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This glossary is a work in process, compiled with assistance from several sources (Acknowledgments), including users of the glossary. The glossary will be updated periodically. Please e-mail questions, additions and suggestions to Sponsored Research Administration at

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A-21 - "Cost Principles for Educational Institutions," a circular published by the federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that establishes the principles for determining the costs applicable to grants, contracts, and other government agreements with educational institutions (also known as sponsored projects).

A-110 - "Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Non-Profit Organizations" a circular published by the federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

A-133 - "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations" a circular published by the federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

A&S - FSU Arts and Sciences

AAALAC - American Association for the Accreditation of Lab Animal Care

ACUC (Animal Care and Use Committee) - A faculty committee charged with reviewing and approving the use of animal subjects in all research projects. The ACUC serves as an institutional compliance committee and is responsible for reviewing reported instances of regulatory noncompliance related to the use of animal subjects in research. See also the IACUC (The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee).

Advance Spending - Authorization to expend funds on a project to a specified limit before the award document has been received from the sponsor.

AFOSR - Air Force Office of Scientific Research (DOD)

AHA - American Heart Association

AHPEG - Arts & Humanities Program Enhancement Grants (CRC Program)

AID - Agency for International Development

Allocable Costs - Those allowable costs that actually benefit the grant or contract to which they are charged.

Allowable Costs - Those categories of costs that are allowable as a charge on a grant or contract as determined by the terms and conditions of the award and/or appropriate cost principles. Certain types of costs, such as the cost of alcoholic beverages are not allowable and may not be charged to a contract or grant.

AMA - American Medical Association

Applied Research - The systemic, intensive study directed toward the practical application of knowledge.

ARRA - American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

ASPR - Armed Services Procurement Regulations

Audit - A formal examination of an organization's or individual's accounts or financial situation. An audit may also include examination of compliance with applicable award terms, laws, regulations and policies.

Authorized Signature - (1) Signature of the person authorized to commit funds and facilities on grants and contracts. The President and his authorized representative are the only authorized signatures in executing a tendered contract or accepting a grant. The President and Vice President for Research are the authorized institutional officials to sign a proposal on behalf of the University. (2) Signature of those persons authorized to commit project funds. The project director/principal investigator is the authorized signer for his/her own project, and may authorize other persons to commit project funds. All authorized signatures must be specified on a Chart of Accounts/Authorized Signature Action Request form.

AUTM - Association of University Technology Managers

Award - Funds that have been obligated by a sponsor for a particular project.

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BA (Budget Amendment or Adjustment) - The act of amending the budget by moving funds from one category or line item to another. (See also rebudget.)

BAA (Broad Agency Announcement) - An announcement of a federal agency's general research interests that invites proposals and specifies the general terms and conditions under which an award may be made.

Basic Research - A systemic, intensive study, the primary aim of which is a fuller knowledge or understanding of the subject under study rather than a practical application thereof.

Bequests - A type of donation or gift. Bequests and gifts are awards given with few or no conditions specified. Gifts may be provided to establish an endowment or to provide direct support for existing programs. Frequently, gifts are used to support developing programs for which other funding is not available.

BOG (Board of Governors) - The Board oversees the operation and management of the State University System's (SUS) twelve institutions in Florida.

Budget - A list of anticipated project costs that represent the Principal Investigator's best estimate of the funds needed to support the work described in a grant or contract proposal.

Budget Description - (A.k.a. budget justification or narrative) A written description of the cost estimation methods used in preparing a budget that also explains or describes the types of individual costs that make up a larger budget category.

Budget Period - The interval of time--usually twelve months--into which the project period is divided for budgetary and funding purposes.

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C&G (Contract & Grant) - Used to describe the group currently referred to as Sponsored Research.

CAPS - Center for Advanced Power Systems

CAS (Cost Accounting Standards) - Federally mandated accounting standards intended to ensure uniformity in budgeting, accounting and reporting project costs. See also Cost Accounting Standards Board for more information.

CAS Exemption Form - Request to charge costs normally treated as indirect costs be treated as direct costs. 

CBD - Commerce Business Daily

CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

CF - Carryforward

CFDA - Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations

Challenge Grant - A grant that provides moneys in response to moneys from other sources, usually according to a formula. A challenge grant may, for example, offer two dollars for every one that is obtained from a fund drive. The grant usually has a fixed upper limit, and may have a challenge minimum below which no grant will be made. This form of grant is fairly common in the arts, humanities, and some other fields, but is less common in the sciences. A challenge grant differs from a matching grant in at least one important respect: The amount of money that the recipient organization realizes from a challenge grant may vary widely, depending upon how successful that organization is in meeting the challenge. Matching grants usually award a clearly defined amount and require that a specified sum be obtained before any award is made.

