Part I Overview Information


Department of Health and Human Services

Participating Organizations
National Institutes of Health, (http://www.nih.gov)

Components of Participating Organizations
National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), (http://www.ncrr.nih.gov)
National Institute on Aging (NIA), http://www.nia.nih.gov)

Title:  NCRR Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) (R25)

Announcement Type
This is a reissue with modifications of PAR-06-080, which was previously released November 30, 2005.

Update: The following update relating to this announcement has been issued:

NOTICE: Applications submitted in response to this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for Federal assistance must be submitted electronically through Grants.gov (http://www.grants.gov) using the SF424 Research and Related (R&R) forms and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide. 

APPLICATIONS MAY NOT BE SUBMITTED IN PAPER FORMAT.

This FOA must be read in conjunction with the application guidelines included with this announcement in Grants.gov/Apply for Grants (hereafter called Grants.gov/Apply).

A registration process is necessary before submission and applicants are highly encouraged to start the process at least four weeks prior to the grant submission date. See Section IV.

Program Announcement (PA) Number: PAR-06-549

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number(s)
93.389

Key Dates
Release/Posted Date: September 13, 2006
Opening Date:  September 29, 2006 (Earliest date an application may be submitted to Grants.gov)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date(s): October 29, 2006, August 22, 2007, August 20, 2008
NOTE: On time submission requires that applications be successfully submitted to Grants.gov no later than 5:00 p.m. local time (of the applicant institution/organization). 
Application Submission/Receipt Date(s):  November 29, 2006, September 19, 2007, September 17, 2008
Peer Review Date(s): February/March 2007, 2008, 2009
Council Review Date(s): May 2007, 2008, 2009
Earliest Anticipated Start Date(s): July 2007, 2008, 2009
Expiration Date: September 18, 2008

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Additional Overview Content

Executive Summary

Table of Contents


Part I Overview Information

Part II Full Text of Announcement

Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
1. Research Objectives

Section II. Award Information
1. Mechanism of Support
2. Funds Available

Section III. Eligibility Information
1. Eligible Applicants

    A. Eligible Institutions
    B. Eligible Individuals
2. Cost Sharing or Matching
3. Other - Special Eligibility Criteria

Section IV. Application and Submission Information
1. Request Application Information
2. Content and Form of Application Submission
3. Submission Dates and Times
    A. Submission, Review, and Anticipated Start Dates
          1. Letter of Intent
    B. Submitting an Application Electronically to the NIH
    C. Application Processing
4. Intergovernmental Review
5. Funding Restrictions
6. Other Submission Requirements

Section V. Application Review Information
1. Criteria
2. Review and Selection Process
    A. Additional Review Criteria
    B. Additional Review Considerations
    C. Sharing Research Data
    D. Sharing Research Resources
3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

Section VI. Award Administration Information
1. Award Notices
2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements
3. Reporting

Section VII. Agency Contact(s)
1. Scientific/Research Contact(s)

2. Peer Review Contact(s)
3. Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Section VIII. Other Information - Required Federal Citations

Part II - Full Text of Announcement


Section I. Funding Opportunity Description


1. Research Objectives

This funding opportunity announcement (FOA) solicits applications from applicant organizations that propose creative and innovative research education programs to increase the public's understanding of medical research and deliver information about healthy living and career opportunities in science to children and the general public.  The NIH Research Education (R25) grant mechanism is a flexible and specialized mechanism designed to foster the development of biomedical, behavioral, and clinical researchers through research education programs. The overall goal of the NCRR’s research education programs are (1) to ensure that highly trained scientists will be available in adequate numbers and in appropriate scientific areas to address the Nation’s biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research needs in the NCRR’s mission areas and (2) to provide public education and outreach on NIH-funded research and the clinical trials process to a variety of audiences through science centers and museums.  The NIH encourages all proposed programs to foster the participation of individuals from racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research, individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, individuals with disabilities, and women. Examples of SEPA activities include:

The proposed research education program may complement other, ongoing research training and education occurring at the applicant institution, but the proposed educational experiences must be distinct from those research training and research education programs currently receiving federal support. The R25 is not a substitute for an institutional research training program (T32) and can not be used to circumvent or supplement Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) mechanisms.

See Section VIII, Other Information - Required Federal Citations, for policies related to this announcement.

Section II. Award Information


1. Mechanism of Support

This FOA will use the NIH Research Education Grant (R25) award mechanism. The applicant will be solely responsible for planning, directing, and executing the proposed project.  

This FOA uses just-in-time concepts. It also uses the non-modular budget format.  Applicants must complete and submit budget requests using the SF424 Research and Related (R&R) Budget Component found in the application package for this FOA. 

Research education grant support is for new projects only; competing renewal (formerly “competing continuation”) applications will not be accepted.  Up to two resubmissions (formerly “revisions/amendments”) of a previously reviewed research education grant application may be submitted.  See NOT-OD-03-041, May 7, 2003. 

2. Funds Available

Because the nature and scope of the proposed research education program will vary from application to application, it is anticipated that the size and duration of each award will also vary. Although the financial plans of the NCRR Provide support for this program, awards pursuant to this funding opportunity are contingent upon the availability of funds and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.

Duration of SEPA projects are: 3 years for a Development (Phase I) application; 2 years for a Dissemination (Phase II) application and 5 years for a combined Development and Dissemination (Phase I + Phase II) applicationAlthough the size of award may vary with the scope of the research education program proposed, it is expected that applications will stay within the following budgetary guidelines: total direct costs are limited to $250,000 annually.

F&A is limited to 8% of modified total direct costs.  Subcontractors are permitted their negotiated F&A rate for this program

NIH grants policies as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement will apply to the applications submitted and awards made in response to this funding opportunity announcement. 

Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs requested by consortium participants, if applicable, are not included in the direct cost limitation.  See NOT-OD-05-004.  

Section III. Eligibility Information


1. Eligible Applicants

1.A. Eligible Institutions

You may submit an application(s) if your organization has any of the following characteristics:

Foreign institutions are not eligible to apply in response to this FOA.

If multiple sites are involved in the research education program, the applicant institution must be the primary site for the program.  The need for and use of multiple sites must be strongly justified.

