During the first meeting of the semester on September 14, 2018, James Kitts was elected as the new Research Council Chair and Lori Goldner was elected as the new Research Policy Committee Chair.

Based on an extensive vetting process over the past year with the help of multiple stakeholders (e.g., faculty, business administrators, the Research Council and the Research Administration Advisory Board) and at various events (e.g., focus groups with campus community members and discussions with peer institutions), and as the result of a competitive bidding process, Kuali Research has been selected as the new Electronic Research Administration (eRA) system for the UMass Amherst campus.

Learn more at

The UMass Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) semi-annual facility inspections will take place in October. All expired items should be removed from facilities regularly and solutions, dilutions, etc. need to be clearly labeled with contents and date.

We developed a new web page with detailed information to help faculty and staff better understand Graduate Student Fellowships.

The recently approved fringe rates for Fiscal Year 2019 are now posted to our website and updated in SmartGrant.

For links and further information on how this impacts grant proposals currently in the queue but not yet submitted, please see below:

Updated Fact Sheet for FY’19 - - All new changes are highlighted in yellow.

Graduate Student Calculator – update pending

Important SmartGrant Reminder - With the advent of the new fiscal year, like the COLAs, the new fringe rates will automatically update all SmartGrant based budgets when accessed. Since no mechanism exists to lock down the budgets currently in process that were created prior to July 1, 2018, the budgets will automatically be updated with the new rates when the detailed budget is accessed in SmartGrant. Business Managers and Principal Investigators should evaluate whether or not to revise their budgets to accommodate the changes or to submit with the older rates.

In recognition of the fact that the variance to the budget should generally have minimal impact, we can either submit budgets for active proposals in the pipeline with last year’s rates or the Business Manager and Principal Investigator can opt to make revisions to their budget to accommodate the updates. Our staff are aware of the issue and will be monitoring this closely for proposals due in the first couple of weeks of July.

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (NIH, HRSA, etc.) and Colleges and Universities are now assigned at the level of school/college and shared by two pre-award administrators. For more details, see our Staff Contacts for Proposals.

Build only a limited budget and provide further details at the Just-In-Time phase. For more details, see the updated guidance on the NIH Sponsor Specific Resources page (Modular Budget Process section).

Below please view a new flowchart that visually describes the COI disclosure process and a set of FAQs to help explain COI and Outside Activities:

Conflict of Interest Disclosure Process Flowchart (PDF download - June 2018)
Conflict of Interest and Outside Activities FAQs (Word download - June 2018)

More information on COI

Effective April 30, 2018, Principal Investigators now have the option of using to submit Full, Research, non-collaborative proposals to NSF.

Effective March 26, 2018 - The National Science Foundation (NSF) is introducing a new centralized and streamlined Fastlane Account Registration Process in

Effective January 7, 2018, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) salary cap is now $189,600 (12 month FTE).

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) rolled out its new “FORMS-E” grant application packages effective January 25, 2018, with most changes resulting from a reengineering of the term Clinical Trial. For more resources and information, see NIH’s Clinical Trial Requirements for Grants and Contracts. Three rounds of applications have been successfully submitted on behalf of UMass Amherst investigators.

Some key changes were made in response to feedback from users on suggested improvements to the Internal Processing Form and the ease of completion in the system. See the link in the title for more information and a description of the changes.

Introduction to the current state of funder mandates and the library resources available to facilitate meeting compliance requirements. 10 am., Life Science Labs (LSL) S330. Co-sponsored by the University Libraries and Research & Engagement as part of Open Access Week.

The FY 2017 Annual Report of Sponsored Activity is now posted in the Reports section of Research Administration and Compliance

Research & Engagement has developed a new training series for business managers, research administrators and staff who support the research proposal process and/or manage or charge expenses to externally funded projects. More information

See this document for a description of recent and important NIH Announcements.

In response to feedback from Approvers and Administrators, programming changes have been made that should improve the routing process.

The Human Subjects Office is sponsoring two upcoming workshops to review IRB essentials for investigators involved with human subjects research. The November 4 workshop will focus on e-Protocol and the December 2 workshop on informed consent.