Change Order - A written order signed by the contracting officer, outlining specific changes to a contract. The change order directs the contractor to make changes as ordered. The changes clause of the contract authorizes the contracting officer to issue change orders without the consent of the contractor.

Close Out - The act of completing all internal procedures and sponsor requirements to terminate or complete a research project.

COFRS - Committee on Faculty Research Support Award (CRC Program)

COGR - Council on Governmental Relations

COLA (Cost of Living Allowance) - Granted to employees based in a foreign city, where cost of living is higher than in Washington, D.C.

COS (Community of Science) - A web server containing information about scientific expertise, funded scientific research, and funding opportunities for research.

Competing Renewal Proposal - Proposals (for ongoing projects) that must compete again if the term of the original award has expired.

Conflict of Interest - Situations in which employees use their positions for purposes that are, or give the appearance of being, motivated by a desire for private gain for themselves or others, such as those with whom they have family, business or other ties.

Consortium Agreement - Group of collaborative investigators/institutions; arrangement can be formalized with specified terms and conditions.

Contract - A mechanism for procurement of a product or service with specific obligations for both sponsor and recipient. Typically, a research topic and the methods for conducting the research are specified in detail by the sponsor, although some sponsors award contracts in response to unsolicited proposals.

Contracting Officer - A sponsor's designated individual who is officially responsible for the business management aspects of a particular contract. The contracting officer is responsible for all business management matters associated with the review, negotiation, award, and administration of a contract and interprets the associated administration policies, regulations, and provisions. (For definition of scientific officer, see Program/Project Officer.)

Copyright - An intangible, incorporeal right granted by statute to an author or originator of certain literary or artistic productions, where he/she is invested, for a limited period, with the sole and exclusive privilege of multiplying copies of the same and publishing and selling them. Works of authorship include literary, musical or dramatic works, works of art, motion pictures or video tapes, audio recordings or computer programs.

Cooperative Agreement - An award similar to a grant, but in which the sponsor's staff may be actively involved in proposal preparation, and anticipates having substantial involvement in research activities once the award has been made.

CRF (Cost-Reimbursable with a Fixed Billing Schedule) - A contract/grant for which the sponsor pays for the full cost incurred up to an agreed-upon amount based on a fixed billing schedule.  These projects are billed based on the fixed billing schedule, but at the end of the award any unspent funds, based on expenditures, will be returned to the agency.

CRADA or CRDA - Cooperative Research and Development Agreement

CRB (Cost-Reimbursement Type Contract/Grant) - A contract/grant for which the sponsor pays for the full costs incurred in the conduct of the work up to an agreed-upon amount. These projects are billed based on expenditures on a monthly or quarterly basis.

CRC - Council on Research and Creativity

CS (Cost Sharing) - A general term used as a noun or adjective that can describe virtually any type of arrangement in which more than one party supports research, equipment acquisition, demonstration projects, programs, institutions. Example: A university receives a grant for a project estimated to have a total cost of $100,000. The sponsor agrees to pay 75% ($75,000) and the university agrees to pay 25% ($25,000). The $25,000 is the cost-sharing component.

CSR - Center for Scientific Review​ (National Institutes of Health) - Previously referred to as the Division of Research Grants

CSFA (Catalog of State Financial Assistance) -  A statewide compendium of state projects that provide financial assistance to nonstate entities. The primary purpose of the catalog is to assist users obtaining general information on state projects and identifying state projects that meet specific objectives

CUI (Controlled Unclassified Information) - Information to which access or distribution controls have been applied to protect confidential and sensitive information that is maintained in the various spheres of University activities.

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DAR (Defense Acquisition Regulations) - The source regulations for research projects sponsored by the Department of Defense.

DARPA - Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DOD)

DCAA - Defense Contract Audit Agency

DDDHC - Dean, Director, Department Head or Chair

DED - Department of Education

Deficit - The result of expenditures exceeding the project funds available.

Developmental Research - The systemic use of scientific knowledge directed toward the production of useful materials, devices, systems or methods, including design and development of prototypes and processes.

