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The following glossary is a joint effort between Grant & Contract Accounting (GCA) and the Office of Sponsored Programs. For questions or suggestions for new content, please contact ORIS Web Team.

A-21 (OMB Circular)Top ↑
The OMB Circular establishing the cost principles for allowability of costs incurred by institutions of higher education under federally-sponsored agreements.
A-110 (OMB Circular)Top ↑
The OMB Circular establishing uniform administrative requirements for grants and agreements with institutions of higher education, hospitals and other non-profit organizations.
A-133 (OMB Circular)Top ↑
The OMB Circular establishing audit requirements for institutions of higher education and other nonprofit organizations.
Access to Systems, Tools, Resources, and Applications (ASTRA)Top ↑
An access management service that stores authorization information about who can use a variety of UW administrative applications and other resources.
Advance Budget Request (ABR)Top ↑
An Advance Budget Request creates a grant or contract budget number which can be used until the sponsor funds are released. The amount is guaranteed by department budgets.
Allocable CostTop ↑
A cost is allocable to a particular cost objective (i.e., a specific function, grant project, service, department, or other activity) in accordance with the relative benefits received. A cost is allocable to a project where it is treated consistently with other costs incurred for the same purpose in like circumstances and (1) is incurred specifically for the award; or (2) benefits both the award and other work and can be distributed in reasonable proportion to the benefits received; or (3) is necessary to the overall operation of the organization.
Allowable CostTop ↑
A cost incurred by a recipient that is: 1) Reasonable for the performance of the award; 2) Allocable; 3) In conformance with any limitations or exclusions set forth in the federal cost principles applicable to the organization incurring the cost or in the Notice of Grant Award as to types or amount of cost items; 4) Consistent with internal regulations, policies and procedures that apply uniformly to both federally-funded and other activities of the organization; 5) Accorded consistent treatment; 6) Determined in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles; and 7) Not included as a cost in any other federally-funded grant (unless specifically authorized).
ApplicationTop ↑
A set of forms and format to request funding from a specific sponsor. Sponsors usually have their own application forms, instructions and submission process. See the funding announcement for this information.
Audit ResolutionTop ↑
The action to resolve audit findings and recommendations, including management and systems deficiencies and cost settlements findings (i.e., questioned costs determined to be unallowable).
Authorizing OfficialTop ↑
The person designated to approve proposals and awards on behalf of the University of Washington. The signature of an authorized official certifies that commitments made on grant proposals or contract agreements can be honored; and ensures that all sponsored agreement s conform to federal regulations, agency guidelines, and University policies. The current authorizing official at UW is Lynette Arias.
Automatic CarryoverTop ↑
Under expanded authorities for research grants, the authority that is delegated to the recipient to move unobligated balances remaining at the end of any budget period to a subsequent budget period which thereby allows for additional expenditures in the subsequent budget period.
AwardTop ↑
An Award is a sponsoring agency agreement to contribute funding to a specific project. When a sponsor approves an award, a formal notice is sent by the sponsoring agency to the University's Office of Sponsored Programs. This notice is usually in the form of a grant or a contract. The Office of Sponsored Programs reports the award to the UW Board of Regents for acceptance and issues a Notice to Establish Account (eFA). The eFA is sent to Grant and Contract Accounting who will then establish a budget for the amount of the award. The term does not include: technical assistance, which provides services instead of money; other assistance in the form of loans, loan guarantees, interest subsidies, or insurance; direct payments of any kind to individuals; and contracts which are required to be entered into and administered under procurement laws and regulations.
Award documentTop ↑
This formal documentation from the sponsor outlines the financial contribution to support a special project. It includes terms and conditions. The award document must be followed for the life of the project and includes project dates, restrictions and reporting.
Award End DateTop ↑
The project period end date as specified in the terms and conditions of the award.
Award FileTop ↑
Files maintained at the unit level for research award content.
BienniumTop ↑
Many governmental organizations, including the University of Washington (UW), divide their accounting records into two-year periods. Each two-year period is called a "biennium".
Billable UnitsTop ↑
The number of units of activity that are expected to be sold in a given time period through a recharge or cost center. Common units are number of hours, number of tests, or number of users.
BudgetTop ↑
There are three primary definitions of a budget at the University:
  1. The schedule of anticipated expenditures required to perform a specified activity or project, as outlined in a proposal to a sponsor.
  2. The amount of spending authority awarded by outside funding sources that the University has a legal claim to spend on a sponsored project.
  3. The account in the University's accounting system where the revenues, expenditures, and transfers associated with a specific activity, function or entity are recorded.
Budget Activity Report (BAR)Top ↑
A monthly paper based report that provides details on financial activities inlcuding budget revisions, encumbrances, actual expenditures, salary allocations, expired salary allocations and revenue. The BARs are distributed monthly by Information Systems to the unit administering the budget number. My Financial Desktop (MyFD) provides an electronic alternative to this report. See the Transaction Summary Report.
Budget Activity Report/ Budget Summary Report (BAR / BSR)Top ↑
Paper based financial reports for University budgets which are distributed monthly by Information Systems to the unit administering the budget numbers. MyFiinancial.desktop (MyFD) provides electronic alternatives to these paper based reports.
Budget ExtensionTop ↑
An expansion of the project period without additional funding. If the project is not completed and awarded funds remain unspent toward the end of a project period, many funding agencies will allow the PI to request more time to complete the work with approval to use up to but not exceed the remaining funds. A Budget Extension must be requested of the agency through OSP (or of OSP if the grant is under Expanded Authority) in writing, prior to the existing project period end date. FDP agencies such as NIH, NSF, DOE, etc. allow the grantee institution to approve a single no cost extension (up to 12 months) without prior approval but still require written notification. Normally, unless specified otherwise in the request to the agency for the extension, the terms and conditions of the award apply to the extension. This includes commitments of effort, both paid and cost shared.
Budget NumberTop ↑
This reference number is the unique identifer contained in the Financial Accounting System assigned by Grant & Contract Accounting for the purpose of distinguishing budget and expenditure information for sponsored agreements and facilitates spending from the project budget. Salaries, benefits, supplies, equipment, services, etc. are all charged to the budget number.
Budget PeriodTop ↑
The intervals of time into which a period of assistance (project period) is divided for budgetary and funding purposes. Budget periods are usually 12 months long but may be shorter or longer, if appropriate.
Budget Status Report (BSR)Top ↑
