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Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA)


SPA provides the following services to NDSU faculty/staff

  • Provide institutional approval for all external proposal submissions.
  • Manage electronic application submission process.
  • Negotiate awards received from external sources for sponsored program activities on behalf of the university.
  • Issue subawards to external entities under a grant/contract awarded to NDSU.
  • Assist with non-financial post award administration matters.
  • Encourage, facilitate, and support the efforts of NDSU faculty and staff in pursuit of external funding for their research and scholarly activities.
  • Ensure that research and other scholarly activities, particularly activities supported by external sources, observe the policies and procedures of the University, state, federal, and other sponsors.
  • Manage NDSU's animal-related activities (See IACUC), research involving human subjects (See IRB), the use of recombinant DNA, and biosafety issues (See IBC) to ensure compliance with federal regulations and University policies.
  • Generate reports that summarize the University's external research activities.

News and Events

4.20.2017 Proposal and Award Management Session
The first in a series of Proposal & Award Management Sessions was held on April 20, 2017.  Slides and the handout from the session are available on the SPA website under Training.

4.10.2017 Proposal & Award Management Sessions
The Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) and Grant & Contract Accounting (GCA) offices will be sponsoring monthly Proposal & Award Management sessions.  These sessions will provide information and training on topics that are relevant to various aspects of proposal submission and award management.  Anyone that participates in any way or has an interest in proposal or budget development, routing and submission of proposals, processing or approving expenditures on awards (allowable costs, payroll, equipment, materials, etc.), overall award management, award compliance, locating funding opportunities or electronic research administration is encouraged to attend.  These sessions are open to all faculty, researchers and staff. 

All sessions will be held in the Quentin Burdick, room 422, from 11:00am - 11:45am.   This room is videoconferencing (IVN) enabled, so if you need to participate via IVN, through please contact Faye Klein in SPA (231-8045) or  IVN participants will need to reserve their site and let Faye know so that SPA can set up for each requesting site.  SPA will need the room name and the IP address no later than 10:00 a.m. the day prior to the session.  Participants who cannot attend in person or via IVN, may be able to connect in two other ways:

1.      directly from their laptop or desktop computer using a specific software application, or

2.      via an audio connection that can be added to the IVN event.

Participants via personal computer or audio-only will want to contact Faye as soon as possible to ensure adequate time for connections, configuration and testing.

Here are the dates and topics for the first 6 sessions:

April 20Focus on Fundamentals:  Sponsored Programs and Grant & Contract Accounting – general overview highlighting the services provided by each office.
May 18Proposal Review - emphasis on budget review, sponsor guidelines, compliance check and NDSU policies; what SPA reviews.
June 15Award Management-Part I - funding mechanisms, the negotiation process, key components and award terms, compliance verification, award hand-off from SPA to GCA.
July 13Award Management–Part 2 – award set-up, GCA expenditure review, award management elements.
August 17Round Table Discussions – multiple discussion tables will be available with an opportunity for attendees to select three topics of interest and participate in 15 minute “mini-sessions”.
September 14Reports and Queries:  PeopleSoft and beyond – Review of reports and queries available to assist users in managing proposal and award activity. 


Check out Gear-Up-for-Grants Seminars offered during the academic year!

Archive News

11.9.2015 Life Cycle of Awards Series Pre-Award/Budgeting – 3 Part Series.* 
Part 2, November 12, 2015
Part 3, November 16, 2015 
Century Theater, Memorial Union, 1:00pm – 2:30pm 
*You may attend parts 2 and 3 even if you did not attend part 1. Part 1 was held early afternoon on November 9th. If you are interested in information from Part 1, please contact SPA, 231-8045. For more information on this series, click here.

11.9.2015 IBC Administrator - New Hire. Julie Sherwood has started as the new IBC administrator. She joins Kristy Shirley and Josie Hayden in the Research Compliance division of SPA. She previously spent 25 years as a Research Specialist in the Veterinary and Microbiological Sciences department. She can be reached at 231-8908 or for any IBC related questions.

