January 15, 2019

OSPA Closely Monitoring the Partial Government Shutdown

As we move into the fourth week of the government shut down, the Office of Sponsored Programs Administration is continuing to monitor communications from federal agencies and COGR.

Below are the latest updates:

Cash Disbursements: OSPA will continue to invoice federal agencies in accordance with award requirements. The US Department of Health and Human Services (including National Institutes of Health) and US Department of Education (including student financial aid programs) are allowing for cash draws at this time, so the university is able to obtain cash reimbursement from those sponsors in accordance with our normal disbursement schedule. Other agencies, such as the National Science Foundation, are not allowing for cash draws. However, unless directed otherwise by a federal agency, work and spending under existing sponsored awards may continue. OSPA will continue to work with the Controller’s Office and the Treasurer’s Office to assess impacts to the university’s cash position and will communicate any updates to the campus research community.

Areas of Risk:
  • New awards, renewals, supplements, and continuation funding will not be awarded until the shutdown is resolved.
  • Faculty and staff serving on a review panel for an agency that is currently shut down should consider their travel plans. Review panels are cancelled until further notice, and most agencies will not reimburse lost deposits or airfare. 
  • Grant reporting obligations and original deadlines are still in effect. While there may not be personnel at the agencies to review these reports, investigators must adhere to the reporting schedule per their grant awards and submit on time.
  • NSF and other agency proposal submission systems remain operational and most proposal deadlines remain in effect. However, NSF and other closed agencies will not review submitted proposals until the government returns to normal operations.
  • Preaward/Advance Accounts may be requested from OSPA, but investigators, chairs, deans, and fiscal staff are advised that there is additional risk in spending funds prior to the receipt of an award from the sponsor, a risk which is elevated during the shutdown. During this time, OSPA is unable to confirm potential start dates nor conduct any negotiations to ensure that expenses incurred prior to the receipt of an award are allowable (and thus are able to be reimbursed by the federal government), therefore preaward/advance account requests should be made only after risks have been carefully evaluated at the department/division level and discussed with OSPA. 

Registration Open for Spring 2019 Certificate Series for Specialized Grants Training


Are you new to grants or sponsored projects administration at MU?  Want a refresher on a pre-award or post-award sponsored projects topic?  Join OSPA’s subject matter experts beginning later this month for the Certificate Series for Specialized Grants Training.  Three tracks are available during the year: Pre-Award, Post-Award, and Regulatory.  Attendance at all sessions earns attendees a Certificate of Completion for each track.  All sessions are free. To register for any of our current sessions please visit our Grants Training Registration App.  Special trainings or other topics may be added during year.

Pre-Award Courses: Proposal Development and Submission | PeopleSoft Grants Module and the Electronic Signature Routing Sheet (ePSRS) | Budget Development | Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Rate | Notice of Grant Award (NGA), Acceptance, and Establishment of an Award | Federal Contracts

Post-Award Courses: PeopleSoft Grants Module Financial Reports and Queries | Allowability | Management of Award | Subawards and Consulting Agreements | Cost Sharing | Effort Verification Reporting (EVR), Cost Transfers, and Payroll Correcting Entries (PCE) | Closeout of Award and Disposition of Equipment | Audit | Federal Contracts

Regulatory Topics: Research Compliance and Ethical Responsibility | Conflict of Interest | Export Controls | Human Subjects Research and the Institutional Review Board | Animal Use in Research and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee | Research Strategic Initiatives and Ongoing Priorities

iThenticate – MU’s Resource in Plagarism Detection and Prevention


To support responsible research practices at MU, the Office of Research encourages researchers’ use of iThenticate software to prescreen grant proposals and scholarly papers for possible plagiarism or misuse of text.   Checking your work for missed citations and/or duplication prior to submission or publication prevents research and scholarly misconduct and helps to ensure research integrity at MU.  

iThenticate compares the text of uploaded documents against both the internet and nearly 50 million scholarly content items, as well as more than 105 million news sources, magazines, and books.  Users will obtain a similarity score, report and summary, and within minutes are able to review the results of found matched content. 

Federal agencies, such as the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), as well as scholarly journals use iThenticate.

Types of plagiarism in research are presented in this infographic from iThenticate. 

Use of this service in licensed to MU faculty and staff who are part of a faculty research team.  Students who are working as part of the faculty research team are also eligible to use the service.   For more information, FAQs, and to request an account, please visit MU’s iThenticate page, under Proposal Development Resources, on the OSPA website.

