SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION FOR NIDCD CAREER DEVELOPMENT (K-SERIES) AWARD 
APPLICANTS AND ACTIVE GRANTEES

Release Date:  June 27, 2000

NOTICE:  DC-00-002

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

This notice provides new information to potential applicants and to active 
grantees on the unique guidelines and award provisions of the career 
development (K-award) programs offered by the National Institute on Deafness 
and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD).  This notice is more fully 
developed on the NIDCD website 
(URL: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/funding/types/kseries-supp.asp).  
Prospective applicants should also consult the relevant trans-NIH K-award 
program announcement (PA) referenced below and the Form PHS-398, Section IV: 
RESEARCH CAREER AWARDS, for instructions on preparing an application.

The present notice supplements the following trans-NIH PAs issued in the NIH 
Guide:

PA-00-020:  Independent Scientist Award (K02) (issued on 12/02/99)
PA-00-003:  Mentored Clinical Scientist Development Award (K08) (issued on 
10/08/99)
PA-00-004:  Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23)
(issued on 10/08/99)
PA-00-005:  Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research (K24)
(issued on 10/08/99)

These PAs may be accessed using the following URL convention:

http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-XX-XXX.html (e.g., PA-00-020).

This notice replaces and supersedes: NIDCD Supplemental Information to the 
NIH Career Development (K Award) Program Announcements, NIH Guide, April 27, 
1999.

Increased salary levels for the K02, K08 and K23 awards made by the NIDCD are 
effective for competing applications submitted for the October 1, 2000 and 
subsequent receipt dates.

INDEPENDENT SCIENTIST AWARD (K02)

The K02 award provides up to five years of salary support to recently 
independent scientists, having research support at the time the award is 
made, who demonstrate the need for a period of intensive research focus (at 
least 75 percent effort) in order to foster their career development as 
outstanding scientists. Applicants for the K02 award must document within the 
application that they will have peer-reviewed research support at the time of 
the award, or are awaiting a funding decision on a submitted research grant 
application.  However, scientists whose work is primarily theoretical may 
apply for this award in the absence of external research grant support, as 
per the trans-NIH K02 announcement (PA-00-020).  It is the policy of the 
NIDCD not to renew a K02 award beyond its original period of five years.  
Scientists with firm salary support for their research endeavors must 
demonstrate a compelling need for a K02 award (e.g., release time from other 
duties for research).

Eligibility Requirements

The applicant must hold a doctoral degree and have demonstrated independent 
research accomplishments at the time of application.  Applicants will 
normally have had at least five years of postdoctoral research experience, 
but not yet be considered well established in the research area of the K02 
application.

Allowable Costs

1.  Salary

Beginning with awards made from applications submitted for the October 1, 
2000 and subsequent receipt dates, the NIDCD will provide up to $75,000 per 
year of salary support, based on the established salary structure at the 
applicant"s institution for staff members of equivalent qualifications, rank 
and responsibilities.  When requested, the NIDCD will provide fringe benefits 
based on the sponsoring institution"s established policies and on the 
proportion of the applicant"s salary provided by the K02 award.  Salary 
support in currently funded Federal research grants generally must be 
forfeited upon award of a K02 grant and cannot be rebudgeted to another 
budget category on the research grant.  Consult with the NIDCD program 
official listed under INQUIRIES if you receive salary support from more than 
one Federal research grant.

2.  Research Development Support

The NIDCD uses the K02 award for salary support only, and not for the support 
of incidental expenses related to research and career development, such as 
tuition, fees, books, publication costs or travel to scientific meetings.

MENTORED CLINICAL SCIENTIST DEVELOPMENT AWARD (K08) AND MENTORED PATIENT-
ORIENTED RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT AWARD (K23)
 
