NSF Guidance Document




Uniform Guidance:



Instructions for Reporting: http://www.research.gov/common/attachment/Desktop/ProjectReportGettingStartedGuide_general.pdf

  • Annual progress reports must be completed via research.gov 90 calendar days prior to the end of the current budget period.  An annual report is required for all funding years including the last year. PLEASE NOTE:  It is imperative that all reports provided to NSF are complete and accurate.  PI’s must be sure to disclose all project participants in project reports.

  • Final- within 90 days following the termination of the grant

    • Progress Report
    • Project Outcomes Report

Access to: Research.gov:    http://www.research.gov/


    •  First – UMass can approve one no cost extension (of up to 12 months) under expanded authority.  Requests for extensions must be submitted via Research.gov at least 15 days prior to the then current grant end date. 
    • Subsequent – no cost extensions require approval from NSF and should be submitted via Research.gov at least 45 days prior to the then current grant end date.



  • Requiring NSF approval:   All requests shall be submitted via Fastlane.
    • Change resulting from a significant change in the level of effort for PI or any Co-PI’s
    • Change that results from a change in the scope of the project
    • Reallocation of funds from the Participant Support Costs budget line item
    • Addition of a subcontract
  •  Other Budget Revisions:
    • Normally do not require NSF approval, but may require a justification for the record.   Contact your grant accountant for guidance
    Any unobligated balance of funds which remains at the end of any funding period, except the final funding period of the project, shall be carried over to the next funding period


    NSF allows up to 2 months total of funded effort within any 12 month period across all active NSF awards for any given PI or Co-PI.  Be sure to monitor your effort on all your active NSF grants to make sure you are not over committed.  If you have any concerns, please contact your award administrator to discuss what actions may need to be taken to properly adjust your overall effort. 


    The following require the prior approval of NSF.  The PI prepares the request in Fastlane or Research.gov, OPAS approves and submits to NSF.   

  • PI Transfer
  • Change PI or Add/Change Co-PI – or withdrawal of PI/Co-PI
  • Addition of a Subcontract
  • Significant change in level of effort for PI or Co-PI - via Research.gov
  • Change in Objectives or Scope - via Research.gov
  • NSF approved No-Cost Extension (2nd extension or late request for 1st extension)
  • Long term absence (over 3 months) of PI or Co-PI.   This approval must be sought from NSF in all cases of the PI/Co-PI being away on sabbatical, maternity/paternity leave, medical leaves, etc. even if the PI/Co-PI intends to keep in communication with the project.   Part of that approval is how the project will run while the PI/Co-PI is away.
  • Reallocation of funds from the Participant Support Costs line item.
  • Preaward costs in excess of 90 days
  • Rearrangement or Alterations $25,000 or over
  • GRANTEE NOTIFICATION TYPES  - PI prepares notification in Research.gov or Fastlane, and OPAS approves and submits to NSF

    • Via Research.gov
  • Grantee approved No Cost Extension (1st extension)
  • Short term absence (up to 3 months)
  • Significant Changes/Delays or Events of Unusual Interests
  • Significant changes in Methods/Procedures
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Via Fastlane
    • Cost Sharing equal to or greater than $500,000 (normally large NSF Coop. Agreements)