Indiana University Northwest
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Office of Sponsored Research

Office of Sponsored Research

Glossary and Acronym List

Glossary and Acronym List

A-21 Effort reports (IU)

A-21 Effort Reports are personnel activity reports which are prepared periodically by Financial Management System for each individual paid or cost-shared on an account. A-21 Effort Reports are based on the individual’s salary and wage distribution by account/project and are routed to the Fiscal Officer, Account Delegate, or A-21 Delegate of each account on the report.

Account Manager (IU)

The Account Manager is the person who through their actions, their position, or the budgeting process of the Dean or Vice President has direct responsibility for how funds are spent and managed. Examples would be a principal investigator who received a grant or contract, an academic person who received internal research funds from the Dean, or a Director of a non-academic department.

A/P

Accounts Payable

A/R

Accounts Receivable

AREA-R15

Academic Research Enhancement Award (NIH)

Allocable Costs

Determines whether costs are directly and/or indirectly attributable to a given project.

Allowable Costs

Expenditures under a funded project that are specifically permitted (or not specifically prohibited) by the award and supporting documentation such as by law, regulation, or guidance from the Office of Management and Budget, federal accounting standards, or other authoritative sources.

Assistant Role (NIH)

In the NIH Commons the role designed to allow PIs to delegate certain responsibilities for data entry of grant information and upkeep of their personal profiles. The ASST does not have any other functions in the system.

Audit

An independent review of a research study, (e.g. data, processes, investigator or team involved with human subject research, grant files). Audits are conducted by auditors according to set rules. Audits conducted obtain sample information and observe parts of a research study to determine if it is in compliance with the appropriate federal and state regulations.

Audit Trail

Documentation and/or system that allows reconstruction of the course of events relating to creation, modification, and deletion of data and/or records.

Authorized Institutional Official/Authorized Signature

An officer of an institution with the authority to speak for and legally commit the institution to adherence to the requirements of the federal regulations regarding the involvement of human participants, animals, biological agents, scientific misconduct and/or other regulations.

Authorizing Official

The representative of the applicant organization who has the authority to submit the grant application and/or sign for an award on behalf of that organization.

Award

To grant or declare as merited or due. If, after consideration, an outside agency/sponsor decides a proposal has merit and worth, an agreement is drawn between the funding agency and Institution for services. This agreement is called an award. An award is a legal, binding document for services in lieu of funds to perform the original outline of the proposal submitted.

Biosketch (IRB)

A biosketch, also known as a biographical sketch, is a document that briefly summarizes the professional experience, publication record and accomplishments of an individual. It Is a general term used by the NIH, and other sponsors. It is required as part of a grant proposal for each PI and other key personnel.

Budget

An estimate of expenditures proposed to be incurred in the performance of a proposed sponsored project.

Budget Justification (Budget Explanation)

Narrative of the budget determining the dollar amounts and the rationale for these amounts.

Budget period

The interval of time, usually one year, into which the budget is divided for budgetary and funding purposes.

Budget Start Date

The start date of a budget period as reflected in the sponsor award instrument.

CCR: Central Contractor Registration Database

The main vendor database for the U.S. Federal Government. Grant-applicant institutions need to register with the CCR to apply for a grant through Grants.gov. The CCR stores organizational information, allowing Grants.gov to verify the organization's identity and to pre-fill organizational information on its grant application. Institutions must have a DUNS number to register in the CCR.

CFDA Number

A unique identifier for the sponsor and the funding opportunity announcement (FOA). The first 2 digits of the number identify the Federal agency. The last 3 digits of the number identify the specific Federal program.


Close Out

A procedure to officially conclude a grant. Institute staff must ensure necessary scientific, administrative, and financial reports have been received, implemented and documented in compliance with Federal records management policy. This includes the Final Financial Status Report (FSR), Final Invention Report, and Final Progress Report.

Conflict of Interest

The following is a general definition of the term conflict of interest. It is based on Public Health Service Department regulations, and therefore applies to National Institutes of Health funded research. This general definition also informs and guides the IRB’s analysis of non-NIH funded research relationships. In all cases, additional factors not inconsistent with applicable requirements may also be considered in determining whether a conflict of interest exists or whether proactive steps should be taken to avoid conflicting interests. A conflict of interest may exist when a covered person’s Significant Financial Interests the interests of outside entities in which a covered person holds a Significant Financial Interest, reasonably would appear to affect or be affected by the covered person’s research or sponsored programs. Under State law on conflict of interest it is a crime for a public employee to knowingly or intentionally deriving a pecuniary benefit from transactions between the employee (including employee’s spouse and dependents) and the public employer. This law establishes a much lower threshold -- $250 or more of transactions during any twelve month period. To avoid criminal penalties, therefore, university employees should disclose to the Board of Trustees of Indiana University any situations likely to result in a contract involving the purchase, sale, or services or other matters, between the university and the employee or employee’s dependents.