1.B. Eligible Individuals

Any individual with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research education program as the Project Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) is invited to work with his/her organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for NIH support.  The PD/PI will be expected to monitor and assess the program, submitting annual reports as required. (See Section VI.3., “Reporting.”)

The PD/PI should be an established investigator in the scientific area in which the application is targeted who is capable of providing both administrative and scientific leadership to the development and implementation of the proposed science education program.  

An individual may not be listed as a principal investigator or Key Personnel on more that one SEPA grant application or active SEPA project.

The PD/PI must devote a minimum of 1.2 person months annually to the proposed SEPA project

2. Cost Sharing or Matching

This program does not require cost sharing as defined in the current NIH Grants Policy Statement.

3. Other-Special Eligibility Criteria

Applicants are required to include a plan for Training in the Responsible Conduct of Research (see Section IV.6).

Applications must contain an evaluation plan and a dissemination plan.

Applications submitted without these sections may be delayed in the review process or not reviewed.

Applicants may submit more than one application, provided each application is scientifically distinct. 

Section IV. Application and Submission Information


To download a SF424 (R&R) Application Package and SF424 (R&R) Application Guide for completing the SF424 (R&R) forms for this FOA, link to http://www.grants.gov/Apply/ and follow the directions provided on that Web site.

A one-time registration is required for institutions/organizations at both:

PD/PIs should work with their institutions/organizations to make sure they are registered in the eRA Commons.

Several additional separate actions are required before an applicant institution/organization can submit an electronic application, as follows:

1) Organizational/Institutional Registration in Grants.gov/Get Started

2) Organizational/Institutional Registration in the eRA Commons

3) Project Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) Registration in the NIH eRA Commons: Refer to the NIH eRA Commons System (COM) Users Guide.

Note that if a PD/PI is also an NIH peer-reviewer with an Individual DUNS and CCR registration, that particular DUNS number and CCR registration are for the individual reviewer only. These are different than any DUNS number and CCR registration used by an applicant organization. Individual DUNS and CCR registration should be used only for the purposes of personal reimbursement and should not be used on any grant applications submitted to the Federal Government.

Several of the steps of the registration process could take four weeks or more. Therefore, applicants should immediately check with their business official to determine whether their organization/institution is already registered in both Grants.gov and the Commons. The NIH will accept electronic applications only from organizations that have completed all necessary registrations.

1. Request Application Information

Applicants must download the SF424 (R&R) application forms and SF424 (R&R) Application Guide for this FOA through Grants.gov/Apply.

Note: Only the forms package directly attached to a specific FOA can be used. You will not be able to use any other SF424 (R&R) forms (e.g., sample forms, forms from another FOA), although some of the "Attachment" files may be useable for more than one FOA.

For further assistance, contact GrantsInfo: Telephone 301-435-0714, Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov.

Telecommunications for the hearing impaired: TTY 301-451-5936.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

Prepare all applications using the SF424 (R&R) application forms and in accordance with the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide (MS Word or PDF).

The SF424 (R&R) Application Guide is critical to submitting a complete and accurate application to NIH. There are fields within the SF424 (R&R) application components that, although not marked as mandatory, are required by NIH (e.g., the “Credential” log-in field of the “Research & Related Senior/Key Person Profile” component must contain the PD/PI’s assigned eRA Commons User ID). Agency-specific instructions for such fields are clearly identified in the Application Guide. For additional information, see “Tips and Tools for Navigating Electronic Submission” on the front page of “Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.”

The SF424 (R&R) application is comprised of data arranged in separate components. Some components are required, others are optional. The forms package associated with this FOA in Grants.gov/APPLY will include all applicable components, required and optional. A completed application in response to this FOA will include the following components:

Required Components:

SF424 (R&R) (Cover component)
Research & Related Project/Performance Site Locations
Research & Related Other Project Information
Research & Related Senior/Key Person
Research & Related Budget

PHS398 Cover Page Supplement
PHS398 Research Plan
PHS398 Checklist

Optional Components:

PHS398 Cover Letter File
Research & Related Sub Award Budget Attachment(s) Form

Research Education Program

While the proposed research education program may complement other, ongoing research training and education occurring at the applicant institution, the proposed educational experiences must be distinct from those research training and research education programs currently receiving federal support.

If multiple sites are involved in the research education program, the applicant institution must be the primary site for the program.  The need for and use of multiple sites must be justified.   

Although research education grants are not typical research instruments, they do involve experiments in education and/or dissemination of research knowledge that require an evaluation plan in order to determine the degree of success or failure. A plan must be provided for program evaluation. Benchmarks should be specified, and specific plans and procedures must be described to capture, analyze and report outcome measures that would determine the success of the research education program in achieving its objectives.   

All applications must include a detailed Evaluation Plan for assessing the success of the proposed SEPA program. The Evaluation Plan should be an integral component of the early planning stages and must continue through the life of the SEPA project. A minimum of ten percent (10%) of the direct costs budget should be devoted to project evaluation. The use of external evaluators is required unless a valid justification can be made for an internal evaluation team.

A specific plan must be provided to disseminate nationally any materials developed under the auspices of the research education program, e.g. Web postings, presentations at scientific meetings, workshops, etc. 

K-12 Phase I + II applications must include a Dissemination plan that may include:

Science Center and Museum projects should include comprehensive plans to develop:

Allowable Costs 

Allowable costs must be consistent with NIH policy and be reasonable, allocable, well documented and fully justified for the research education program proposed in the application. Grant funds may not be used to supplant funds otherwise available at the applicant institution.

Personnel: Individuals participating in the design and implementation of the research education program may request salary and fringe benefits appropriate for the person months devoted to the program.  These expenses must be itemized in Sections A and B, as appropriate, of the Research & Related Budget.  Salaries requested may not exceed the levels commensurate with the institution's policy for similar positions and may not exceed the congressionally mandated cap. (If mentoring interactions and other activities with students/participants are considered a regular part of an individual's academic duties, then mentoring and other interactions with students/participants are non-reimbursable from grant funds). Limited administrative and clerical salary costs associated distinctly with the program that are not normally provided by the applicant organization may be direct charges to the grant only when specifically identified and justified. 

Other Program-Related Expenses: Consultant costs, equipment, supplies, travel for key persons, and other program-related expenses must be justified as specifically required by the proposed research education program and must not duplicate items generally available for educational programs at the applicant institution. These expenses must be itemized, as appropriate, in Sections C. (Equipment), D. (Travel), and F. (Other Direct Costs) of the Research & Related Budget.