DFARS - Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement

DHHSDepartment of Health and Human Services

Direct Costs - Clearly identifiable costs related to a specific project. General categories of direct costs include but are not limited to salaries and wages, fringe benefits, tuition, supplies, contractual services, travel and communication, equipment, and computer use.

Direct Support Organization (DSO) - A.k.a. Component Unit, these non-profit organizations operate exclusively to provide the University with additional resources from other sources. Ex: FSURF, FSUF, FSU Boosters, Ringling Museum, COB Investment Fund, etc.

DOD - Department of Defense (includes Air Force, Army, ARPA, and Navy)

DOE - Department of Energy

DOI - Department of Interior

DOL - Departmental Online Ledger /Journal Entry Form

Donation - Transfer of equipment, money, goods, services, or property with or without specifications as to its use. Sometimes donation is used to designate contributions that are made with more specific intent than is usually the case with a gift, but the two terms are often used interchangeably. (Also see Gift)

DOT - Department of Transportation

DRG - Division of Research Grants (National Institutes of Health) - Renamed to the Center for Scientific Review​

DUNS (Data Universal Number System) - A unique nine digit identification number for each physical location of a business. The federal government uses the DUNS number to track how federal money is allocated. 

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EDISON - NIH Extramural Invention Information Management System

EDMS (Electronic Disclosure and Management System) - Used to submit and review Federal Financial Conflict of Interest Disclosure/Certification Form

Effort - The total activity or work for which an individual is compensated by the University. Expressed as a percentage of the full time equivalence (FTE).

Encumbrance - Funds that have been set aside or "claimed" for projected expenses pending actual expenditure of the funds.

Endowment - A fund usually in the form of an income-generating investment, established to provide long-term support for faculty/research positions (e.g., endowed chair).

EPA - Environmental Protection Agency

ER - Expense Report

ERA (Electronic Research Administration) - Conducting research administration by utilizing electronic resources such as the internet, form templates, databases, and other electronic tools. (For more information, link to NCURA or ERA Task Force)

ETJ - Expenditure Transfer Journal

Expiration Date - The date signifying the end of the performance period, as indicated on the Notice of Grant Award.

Extension - An additional period of time authorized by the sponsor (or awardee institution, as appropriate) to an organization for the completion of work on an approved grant or contract. An extension allows previously allocated funds to be spent after the original expiration date.

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Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Costs - A.k.a. Indirect Costs, 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. General categories of F&A include general administration (accounting, payroll, purchasing, etc.), sponsored research administration, plant operation and maintenance, library expenses, departmental administration expenses, depreciation or use allowance for buildings and equipment, and student administration and services. There are 4 "bases" on which to calculate F&A: MTDC, TDC, SLFR and N/A.

FAA - Federal Aviation Administration

FAC (Florida Administrative Code) - The official compilation of administrative rules for the state of Florida legally promulgated by the Florida Department of State.

FACET - Faculty Assignments Commitments & Effort Certification Tracking

FAIN - Federal Award Identification Number

FAT - Funding Agency Travel (CRC Program)

FCIO - Financial Conflict of Interest. See EDMS above for more information.

FDA - Food and Drug Administration

FDP (Federal Demonstration Partnership) - A cooperative effort between a number of universities and federal agencies to increase research productivity by eliminating unnecessary administrative procedures and by streamlining and standardizing needed controls.

FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations) - The FAR is the primary regulation for use by all Federal Executive agencies in their acquisition of supplies and services with appropriated funds.

FEDIX - On-line federal database serving most federal agencies for on-line searches.

FEID (Federal Employer Identification Number) - The Internal Revenue Service assigns this nine-digit figure (format: XX-XXXXXXX) to track a business's tax-related activities. Also known as Employer Identification Numbers, tax ID numbers and Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).

FFATA (Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act) - Requires information about Federal awards to be posted on a single, searchable website ( that is open for public access.

FIC - Fogarty International Center (NIH)

Final Report - The final technical or financial report required by the sponsor to complete a research project.

Fiscal Year (FY) - Any twelve-month period for which annual accounts are kept. The federal government's fiscal year is October 1 through September 30. FSU's is July 1 through June 30.

FIXCOM - A contract/grant for which the sponsor has set 2 different billing mechanisms within the same contract.  Due to the difference in billing mechanisms two projects will be set up: one project will be set up as a Fixed-Price (FP), the other a Cost-Reimbursement (CRB).

Fixed-Price (FP) Contract/Grant - A contract/grant for which one party pays the other party a predetermined price, regardless of actual costs, for services rendered or the delivery of a final product/report. Quite often this is a fee-for-service agreement.  These projects are billed based on completion of deliverables.