Consortium Agreement

A formalized agreement whereby a research project is carried out by the grantee and one or more other organizations that are separate legal entities. Under the agreement, the grantee must perform a substantive role in the conduct of the planned research and not merely serve as a conduit of funds to another party or parties.

Consultant

An individual providing professional advice or services on the basis of a written agreement for a fee. These individuals are not normally employees of the organization receiving the services. Consultants also include firms providing professional advice or services.

Cost Share

The portion of total project costs that are paid from sources other than the sponsor.

Current and Pending Support

In a proposal, a listing all the PI's current and proposed externally funded research activity.

DUNS: Data Universal Numbering System

The DUNS number is a unique nine-digit number assigned by Dun and Bradstreet Information Services. It is recognized as the universal standard for identifying and keeping track of more than 92 million businesses worldwide. Grants.gov requires a DUNS number for registration. For applicants, the DUNS number in the application must match the DUNS number in the Institutional Profile in Commons.

Depositing Funds on Grant and Contract accounts (IU)

Deposit of income over $200 should be within one business day of receipt or weekly regardless of the amount. Within one business day of the deposit, a cash receipt document (CR) must be prepared to record the income.

Direct Cost

Costs that can be identified specifically with a particular sponsored project, an instructional activity, or any other institutional activity, or that can be directly assigned to such activities relatively easily with a high degree of accuracy.

Disallowance or Disallowed Cost

A sponsor may deem certain charges as unallowable and typically will not pay for these costs.

Effective Date

The start date of a project and generally the first date for which charges can be made to the project budget.

EIN: Employer Identification Number

Identification of a business to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service; also known as a Federal tax identification number.

Encumbrances

Obligations that are chargeable to an award and have had a portion of the funds reserved. Such examples of such obligations include purchase orders, contracts, and salary commitments.

Equipment

An article of tangible nonexpendable personal property that has a useful life of more than 1 year and an acquisition cost per unit that equals or exceeds $5,000 or the capitalization threshold established by the organization, whichever is less.

Expiration date

The date signifying the end of the current budget period, after which the grantee is not authorized to obligate grant funds regardless of the ending date of the project period or "completion date."

F&A Indirect Costs: F&A Facilities and Administration

Costs that are incurred for common or joint objectives and, therefore, cannot be identified readily and specifically with a particular sponsored project, an instructional activity, or any other institutional activity. F&A costs are synonymous with indirect costs and overhead costs.

FastLane System (NSF)

FastLane is the National Science Foundation (NSF) online website through which we conduct our relationship to researchers and potential researchers, reviewers, and research administrators and their organizations.

Federal Pass-through

Funding as part of a larger project an entity is performing for a US government entity, such that federal funding rules will apply.

Fee Remissions (IU)

Must be charged to the sponsored account incurring the graduate student’s salary. Fee remissions are charged under object code 5400 and correlate to GA salaries under object codes 23XX. Fee remissions under object code 5400 are not provided to fellowship recipients paid under object code 5820.

Fellowship

An award made directly to an individual to support a specific educational pursuit.

Fellowship Award (NIH)

An NIH training program award where the NIH specifies the individual receiving the award. Fellowships comprise the F activity codes.

Financial Disclosure (IU)

As part of a Financial Disclosure to the University, this describes any financial interest that a researcher may have in a research project, subcontracting company or other entity that will be funded from the project.

Financial Management Plan (NIH)

A policy to establish consistency in funding which specifies levels for items such as the payline, programmatic reductions, and caps for re-competing grants.

Financial Report (IU)

Official institutional reporting to the funding agency outlining the actual expenses incurred for a given award. Grant Services of the Office of Research Administration is responsible for submitting all financial reports unless there has been specific approval otherwise.

Fiscal Compliance

Assurance that funds are appropriately spent and that work is done to the highest standards.

Fiscal Officer (IU)

The campus, school, and department are responsible for identifying and sufficiently training staff in the role of Fiscal Officer.  The Fiscal Officer (or their delegate) is responsible for daily oversight of each account and will have signature authority for all financial transactions.  The Fiscal Officer will be required to utilize IU’s Financial Information System (FIS) and will ensure that delegates have the information and expertise to comply with university policies and practices.   The primary delegate role is not changing. Individuals currently assigned delegation responsibility in the FIS will continue to have this responsibility until the Fiscal Officer initiates a change.  This will ensure continuity of current internal departmental procedures and access to information through the conversion.

Fiscal Report

The financial report's required to be submitted to the sponsor.

Fringe Benefits

Employee benefits paid by the employers such as FICA, Worker's compensation, Withholding Tax or Insurance.