Participant Costs: Participants are those individuals who benefit from the proposed research education program.  Participant costs must be justified as specifically required for the proposed research education program.  Participant costs must be itemized in Section E. (Participant/Trainee Support Costs) of the Research & Related Budget

Because this is an educational and not a training mechanism, non-U.S. citizens may participate in this program. However, requests for participation of non-U.S. citizens under the auspices of this FOA should be made with the understanding that this mechanism is not to be used to circumvent or supplement NRSA training mechanisms. Unless strongly justified on the basis of exceptional relevance to the NIH/IC mission, research education programs should be used primarily for the education of U.S. citizens.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Program staff (see Section VII) to discuss the appropriate utilization of this mechanism with respect to the eligibility, appointment, and participation of non-U.S. citizens.

Participants in the research education program may receive a subsistence allowance, including partial costs of meals and lodging unless such costs are furnished as part of the registration fee. Participants may also receive funds to defray partial tuition, other education-related, and travel expenses. Expenses for foreign travel must be exceptionally well justified. Funds will not be provided for fringe benefits or health insurance for participants in any research education program. Individuals supported by NIH training and career development mechanisms (K, T, or F awards) may receive, and indeed are encouraged to receive, educational experiences supported by the R25 mechanism, as participants, but may not receive salary or stipend supplementation from a research education program.

Because the R25 mechanism is not intended as a substitute for an NRSA institutional training program (T32), costs to support full-time participants are not allowable. A full-time participant is defined for the research education program as an individual supported for 40 hours/week for a continuous, 12-month period.

Institutional Commitment: Evidence of institutional commitment to the research educational program is strongly encouraged. 

Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Costs: F&A costs for the applicant organization and consortium participants will be reimbursed at 8 percent of modified total direct costs, or at the actual F&A cost rate, whichever is less.   Subcontractors will receive their full negotiated F&A rate.

3. Submission Dates and Times

See Section IV.3.A for details.

3.A. Submission, Review, and Anticipated Start Dates

Opening Date: September 29, 2006 (Earliest date an application may be submitted to Grants.gov)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date(s): October 29, 2006, August 22, 2007, August 20, 2008
Application Submission/Receipt Date(s): November 29, 2006, September 19, 2007, September 17, 2008
Peer Review Date(s): February/March 2007, 2008, 2009
Council Review Date(s): May 2007, 2008, 2009
Earliest Anticipated Start Date(s): July 2007, 2008, 2009

3.A.1 Letter of Intent

Prospective applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent that includes the following information:

Although a letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and does not enter into the review of a subsequent application, the information that it contains allows IC staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan the review.

The letter of intent is to be sent by the date listed in Section IV.3.A.

The letter of intent should be sent to:

L. Tony Beck, Ph.D.
Division for Clinical Research Resources
National Center for Research Resources
6701 Democracy Blvd, Room 916
Bethesda, MD 20892
Telephone: (301) 435-0805
FAX: (301) 480-3661
Email: beckl@mail.nih.gov

3.B. Submitting an Application Electronically to the NIH

To submit an application in response to this FOA, applicants should access this FOA via http://www.grants.gov/Apply and follow steps 1-4. Note:  Applications must only be submitted electronically.  PAPER APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED. 
 
3.C. Application Processing

Applications may be submitted on or after the opening date and must be successfully received by Grants.gov no later than 5:00 p.m. local time (of the applicant institution/organization) on the application submission/receipt date(s). (See Section IV.3.A. for all dates.) If an application is not submitted by the receipt date(s) and time, the application may be delayed in the review process or not reviewed.

Upon receipt, applications will be transferred from Grants.gov to the NIH Electronic Research Administration process for validation. 

Once an application package has been successfully submitted through Grants.gov, any errors have been addressed, and the assembled application has been created in the eRA Commons, the PD/PI and the Authorized Organization Representative/Signing Official (AOR/SO) have two business days to view the application image.

Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness by the Center for Scientific Review, NIH. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

There will be an acknowledgement of receipt of applications from Grants.gov and the Commons. Information related to the assignment of an application to a Scientific Review Group is also in the Commons. 

The NIH will not accept any application in response to this FOA that is essentially the same as one currently pending initial merit review unless the applicant withdraws the pending application. The NIH will not accept any application that is essentially the same as one already reviewed. This does not preclude the submission of an application already reviewed with substantial changes, but such application must include an “Introduction” (3 pages maximum) addressing the previous critique. Note such an application is considered a "resubmission" for the SF424 (R&R).

4. Intergovernmental Review

This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

5. Funding Restrictions

All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

Pre-Award Costs are allowable. A grantee may, at its own risk and without NIH prior approval, incur obligations and expenditures to cover costs up to 90 days before the beginning date of the initial budget period of a new award if such costs: are necessary to conduct the project, and would be allowable under the grant, if awarded, without NIH prior approval. If specific expenditures would otherwise require prior approval, the grantee must obtain NIH approval before incurring the cost. NIH prior approval is required for any costs to be incurred more than 90 days before the beginning date of the initial budget period of a new award.

The incurrence of pre-award costs in anticipation of a competing or non-competing award imposes no obligation on NIH either to make the award or to increase the amount of the approved budget if an award is made for less than the amount anticipated and is inadequate to cover the pre-award costs incurred. NIH expects the grantee to be fully aware that pre-award costs result in borrowing against future support and that such borrowing must not impair the grantee's ability to accomplish the project objectives in the approved time frame or in any way adversely affect the conduct of the project. See the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

6. Other Submission Requirements

The NIH requires the PD/PI to fill in his/her Commons User ID in the “PROFILE – Project Director/Principal Investigator” section, “Credential” log-in field of the “Research & Related Senior/Key Person Profile” component. The applicant organization must include its DUNS number in its Organization Profile in the eRA Commons. This DUNS number must match the DUNS number provided at CCR registration with Grants.gov. For additional information, see “Tips and Tools for Navigating Electronic Submission” on the front page of “Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.”

All application instructions outlined in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide (MS Word or PDF) are to be followed, with the following requirements for R25 applications:

Do not use the Appendix to circumvent the page limitations of the Research Plan. An application that does not observe these limitations may be delayed in the review process.   

