University of Washington

Research Matters, Spring 2013

Research Matters - SAGE News for the Research Community

Introducing the ORIS UX Team 

The Office of Reserch Information Services (ORIS) now has a User Experience (UX) team that works to improve the usefulness and usability of the Web products that ORIS develops.The team consists of three designers - Sandra Bilbrey, Kaitlyn Schirmer, and Gavin Elster - who all studied some flavor of Human-Computer Interaction as undergraduate students at the UW. They kindly agreed to share details about their work.

What We Do

We interview users, influence the kinds of products that get built, design how products will look and how people will use them, and test whether our products are easy to use.

One recent product that saw a lot of UX love is the FCOI Training Verification Completion tool. To ensure this product’s usefulness, we...

1.     Heard that people needed a way to look up their Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) training.

2.     Sketched potential tool layouts (wireframes)

3.     Developed a working model of the tool (functional prototype).

4.     Tested the prototype with users and refined the design eight times based on feedback.

5.     Launched the tool.

6.     Continued to make sure the design was working correctly (validation) after launch.

7.     Will start back at step 4 when the tool needs refinements.

Click the image below to see an illustration of the UX process we follow.

User Experience image

Our Future Plans

We hope to bring more products out for users to try when they are in the development stage. Please keep an eye out for any calls for usability test participants in this newsletter, and sign up if you have time. Your feedback is invaluable!

FIDS Tips from the UW's Research Compliance Office

Joe Giffels, Associate Vice Provost for Research Compliance, is the UW’s Institutional Official responsible for financial conflict of interest. He offers some recommendations for investigators when they are filling out their Significant Financial Interest (SFI) information in the UW's Financial Interest Disclosure System (FIDS). If you are not an investigator, consider forwarding this information to someone who is.

FIDS solicits information about a number of aspects of each SFI you are disclosing.  In many cases, it would be helpful to have a more detailed explanation of the SFI itself and of the relationship between the SFI and the associated research project(s). FIDS provides two opportunities for such explanations:

1.     Summary.  In the Summary, you can describe your financial relationship with a particular entity in greater detail.  For example, while you may have indicated that you served as a paid consultant for the entity from January 1, 2013 to February 15, 2013, you might also wish to explain that your consulting agreement with the entity terminated on February 15 and that you do not anticipate doing any further consulting for that entity.  That explanation can be made in the Summary, and it may be useful to reviewers of the disclosure.

2.     Narrative.  In the Narrative, you can describe in some detail the relationship between the SFI(s) in your disclosure to the research project(s) you have linked to the disclosure.  For example, for a disclosure in which you are reporting your equity (stock or options) holding in an entity, you might wish to explain whether or not any product that is marketed by or of interest to the entity is the subject of the linked research projects.  Again, that information may be useful to reviewers of the disclosure.

In general, the more information you provide, the smoother the review process will go.

FAQs from the Help Desk

The ORIS Help Desk fields numerous questions each month. Whether you email (,, or or call the Help Desk at 206.685.8335, a ticket is automatically created for you in our online ticket tracking system. This ensures a timely review of your inquiry, in addition to providing us with a resource for frequently asked questions. Some of the answers to recently-asked questions are

1.     FIDS: If the application’s title is long in FIDS, investigators might have to scroll to the right to see the “Complete Disclosure” button. We plan to fix this issue in the next release which is currently scheduled for mid June.

2.     Grant Runner: Be careful if you copy and paste text into Grant Runner, as accented letters are not acceptable.

3.     SAGE Budget: In the March release we revised salary calculations to include additional earn types. We have found a few rare cases where SAGE lists inaccurate salaries when the salary distributions have not yet been entered into the HR database. If you find a budget with a missing distribution, for now just manually type in the full salary amount. We anticipate fixing this issue in the next few weeks.

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