A monthly paper based report that summarizes cumulative financial activity of each budget by sub-object and object expenditure code. For state budgets the BSR reflects biennial budget status. For grants, contracts and other budgets, the year to date may represent a designated time period or an indefinite time period as specified for the particular budget in the award/agreement. The BSR's are distributed monthly by Information Systems to the unit administering the budget number. My Financial desktop (MyFD) provides an electronic alternative to this report. See Budget Summary Report.
Budget Summary ReportTop ↑
The Budget Summary includes budgeted amounts, encumbrances, transaction totals, and budget balances and is the online equivalent to the printed BSR.  This report is not limited by access; anyone with access to MyFD may look at the Budget Summary Report for any budget.
Capital LeaseTop ↑
A lease that transfers substantially all the benefits and risks inherent in the ownership of property to the University. The criteria for a capital lease can be found at the State Administrative and Accounting Manual website.
CarryforwardTop ↑
Unexpended award funds on grants and contracts which are moved to the next funding period (usually a year) when the agency (sponsor) allows the carryover of unexpended funds.
Cash SalesTop ↑
Sales to users who are external to the University and who do not pay for the goods or services with a University budget number, i.e., pay with cash, check or credit card.
CoMotionTop ↑
This is the university central office which coaches researchers through the commercialization process. They build relationships between university researchers and Industry partners while protecting the university in areas which involve licensing, patents, copyright and the protection of IP rights.
Clinical Research Budgeting & Billing Office (CRBB)Top ↑
The CRBB provides budget review and preparation, budget negotiation with industry sponsors, and billing support to clinical research investigators and staff. Clinical research contracted through the University of Washington must be reviewed by the CRBB. This includes clinical services, items or tests that are provided by UW Physicians, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance or UW Medicine hospitals or clinics, including UW Medical Center, Harborview Medical Center, Eastside Specialty Center, Hall Health Primary Care Center and Sports Medicine Clinic.
CloseoutTop ↑
Federal and many other sponsored programs require final reports be submitted at the time of or soon after the award end date. In accepting sponsor funding, the University has an obligation to comply with the sponsor's reporting requirements including equipment accountability, fiscal reporting, final invention statement and final technical report. Other final reporting requirements may be mandated in the terms of the award. Failure to submit these final reports can lead to closer monitoring by the sponsor, future award delays, or the sponsor withholding future funding to the Principal Investigator, the Principal Investigator's Department and the University. See GIM 39.
Cognizant AgencyTop ↑
The Federal agency which, on behalf of all Federal agencies, is responsible for implementing the requirements of the Single Audit Act which include: reviewing, negotiating, and approving cost allocation plans, indirect cost rate and similar rates; receiving and approving non-federal audit reports; conducting federal audits as necessary; and resolving cross-cutting audit findings. The University of Washington's cognizant agency is the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
Competing RenewalTop ↑
An open competition to request for renewal funding to continue a project.
Concurrence LetterTop ↑
Click term for more information
Closing AccountsTop ↑
Click term for more information
Closing TypesTop ↑
Click term for more information
ComplianceTop ↑
Click term for more information
ContractTop ↑
An award instrument used for the acquisition, by purchase, lease, or barter, of property or services.
Cooperative AgreementTop ↑
A Cooperative Agreement is used when the purpose of the agreement is similar to that of a grant, but substantial programmatic involvement of or coordination by the funding agency is anticipated during the project.
Cost PrinciplesTop ↑
The principles as set out in applicable statutes, regulations, grantor instructions, Office of Management and Budget Circulars and generally accepted accounting rules used for determining allowability, reasonableness, and allocability of costs applicable to grants, contracts, and other agreements.
Cost Share Addendum FormTop ↑
This UW form is used at the time of award to document the Cost Share Commitment and source of funding. It is completed by the Department, sent to OSP and processed by GCA. Any grant award that includes cost sharing must have this form completed before the funding can be released by OSP.
Cost SharingTop ↑
Some funding agencies require the grantee institution to demonstrate its financial commitment to the project, or the commitment of other funding sources, by sharing the project costs. Cost sharing funds may come from an outside source in the form of cash contributions, volunteer services from the University's own funds (e.g. personnel effort without salary recovery); or from shared resources or facilities. If the award is federal, only acceptable non-federal costs qualify as cost sharing.
Cost Transfer InvoiceTop ↑
A form used by a department which provides goods or services to charge the cost of those goods or services to the budget of the requesting department.
DeficitTop ↑
The excess of expenditures over revenues (authorized budget) during an accounting period or award/project period for grants and contracts.
Delegation of AuthorityTop ↑
The Principal Investigator may delegate the authority to acquire goods and/or services with sponsored project funds. See GIM 14
Departmental Administrative contactTop ↑
The administrative and fiscal contacts listed on the eGC1.
Direct CostsTop ↑
Those costs that can be specifically identified with a particular project, program, or activity.
DisallowanceTop ↑
Expenditures incurred on a sponsored project for which the sponsor will not pay. This occurs when expenditures are not in compliance with the award terms.
Disallowed Cost or DisallowanceTop ↑
A charge to a grant that the Federal awarding agency determines to be unallowable, in accordance with the applicable federal cost principles or other terms and conditions contained in the award. Typically the sponsor will not pay for these expenditures and the disallowed expenditure becomes the responsibility of the PI and must be transferred to another budget (non-federal) or receive after-the-fact approval from the sponsor.
eApprovals in SAGETop ↑
The eApproval graph is generated based on the content of the eGC1 and the approval rules for your department, school or college. Email notifications are sent automatically requesting each unit to approve. When all campus units have approved, then the eGC1+application is routed to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). For questions about SAGE, contact the SAGE Help Desk at or call 206-685-8335.
eFA (Funding Action)Top ↑
A funding action (FA) is communication from OSP to GCA to set up a budget number or add funding to an existing budget number. A funding action includes details on Sponsor, amount of funding, PI, the project period, and other pertinent information for award reporting and for administering the funding within the financial system.
eFECSTop ↑
Faculty effort cost share system
eGC1Top ↑
Form submitted to The Office of Sponsored Programs along with proposal which contains the budget, institutional signatures, basic proposal information, addresses and policy issues.
ePAC (Post-Award Change)Top ↑
A post-award change is an adjustment made to an award that need involvement from OSP
EncumbrancesTop ↑
Obligations in the form of purchase orders, contracts, or salary commitments which are chargeable to an award and for which a part of the awarded amount is reserved. They cease to be encumbrances when paid.
Encumbrance Codes Matrix (T, BSC, BIA, TN, BCA, ZB, and others)
Environmental Health & Safety (EHS)Top ↑
Environmental Health & Safety is a UW administrative department that is responsible for addressing environmental issues in order to provide a safe educational and work place on campus.
EquipmentTop ↑
Tangible assets acquired through donation, gift, purchase, capital lease, or self construction with a life expectancy of more than one year.
eRA CommonsTop ↑
Electronic Research Administration system for National Institutes of Health
E-VerifyTop ↑