Warning: Please be sure that you observe the direct cost, project period, and page number limitations specified above for this FOA. Application processing may be delayed or the application may be rejected if it does not comply with these requirements.

Note: While each section of the Research Plan needs to be uploaded separately as a PDF attachment, applicants are encouraged to construct the Research Plan as a single document, separating sections into distinct PDF attachments just before uploading the files. This approach will enable applicants to better monitor formatting requirements such as page limits. All attachments must be provided to NIH in PDF format, filenames must be included with no spaces or special characters, and a .pdf extension must be used.   

Supplementary Research Education Program Application Instructions

Applicants should use the following guidance, in addition to the instructions accompanying the SF 424 (R&R) form.  Applications that do not conform to the specific instructions detailed below will be returned.  

1. SF 424 Research & Related Project/Performance Site Location(s): Include collaborating sites, if appropriate.

If multiple sites are involved in the research education program, the applicant institution must be the primary site for the program.  A justification must be included for sites other than the applicant institution in the program narrative.   

2.  SF 424 Research & Related Other Project Information, Item 9 (Facilities & Other Resources):  Describe the educational environment, including the facilities, laboratories, participating departments, computer services, and any other resources to be used in the development and implementation of the proposed program.  List all thematically related sources of support for research training and education following the format for Current and Pending Support. 

3.  SF 424 Research & Related Senior/Key Person Profile: Key Personnel must include the PD/PI as well as any other key persons (such as those involved in the development, implementing, directing, monitoring, evaluating, etc., who are integral to the proposed research education program) participating in the research education program.  The PD/PI and any Subcontractor(s) are normally listed as Key Personnel for SEPA projects. 

4.  Research & Related Budget:  Complete for each budget period requested.

A.  Senior/Key Person: complete for all senior/key persons associated with the research education program.  The PD/PI must be included here.

B.  Other Personnel: complete for all other personnel (including clerical and administrative staff) associated with the research education program.

C.  Equipment: self-explanatory.

D.  Travel: include here any travel funds requested for senior/key persons and other personnel (i.e. those persons identified in Sections A. and B.) associated with the research education program. Applicants must budget for travel funds for attendance by the PI and, if appropriate, Key Personnel at the Annual SEPA Program Directors Conference.

E.  Participant/Trainee Support Costs: include here all allowable categories of funds requested to support participants in the research education program.  If categories in addition to those listed in this section of the 424R&R form are needed, describe in Other. State the number of Participants/Trainees to be supported by the proposed research education program

F. Other Direct Costs: itemize as appropriate and allowed for the research education program.

G. Budget Justification: provide a detailed justification for each category for which funds are requested.  For Section E, itemize each category of support costs per participant and justify. 

Personnel Costs - individuals participating in the design and implementation of the research education program may request salary and fringe benefits appropriate for the percent of time devoted to the programSalaries requested may not exceed the levels commensurate with the institution's policy for similar positions.  If mentoring interactions and other activities with students is considered a regular part of an individual's academic duties, then mentoring and other interactions with students are non-reimbursable from grant funds.

Administrative and clerical salary costs associated distinctly with the program that are not normally provided by the applicant organization may be direct charges to the grant only when specifically identified and justified. 

Consultation costs, equipment, supplies, necessary travel, and other program-related expenses must be justified as specifically required by the program proposed and not duplicate items generally available for educational programs at the host institution.

Funds will not be provided for fringe benefits or health insurance for participants involved in this education program.

5.  PHS 398 Research Plan Attachments:

Part 4 of this section (Preliminary Studies/Progress Report) should contain information on steps that have led to the proposed research education program.

Preliminary Studies:

Part 5 of this section (Research Design and Methods) should be re-titled "Research Education Program Plan" and should contain material organized under the following subheadings in a single attachment and as appropriate to the specific program.

Program Director(s): Describe arrangements for administration of the program, provide evidence that the Program Director is actively engaged in research and/or teaching in an area related to the mission of the NCRR SEPA program, and can organize, administer, monitor, and evaluate the research education program, as well as evidence of institutional and community commitment and support for the proposed program. Program Directors must commit a minimum of 1.2 person months annually to the SEPA project.

Program Faculty/Staff:

Proposed Research Education Program: Provide programmatic detail on the special activities proposed (e.g., courses, curricula, seminars, workshops). Expand as needed for the specific FOA.

The Research Education Program Plan should clearly describe why this is an innovative science education project or a model program. Applicants should state the activities to be completed and discuss how these activities will accomplish the project goals.  SEPA K-12 projects are based on a partnership between scientists and the teachers, parents and the community.  SEPA science center/museum projects involve partnerships with the teachers, parents and the community leaders, the media and the general public. 

SEPA K-12 science education projects must target State and National Science Education Standards (http://www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/nses/).  The application should include a listing of the educational standards that the project will target and discuss how the project content will be incorporated into the standardized curriculum

Administration:

Preliminary Studies: (Phase I applications only):

Partnerships: 

Institutional Support

Teaching Curriculum and Materials:

Innovation:

SEPA projects are encouraged to:

Summer Teacher Training and Internships:

Both Phase I and II SEPA applications may include a summer internship or research component for the students and/or teachers and/or programs to provide innovative mentoring programs for students wishing to learn more about the laboratory research process.  If relevant to the application:

Sustainability:

The NCRR SEPA program no longer requires a specific plan for sustainability after the SEPA funding ends.  Applicants are encouraged to discuss plans within their proposed science education project that may create institutional support for the project, a culture shift for the K-12 science education community in which their project is conducted, increased parental and/or community involvement and other sustained, long-term changes.

Responsible Conduct of Research: Describe plans to provide formal and informal instruction to participants on scientific integrity and ethical principles in research. The plan should be appropriate for the duration and content of the proposed research education program.  Although the NIH does not establish specific curricula or formal requirements, all programs are encouraged to consider instruction in the following areas: conflict of interest, responsible authorship, policies for handling misconduct, data management, data sharing, and policies regarding the use of human and animal subjects. Plans must address: 1) the subject matter of the instruction, the format of the instruction, the degree of program faculty participation, participant attendance, and the frequency of instruction; and 2) the rationale for the proposed plan of instruction.

