI/PD will provide the complete grant narrative and all forms/documents of the proposal to the ORSP at least 2 business days prior to the submission deadline.
  9. After reviewing and assessing the proposed grant and/or research project, including whether WVSOM can meet the resources needed to carry out the project, ORSP will either ask additional questions or approve the project so the Principal Investigator (PI) can proceed.
  10. Once the proposal documents are completed to the PI/PD's and the ORSP's satisfaction, the ORSP will submit the proposal on behalf of WVSOM (unless otherwise discussed).

As described in the above procedures for Extramural Support, the ORSP requires a minimum of 5 business days to review and approve a project before a grant application can be submitted to the appropriate external funding organization.  Note that if the proposal is planned as a subaward to WVSOM, where another institution is applying for the award, WVSOM still needs all of this information to review.  See the section below for more information.

Subaward processes

Grant submitted by WVSOM, with planned subawards to another entity

All the required sponsored programs award procedures apply (e.g. all documents required at least 5 business days in advance, etc.), however the budget needs to explain the subrecipient’s portion of the work. Please break down the budget to include separate documents for:

  1. The subrecipient Institution’s Sponsored Programs Office contact. An email or phone number is sufficient.
  2. Subrecipient budget
  3. Subrecipient budget justification – The details of what the prime recipient will need should come from the prime institution. It will depend on the grant and the amount requested.
  4. Subrecipient statement/scope of work from each Co-I (the WVSOM PI/Co-PI) including a description of the work the subrecipient will perform, and as necessary, defining any project-specific activities, deliverables and/or timelines necessary for the successful completion of the work agreed upon.
  5. Subrecipient letter of commitment/intent/memo to enter into a subaward agreement w/ the prime institution.
  6. Description of resources, core facilities and equipment available to perform the work at Subrecipient’s location.
  7. A copy of the subrecipient institution’s most recent negotiated rate agreement.
  8. Any additional required documents specified by the grant.
    1. For example, NIH requires the PHS Face page from each Co-I.  This form should be completed and routed through each subawardee institution’s Research Office for endorsement before submission to WVSOM.  This document can serve as the consortium arrangements section within the application package.
    2. NIH Biosketches for key personnel in the current Forms F format (the most current NIH biosketch template and instructions for the completion of the NIH biosketch can be found here: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/forms/biosketch.htm
WVSOM will be a subrecipient, with grant submitted by another entity

The same procedures apply as usual; however, the ORSP needs fewer documents. The ORSP will just need WVSOM’s part of the application. The ORSP needs all these documents 5 business days in advance of the due date TO THE PRIME. For example, if the grant is due to the sponsor on October 5, and the Prime has a policy requiring all documents 5 days in advance, then WVSOM needs the subaward documents for internal routing 10 days in advance, so we can submit to the Prime for their 5 days in advance. The required documents include:

  • The RFA/RFP/FOA
  • The Prime Institution’s Sponsored Programs Office contact.  An email or phone number is sufficient.
  • The ORSP5 form completed and signed by the WVSOM PI and their department chair/supervisor
    • Information should be specific to WVSOM’s portion of the grant
  • WVSOM’s portion of the budget
  • WVSOM’s budget justification – The details of what the prime recipient will need should come from the prime institution.  It will depend on the grant and the amount requested.
  • WVSOM’s statement/scope of work from the WVSOM Co-I (the WVSOM PI/Co-PI) including a description of the work the WVSOM PI will perform, and as necessary, defining any project-specific activities, deliverables and/or timelines necessary for the successful completion of the work agreed upon.
  • The proposed letter of commitment/intent/memo to enter into a subaward agreement w/ the prime institution.
    • This letter should be addressed to the prime institution’s Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR), unless the Prime indicates otherwise
  • Any additional required documents specified by the Prime.
    • For example, NIH requires the PHS Face page from each Co-I.  This form should be completed and routed through each subawardee institution’s Research Office for endorsement before submission to WV SOM.  This document can serve as the consortium arrangements section within the application package.
    • NIH Biosketches for key personnel in the current Forms F format (the most current NIH biosketch template and instructions for the completion of the NIH biosketch can be found here: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/forms/biosketch.htm
    • Description of resources, core facilities and equipment available to perform the work at WVSOM.
    • The Prime will specify what additional documents are needed, but the WVSOM PI should ask, or ask the ORSP to reach out to ask.

