Categories of Assistance

Listed below are resources to help with the award life cycle of a sponsored program.  Resources have been categorized into Pre-Award, Post-Award, and General. The MRJCON Office of Research will help you navigate the process of submitting a proposal, assisting with grant management, and closing the award.  


This internal form is required for any sponsored program (federal and/or private, external and/or internal). This form will help the Research Office with workflow, productivity tracking, and planning for deadlines.  Please submit 4 weeks prior to the submission deadline or as soon as possible (we understand finding the perfect last-minute RFP!).

Click here to access the Intent to Submit form

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Please complete this internal fom if requesting statistical support for your project.

Click here to access the Statistical Support Request

MRJCON Contract Research Time

I have a percent of my contract for research.  How do I determine an appropriate FTE for my project?

This is a hard question to answer. All options offered below come into play.  Read this document, visit the sites provided and have a conversation with the MRJCON Office of Research.

Start by thinking about the methods/workplan of your project.  How much time will be devoted to achieving the goals and objectives of the project.  Don’t underestimate your time, challenges and barriers will pop up.  Don’t overestimate your time as you want room in your allotted research time for upcoming opportunities.   

MRJCON Course Release Time

I want to ensure I can get course release time if my proposal is funded.  What do I do?

First discuss this plan with the Associate Dean for Research and your Campus Director. If you are teaching courses in the graduate program the Associate Dean for Academic Programs should be consulted as they will need to find a suitable graduate faculty replacement in conjunction with the Campus Director.  Requesting release time is appropriate when you have a salary supported by a sponsored project or if a specific amount of “release time” is required by the funding agency.  Determine which course(s) you want released from and when (the semester).  Work with the Office of Research to ensure you get the appropriate amount of money budgeted in the proposal.  Release time must be approved before a sponsored program proposal is submitted. 

How much do I calculate for release time? 

You will need between 10-20% FTE written into the sponsored program for release time.  The specific amount is dependent on many factors.  Please work with the Associate Dean for Research and your Campus Director to determine the appropriate FTE.

My project was funded! How do I get my release time?

Hiring NTT faculty replacements can take time.  Inform the Associate Dean for Research and your Campus Director that your project was funded and contains release time.  Hopefully this will give your Campus Director time to hire a NTT.  Campus Directors must follow the CON guidelines for hiring dates and cannot authorize release time mid-semester.  

Work with the MRJCON Office of Research to ensure a funding distribution change for the semester(s) is submitted. Release time should be requested at least 2 weeks prior to the beginning of the semester in which release time is requested. 

How does release time work?

The faculty member's AY salary (determined using the appropriate equation above) is diverted from the state instructional index (where the TT faculty member's salary is 100% budgeted) and paid for by a sponsored program. This “frees up” salary in the state index that can then be used to pay the cost of hiring an NTT to teach the course. 

How do benefits work during release time?

Benefits (retirement, health insurance and taxes) follow the index number that pays the salary. The faculty member will not experience any change in benefits during a course buy-out.

Can I get release time and the Incentive Program for Researchers (IPR)?

Yes, but the cost of your release time is taken into consideration (see IPR information below).

MSU Incentive Program for Researchers (IPR)

What is IPR?

The MSU Incentive Program for Researchers has been developed to enhance sponsored research and scholarly activities. The program provides incentives for faculty to secure externally funded research grants and contracts and is in addition to and complements existing academic Year (AY) and Fiscal Year (FY) faculty. Click here to read MSU’s policy on the Incentive Program for Researchers.

I have a ton of questions about IPR.  Where can I get information?

Please talk to the MRJCON Office of Research about IPR.

Click here to read MSU’s policy on the Incentive Program for Researchers.

In addition click here to be directed to MSU’s Incentive Program for Researchers FAQ page. 

MSU Time and Effort Considerations

What is time and effort as related to my project?

As a recipient of federal funding MSU is required to comply with the Office of Management and Budget Circular Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (“Uniform Guidance”) as well as other federal requirements for certifying effort expended on sponsored awards. MSU requires all individuals who receive federal sponsored funding to comply with University policies and sponsoring agency regulations regarding the proposing, charging, and reporting of effort on those awards.

University faculty and staff are expected to charge their time to sponsored awards commensurate with the committed effort expended on all activities they perform. Payroll charges to sponsored awards, and cost sharing recorded for faculty and staff, serve as the initial data points for the University’s effort reporting system.

Click here to visit the MSU OSP time and effort reporting policy.

Why should I think about time and effort in the proposal stage?

Your work week is driven by time and effort on projects, teaching duties, meetings, and other work.  Adding a sponsored program will change how your work week runs.  Time and effort is not based on a 40 hour work week.  Time is ALL hours you worked in a week. Effort is how much time you spent on each work item.  For example, you have a sponsored project that will take 10% of your time, your effort is considered 10% on ALL hours you worked in a week. If you worked 60 hours in a week 10% of your effort (or 6 hours) must be devoted to your project.  The next week you worked 35 hours, 3.5 hours of your effort must be devoted to your project. This is in play for the whole project timeline.  All sponsored programs must have associated effort whether salary is requested or not.  