If such training is not appropriate for the proposed research education program, then the PD/PI must provide a strong justification for its exclusion.

Program Participants: Provide details about the pool of proposed participants, their qualifications, recruitment strategies and sources of applicant pool, etc. 

Target Audience:

Diversity Recruitment and Retention Plan:  Provide a detailed diversity recruitment and retention plan for the research education program.  Renewal applications must detail experiences in recruiting and retaining individuals from underrepresented groups during the previous award period.  Include, in a table, the total numbers of individuals who applied, were interviewed, admitted, and participated in the research education program as well as the total number of individuals from the three classes defined below.  For those programs where individuals are not participating, e.g. a program requesting support to develop a curriculum, the PD/PI must explain why this information is not appropriate. 

The NIH recognizes a unique and compelling need to promote diversity in the biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research workforce. The NIH expects efforts to diversify the workforce to lead to the recruitment of the most talented researchers from all groups; to improve the quality of the educational and training environment; to balance and broaden the perspective in setting research priorities; to improve the ability to recruit subjects from diverse backgrounds into clinical research protocols; and to improve the Nation's capacity to address and eliminate health disparities.

Accordingly, the NIH continues to encourage institutions to diversify their student and faculty populations and thus to increase the participation of individuals currently underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences such as: individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups; individuals with disabilities; and individuals from socially, culturally, economically, or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds that have inhibited their ability to pursue a career in health-related research. Institutions are encouraged to identify candidates who will increase diversity on a national or institutional basis. The NIH is particularly interested in encouraging the recruitment and retention of the following classes of participants:

A. Individuals from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in health-related sciences on a national basis (see http://www.nsf.gov/sbe/srs/women/start.htm). In addition, it is recognized that under representation can vary from setting to setting; individuals from racial or ethnic groups that can be convincingly demonstrated to be underrepresented by the grantee institution should be encouraged to participate in this program.

B. Individuals with disabilities, who are defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

C. Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds who are defined as:

1. Individuals who come from a family with an annual income below established low-income thresholds. These thresholds are based on family size; published by the U.S. Bureau of the Census; adjusted annually for changes in the Consumer Price Index; and adjusted by the Secretary for use in all health professions programs. The Secretary periodically publishes these income levels at http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/index.shtml. For individuals from low income backgrounds, the institution must be able to demonstrate that such participants have qualified for Federal disadvantaged assistance or they have received any of the following student loans: Health Professions Student Loans (HPSL), Loans for Disadvantaged Student Program, or they have received scholarships from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under the Scholarship for Individuals with Exceptional Financial Need.

2. Individuals who come from a social, cultural, or educational environment such as that found in certain rural or inner-city environments that have demonstrably and recently directly inhibited the individual from obtaining the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to develop and participate in a research career.  Recruitment and retention plans related to a disadvantaged background are most applicable to high school and perhaps to undergraduate candidates, but would be more difficult to justify for individuals beyond that level of academic achievement.

Peer reviewers will separately evaluate the diversity recruitment and retention plan after the overall score has been determined.  Reviewers will examine the strategies to be used in the recruitment and retention of individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from socially, culturally, economically, or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds.  The review panel’s evaluation will be included in an administrative note in the summary statement.  If the diversity recruitment and retention plan is judged to be unacceptable, funding will be withheld until a revised plan (and report) that addresses the deficiencies is received.  Staff within the NCRR, with guidance from the appropriate national advisory committee or council, will determine whether amended plans and reports submitted after the initial review are acceptable.

Evaluation Plan: Include evaluation plans for assessing the success of the program in achieving its goals and objectives. Benchmarks should be specified, and specific plans and procedures must be described to capture, analyze and report outcome measures that would determine the success of the research education program in achieving its objectives. The inclusion of evaluation instruments is encouraged.  Applications that lack an evaluation plan will be returned.

All applications must include a detailed Evaluation Plan for assessing the success of the proposed SEPA program. The Evaluation Plan should be an integral component of the early planning stages and must continue through the life of the SEPA project.  A minimum of ten percent (10%) of the direct costs budget should be devoted to project evaluation. The use of external evaluators is required unless a valid justification can be made for an internal evaluation team. At least one component of the evaluation plan must assess the impact of the project using rigorous methods, such as a well-designed randomized controlled trial or a well-matched comparison-group study design.

Evaluation Plan:  K-12 Science Education Projects

Evaluation Plan:  Science Centers and Museums

Dissemination Plan: A specific plan must be provided to disseminate nationally any materials developed under the auspices of the research education program, e.g., Web postings, presentations at scientific meetings, workshops, etc. 

The Research Education Program Plan must provide a comprehensive description as to how materials generated by the proposed project will be disseminated to a broad audience and/or how the program(s) may be replicated at other sites.  Include a plan for the of training and support for scientists to speak to students and teachers in the classroom, teacher workshops, parents, the general public, health care professionals, the lay press and other audiences.  These outreach programs should be directed to increasing their knowledge of scientific terms, concepts, reasoning, and their ability to understand scientific public policy issues. Regardless of the intended audience, all projects must involve a partnership between scientists and educators, media experts, community leaders, or other interested organizations  

K-12 Phase I + II applications must include a Dissemination plan that may include but it not limited to:

Science Center and Museum projects should include plans to develop:

Plan for Sharing Research Data

Not applicable

Sharing Research Resources

NIH policy requires that grant awardee recipients make unique research resources readily available for research purposes to qualified individuals within the scientific community after publication (See the NIH Grants Policy Statement  http://grants.nih.gov/archive/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/index.htm#_Toc54600131). Investigators responding to this funding opportunity should include a sharing research resources plan addressing how unique research resources will be shared or explain why sharing is not possible.

Research education programs are not generally expected to generate research resources. However, applications are expected to include a software dissemination plan if support for development, maintenance, or enhancement of software is requested in the application. There is no prescribed single license for software produced. However, the software dissemination plan should address, as appropriate, the following goals:

The initial review group will comment on the appropriateness of the proposed software dissemination plan.  Program staff will also consider the adequacy of the software dissemination plan as one of the criteria for award.