Proposal Basics

Time and Effort

During budget development, calculating the amount of time and effort you will devote to the project may be required.  This is important if you request salary, or commit any specific time in the budget narrative (see cost sharing below).  A link to an excel spreadsheet to help you calculate time and effort is provided here.

Time and effort worksheet

For more information on time and effort, see the post-award page and FAQs on how to report time and effort.

Cost Sharing
  • Some agencies require that a percentage of research costs be shared.
  • Cost sharing represents a financial commitment to a project. Whenever the full cost of a project is not recovered by direct costs or F&A costs, WVSOM is sharing the costs, also known as cost sharing.
  • Cost sharing should not be included in a proposal unless it is mandatory by statute, regulation or written policy. No cost sharing, waiver, or modification can be accepted without the approval of the supervisor/chair, dean, and the president.
  • Cost sharing should not be included in budget documents or the proposal narrative without prior approval.
  • Cost sharing may be outright, in-kind, or matching. Outright cost sharing is a cash contribution. In-kind contributions may include WVSOM or third-party contributions of effort, services, or goods.
  • All expenditures must be verifiable; may not be used as cost sharing for any other sponsored program; must be necessary and reasonable to accomplish the project; must be allowable under the WVSOM cost principles and policies; must be incurred during the dates of the award, and must not paid by the federal government under another sponsored project.
Direct and Indirect Costs

Direct costs are those costs incurred that are directly attributable to the project. These are the costs you typically put in your budget and budget narrative. See "key items" below for more information.

Indirect costs (also known as F&A)

  • Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs include institutional expenses for general operations such as administrative expenses and building use and maintenance. These costs are computed as a percentage of direct costs set by the federal government calculation of F&A cost rates. F&A cost rates may vary according to the type or location of the project.
  • Contact Ms Allen for more information as you are drafting your grant/sponsored project budget.
Key items to include in your budget (Direct Costs)
  • Laboratory Supplies
  • Animal and animal care costs
  • Travel costs
  • Salary costs for PI, Techs, staff, etc. (Including Fringe)
  • Allocation Costs
  • Subawards Cost share or Match – a portion of the project or program costs not paid for by the federal gov’t
  • Scholarship, Honorarium, or Stipends (allowable with a training component)
  • Capital expenditures for special purpose equipment are allowable as direct costs, provided that items with a unit cost of $5,000 or more have prior written approval of the awarding agency or pass-through entity
  • *Prior approval items
Unallowable costs

Unallowable costs are generally not allowable in a federally sponsored grant.  Be aware of these, as the pre-award review will look for these.  Sometimes, unallowable costs are permitted if prior approval is provided.

  • Goods and services for personal use
  • Individual memberships or subscriptions
  • Fines or penalties
  • Gift Cards
  • Alcohol
Prior approval

Prior approval is when the awarding agency approves the detailed budget and budget narrative as described.  It is imperative that all items listed in the budget be clearly defined in the budget justification or narrative when submitted.

Prior approval is also required after an award is made if there are planned changes to the budget or scope of work.  Prior to implementing such things, the sponsoring agency MUST be consulted and approve the changes.  Typical key changes in budget that need to be submitted include (but are not limited to):

  • Changes of key personnel
  • Changes in the scope or objective of the project
  • Disengagement from the project for more than 3 months or a 25% reduction in time devoted to the project
  • Change in cost sharing or matching
  • Transfer of participant support cost
  • No cost extensions
  • Carrying forward of funds

The WVSOM Grants Administrator will help the PI navigate this process.  All prior approval or change requests are submitted by the ORSP, unless otherwise discussed and agreed to.

The Uniform Guidance

All federal grants financial rules are regulated by the "Uniform Guidance", 2 CFR 200.  This Guidance is actually a requirement, despite its name.  Both the Grants Administrator in the ORSP and Grants Financial Officer in the OBA may provide assistance in interpreting and understanding these regulations.