E-Verify is a Federal, internet based system that was established per an executive order by President Bush in June 2006. The system was implemented and effective 9/8/2009. The system uses information from Form I-9 to verify an employee's eligibility to work in the United States.

E-verify is for Federal CONTRACTS only—not grants. OSP is responsible for notifying departments when E-Verify is needed, and will authorize users in the system.

More info about E-Verify and FAQs can be viewed via the UW Payroll website.

Expanded AuthoritiesTop ↑
The operating authorities provided to grantees under certain research grant mechanisms that waive the requirement for Sponsor prior approval for specified actions.
ExpenditureTop ↑
All monies used in the operation of a budgeted project are Expenditures. Expenditures may include faculty salaries, student compensation, equipment acquisition, travel expenditures or any other activity which can be assigned a dollar value. Expenditures are recorded in the Financial Accounting System under the budget number being charged for the activity. Note: Encumbrances are not expenditures and are recorded to remind PI's of a formal commitment.
Expense TransferTop ↑
A feature in MyFinancial Desktop that allows users to reallocate posted salary and non-salary expenditures. About Transactions
Export ControlTop ↑

The federal requirement that controls the export, re-export and other activities regarding the export of sensitive materials, person or activities. Export transactions may require a license or other written approval by the US government, while others are prohibited. Export control laws govern:

  • The release of technology, technical data, software, and information to foreign nationals within or outside the US
  • The furnishing of defense services to foreign persions whether in the US or abroad
  • The shipment or other transmission of items or defense articles outside the US
  • The ability to export or otherwise transact with certain individuals, entities and countries.
Facilities & Administration (F&A)Top ↑

Those costs that pay for expenses which cannot be identified to a particular project, program or activity but are nevertheless necessary to the operations of the university. F&A costs are synonymous with Indirect Costs (IDC).