The proposed sharing plan, after negotiation with the applicant when necessary, will be made a condition of the award.  Evaluation of annual non-competing progress reports will include assessment of the dissemination practice by the grantee.  The adequacy of the resources sharing plan and any related data sharing plans will be considered by Program staff of the funding organization when making recommendations about funding applications. The effectiveness of the resource sharing will be evaluated as part of the administrative review of each Non-Competing Grant Progress Report (PHS 2590). See Section VI.3., “Reporting.”

Discuss plans for dissemination of the SEPA-developed teaching materials, evaluation instruments, pedagogical methods, and other educational products  generated by the proposed project to school systems and with SEPA, HHMI, NSF and other K-12 science education projects.  Science Center and Museum Projects are encouraged to share and collaborate with other science centers, museums, public libraries and other general public venues.

All products generated by SEPA-funding should plan on providing those materials that are appropriate for web-based dissemination to the SEPA website, www.ncrrsepa.org

Section V. Application Review Information


1. Criteria 

Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process.

2. Review and Selection Process

Applications that are complete will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate review group convened by the NCRR in accordance with the review criteria stated below.

As part of the initial merit review, all applications will:

Applications submitted in response to this funding opportunity will compete for available funds with all other recommended applications. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

The goals of NIH-supported research training, education, and career development programs are to help ensure that a diverse pool of highly trained scientists is available in adequate numbers and in appropriate scientific areas to address the Nation’s biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research needs.  The goals of NIH-supported science education projects at science centers and museums are to provide public education and outreach on NIH-supported research at these institutions. In their written critiques, reviewers will be asked to comment on each of the following criteria in order to judge the likelihood that the proposed research education program will have a substantial impact on the pursuit of these goals. Each of these criteria will be addressed and considered in assigning the overall score, weighting them as appropriate for each application.

Note that an application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact and thus deserve a high priority score. These criteria are not listed in any order of priority.

Significance: Does the proposed research education program address scientific/education areas and/or topics important to the mission of the NCRR? How will implementation of the proposed program advance the objectives of this funding opportunity announcement as well as the mission of the NCRR?

Approach: Are the conceptual or clinical framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well integrated, well reasoned, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics

Innovation: Is the research education program original and innovative? For example: Does the project challenge existing paradigms or clinical practice; address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to progress in the field? Does the project develop or employ novel concepts, approaches, methodologies, tools, or technologies for this area?

Investigators: Are the investigators appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work? Is the proposed program appropriate to the experience level of the PD/PI and other researchers? Does the investigative team bring complementary and integrated expertise to the program (if applicable)? Is there evidence that an appropriate level of effort will be devoted by the program leadership to ensure the program's objectives?

Environment: Does the scientific/educational environment in which the program will be conducted contribute to the probability of success? Does the proposed research education program benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, subject populations, or employ useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of appropriate collaboration among participating programs, departments, and institutions? Is the institutional commitment to the proposed program appropriate?

Partnerships and collaborations:

Sustainability:

Progress Reporting (Phase II applications only)

Evaluation Plan

Dissemination Plan:

Science Center and Museum projects:

Resubmission Applications (formerly “revised/amended” applications): In addition to the above criteria, the following criteria will be applied to resubmission applications: 

Are the responses to comments from the previous scientific review group adequate? Are the improvements in the resubmission application appropriate?

2.A. Additional Review Criteria:

In addition to the above criteria, the following items will continue to be considered in the determination of scientific merit and the priority score:

Protection of Human Subjects from Research Risk: The involvement of human subjects and protections from research risk relating to their participation in the proposed research will be assessed.  See item 6 of the Research Plan component of the SF424 (R&R).

Inclusion of Women, Minorities and Children in Research: The adequacy of plans to include subjects from both genders, all racial and ethnic groups (and subgroups), and children as appropriate for the scientific goals of the research will be assessed. Plans for the recruitment and retention of subjects will also be evaluated. See item 7 of the Research Plan component of the SF424 (R&R).

Care and Use of Vertebrate Animals in Research: If vertebrate animals are to be used in the project, the five items described under item 11 of the Research Plan component of the SF424 (R&R) will be assessed.

Biohazards: If materials or procedures are proposed that are potentially hazardous to research personnel and/or the environment, the adequacy of the proposed protection will be assessed.

2.B. Additional Review Considerations

Budget and Period of Support: The reasonableness of the proposed budget and the appropriateness of the requested period of support in relation to the proposed research education program will be assessed by the reviewers. Is the effort listed for the PD/PI appropriate for the work proposed? Is each budget category realistic and justified in terms of the aims, methods, educational opportunities, and participant activities?

Training in the Responsible Conduct of Research: Peer reviewers will assess the applicant's plans for training in the responsible conduct of research on the basis of the appropriateness of topics, format, amount and nature of faculty participation, and the frequency and duration of instruction.

The plan will be discussed after the overall determination of merit, and the review panel's evaluation of the plan will not be a factor in the determination of the priority score. Plans will be judged as acceptable or unacceptable. The acceptability of the plan will be described in an administrative note on the summary statement. Regardless of the priority score, applications with unacceptable plans will not be funded until the applicant provides a revised, acceptable plan. Program staff will judge the acceptability of the revised plan.

Diversity Recruitment and Retention Plan:The NIH recognizes a unique and compelling need to promote diversity in the biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research workforce.  The NIH expects efforts to diversify the workforce to lead to the recruitment of the most talented researchers from all groups; to improve the quality of the educational and training environment; to balance and broaden the perspective in setting research priorities; to improve the ability to recruit subjects from diverse backgrounds into clinical research protocols; and to improve the Nation’s capacity to address and eliminate health disparities.

Accordingly, the NIH continues to encourage institutions to diversify their student and faculty populations and thus to increase the participation of individuals currently underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences such as: individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups; individuals with disabilities; and individuals from socially, culturally, economically, or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds that have inhibited their ability to pursue a career in health-related research.  Institutions are encouraged to identify candidates who will increase diversity on a national or institutional basis.

Peer reviewers will separately evaluate the diversity recruitment and retention plan after the overall score has been determined.  Reviewers will examine the strategies to be used in the recruitment and retention of individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from socially, culturally, economically, or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds.  The review panel’s evaluation will be included in an administrative note in the summary statement.  If the diversity recruitment and retention plan is judged to be unacceptable, funding will be withheld until a revised plan (and report) that addresses the deficiencies is received.  Staff within the NCRR, with guidance from the appropriate national advisory committee or council, will determine whether amended plans and reports submitted after the initial review are acceptable.