1.22.2015. New Indirect Cost Rate Agreement. NDSU has received an updated Indirect Cost Rate agreement which is effective immediately and should be used with all new proposals.  Any continuation awards or supplemental funding to an existing award should include indirect costs at the rate included in the original proposal submission.  The new rate agreement has been added to the Sponsored Programs website under “forms”.   Additionally, NDSU policy 813 will be updated to include the new rates, incorporate language from the signed indirect cost rate agreement and will provide updated information related to use of the on-campus/off-campus rates. 

12.18.2014. Uniform Guidance.  The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has combined many federal circulars, including A21 and A110, into a single guidance document that can be used by all agencies.  This combined document is known as "Uniform Guidance."  Federal agencies are currently developing their implementation plans under this guidance and these new regulations will become effective on December 26, 2014.  This website will provide information on how NDSU will address the impacts from these changes.  Check here often for updates.

Council on Financial Assistance Reform (COFAR) 

Federal Register Notice announcing new Regulations

12.18.2014. Revised NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedure Guide.  A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF 15-1), is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after December 26, 2014.  

11.7.2013. Proposal Documents Purge. Beginning January 1, 2014, all proposal documents that have been pending in Sponsored Programs Admin files for over two years without notice from the grant agency will be destroyed. Faculty and staff who would like any of the hard copy documents from their proposals should contact the Sponsored Programs Admin Office before the two year anniversary of the proposal submission.

1.24.2013. New Faculty Guide to Competing for Research Funding. This 81-page guidebook is intended to help new faculty get started. It addresses the key competitive strategies and grant writing skills new faculty need to master for funding success at federal agencies and foundations. To access the guide, you must log in using your NDSU email username and password.

11.8.2012. Export control regulations. Federal export control regulations govern what hardware, software, materials, and technology can be exported out of the country or exposed to certain foreign nationals studying and working within our programs and laboratories. The controls apply to items considered sensitive for military, security, or commercial purposes. An external consultant, Don Fischer, of Fischer and Associates, visited campus to discuss the enforcement of export control regulations at major research institutions and initiated a risk assessment for NDSU. Mr. Fischer has met with a number of administrators, faculty, and staff as part of the assessment and will provide recommendations for enhancing export control compliance at NDSU. 

9.25.2012. PHS conflict of interest rules. Requirements for financial conflict of interest (FCOI) disclosure and training have been implemented for PHS proposals and awards.  All project investigators must disclose their financial interests prior to proposal submission (once annually and whenever changes to financial interests occur).  Upon notice of award, all investigators must also complete FCOI training. Refer to NDSU Policy 823, or contact SPA at 231-8908 for more information.  Disclosure Forms are available on the SPA Forms Page.

5.2.2012. Assistance for writing Data Management Plans, now required as part of many grant proposals, can be found at the Research Data website or by contacting Kim Owen, ITS Advanced Applications Coordinator, 231-9522.

11.29.2011. USDA NIFA has revised their indirect cost rates. The rate has changed from 22% of total federal funds (equivalent of 28.205% of total direct costs) to 30% of total federal funds (equivalent of 42.857% of total direct costs) for many of the grants funded by USDA/NIFA. Since the new rate is so close to NDSU's federally negotiated rate for on-campus research (44.5% of modified total direct costs), it is suggested to calculate using both rates. The rate that results in the lowest amount of indirect costs is the rate that is to be used. For questions, contact SPA or The new rates described above do not apply to all USDA programs. See this helpful chart which displays the range of USDA programs with the indirect cost rates that apply to each:

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Phone: 701.231.8045
Physical/delivery address:  1735 NDSU Research Park Drive/Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address:  P.O. Box 6050—Dept. 4000/Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: RCA

Last Updated: Monday, April 24, 2017 4:58:09 PM
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