  • F&A rate, expressed as a percentage, is established by negotiation on an annual basis. Current F&A rates can be found in GIM 13.
  • F&A base type determines which budget items are excluded from the F&A calculation. There are several base types: MTDC = Modified Total Direct Costs, TDC = Total Direct Costs, S&W = Salaries and Wages, and TDC less T&E = Total Direct minus Tuition & Equipment.
  • F&A cost are determined by multiplying the rate by the base amount.
Faculty Effort Certification (eFEC)Top ↑
Faculty Effort Certification is the (electronic) process by which faculty accurately account for and document time spend on University activities including research, instruction, administration, service and clinical activity using percentages.
Faculty Effort Certification (FEC)Top ↑
Quarterly and semiannual report used to document faculty effort on grants and contracts.
FastlaneTop ↑
Online sponsored programs system for the National Science Foundation.
Final Action DateTop ↑
Last day for all transactions of the grant and contract posted to Online Financial Accounting System (FIN), or for department to communicate pending charges/credits to Grant and Contract Accounting (GCA).
Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI)Top ↑
A Significant Financial Interest of an Investigator or Innovator that could directly and significantly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of Research or adversely affect a Technology Transfer Transaction.
Financial Interest Disclosure System (FIDS)Top ↑
The Financial Interest Disclosure System (FIDS) is the interface research investigators use to disclose Significant Financial Interests (SFI) in accordance with the UW's policy as defined in Grants Information Memorandum GIM 10.
Financial Status Report (FSR)Top ↑
A Significant Financial Interest (SFI) of an investigator or innovator that could directly and significantly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of research or adversely affect a technology transfer transaction.
Fiscal reportTop ↑
The final report reflecting a summary of transactions within the reporting period for the subject grant or contract.
ForecastingTop ↑
Financial Forecasting is an estimate of future financial outcomes for a project using historical data and expected expenses.
Fully Loaded RateTop ↑
Refers to a rate of pay included on a funding proposal that includes salary, fringe benefits, and the applicable negotiated F&A charge.
Funding Action (eFA)Top ↑
An electronic mechanism used by OSP to transmit detailed award information to GCA for budget set-up and award distribution. Copies of the eFA are also delivered to eGC1 contacts when the budget is complete and ready to accept charges.
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA)Top ↑
Published grant opportunities which usually have their own instructions, forms and requirements.
GIMTop ↑
GIM is the acronym for Grants Information Memoranda. GIM's are maintained at official reference stations and define the policies and procedures associated with grant and contract awards/budgets.
Graduate Operating FeeTop ↑
The term "Graduate Operating Fees" refers to the combination of tuition and fees which are required of all graduate students at the University of Washington. Prior to 1985 research assistants at the University of Washington were expected to pay these fees from their salaries. At that time the salaries were reduced by the amount at issue, and the tuition and fees now appear as a separate item in the budget rather than as a component of the salaries. This is a common practice at research universities. Research assistants at the University of Washington are considered residents, regardless of their actual resident status. The fees at issue, therefore, are at the same level as those for residents of the State of Washington.
GrantTop ↑
Financial assistance (including cooperative agreements) in the form of money, or property in lieu of money, by the Federal government to an eligible recipient. The term does not include: any Federal procurement subject to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR); technical assistance (which provides services instead of money); or assistance in the form of revenue sharing, loans, loan guarantees, interest subsidies, insurance, or direct payment of any kind to individuals.
Grant & Contract Accounting (GCA)Top ↑
A department of Financial Management that helps set up grants, contracts and gift budgets in the Financial Accounting System. They invoice sponsors, manage related cash, prepare fiscal reports to sponsors and close grant budgets.
Grant and Contract Certification Reports (GCCR)Top ↑
Grant and Contract Certification Reports (also known as Payroll Certification Reports) represent the documentation the University of Washington utilizes to certify the reasonableness of salaries and wages charged to sponsored projects. The report reflects all UW employees paid on a sponsored budget and their grant and contract compensation with the exception of faculty who certify via the Faculty Effort Certification (FEC) report. Included on each report is the name of the employee, payroll classification, the percentage of effort or number of hours paid for the month and the dollar amount paid.
Grant RunnerTop ↑
A component of SAGE that allows some grants applications to be submitted to electronically by OSP. SAGE combines the eGC1 and the sponsor forms for some funding opportunities (NIH R01s, R03s and R21s with modular budgets). UW institutional codes and some eGC1 information are pre-populated, there is automatic checking for required fields and common errors, and the status of the submission is documented in the History for easy tracking and reference.
Grant TrackerTop ↑
Once a budget number has been assigned to a project by GCA it will be available in Grant Tracker for reference.
Grants.govTop ↑ is your source to FIND and APPLY for federal government grants. is a central storehouse for information on over 1,000 federal grant programs and provides access to approximately $500 billion in annual awards.
Human Subjects Division (HSD)Top ↑
Human subjects Division. The arm of the Office of Research which partners with researchers to safeguard the rights and welfare of human subjects in UW research.
Reviews and approves all use of vertebrate animals in teaching and research; monitors care and use of animals in laboratory and research programs to ensure humane treatment of animals in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. At the University of Washington the IACUC is facilitated by the Office of Animal Welfare.
Incremental Award or SupplementTop ↑