FOA - Funding Opportunity Announcement a.k.a. solicitation

FOIA - Freedom of Information Act

FR - FSU Office of Federal Relations

Fringe Benefits - Employee benefits paid by the employer. (e.g., FICA, Worker's Compensation, Withholding Tax, Insurance, etc.)

FSUF (FSU Foundation) - The University’s fundraising and private support programs accounted for and reported separately by the Foundation. The Foundation revenues include unrestricted and restricted gifts and grants, rental income, and investment income. The Foundation expenses include scholarship distributions to students and departmental faculty, staff development support, various memorials and class projects, departmental research, and administrative costs of the Foundation’s development program.

FSURF or RF (FSU Research Foundation) - Established to promote and assist the research and training activities of the University through income from private sources using private funds (contracts, grants, and other sources) including income derived from the development and commercialization of the University’s work products. FSURF is a not-for-profit corporation and direct-support organization of Florida State University. 

Funding Cycle - Range of time during which proposals are accepted, reviewed, and funds are awarded. If a sponsor has standing proposal review committees (or boards) that meet at specified times during the year, application deadlines are set to correspond with those meetings. For some sponsors, if proposals are received too late to be considered in the current funding cycle, they may be held over for the next review meeting (i.e., National Science Foundation's Target Dates).


FYAP - First Year Assistant Professor (CRC Program)

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GAN - Grant Award Notification or Grant Adjustment Notice

GAP - Grant Assistance Program

General Purpose Equipment - Equipment that can be utilized for activities other than the specific, technical, specialized activities supported by a grant or contract. Examples include office equipment and furniture, reproduction equipment, motor vehicles and data processing equipment.

GENIUS - Global Expertise Network for Industry, Universities and Scholars

Gift - Gifts and bequests are awards given with few or no conditions specified. Gifts may be provided to establish an endowment or to provide direct support for existing programs. Frequently, gifts are used to support developing programs for which other funding is not available. (Also see Donation.)

GO (Grants Officer) - A sponsor's designated individual who is officially responsible for the business management aspects of a particular grant or cooperative agreement. The grants officer is responsible for all business management matters associated with the review, negotiation, award, and administration of a grant or contract and interprets the associated administration policies regulations, and provisions (For definition of scientific officer, see Program/Project Officer.).

GPG - Grant Proposal Guide for the National Science Foundation.

Grant - A type of financial assistance awarded to an organization for the conduct of research or other program as specified in an approved proposal. A grant, as opposed to a cooperative agreement, is used whenever the awarding office anticipates no substantial programmatic involvement with the recipient during the performance of the activities.

GSA - General Services Administration

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HSC - Human Subjects Committee, a.k.a. Institutional Review Board (IRB)

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IBC (Institutional Biosafety Committee) - A faculty committee charged with reviewing and approving the use of biologically hazardous substances in all research projects. The IBC serves as an institutional compliance committee and is responsible for reviewing reported instances of regulatory noncompliance related to biosafety issues in research.

IDC (Indirect Costs) - A.k.a. F&A costs.

IDR (Interdepartmental Requisitions) - Journal entries used to record the sale of goods and/or services between two FSU departments.

IFB (Invitation for Bid) - A solicitation issued to prospective bidders. An IFB describes what is required and how the bidders will be evaluated. Award is based on the lowest bid. Negotiations are not conducted.

IHE - Institute of Higher Education

IIA - Inter-Institutional agreement

Incremental Funding - A method of funding grants and contracts that provides specific spending limits below the total estimated costs. Each increment is, in essence, a funding action.

Indirect Cost Rate - The rate, expressed as a percentage of a base amount (MTDC or TDC), established by negotiation with the cognizant federal agency on the basis of the institution's projected costs for the year and distributed as prescribed in OMB Circular A-21. At UCI, indirect costs are applied to a Modified Total Direct Cost (MTDC), Total Direct Cost (TDC) or Salary and Fringe only (SLFR) base. The indirect cost rate is charged on a set of direct costs known as an indirect cost base.

In-Kind - Contributions or assistance in a form other than money. Equipment, materials, or services of recognized value that are offered in lieu of cash.

Invention - Any process, machine, manufacture, composition of matter, or design, or any new or useful improvement thereof, and any variety of plant which is or may be patentable under the patent laws of the United States.

Investigator-Initiated Proposal - A proposal submitted to a sponsor that is not in response to an RFP, RFA, or a specific program announcement.