Updated NSF PAPPG Goes in Effect January 28



The new PAPPG is effective for proposals submitted or due on or after January 28, 2019, and awards made on or after January 28, 2019.  Significant changes this year include: 
  • Addition of Research.gov as an option for proposal preparation and submission, and proposal file updates;
  • Revision of eligibility standards for unaffiliated individuals;
  • Specification that conference proposals over $50,000 and all equipment proposals must include the Collaborators and Other Affiliations information in the proposal submission;
  • Revision of resubmission guidelines for NSF programs that accept proposals at any time;
  • Implementation of NSF’s policy on sexual harassment and other forms of harassment, or sexual assault;
  • Specification that proposers are required to have a policy or code-of-conduct that addresses sexual harassment, other forms of harassment, and sexual assault, and that includes clear and accessible means of reporting violations of the policy or code-of-conduct.  This policy or code-of-conduct must be disseminated to conference participants prior to attendance at the conference as well as made available at the conference itself;
  • Emphasis on the importance of training faculty in the responsible and ethical conduct of research;
  • Incorporation of existing patent policy into the PAPPG.  This policy was previously implemented by regulation at 45 CFR 650; and
  • Numerous clarifications and other changes throughout the document.
If you missed the update webinar in late November last year, you can visit the NSF Grants Conference website and view both the slides and a recording of the event.   

OSPA Welcomes Dr. Abebaw Adamu in February 2019

MU OSPA was selected by the International Research & Exchanges Board (IREX) to host a fellow as part of IREX’s University Administration Support Program. We are pleased to announce that Dr. Abebaw Adamu from Addis Ababa University in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia will be on site for the month of February. Dr. Adamu currently serves as the Director of the Ethiopian Institute for Higher Education at Addis Ababa University. While he is visiting MU, he will work closely with OSPA to gain an understanding of our research operations including identifying funding opportunities, submitting proposals, and managing awards. Additionally, he will spend some time with various administrative offices on campus, and visit with researchers. We are very excited to have the opportunity to work with Dr. Adamu and look forward to introducing him to our amazing research community!

NIH Reminds Investigators to Disclose All Financial Interests


NIH recently published a Notice reminding investigators that they “must disclose all financial interests received from a foreign institution of higher education or the government of another country.”  As a reminder, all sources of research support must be disclosed to the NIH.

Where disclosures should be made:        
  • “Current and pending support” section in grant proposals
  • “Other support” section in grant proposals
  • “Active and pending support” section in grant proposals 
  • Just-in-Time (JIT) responses
  • Progress reports
In addition, University of Missouri policies require that an investigator’s financial interests be disclosed through the Conflict of Interest process.

Learn more about the University’s response to the NIH Notice here: https://research.missouri.edu/ospa/guidance_to_disclose_all_financial_interests.php

November 27, 2018

November 2018 Grant Connections Notes

Minutes from the Grant Connections meeting on November 14, 2018 are now available. Please follow the links below to access the materials.


Not able to attend? We’ve got you covered. Here’s a link to the recording of the session: https://missouri.zoom.us/recording/share/aIUze2RocWdTTm6kOwsRx2OM4vTG6H-rcEdlsvHFsMqwIumekTziMw?startTime=1542214966000.

We hope to see everyone at our next meeting on January 23, 2019!


November 2018 Grant Connections Minutes
PS Upgrade PowerPoint

OSPA Open House Flyer

October 15, 2018

Plenary Sessions for Fall 2018 NSF Grants Conference Offered via Webcast

Experience the Fall 2018 National Science Foundation (NSF) Grants Conference virtually!

The plenary sessions for the upcoming conference in New Orleans, Louisiana on November 8-9, 2018 will be webcast live to the research community.

View the plenary sessions to gain key insights into a wide range of current issues at NSF including: the state of current funding, new and current policies and procedures, and pertinent administrative issues.

Please click here for more information and to register.

Check out the webcast agenda for more information on the sessions that will be covered. 

These sessions will be recorded for on-demand viewing once the conference has concluded.  Presentations will also be available on the conference website. 

If you have any questions, please send an email to: grants_conference@nsf.gov, or call 703.245.7562.

NIH Releases New Peer Review Videos for Applicants

The NIH Center for Scientific Review (CSR) released “What Happens to your NIH Grant Application” and “Top 10 Peer Review Q&A for NIH Applicants” for applicants, their mentors, and grant management officials.



October 10, 2018

NSF Develops "The Art and Science of Reviewing Proposals" Video


The National Science Foundation (NSF) is committed to ensuring a fair, competitive, and transparent merit review process. The reviews submitted by external peer reviewers are an important part of the decision-making process and a crucial source of feedback to Principal Investigators. NSF has developed a short reviewer orientation video that provides helpful tips for writing high quality reviews.  

NSF encourages all reviewers to watch the orientation video, “The Art and Science of Reviewing Proposals,” which can be accessed in FastLane through the Panelist Travel and Reimbursement page and the Proposal Review, Ad Hoc Reviewers page. You can also view the video directly at https://tipsforreviewers.nsf.gov. 

There is a link at the end of the video to additional resources, a list of helpful hints, and a short feedback survey. NSF values your feedback and will use the results of the survey improve future reviewer orientation materials.