An Incremental Award or Supplement is a request for additional award support for an existing project. The grant/contract award number remains the same and separate cash accountability is not required.
Indirect CostsTop ↑
Those costs that are incurred for common or joint objectives and therefore cannot be identified readily and specifically with a particular sponsored project, program, or activity but are nevertheless necessary to the operations of the organization. At educational institutions such costs normally are classified under the following indirect cost categories: depreciation and use allowance, general expenses, sponsored project administration expenses, library expenses, departmental administration expenses, library expenses, departmental administration, operations and maintenance expense and student administration services.
Interdisciplinary National Science Program Incorporating Research and Education Experience
Institutional Review Board (IRB)Top ↑
Reviews and approves all proposed research projects that involve human subjects to insure that the rights of subjects are protected, that adequate and informed consent for their participation is obtained, and that any possible benefits of the research are commensurate with the risks involved. At the University of Washington the IRB is facilitated by the Human Subjects Division in the Office of Research.
Intellectual Property (IP)Top ↑
Creative work or idea embodied in a form that can be shared or can enable others to recreate, emulate or manufacture. It is protected by trademark, trade secret or copyright. The UW unit CoMotion manages IP rights along with OSP.
Interim BudgetTop ↑
A University budget other than a grant or contract to which it is allowable to charge expenditures temporarily pending receipt of grant or contract awards. Examples of these include Research Support Allocation, gift and discretionary budgets.
Internal Sales Document (ISD)Top ↑
A form used by service centers or auxillary enterprises (budget numbers which begin with 14, 15, 16 or 25) which provide goods or services to charge the cost of those goods or services to the budget of the requesting department.
Invention StatementTop ↑
A form detailing all inventions conceived or first reduced to practice during the course of the work under the grant or contract and the inventing party.
InvoicingTop ↑
The process in which the university submits a request for payment to the sponsor.
Journal VouchersTop ↑
An accounting entry for the recording of certain transactions, corrections or information. The journal voucher usually contains an entry or entries, explanations, references to documentary evidence supporting the entry or entries, and the signature or initials of one or more properly authorized officials.
Just-in-Time (JIT)Top ↑
In the research arena, it generally refers to the process of providing assurances and other information at the point that it is needed. For example, NIH requires various approvals and assurances prior to an award being made, but not at the proposal stage.
Matching fundsTop ↑
Matching funds, if required by the funding agency, are raised from non-federal outside sources to increase the level of support provided by the funding agency. Such funds must be identified by the donor or funding source for use as matching funds.
Modified Total Direct Costs (MTDC)Top ↑
The aggregated direct costs for a given University activity, such as organized research, excluding certain costs specified by The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Title 2, Volume I, Part 220, J 10 (formerly OMB Circular A-21). Costs excluded from MTDC typically include equipment, capital expenditures, tuition remission, stipends, and that portion of a sub-contract expenses in excess of $25,000.
MyFinancial.desktop (MyFD)Top ↑
MyFinancial .desktop (MyFD) GlossaryTop ↑
Glossary of Financial terms used in MyFD. Links to the Glossary page
No Cost ExtensionTop ↑
See Budget Extension.
Non Competing RenewalTop ↑
A Non-Competing Renewal, also known as a Continuation, is a request for funding for the second or subsequent budget periods of a grant within an awarded project period. The recommended funding level for each subsequent year was set in the initial award and therefore is not an open competition for funding.
Notice of AwardTop ↑
This is a formal notice from an external sponsor to the university giving notice of an award for a specific research project. Normally, the notice will outline the scope of the award or any special terms and provisions. This document is also sometimes called the notice of Grant Award (NOGA) or Notice of Award (NOA).
Notice of Expiration LetterTop ↑
A letter sent by GCA to the department administrator 30 days before budget expiration requesting information for final closeout and indicating the final action date.
Object CodesTop ↑
The University of Washington Financial Accounting system (FAS) uses codes and categories track all expenditures. Object codes are further incremented into sub-object codes for greater detail.
Obligated FundsTop ↑
Funds that are unexpended but are encumbered at the end of the funding period to cover the known obligations. They are considered to be unexpended funds. However, if the agency allows, the "obligated" funds and matching encumbrances are carried forward to the next funding period.
Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP)Top ↑
A unit in the Office of Research at the University of Washington which supports and advises the entire academic community in securing external support for sponsored projects and collaborations. They review, negotiate, approve, and provide administrative oversight related to proposals and establishment of awards on behalf of the University of Washington in accordance with all applicable policies, and regulations.
Office of Research (OR)Top ↑
Office of Research is led by the Vice Provost for Research and oversees the following administrative units: HSD, OSP, and ORIS.
Office of Research Information Services (ORIS)Top ↑
A division of the Office of Research, which coordinates, develops, and supports electronic research administration for faculty and staff at the University of Washington.
Parent Top ↑
A Parent is the budget which is used to group together multiple budgets under the same award. For example, a sponsored agreement for a specific project may involve several segments/departments and the individual departments wish to establish separate control budgets for processing purchases and recording salaries. Each budget is set up with the control (parent) budget number in order to combine budget information on the Consolidated Budget Status Report by Parent for overall review by the Program Director.