IRB (Institutional Review Board) - A.k.a HSC (Human Subjects Committee) is a faculty committee charged with reviewing and approving the use of human subjects in all research projects. The IRB serves as an institutional compliance committee and is responsible for reviewing reported instances of regulatory noncompliance related to the use of human subjects in research.

ISPO - FSU Information Security and Privacy Office

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Key Personnel - Personnel considered to be of primary importance to the successful conduct of a research project. The term usually applies to the senior members of the project staff; however, sponsors may have differing definitions of Key Personnel.

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LAR (Laboratory Animal Resources) - Responsible for care of all vertebrate animals used in teaching and research across the University. 

Line Item Budget - A budget that lists the cost of personnel participating in a project as well as itemizes the costs for all other budgeted categories such as travel, supplies, equipment, etc. Itemization may be required in varying degrees of detail.

LOA - Letters of Agreement

LOC (Letter of Credit) - A payment mechanism that allows the institution to request a wire transfer of cash from the federal sponsor’s treasury account in order to recoup the costs of the research projects supported by that sponsor. These projects are billed based on expenditures on a weekly basis.

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Matching Grant - A grant that requires a specified portion of the cost of a supported item of equipment or project be obtained from other sources. The required match may be more or less than the amount of the grant. Some matching grants require that the additional funds be obtained from sources outside the recipient organization. Many matching grants are paid in installments, the payments coinciding with the attainment of pre-specified levels of additional funding. (Also see Challenge Grant.) Matching grants are very common in the sciences, especially for equipment. They are standard practice in some government agencies.

MDS - Multidisciplinary Support Program (CRC Program)

Misconduct in Science - Fabrication, plagiarism, falsification or destruction of data, or other practices that seriously deviate from those that are commonly accepted within the scientific community for proposing, conducting, or reporting research. It does not include honest error or honest differences in interpretations or judgments of data.

Mission - A sponsor's stated purpose, which is designed to address a specified set of problems. Almost all federal research agencies are designated as mission agencies.

MOU - Memorandum of Understanding

Modification - An award document that modifies any aspect of an existing award other than those named above. Example: Carryover approvals, adding or deleting special terms and conditions, changes in funding levels (including NSF's Research Experience for Undergraduates, NIH's Minority Supplement, DOD's ASSERT Programs), administrative changes initiated by the agency, extensions that include changes in terms, change of principal investigator, etc.

MTDC or MD (Modified Total Direct Costs) - At FSU, the basic indirect costs are calculated on a subset of direct costs, normally excluding among other costs, equipment, tuition, patient care, space rental, alterations and renovations, and subcontract costs in excess of the first $25,000.


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NACUBO - National Association of College and University Business Officers

NAS - National Academy of Sciences

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NCHGR - National Center for Human Genome Research (NIH)

NCI - National Cancer Institute (NIH)

NCRR - National Center for Research Resources (NIH) - abolished in December 2011 as part of an NIH reorganization to create the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS).

NCTE - No Cost Time Extension

NCURA - National Council of University Research Administrators

NEA - National Endowment for the Arts

NEH - National Endowment for the Humanities

NEI - National Eye Institute (NIH)

New Award - An award not previously awarded or a renewal or continuation award treated as a new award by the sponsor and given a new agency number.

NHLBI - National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NIH)

NIA - National Institute on Aging (NIH)

NIAAA - National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIH)

NIAID - National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIH)

NIAMS - National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIH)

NICHD - National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NIH)

NIDA - National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH)

NIDCD - National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders (NIH)

NIDDK - National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIH)

NIDR - National Institute of Dental Research (NIH)

NIEHS - National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH)

NIGMS - National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIH)

NIH - National Institutes of Health

NIMH - National Institute of Mental Health (NIH)

NINDS - National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NIH)

NINR - National Institute for Nursing Research (NIH)

NLM - National Library of Medicine

NOA - Notice of Action

Non-Competing Continuation Proposal - A continuation proposal reports on progress made during a portion of the project period and requests continuation funding for the next portion of the project period. Continuation proposals do not compete with new project proposals and are not subjected to peer review beyond the initial project approval.

Notice of Grant Award - The legally binding document that serves as a notification to the recipient and others that a grant or cooperative agreement has been made; contains or references all terms of the award; and documents the obligation of funds.