General Purpose Equipment

The Federal capital equipment threshold is $5,000. Equipment that is not limited to research, medical, scientific or other technical activities. Computers and general purpose equipment costs on federal or federal pass through accounts are unallowable except where approved in advance by the agency. A-21 defines general purpose equipment as such items as office equipment and furnishings, modular offices, telephone networks, information technology equipment and systems, air conditioning equipment, reproduction and printing equipment, and motor vehicles. Article J.18.b.(1) of Circular A-21 states: Capital expenditures for general purpose equipment, buildings, and land are unallowable as direct charges, except where approved in advance by the awarding agency.

Gift

Funds from private individuals, non-governmental source that imposes no contractual requirements, and/or awarded irrevocably. Gifts received for the benefit of Indiana University must be spent or utilized according to donor intent. The Fiscal Officer must ensure that funds are used in compliance with donor intent.

Grant

Award of financial or other assistance that does not hold the grantee to a rigid work plan and is, therefore, more flexible than a contract.

Grant Period

The period between the "effective date" and the "termination date" of a grant or contract and the only period during which charges can be made to the account.

Grantee

The organization or individual awarded a grant or cooperative agreement that is responsible and accountable for the use of the funds provided and for the performance of the grant-supported project or activities. The grantee is the entire legal entity even if a particular component is designated in the award document. The grantee is legally responsible and accountable for the performance and financial aspects of the grant-supported project or activity.


Hospitality

Hospitality expense, usually related to conferences or workshops, must be detailed in the agency approved budget or have specific written agency approval. Hospitality must be in the budget, necessary, appropriate to the occasion, reasonable in amount, and consistent with the agency's intended use of the funds.

Informed Consent (IRB)

An ongoing process by which a subject (or his/her legal representative) voluntarily confirms his or her willingness to participate in a particular research project, after having been informed of all aspects of the research that are relevant to the subject's decision to participate. Informed consent is often, but not always, documented by means of a written, signed, and dated informed consent form with documentation, which is retained in the subject's record.

In-Kind Contribution

This is a service or item donated in lieu of dollars to the operation of a funded project. Also see Cost Share.

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Any board, committee, or other group formally designated by an institution to review, to approve the initiation of, and to conduct periodic review of, biomedical and/or behavioral research involving human subjects. The primary purpose of such review is to assure the protection of the rights and welfare of the human subjects. The IRB is constituted of members with varying backgrounds (e.g. medical, scientific, nonscientific, and unaffiliated).

Intellectual Property

Patentable, copyrightable, licensable or otherwise protectable materials.

Key Personnel (for grants)

The PI and other individuals who contribute to the scientific development or execution of a project in a substantive, measurable way, whether or not they receive salaries or compensation under the grant. Typically these individuals have doctoral or other professional degrees, although individuals at the masters or baccalaureate level may be considered key personnel if their involvement meets this definition. Consultants also may be considered key personnel if they meet this definition. "Zero percent" effort or "as needed" is not an acceptable level of involvement for key personnel.

Letter of Intent

A letter submitted in advance of an application outlining a research idea.

Limited Submission

A sponsor may place limitations on how many proposals will be considered from a single institution.

Master Inventory List

The original itemized catalog of the location of all data and documents being retained and/or stored.

Matching Funds or Cost Sharing

The value of third party in-kind contributions and the portion of the costs of a project of program not borne by the Sponsor - but borne by a third party or the university. Matching or cost sharing may be required by law, regulation, or administrative decision of a Sponsor. Costs used to satisfy matching or cost sharing requirements are subject to the same policies governing allowability as other costs under the approved budget.

Materials and Supplies

Materials and supplies are defined as tangible personal property other than equipment, costing less than $5,000, or other lower threshold consistent with grantee policy. Materials and supplies that are necessary to carry out the project are allowable as prescribed in the governing cost principles.

MOU: Memorandum of Understanding

Used by two or more parties to agree to specific activities, collaborations and partnerships, also known as a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) .

Mentoring

Mentoring is a process in which a more experienced person supports and aids a less experienced person in his/her professional or personal development.

No Cost Extension

The extension of the project termination date with no additional funds to complete the work of the project.

Non-Competing Continuation

A year of continued support for a funded grant. Progress reports for continued support do not undergo peer review but are administratively reviewed by the Institute/Center and receive an award based on prior award commitments.

Noncompliance

Any action or activity associated with the conduct or oversight of research involving research subjects that fails to comply with federal or state regulations, or institutional policies.

OMB: Office of Management and Budget

Executive Branch office assisting the U.S. president in preparing the Federal budget, evaluating agency programs and policies, and setting funding priorities. In setting policy, OMB issues Government-wide policy directives, called circulars that apply to grants.