Sub-Budgets for Funding Restricted for a Specific Purpose
Faculty members with funds restricted within a grant for a specific purpose (e.g. a supplement given to be used only for salaries and supplies of a specified individual or group of individuals) are encouraged to establish a sub-budget. To that sub-budget, they are encouraged to transfer the restricted funding and post only related expenditures. This will improve tracking and subsequent reporting to the sponsor.

Post Award Change (ePAC)Top ↑
An electronic mechanism used by OSP to transmit any information to GCA which will change the initial award information. Common examples of ePACs: a No cost Extension, a change of PI, or a release of funding restrictions. Copies of the ePACs are also delivered to eGC1 contacts when the changes have been completed in the system.
Preaward CostTop ↑
The cost incurred prior to the effective date of the award, directly pursuant to the negotiation and in anticipation of the award, where incurrence is necessary to comply with the proposed delivery schedule or period of performance.
Pre Award Notification (PAN)Top ↑
An electronic mechanism used by OSP to track information or changes to submitted proposal prior to award notification. Common examples of PANs: Just in Time Information, Other Support Pages, Sponsor notifications
Prior ApprovalTop ↑
The written permission provided by the authorized granting official from the awarding office before the recipient may undertake certain activities (such as performance or modification of an activity), expend funds, or exceed a certain dollar level.
Prime InstitutionTop ↑
The institution receiving the award from the sponsor.
Principal Investigator (PI)Top ↑
The individual responsible for the conduct of research or other activity described in a proposal for an award.
Program Announcement (PA)Top ↑
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 IncomeTop ↑
The gross income received by the recipient and/or sub-recipient directly generated by the supported activity, or earned as a result of the award. Program income includes (but is not limited to) income from fees for services performed, the use or rental of real or personal property acquired under the grant, the sale of commodities or items fabricated under an award, license fees and royalties on patents and copyrights, and payment of interest on loans made with grant funds. Standard Program Income Alternatives are: 1) Deduction alternative - Deducted from total allowable costs and third party in-kind contributions for the purpose of determining the net costs on which the Federal share of costs will be based. When this alternative applies, the deduction must be made from current costs unless the terms of the award authorize deferral to a later period; 2) Cost Participation or Matching Alternative - Used to satisfy all or part of a cost participation or matching requirement; 3) Additional Cost Alternative - Used for costs that are in addition to the allowable costs of the project for any purposes that further the objectives of the legislation under which the grant was made.
Progress ReportTop ↑
A periodic, usually annual, report submitted by the PI to a sponsor to demonstrate progress in the research. Many sponsors use this report to determine whether to provide funding for the upcoming budget period. This is also sometimes called the "Technical Report."
Project PeriodTop ↑
The total time period stated in the Notice of Grant Award (including any amendments) for which Federal support is recommended. The project period may consist of one or more budget periods. It does not constitute a commitment by the Federal government to fund the entire project period.
ProposalTop ↑
See Application
Reasonable CostTop ↑
A cost may be considered reasonable if its amount and nature reflect what a reasonable person would incur in the conduct of the same business in the same or similar circumstances.
Re-budgetingTop ↑
The budget plan is the financial expression of the project or program as approved during the award process. After a grant or contract has been awarded, the PI may determine that the approved budget allocations are not consistent with actual project needs. S/he may request the formal reallocation of funds from one spending category, or object code, to another object code category that better reflects the project requirements. This process is called Rebudgeting or Budget Revision. Informal rebudgeting occurs when actual expenditures exceed or fall short of the allocated amount budgeted in an object code or when actual expenditures occur in an object code that has no budget allocation. Rebudgeting
Recharge CenterTop ↑
An organizational unit or activity that provides goods and services primarily to internal University operations. Recharge centers are units that charge either more than $175,000 annually to federally sponsored agreements OR more than $1,000,000 in total charges.
Renewal AwardTop ↑
An authorization for follow-up support to a project. Renewal awards usually retain the same grantor number but require a separate budget number for accounting purposes. The budget amount for the renewal award consists of the approved annual award and authorized carryover of unexpended or obligated balances.
Request for Application/Proposal (RFA or RFP)Top ↑
A specific solicitation for project ideas which may or may not involve a special allocation of funding, unique forms or other restrictions.
RequisitionsTop ↑
A written (or on-line) request, usually from one department to the Purchasing department for specified goods or services.
Research AdministrationTop ↑
The non-scientific responsibilities of funded projects are referred to as research administration. It includes preparing the proposal, fiscal and non-fiscal compliance and other activities throughout the project's lifecycle.
Research Administration Learning ProgramTop ↑
A training program that provides support for faculty and administrators to expand their skill sets and build research programs. Courses are free of charge and new courses are added periodically. The program is developed collaboratively with central offices and campus volunteers, and taught by subject matter experts. OSP Learning
Research Cost RecoveryTop ↑
Allocation of funds back to academic units that were generated from indirect cost from grants and contracts.
Residual ValueTop ↑
The remaining worth of a capitalized asset at the end of its useful life.
Restricted FundsTop ↑
Funding from a prior year which is carried forward (unexpended and unobligated) to the current year and which requires agency approval to expend. This is coded 37-99 in the accounting system and is encumbered.
RevenueTop ↑
Funds received from sales and services. Revenue and funding are recorded in the University of Washington current operating fund, which is the economic resource of the University available for the purpose of performing the primary and supporting missions of the institution. The major sources of revenue funding for the University are state allocations, grants, contracts, gifts, rents, royalties, and interest and dividends from investments. All revenues are included in the University's biennial budget request and are subject to State accounting and budgeting requirements.
Salary capTop ↑
The maximum amount of institutional base salary that may be used in calculating the amount of an individual's salary to be charged to a grant or contract. Institutional Base Salary does not include the fringe benefits or facilities and administrative (F&A) costs associated with the individual's salary. Salary Cap is most commonly associated with NIH grants and contracts but may be applied to other grant or contracts as dictated by a sponsor.
Salary encumbrancesTop ↑