NPR - National Performance Review

NSF - National Science Foundation

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OBIEE - Oracle Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition Plus

OCO (Operating Capital Outlay) - Money spent to either purchase a capital asset or to extend the useful life of a capital asset costing $5000 or more with a life expectancy of year or more. FSU depreciates these capital assets using the straight-line basis over the appropriate useful life. A.k.a. Property, Plant and Equipment (PPE), Fixed Assets (FA) or Capital Expenditures (CAPEX).

OFPP - Office of Federal Procurement Policy

OHA (Overhead Assessment): a means by which the University recoups a portion of the expenses borne by central offices (e.g., the Controller’s Office, Human Resources, Inspector General Services) in support of other activities

OMB - Office of Management and Budget

OMB Circulars - Regulatory circulars issued by the Office of Management & Budget (OMB). Definitions included in OMB Circulars A-21, 110, 122, 128 and 133.

OMNI - Online Management of Networked Information 

ONR - Office of Naval Research

OPAS - Organizational Prior Approval System

OPD - Office of Proposal Development

OPRR - Office for Protection from Research Risks (DHHS)

Organized Research - Research activities that the University budgets and accounts for separately. This includes all extramurally funded programs in the Sponsored Research and Development Trust Fund.

ORCP - Office of Research Compliance Programs

OVPR - Office of the Vice President for Research

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PAR (Personnel Activity Report) - A report that reflects an after-the-fact reporting of the percentage of activity (effort) of each employee. Each report must account for 100% of the activity for which the employee is compensated and which is required in fulfillment of the employee's obligations to the institution. The report must reasonably reflect the percentage of effort applicable to each sponsored agreement, and to other activities defined on the PAR. Each report must be signed by the employee or by a responsible official having firsthand knowledge of the work performed.

PECO - Public Education Capital Outlay

Peer Review - A system using reviewers who are the professional equals of the principal investigator or a program director who is to be responsible for directing or conducting the proposed project. It is a form of objective review. Peer review is legislatively mandated in some programs and in other programs is administratively required.

PG - Planning Grant Award (CRC Program)

PHS (Public Health Service) - A division of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and contains eight out of the department's eleven operating divisions such as NIH, CDC, FDA, etc.

PHS 2590 - Application for Continuation of a PHS Grant (National Institutes of Health)

PHS 398 - Application Form for a PHS Grant (National Institutes of Health)

PII - Personally Identifiable Information

Post-Differential Allowance - Expenses authorized for employees based abroad to provide additional compensation for services as a recruitment and retention tool. When the allowance is authorized, the employee's base salary is increased accordingly.

PRDA - Program Research and Development Announcement

Pre-Proposal - A brief description, usually 2-10 pages, of research plans and estimated budget that is sometimes submitted to determine the interest of a particular sponsor prior to submission of a formal proposal. Also termed Preliminary Proposal.

PI (Principal Investigator) - The individual responsible for the conduct of research or other activity, described in a proposal for an award. The Principal Investigator is responsible for all programmatic and administrative aspects of a project or program.

PP (Project Period) - The total time for which support of a project has been programmatically approved. A project period may consist of one or more budget periods. (Also see Budget Period.)

Prior Approval - The requirement for written documentation of permission to use project funds for purposes not in the approved budget, or to change aspects of the program from those originally planned and approved. Prior approval must be obtained before the performance of the act that requires such approval under the terms of the agreement.

Priority Score - A score derived from the rating given a research proposal by each member on a review committee. It is used to help determine which approved proposals will be granted awards, based on funds available.

Program Announcement - Describes existence of a research opportunity. It may describe new or expanded interest in a particular extramural program or be a reminder of a continuing interest in an extramural program.

Program/Project Officer - sponsor's designated official responsible for the technical, scientific, or programmatic aspects of a particular grant, cooperative agreement, or contract. Serving as the counterpart to the PI/project director of the grantee/contractor organization, the program/project officer works with the grantee/contractor organization staff to assure programmatic progress.

Progress Report - Periodic, scheduled reports required by the sponsor summarizing research progress to date. Technical, fiscal, and invention reports may be required.

Proposal - An application for funding that contains all information necessary to describe project plans, staff capabilities, and funds requested. Formal proposals are officially approved and submitted by an organization in the name of a PI.

PTF (Proposal Transmittal Form) - A.k.a. "Transmittal", an internal routing form used at FSU for securing institutional approvals prior to submitting a proposal to a sponsor for funding consideration.

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RAMP - Research Administration Management Portal

RCR - Responsible Conduct of Research

RDF (Retroactive Distribution of Funding) - The correction or change to the funding source of an individual employee’s payroll charges for a prior pay period. See the 4-OP-D-2-E Payroll policy and the RDF Form.