2.C. Sharing Research Data

Not applicable.

2.D. Sharing Research Resources

NIH policy requires that grant awardee recipients make unique research resources readily available for research purposes to qualified individuals within the scientific community after publication (See the NIH Grants Policy Statement  http://grants.nih.gov/archive/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/index.htm#_Toc54600131). Investigators responding to this funding opportunity should include a sharing research resources plan addressing how unique research resources will be shared or explain why sharing is not possible.

All proposed project must present plans for dissemination of the SEPA-developed teaching materials, evaluation instruments, pedagogical methods, and other educational products generated by the proposed project to school systems and with SEPA, HHMI, NSF and other K-12 science education projects. 

Science Center and Museum Projects are encouraged to discuss how they might share and collaborate with other science centers, museums, public libraries and other general public venues.

Science education materials from all SEPA-funded projects should be made available for dissemination on the SEPA website, www.ncrrsepa.org

3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

Not Applicable.

Section VI. Award Administration Information


1. Award Notices

After the peer review of the application is completed, the PD/PI will be able to access his or her Summary Statement (written critique) via the NIH eRA Commons

If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant. For details, applicants may refer to the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General.

Selection of an application for award is not an authorization to begin performance. Any costs incurred before receipt of the Notice of Award (NoA) are at the recipient's risk. These costs may be reimbursed only to the extent considered allowable pre-award costs. See Section IV.5., “Funding Restrictions.”       

A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document. Once all administrative and programmatic issues have been resolved, the NoA will be generated via email notification from the NCRR to the grantee business official. 

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Termination of Award: When a grantee institution plans to terminate an award, program and grants management staff at the NIH funding component must be notified in writing as soon as possible.

Change of Institution

The research education program may not be transferred from one institution to another, unless very strongly justified.  Consultation with the NCRR program staff is strongly encouraged when a change of institution is being considered.  In reviewing a request to transfer a grant, NIH will consider whether there is a continued need for the grant-supported project or activity and the impact of any proposed changes in the scope of the project. A change may be made without peer review, provided the PI plans no significant change in the original objectives, and the facilities and resources at the new organization will allow for successful performance of the project or activity. If these conditions or other programmatic or administrative requirements are not met, the NCRR may require peer review or may disapprove the request and, if appropriate, terminate the award.

The applicant must provide the following information to the NCRR for review:

Change of Program:  Awards are made for a specific program under the guidance and leadership of a particular PD/PI.  A change in any of these parameters requires prior approval by the responsible program officer in the NIH funding component.  A rationale must be provided for any proposed changes in the aims of the original, peer-reviewed program.  If the new program does not satisfy this requirement, the award will be terminated.

Change of PD/PI: If change of the PD/PI is necessary, support of the award is not automatic but may be continued with prior written approval by the NIH funding component, provided that the following conditions are met.  The current PD/PI or the grantee institution must submit a written request for the change, signed by the appropriate institutional business official, to the responsible program officer of the NIH funding component that describes the reasons for the change.  The Biographical Sketch of the proposed PD/PI, including a complete listing of active research grant support, must be provided.  The information in the request must establish that the Specific Aims of the original peer-reviewed research education program will remain unchanged under the direction of the new PD/PI and that the new PD/PI has the appropriate research and administrative expertise to lead the program.  This request must be submitted sufficiently in advance of the requested effective date to allow the necessary time for review. 

Funding Credit:  For each publication that results from grant support provided by the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), grantees must include an acknowledgment of support and a disclaimer stating the following:

“This publication was made possible by Grant Number ________ from the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).” or “The project described was supported by Grant Number ________ from the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and “Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of NCRR or NIH.”

Science Center and Museum projects must have clearly visible credit signage at the entrance to the SEPA exhibit stating the following: “This exhibit was made possible by a Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) grant from the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).”  Additional or follow-on support from other organizations, companies or individuals should be listed as such. 

All NIH grant and cooperative agreement awards include the NIH Grants Policy Statement as part of the NoA. For these terms of award, see the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General  and Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities.

3. Reporting

Awards made in response to this FOA are subject to SNAP. 

When multiple years are involved, awardees will be required to submit the Non-Competing Grant Progress Report (PHS 2590) annually and financial statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement. Applicants should provide Inclusion Enrollment and Targeted Enrollment Tables with their Annual Progress Reports.l

Progress ReportsThe Annual and Final Progress Reports should provide information on the development and implementation of the proposed research education program (including education in the responsible conduct of research), modifications to the research education program as originally proposed, details about the applicant pool and the participants including their career level, gender, and racial/ethnic backgrounds (if applicable), updates on the evaluation of the research education program and dissemination activities (if applicable), and a list of any publications and/or other materials arising from the research education program.

Evaluation:  In carrying out its stewardship of human resource-related programs, the NIH may request information essential to an assessment of the effectiveness of this program.  Accordingly, award recipients are hereby notified that they may be contacted during and after completion of this award for periodic updates on various aspects of program development, implementation, dissemination, and other information helpful in evaluating the impact of this program.

Publication and Sharing of Research Results: Investigators are encouraged to submit reports of their findings for publication to the journals of their choice.  For each publication that results from this award, NIH support should be acknowledged by a footnote in language similar to the following: “This project was supported by NIH grant number ________.  Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.”

Final Reports: A final Progress Report and Financial Status Report are required when an award is terminated.