Salary encumbrances represent the commitment of salary expenses not yet incurred, i.e., paid. Salaries are encumbered on grant and contract accounts to assist departments in planning expenditures during the life of a grant or contract. Salaries are not encumbered on gift accounts.

The dollar amount of the salary encumbrance is calculated automatically based on the Personnel Actions submitted by the department on the Online Payroll Update System (OPUS). The departmental payroll coordinator enters the data elements into the OPUS system. The information entered into OPUS interfaces automatically into the Payroll/Personnel System (HEPPS) and Financial Accounting system (FAS). It is the entry of information in OPUS that causes the salary and benefits and encumbrances to post in FIN.

Differences between departmental records of pending salaries and salary encumbrances are usually tied to OPUS actions "in process". Departments may "turn off" the salary encumbrance feature by sending a request to GCA via GrantTracker. The appropriate Dean must be included in the GrantTracker request. Principal Investigators are fiscally responsible should salaries (or any other category) be overspent.

Questions about this process should be directed to the gcahelp, 206-616-9995.

SaleTop ↑
Recorded when goods or services are provided to others for a fee and the original nature of the costs have changed. With a sale, a rate is developed and billed as one unit. An example of a sale is when an instrument shop manufactures instruments used in research. The billed amount to users includes salaries, service contracts, supplies, and perhaps equipment depreciation which are the inputs into the final product or service.
Sales TaxTop ↑
State tax on sales to external users for sales of "tangible personal property" and some services.
System for Electronic Research Accounting. Part of the SAGE Suite used by Grant and Contract Accounting. See SAGE for more details.
Shadow SystemTop ↑
Series of Excel spreadsheets or other similar records created and maintained by the department to mirror official UW systems and track additional information. Shadow systems are not the system of record.
Significant Financial Interest (SFI)Top ↑
Any financial interest that meets the threshold established in GIM 10 and is related to an investigator's research or, for Public Health Service funded investigators, to their institutional responsibilities.
Single Audit ActTop ↑
Originally enacted by Congress in 1984 to establish uniform audit requirements for state and local governments receiving federal financial assistance. It was revised in 1990 to incorporate institutions of higher education and non profit organizations.
Sponsored Programs Administration and Electronic Research Compliance (SPAERC). Part of the SAGE Suite tools used by the Office of Sponsored Programs to support research administration.SAGE for more information.
SponsorTop ↑
An agency external to the UW that provides funding or non-monetary project support. Examples: National Institutes of Health (NIH), Department of Defense (DOD), National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), Annenberg Foundation, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC).
Sponsored Program or ProjectTop ↑
A University activity, typically research, instruction or service, sponsored by federal and non-federal agencies and organizations. See Sponsored Research and Sponsored Instruction.
Sponsored ResearchTop ↑
All research and development activities that are sponsored by federal and non-federal agencies and organizations. This includes activities involving the training of individuals in research techniques (commonly called research training). (See Organized Research.)
Sponsored Research TrainingTop ↑
Activities involving the training of individuals in research techniques where the training is in the same facility as other research and development activities. (See Organized Research.)
Status CheckerTop ↑
A look-up tool that extracts information about the status of new awards and administrative actions from SPAERC (OSP's administrative module in SAGE). Status Checker contains information for the past 60 days, and is updated each day at 6am.
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. A stipend is not considered compensation for the services expected of an employee. Stipends may also be used to help defray the costs of personal maintenance while participating in a conference or training activity. In these cases participants may be paid a stipend, per diem or subsistence allowance. Note, object codes in the 01-5X and 01-9X represent stipends where the recipient qualifies for health insurance coverage under the university system. No other fringe benefits are provided as part of the stipend although they may qualify for leave benefits based on the funders terms and conditions.
Streamlined Non-Competing Award Process (SNAP)
A type of award, normally research, made by the NIH. More information can be found at: SNAP AWARD PROCESS
Sub-budgetTop ↑
A budget, subordinate to another budget, established to account for an identifiable segment of an award (see PARENT). It is also used when funding is given to individuals to complete an approved project from a University-controlled funding source. The budget information on a subbudget is reported on the Consolidated Budget Status Report for each parent.
SubcontractTop ↑
A formal cooperative research relationship with another organization, generally a university or non-profit research center . The cooperative research is part of a sponsored agreement/proposal accepted by the University of Washington and the other organization participating in the research project or providing a required service to complete the research project. See GIM 7 for additional information
Suitable Means of Verification
Suitable means of verification in effort reporting includes participation in or close supervision of the faculty member's activities or a written confirmation from the faculty member himself or herself, either in an email or memo, that the effort was performed as documented on the Faculty Effort Certification (FEC). Note, self certification is synonomous with suitable means of verification.
Supplemental AwardTop ↑
The addition of funds to an existing award to:
  1. Support new or additional activities which are not identified in the current grant or which significantly expand the project's scope beyond the purpose(s) for which the current grant was awarded;