The purpose of the K08 award and the K23 award is to foster the development 
of clinically trained professionals into independent investigators in the 
biomedical and behavioral scientific mission areas of the NIDCD.  These 
awards serve to facilitate the awardee"s progression from mentored research 
status to research independence, not to maintain a promising clinician-
scientist in postdoctoral training status.  Furthermore, these awards are not 
designed for individuals seeking to change their career trajectories from 
clinical practice to research, but for individuals seeking to integrate both 
elements in their career.  Hence, the applicant should demonstrate in the 
application how the K08 or K23 award will enable them, in the short- or long-
term, to transfer scientific knowledge to clinical practice.  Candidates 
seeking to concentrate their research career development on fundamental 
research should apply for a K08 award.  Candidates seeking to concentrate 
their research career development on "patient-oriented research," as defined 
in PA-00-005, should apply for a K23 award.  The choice of appropriate 
mentorship is considered critical to the success of a candidate’s research 
career development plan and details of the plan are closely scrutinized.  In 
addition to the primary mentor, one or more co-mentors may be designated. The 
role(s) of the mentor(s) in the career development plan and the schedule for 
contact between the candidate and the mentor(s) must be carefully described 
in the application.  To facilitate regular face-to-face contact within the 
mentoring relationship, the primary mentor should be based at the applicant"s 
home institution or at an institution within a reasonable distance (i.e., 
approximately 100 miles) of the applicant"s institution. 

The NIDCD strongly encourages K08 and K23 recipients who are successfully 
progressing in their career development program to submit an application for 
independent research support through an NIH research project grant mechanism, 
typically the new-investigator R01 grant, during the latter years of their 
award.  This will facilitate a smooth, uninterrupted transition from the 
mentored research career stage to the independent research career stage.

Eligibility Requirements

The applicant should hold a clinical doctoral degree, have completed 
postgraduate clinical training and have secured employment in an academic or 
nonacademic research institution prior to award of a K08 or K23 grant.  
However, one may submit an application during the final stages of clinical 
training.  In certain cases, the NIDCD may consider an individual holding a 
doctoral degree in a non-clinical discipline, but certified or licensed to 
perform clinical duties, eligible for these career development awards, 
providing the individual’s career goals are to combine research with clinical 
practice. Individuals holding both clinical and non-clinical doctoral degrees 
are eligible.  Two years of prior research experience, including experiences 
at the undergraduate, predoctoral and postdoctoral levels, is expected of K08 
and K23 applicants. Individuals holding positions of senior academic rank, 
such as associate professor or professor, or the equivalent in non-academic 
settings, are not eligible to apply for these awards. Consult with the NIDCD 
program official listed under INQUIRIES concerning your eligibility for these 
programs.

The NIDCD encourages early-stage clinician-scientists to consider applying 
for one year of support through an NIDCD R03 award, if needed to demonstrate 
the feasibility of the research to be proposed in their K08 or K23 
application.

The K-awardee may hold an NIDCD R03 award concurrent with the K08 or K23 
award, providing the aggregate number of years of R03 support (prior to and 
during the K award) does not exceed three years and that the R03 does not 
provide the K-awardee with additional salary support.  The purpose of such an 
R03 grant is to provide the mentored K-awardee with additional research funds 
to support the transition to independence. The research specific aims (SAs) 
of the R03 application may overlap, but should expand upon the SAs of the K08 
or K23 award, rather than duplicate the SAs of the latter award. In this 
case, the concurrent professional effort associated with these awards is 
considered overlapping rather than additive. It is also possible for a K-
awardee to serve as a co-investigator (Co-I) on another PI’s research grant, 
providing the Co-I’s overall percentage effort does not exceed 100%.  K08 and 
K23 recipients offered research support from other Federal agencies or from 
private professional and voluntary organizations and foundations should 
consult with the NIDCD program official listed under INQUIRIES prior to 
accepting the non-Public Health Service award.

Allowable Costs

1.  Salary

The NIDCD shall provide salary support up to a maximum of $105,000, plus 
commensurate fringe benefits, based on the applicant institution’s 
established salary structure for a full-time, 12-month staff member of 
equivalent qualifications, rank and responsibilities in the department 
concerned. (Current NIDCD K08/K23 awardees will continue to receive up to 
$75,000 for each remaining year of the award.)

2. Research Development Support

The NIDCD will provide up to $50,000 per annum for the research development 
expenses outlined in PA-00-003 and PA-00-004, including expenses relating to 
travel of the designated external advisory committee to the awardee’s 
institution (see later section on External Advisory Committee).