Rebudget - The act of amending the budget by moving funds from one category or line item to another. (See also Budget Adjustment)

Regs - Short for "regulations."

Regulations - The contractual rules and procedures governing sponsored research projects.​

Regulatory Noncompliance - Failure to adhere to regulations, policies, procedures or special conditions related to the conduct of research. Examples of such noncompliance include, but are not limited to, failure to obtain/maintain approval for research; coercion of human subjects; performing unapproved procedures; and conducting research at unapproved sites.

Renewal - Applicable to grants and cooperative agreements only. A competitively reviewed proposal requesting additional funds extending the scope of work beyond the current project period.

Research - Investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories in the light of new facts, or the application of such new or revise.

Revised Proposal - A modified and resubmitted request for funding for a project that was previously not funded either because it was denied by the sponsor or withdrawn by the principal investigator.

RFA (Request for Applications) - Announcements that indicate the availability of funds for a topic of specific interest to a sponsor. Proposals submitted in response to RFAs generally result in the award of a grant. Specific grant announcements may be published in the Federal Register and/or specific sponsor publications. (Also see Broad Agency Announcements.)

RFP (Request for Proposal) - Announcements that specify a topic of research, methods to be used, product to be delivered, and appropriate applicants sought. Proposals submitted in response to RFPs generally result in the award of a contract. Notices of federal RFPs are published in the Commerce Business Daily.

RFQ (Request for Quotations) - A formal request to vendors for a price quotation on equipment or supplies to be purchased.


RTC - Research Terms and Conditions

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S&W (Salaries and Wages) - Payments made to employees of the institution for work performed.

SBA - Small Business Administration

SBIR (Small Business Innovative Research) - Agency administered programs supported by ear-marked federal funds, making grants to small business entities.

Scope of Work - The description of the work to be performed and completed on a research project.

Senior Personnel - Professional personnel who are responsible for the scientific or technical direction of project.

SFI - Significant Financial Interests

SGP - Small Grant Program (CRC program)

Small Grant - A special type of award, often limited to a beginning researcher. Typically, such an award may be obtained for one year only.

SMARTS - SPIN Matching And Researcher Transmittal System

Special Purpose Equipment - Equipment that is generally usable only for research, medical, scientific, or technical activities.

SPIN (Sponsored Programs Information Network) - An on-line search system available by subscription for research opportunities developed by the InfoEd.

Sponsor - The organization or entity that funds a research project.

Sponsored Research - Research conducted by University employees using any University space, facilities, materials, equipment, or property, and which is financed by contract payments, grants, or gifts from any source other than the University's funds.

SRA - Society of Research Administrators

SRAS (Sponsored Research Accounting Services) - SRAS is a unit of the Division of Sponsored Research reporting to the Vice President for Administrative and Business Services. SRAS is the campus office responsible for financial oversight of extramural funds, for receiving actual contract and grant moneys, preparing monthly ledgers, submitting invoices, and for submitting official financial reports related to extramural awards.

SRAD (Sponsored Research and Development Trust Fund) - Those funds received for earned overhead (indirect costs) and distributed to University schools/colleges, departments or institutes to support the research activity of the University. 

SRS (Sponsored Research Services) - SRS is a unit of the Division of Sponsored Research reporting to the Vice President for Research. SRS staff are responsible for reviewing and submitting contract and grant proposals, accepting grants, and negotiating contracts for extramurally-funded research, training, and public service projects. SRS staff act as FSU's institutional official in matters involving the sponsor's awarding office. SRS is also responsible for post-award activities, such as approving certain actions delegated to the campus by sponsors, obtaining sponsor approvals as required, resolving problems that arise during the project period, reviewing consultant agreements, and assuring compliance with University and sponsor policies and regulations. SRS staff write and execute subcontracts with other institutions for performance of a portion of the scope of work under contracts and grants awarded to the University. Working with the FSU Research Foundation, SRS coordinates proposal and award activity involving non-public funding.

SSA - Social Security Administration

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.

STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) - Grant applications and/or programs to fund small business "teamed" with research institutions.

Subcontract, Subgrant, or Subagreement - A document written under the authority of, and consistent with the terms and conditions of an award (a grant, contract or cooperative agreement), that transfers a portion of the research or substantive effort of the prime award to another institution or organization.

Subs - Short for subcontractors.