Office Supplies (IU)

Refers to all supplies regularly used in offices by businesses and other organizations and not meeting the threhold of equipment. At IU, office supplies (object code 4100) are generally not allowable. Lab supplies (code 4035), research supplies (code 4938), and project supplies (4690) may be allowable.

Overdraft (IU)

Condition where actual expenses on an IU account exceed the greater of budget or income.

Percent Effort

The time/effort that the Investigators, and/or other personnel, are committing to the sponsored project. This must be the proportion of time in relation to all institutional commitments and obligations. The total effort cannot exceed 100% for all sponsored projects and work-related duties.

Phone Rental (IU)

Per Article J.9. of OMB Circular A-21 phone services (local and long distance calls) are allowable. IU has determined that charges for land line phone rental devices and cell phones devices are not allowable on federal and federal pass through accounts as these costs are generally included in the indirect cost calculation. Exceptions may be granted for cell phone if justified, in situations of 100% use on the project and if a shared device. Off-campus awards are allowed to incur costs for phone rental.

Pre-award Costs

Grantee may, at its own risk incur obligations and expenditures to cover costs prior to the begin date of the initial budget period. Depending on the sponsoring agency, prior sponsor approval may be required for pre-award costs.

Prime Sponsor

The organization that funds a sponsored project, and is the original source of funds.

PI: Principal Investigator

The individual designated by the grantee, and approved by the sponsoring agency, who will be responsible for the scientific or technical direction of the project.

Procurement

An agreement to purchase a specified good or service from a particular entity. In some cases this document is used instead of a grant or contract document depending on grantor policy.

Project End Date (IU)

The expiration date of the currently proposed/funded period, plus unfunded periods (this may include possible option years).

Project Number (IU)

Commonly referred to as the application number or grant number, depending upon its processing status.

Project Period (IU)

The total time for which support of a project has been programmatically approved. The total project period comprises the initial competitive segment, any subsequent competitive segment(s) resulting from a competing continuation award(s), and non-competing extensions.

Project/Program Officer

The sponsor's official who is responsible for the programmatic, scientific, and/or technical aspects of a grant.

Proposal

A formal written document providing detailed information to a potential sponsor on the technical and business aspect of a proposed project. A proposal may be unsolicited or in response to a specific funding announcement. The successful outcome of a proposal will result in an award to the institution.

Reporting and Invoicing (IU)

Program reports are the responsibility of the principal investigator. The Office of Research Administration is responsible for submitting financial reports to the agency as well as reports on inventions, patents, equipment, cost share, Minority & Women Owned Businesses and final financial closeout reports. Most Federal grants require that accounts be reported and closed within 90 days following expiration, except Federal stimulus funds provided under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) which require financial reports within 10 days of the end of a quarter. State grants have a shorter time frame varying from 5 days to 30 days. Foundation grants vary from 15 to 90 days. Final financial reports require fiscal officer approval before submission to the agency.

RFP: Request for Proposals

More specific than an RFA, these define a specific project or scope of work and are funded by contracts.

Route Sheet (IU)

IU internal routing and approval document required for all proposals prior to submission to the agency.

Sponsored Project

Any activity that receives funding from outside the University. Sponsored projects may also be known as sponsored programs or sponsored agreements.

Stipend

A payment made to an individual under a fellowship or training grant in accordance with pre-established levels to provide for the individual's living expenses during the period of training. A stipend is not considered compensation for the services expected of an employee.

Subaward

A financial assistance agreement, which transfers a substantive effort of the project, issued to a sub-recipient when the prime award mechanism is a GRANT or COOPERATIVE AGREEMENT. Generally subject to prime agency flow-through Terms & Conditions and OMB circular regulations.

Subcontract

A formal agreement issued to a sub-recipient when the prime award mechanism is a CONTRACT. A subcontract is generally subject to state federal contract/procurement law such as FAR clauses.

Summer Salaries

Charges for work performed by faculty members on sponsored agreements during the summer months or other period not included in the base salary period will be determined for each faculty member at a rate not in excess of the base salary divided by the period to which the base salary relates, and will be limited to charges made in accordance with other parts of this section. The base salary period used in computing charges for work performed during the summer months will be the number of months covered by the faculty member's official academic year appointment. Many federal agencies make additional restrictions on summer pay. Consult current agency guidelines for specifics.

Summer Salary

The annual base academic year salary divided by the number of months in the period for which the base salary is paid.

Total Cost

The total cost of a project including direct costs, cost share, and F&A costs.

Unallocable Cost

An expense that cannot be directly attributed to a specific grant or contract.

Unallowable Cost

An expense that is specifically prohibited by an agency as both a direct and indirect cost.

Underwrite (IU)

A term for an account established in advance of an expected award that is guaranteed by the PI’s department or School.

Unrecovered F&A

F&A costs which are not requested or provided by the sponsor.