  2. Support an expansion of the grant approved activities; or

  3. Provide for an increase in costs due to unforeseen circumstances.

For supplemental awards, the budget and grantor numbers remain the same.
Additional amount charged to non-UW, non-federal users in excess of internal rate, not including sales tax or institutional overhead.
For recharge/cost centers a surplus occurs when revenues are greater than both expenditures and working capital amount. Ordinarily, surpluses in excess of the working capital amount should be incorporated into the next year's rate proposal. For fixed price contracts a surplus is the amount of revenue exceeding expenditures at the conclusion of the fixed price contract.
System to Administer Grants Electronically (SAGE)Top ↑
The web-based system for supporting electronic Research Administration (eRA) at the University of Washington. The suite is comprised of three systems - SAGE, SPÆRC, and SERA - three views of a single database. Faculty, administrators, and staff submit funding applications and request advance budget numbers via SAGE. The Office of Sponsored Programs tracks and approves these requests via SPÆRC. The Grant and Contract Accounting office handles post-award functionality via SERA.
Technical ReportTop ↑
A technical, usually scientific, description of the project results and additional information as required by the sponsor. Additional information requested can include an abstract and a list of publications.
Terms & Conditions (T&C)Top ↑
The contractual agreements approved by the sponsor and OSP. They are included in the award document.
A means to allocate costs to different budgets through pro-rating or apportionment of actual benefit received. A cost transfer (also, called Salary Expense Transfer when transferring salaries) is used when the nature of the activity/costs has not changed from one entity or another or when costs are transferred in the categories in which they are charged (e.g. salaries, supplies, etc.). An example of a cost transfer is copier expense charged to one budget and allocated to all benefiting budgets.
Transferring ExpendituresTop ↑
The Transactions Application allows MyFinancial.desktop (MyFD) users to transfer posted salary and non-salary expenditures on University of Washington budgets in order to correct posting errors. See Expense Transfers
The form used to establish, extend, supplement and transfer funds between parent and sub-budgets. See TRANSPASU instructions.
Unallowable CostTop ↑
An expense determined to be non-permissible in accordance with the applicable cost principles or other terms and conditions contained in a grant award.
University Research
All research and development activities that are separately budgeted and accounted for by the institution under an internal application of institutional funds. (See Organized Research.)
Unrecovered Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Cost Sharing
Sometimes the University's F&A rate is higher than the rate agreed to on an award. As a result, the University is reimbursed for fewer overhead costs by the sponsor than are incurred in support of the project. In this situation, the University incurs a shortfall called "unrecovered Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs". Some sponsors allow this shortfall to be applied as a cost share contribution. When a budget has cost sharing that includes unrecovered F&A, Grant and Contract Accounting (GCA) adjusts the calculated cost sharing on a quarterly basis.
Unexpended FundsTop ↑
The funding (money) not spent during the award process.
Useful Life
The number of years an asset costing more than $2,000 ($5,000 for recharge/cost centers) is expected to remain in service. The useful life is employed in calculating annual depreciation. (State equipment classes and their useful lives are found at the State Administrative and Accounting Manual website.)
Zero BalanceTop ↑
At the closing of a grant, when the budget, expenditures, and revenue are equal, the budget is said to have a zero balance.