Supplemental (Rebudgeting or Modification) Proposal - A request to the sponsor for additional funds for an ongoing project during the previously approved performance period. A supplemental proposal may result from increased costs, modifications in design, or a desire to add a closely related component to the ongoing project.

SUS - State University System of Florida

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T&C - Terms and Conditions

TAPS (Tracking Applications) - Unique tracking numbers assigned to Requests for Proposals (RFPs) or Requests for Applications (RFAs) to correspond with applications submitted to the Florida Department of Education (FDOE).

Teaming Agreement - An agreement between two or more parties to participate in a research project or teaching activity.

Technical Data - Recorded information, regardless of form or characteristic, of a scientific or technical nature. Often referred to as the "science" of a proposal.

Templates - Facsimiles of agency forms created with common software (MS Word, Excel, WordPerfect, etc.) that enable the user to complete agency forms with their computer. (See Forms)

Terms of Award - All legal requirements imposed on an agreement by the sponsor, whether by statute, regulation(s), or terms in the award document. The terms of an agreement may include both standard and special provisions that are considered necessary to protect the sponsor's interests.

TOA (Task Order Agreement) - A legally binding document authorizing work and appropriating funds as a supplement to a basic contract or master agreement.

Total Direct Costs (TDC or TD) - The total of all allowable direct costs of a project (excludes tuition).

Total Project Costs - The total allowable direct and indirect costs incurred by the institution to carry out an approved project or activity.

TRAM - A WWW service initially developed by the Texas Research Administrators Group providing funding opportunity searches, agency form templates, links to research administration home pages, etc.

TWO - Task Work Order

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UBAC (University Budget Advisory Committee) - Committee appointed by the President of the University to advise and consult on budgetary matters pertaining to the implementation of FSU's mission and priorities.

UFT - Unfavorable Terms Memo

Unallowable Costs - Unallowable costs are specific categories of costs that cannot be charged, directly or indirectly, to federally sponsored agreements in accordance with Federal regulations.

Unrestricted Funds - Moneys with no requirements or restrictions as to use or disposition. Grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements are considered to be restricted funds, while gifts are usually considered unrestricted funds.

Unilateral Award - An award made by a sponsor to an organization without considering competitive proposals. Unilateral awards are most often made when unsolicited proposals receive favorable treatment.

Unsolicited Proposal(s) - Proposals submitted to a sponsor that are not in response to an RFP, RFA, or program announcement. (See also Investigator-Initiated Proposal.)

USDA - United States Department of Agriculture

USIA - United States Information Agency

VA - Veterans Administration

VAH - Veterans Administration Hospital


Bonnie Hale, Information Editor, Stanford University Sponsored Projects provided Stanford's Proposal Preparation Manual published in June 1993 with acknowledgments to:

Dusek, Ralph E.; Holt, Virginia E; Burke, Marti E.; and Kraut, Alan G., eds. Guide to Research Support, Second Edition. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 1984. Current Copyright 1987 (Third ed.) by the American Psychological Association. Adapted by permission. (out of print)

"A Short Glossary of Equipment Grants Terms," SCI/Grants News, Vol. I, No. 6, June, 1989. Reprinted with permission from SCI/Grants News--Federal Grants and Contracts Weekly, Capitol Publications Inc., P.O. Box 1453, Alexandria, VA 22313-2053, (703) 683-4100.

PHS Grants Policy Statement, Glossary, pp. 2-1 through 2-4, October 1, 1990, Rockville, MD: Department of Health & Human Services, Public Health Service, Grants Policy Branch, Division of Grants and Contracts. Adapted and reprinted with permission.

Gary Chaffins, University of Oregon, provided an acronym list.

Keith Davis, UC Davis, provided additional terms and definitions.

Diana Demers, Keene State College, provided additional links.

Charlene Miller, Texas A&M, provided the Texas A&M Research Foundation glossary.

Samantha Westcott, Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology, UCLA, provided additional terms, definitions, and links.

Ellen Beck, Patricia Brennan, Martha Hansen, Linnaea Mallette, Sherry Miranda, and Ann Pollack in the UCLA Sponsored Research Office also participated by providing terms, definitions, and links for this glossary.

This glossary was originally compiled and transferred to the web by Bonnie Hale, San Francisco State University.

This glossary was updated, revised and adapted for the University of California, Irvine by Bruce Morgan, Associate Director, Office of Research Administration.

This glossary was revised and adapted for Florida State University by Diana Key, Sponsored Research Administration.