Final Reports should contain:

Section VII. Agency Contacts


We encourage your inquiries concerning this funding opportunity and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants. Inquiries may fall into three areas: scientific/research, peer review, and financial or grants management issues:

1. Scientific/Research Contacts:

L. Tony Beck, Ph.D.
Division for Clinical Research Resources
National Center for Research Resources
6701 Democracy Blvd
Room 916-MSC 4874
Bethesda, MD 20892
Telephone: (301) 435-0805
FAX: (301) 480-3661
Email: beckl@mail.nih.gov

2. Peer Review Contacts:

Bonnie B. Dunn, Ph.D.
Scientific Review Administrator
Office of Review
National Center for Research Resources
6701 Democracy Blvd
Room 1074
Bethesda, MD 20892
(For courier service, 20817)
Tel: (301)435-0824
Fax: (301) 480-3660
EMail: dunnbo@mail.nih.gov

3. Financial or Grants Management Contacts:

Leslie Le
Grants Management Specialist
Office of Grants Management
National Center for Research Resources
6701 Democracy Blvd
Room 1058
Bethesda, MD 20892
Tel: (301)435-0856
Fax: (301) 480-3777
EMail: leleslie@mail.nih.gov

Section VIII. Other Information


Required Federal Citations

Use of Animals in Research:
Recipients of PHS support for activities involving live, vertebrate animals must comply with PHS Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/references/PHSPolicyLabAnimals.pdf) as mandated by the Health Research Extension Act of 1985 (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/references/hrea1985.htm), and the USDA Animal Welfare Regulations (http://www.nal.usda.gov/awic/legislat/usdaleg1.htm) as applicable.

Human Subjects Protection:
Federal regulations (45 CFR 46) require that applications and proposals involving human subjects must be evaluated with reference to the risks to the subjects, the adequacy of protection against these risks, the potential benefits of the research to the subjects and others, and the importance of the knowledge gained or to be gained (http://www.hhs.gov/ohrp/humansubjects/guidance/45cfr46.htm).

Access to Research Data through the Freedom of Information Act:
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-110 has been revised to provide access to research data through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) under some circumstances. Data that are (1) first produced in a project that is supported in whole or in part with Federal funds and (2) cited publicly and officially by a Federal agency in support of an action that has the force and effect of law (i.e., a regulation) may be accessed through FOIA. It is important for applicants to understand the basic scope of this amendment. NIH has provided guidance at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/a110/a110_guidance_dec1999.htm. Applicants may wish to place data collected under this funding opportunity in a public archive, which can provide protections for the data and manage the distribution for an indefinite period of time. If so, the application should include a description of the archiving plan in the study design and include information about this in the budget justification section of the application. In addition, applicants should think about how to structure informed consent statements and other human subjects procedures given the potential for wider use of data collected under this award.

Inclusion of Women And Minorities in Clinical Research:
It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups and their sub-populations must be included in all NIH-supported clinical research projects unless a clear and compelling justification is provided indicating that inclusion is inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the research. This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (Section 492B of Public Law 103-43). All investigators proposing clinical research should read the "NIH Guidelines for Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research” (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-02-001.html); a complete copy of the updated Guidelines is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/women_min/guidelines_amended_10_2001.htm. The amended policy incorporates: the use of an NIH definition of clinical research; updated racial and ethnic categories in compliance with the new OMB standards; clarification of language governing NIH-defined Phase III clinical trials consistent with the SF424 (R&R) application; and updated roles and responsibilities of NIH staff and the extramural community. The policy continues to require for all NIH-defined Phase III clinical trials that: a) all applications or proposals and/or protocols must provide a description of plans to conduct analyses, as appropriate, to address differences by sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic groups, including subgroups if applicable; and b) investigators must report annual accrual and progress in conducting analyses, as appropriate, by sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic group differences.

Inclusion of Children as Participants in Clinical Research:
The NIH maintains a policy that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 21) must be included in all clinical research, conducted or supported by the NIH, unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them.

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the "NIH Policy and Guidelines" on the inclusion of children as participants in research involving human subjects (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/children/children.htm).

Required Education on the Protection of Human Subject Participants:
NIH policy requires education on the protection of human subject participants for all investigators submitting NIH applications for research involving human subjects and individuals designated as key personnel. The policy is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-00-039.html.

NIH Public Access Policy:
NIH-funded investigators are requested to submit to the NIH manuscript submission (NIHMS) system (http://www.nihms.nih.gov) at PubMed Central (PMC) an electronic version of the author's final manuscript upon acceptance for publication, resulting from research supported in whole or in part with direct costs from NIH. The author's final manuscript is defined as the final version accepted for journal publication, and includes all modifications from the publishing peer review process.

NIH is requesting that authors submit manuscripts resulting from 1) currently funded NIH research projects or 2) previously supported NIH research projects if they are accepted for publication on or after May 2, 2005. The NIH Public Access Policy applies to all research grant and career development award mechanisms, cooperative agreements, contracts, Institutional and Individual Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards, as well as NIH intramural research studies. The Policy applies to peer-reviewed, original research publications that have been supported in whole or in part with direct costs from NIH, but it does not apply to book chapters, editorials, reviews, or conference proceedings. Publications resulting from non-NIH-supported research projects should not be submitted.

For more information about the Policy or the submission process, please visit the NIH Public Access Policy Web site at http://publicaccess.nih.gov/ and view the Policy or other Resources and Tools, including the Authors' Manual.

Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information:
The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) issued final modification to the "Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information", the "Privacy Rule", on August 14, 2002. The Privacy Rule is a federal regulation under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 that governs the protection of individually identifiable health information, and is administered and enforced by the DHHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

Decisions about applicability and implementation of the Privacy Rule reside with the researcher and his/her institution. The OCR website (http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/) provides information on the Privacy Rule, including a complete Regulation Text and a set of decision tools on "Am I a covered entity?" Information on the impact of the HIPAA Privacy Rule on NIH processes involving the review, funding, and progress monitoring of grants, cooperative agreements, and research contracts can be found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-03-025.html.

URLs in NIH Grant Applications or Appendices:

All applications and proposals for NIH funding must be self-contained within specified page limitations. For publications listed in the appendix and/or Progress report, internet addresses (URLs) must be used for publicly accessible on-line journal articles. Unless otherwise specified in this solicitation, Internet addresses (URLs) should not be used to provide any other information necessary for the review because reviewers are under no obligation to view the Internet sites. Furthermore, we caution reviewers that their anonymity may be compromised when they directly access an Internet site.

Healthy People 2010:
The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2010," a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas. This PA is related to one or more of the priority areas. Potential applicants may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2010" at http://www.health.gov/healthypeople.

Authority and Regulations:
This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance and is not subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health Systems Agency review. Awards are made under the authorization of Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as amended (42 USC 241 and 284) and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR Part 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant recipients to provide a smoke-free workplace and discourage the use of all tobacco products. In addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking in certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which regular or routine education, library, day care, health care, or early childhood development services are provided to children. This is consistent with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of the American people.


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