If additional research development support is needed for an NIDCD-supported 
K08 or K23 grant already in progress to help transition the awardee to 
independence, an NIDCD R03 may be submitted. In the event that the limit of 
three years of aggregate R03 support has already been reached, additional 
support may be requested from the NIDCD as an administrative supplement 
application if compelling justification can be provided.  The awardee should 
consult with the NIDCD program official listed under INQUIRIES prior to 
submitting such an administrative supplement application.

Application Procedures

1.  Career Development Plan

In addition to the guidelines in PA-00-003 and PA-00-004, the NIDCD requires 
that applicants describe plans to complete a graduate-level didactic course 
in biostatistics and research design during the first year of the award or 
provide evidence that such training was previously completed by the 
applicant. 

2.  External Advisory Committee

The NIDCD requires that the applicant, in consultation with his/her 
mentor(s), configure an external advisory committee, to be described in the 
application, composed of two scientists from outside the applicant’s 
institution who are experts in the field of the proposed research career 
development, but who are not mentors or collaborators of the applicant or the 
applicant’s mentor.  The scientists should have records of mentoring new 
investigators and of Federal research funding.  The external advisory 
committee members shall commit to be available to the candidate for 
consultation on an as-needed basis [beyond the input of the mentor(s)] and to 
site visit the awardee and his/her primary mentor at the home institution 
twice during the period of the K-award, in the first half of the second year 
and in the latter half of the fourth year of the award period.  Each external 
advisory committee member shall write a letter, to be included with the 
application, stating his/her commitment.  The underlying goal of the external 
advisory committee is to provide the awardee, the mentor, the institution and 
the NIDCD with a mechanism for quality assurance on the conduct of the 
research career development program.  The specific purposes of these site 
visits are: 1) to advise the awardee in attaining the goals of the career 
development program, and 2) to help ensure that the institution’s commitments 
to the terms of the award, including the awardee’s protected research career 
development time, the research facilities and resources available and the 
mentorship arrangement, are being met. The travel costs associated with these 
site visits shall be budgeted within the application as research development 
expenses. A report of the input of the external advisory committee to the 
awardee and his/her institution, signed by each committee member, should be 
incorporated into the Application for Continuation Grant (PHS Form 2590) 
(progress report), submitted to the NIDCD by the awardee’s institution for 
Years Three and Five of the award.

MIDCAREER INVESTIGATOR AWARD IN PATIENT-ORIENTED RESEARCH (K24)

The NIDCD will support established clinician-investigators who have a record 
of Federal or private research grant funding, past and present, and 
scientific accomplishment in patient-oriented research who seek protected 
time to: 1) enhance their research program and capabilities, and 2) mentor 
medical residents, clinical fellows and/or junior clinical faculty in 
research. Individuals appropriate for the K24 award generally have attained 
the academic rank of full-professor, or the equivalent in non-academic 
settings. Such individuals are often at a period in their careers when their 
research time has been seriously challenged by the increasing demands of 
clinical service, teaching, clinical training and administration.  The award 
protects up to 50% of the time of such individuals and allows them to become 
role models for newer clinician-investigators during a period of research 
renewal.  Applicants for this career development award must present a 
compelling justification for the need and utility of this mechanism for their 
continued career development in patient-oriented research.

SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS FOR NIDCD K-AWARDS

In addition to the original application and three copies sent to the NIH 
Center for Scientific Review, send two additional copies of the application 
(and five sets of appendices) to:

Chief, Scientific Review Branch
Division of Extramural Research
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
6120 Executive Boulevard, Room 400-C, MSC 7180
Bethesda, MD  20892-7180 (regular mail)
Rockville, MD 20852 (overnight/express mail)

INQUIRIES

Consultation with the following program official, responsible for the NIDCD 
extramural research training program, is strongly encouraged prior to 
submitting a K-award application. Direct inquiries to:

Daniel A. Sklare, Ph.D.
Research Training Officer
Division of Extramural Research
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
Executive Plaza South, Rm. 400C, MSC-7180
6120 Executive Blvd.
Bethesda, MD 20892-7180 (regular mail)
Rockville, MD 20852 (overnight/express mail)
Tel:     (301) 496-1804
FAX:  (301) 402-6251
Email:  daniel_sklare@nih.gov



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