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Not all of these items are appropriate for every grant and the list is not inclusive of all items that might be needed.  

Personnel (include pay increases, 2% is fairly typical):

  • Administrative staff support
  • Grant/fiscal management
  • Interns
  • Principal investigator or project director
  • Professional staff
  • Project coordinator
  • Research assistants (grad, undergrad, professional)
  • Statistician


  • Related benefits for employees – at current university rates

Contracted Services (Other services rendered by others except rentals, repairs, and maintenance): 

  • Consultants
  • Transcriptions
  • Subcontractors
  • Graphic artists
  • Evaluator
  • Statistician
  • Transcription services
  • Computer services
  • Photography, audio, video, telecommunications services
  • Laboratory services
  • Insurance and bonds
  • Warrant writing
  • Honorariums/speakers – speakers who present workshops & lectures
  • Advisors
  • Advisory committee
  • Editors
  • Off campus services (services performed off campus, includes printing)
  • Campus services (services performed by university operations, includes printing)
  • Volunteers (may not be paid – but important to write them in the budget if appropriate)

 Facilities, Space: 

  • Land
  • Rent, leases, construct, etc
  • Utilities
  • Space alterations, renovations
  • Easements or signage

Equipment (anything valued over $5,000 with a shelf life of more than one year):

  • Major computer equipment
  • Communications equipment
  • Laboratory equipment
  • Construction equipment
  • Safety/security equipment
  • Vehicles


  • Educational supplies – any supplies and materials relating to the education of students
  • Laboratory supplies – supplies used in research
    Medical supplies – purchased for use – not for resale
  • Minor tools – costing less than $1,000
    Photocopy, photo and reproduction supplies (not printing)
  • Books and reference materials
    Minor equipment (non-computing equipment ($1,000 to $4,999)
  • Chemicals – non-academic purposes
  • Computer equipment – including peripherals, costing less than $5,000
  • Minor software – costing less than $5,000
  • Office supplies
  • Publication expense
  • Special clothing (uniforms, lab coats, etc.)
  • Dues – memberships in organizations where MSU is the institutional member and is required to join (excludes all personal memberships)
  • Subscriptions – magazines, newspapers, periodicals, directories, technical services, etc


  • Postage, shipping, mailing (Fed Ex, USPS, UPS, DHL, etc.)
  • Advertising – other than recruiting
  • Employment ads
  • Telephone equipment charges – monthly service charges
  • Long distance telephone – long distance, credit card calls, fax, cellular phone itemized phone charges  (phone cards are unallowable) 


  • Project team travel
  • Data collection
  • Field work
  • Professional meetings
  • Staff travel
  • Student travel
  • Volunteer travel
  • Consultant travel
  • Per Diem meals
  • Lodging
  • Airfare
  • Rental car
  • State car
  • Taxi, shuttle, Uber, etc.
  • Train
  • Personal car mileage
  • Registration fees – conference and professional meetings
  • Parking


  • Scholarship and fellowships
  • Fee waiver
  • Tuition waiver

Participant Support

  • Support for people participating in your project/program – MUST be specifically budgeted in the grant proposal, tutition, stipends, other costs, etc.

Facilities and Administration (also called Indirect Costs - IDC) - Check your proposal instructions for caps on the rate

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  • Help developing idea/research question
  • Statistical support
  • Proof reading
  • Feedback and input on your proposal - focus on the research narrative
  • Overall planning, organizing, and coordinating submission documents and assisting with submission 
  • Budget and budget justification development
  • Submitting electronic proposal clearance form (ePCF) 
  • Other items as requested

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  • Liaison with between PI and MSU Office of Sponsored Programs 
  • Assistance with subawards
  • Liaison with Fiscal Shared Services
  • Fiscal oversight, assistance and compliance monitoring
  • Time and effort tracking/reporting
  • Assistance setting up and closing grant account
  • Assistance with hiring students and/or GRAs
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Mentoring undergraduate students around research is an important opportunity to encourage interest in future research and academic careers. Working with undergraduate students on research projects can be mutually beneficial for faculty and students. Engaging students in faculty research can improve faculty research productivity and visibility. To encourage and support this reciprocal benefit, the MRJCON Office of Research has established the following undergraduate research student mentoring incentive program for eligible non-tenure and tenure track faculty within the college:


  • Tenure and non-tenure track faculty are eligible if they are actively working on funded or non-funded scholarship or research.
  • A total of 25 incentive awards will be available each academic year.
  • For each undergraduate student mentored, faculty will receive $200 to be used for research related expenses (e.g., supplies, travel). Funding is renewable for the same student multiple semesters.
  • Mentoring of any MSU undergraduate student is eligible for this funding (i.e., nursing or non-nursing).
  • If students’ work is accepted for presentation (poster or podium) at the regional Western Institute of Nursing (WIN) conference, funding will be provided to support student and mentor travel. Mentoring faculty will be expected to use other available funds first for travel if available (i.e., grant funding).
  • Faculty must complete an application for this incentive program for each student. Click here to access the application.

Click here to access the undergraduate research student mentoring incentive request form