Department of Health and Human Services

Part 1. Overview Information
Participating Organization(s)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Components of Participating Organizations

National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)

Funding Opportunity Title

NIMHD Minority Health and Health Disparities International Research Training (T37)

Activity Code

T37 Minority International Research Training Grants

Announcement Type

Reissue of RFA-MD-08-006

Related Notices

None

Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number

RFA-MD-13-002

Companion Funding Opportunity

None

Number of Applications

Only one application per institution is allowed, as defined in Section III. 3. Additional Information on Eligibility.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s)

93.307

Funding Opportunity Purpose

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) invites applications for the Minority Health and Health Disparities International Research Training (MHIRT) awards.  These awards will support programs to offer international research training opportunities at a foreign site to qualified undergraduate, post-baccalaureates or graduate students in the life, physical, or social sciences; or medical students, dental students, or students in other health-professional programs who have not yet received terminal degrees who are from groups underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research.   

Key Dates
Posted Date

January 16, 2013

Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)

February 20, 2013

Letter of Intent Due Date

February 20, 2013

Application Due Date(s)

March 20, 2013, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization.

AIDS Application Due Date(s)

Not Applicable

Scientific Merit Review

May/June 2013

Advisory Council Review

August 2013

Earliest Start Date(s)

December 2013

Expiration Date

March 21, 2013

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide including the Supplemental Instructions to the SF424 (R&R) for Preparing Institutional Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Application, except where instructed to do otherwise (in this FOA or in a Notice from the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts). Conformance to all requirements (both in the Application Guide and the FOA) is required and strictly enforced. Applicants must read and follow all application instructions in the Application Guide as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions. Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

Table of Contents

Part 1. Overview Information
Part 2. Full Text of the Announcement
Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
Section II. Award Information
Section III. Eligibility Information
Section IV. Application and Submission Information
Section V. Application Review Information
Section VI. Award Administration Information
Section VII. Agency Contacts
Section VIII. Other Information

Part 2. Full Text of Announcement

Section I. Funding Opportunity Description

Background

The FY 2009-2013 NIH Strategic Plan for Health Disparities lists expanding and enhancing research capacity to create a culturally sensitive and culturally competent workforce as one of three major goals each NIH Institute and Center must strive to achieve. The NIH recognizes a unique and compelling need to promote diversity in the biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research workforce. The NIH expects efforts to diversify the workforce to lead to the recruitment of talented researchers from underrepresented groups; improve the quality of the educational and training environment; balance and broaden the perspective in setting research priorities; and improve the Nation’s capacity to address and eliminate health disparities.

As the lead Institute in the mission to improve minority health and end health disparities, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) fully recognizes the importance of developing and training a diverse research workforce to accomplish this mission.  Moreover, published reports from the American Association of Medical Colleges, National Science Foundation, the National Academy of Sciences, American Federation For Medical Research (http://www.afmr.org), and others (J. National Medical Association 97, 1063 {2005}) provide evidence that there is a need to replenish and diversify the U.S. research workforce.  To address the compelling need to diversify the research workforce and accomplish the NIMHD mission, a portfolio of grant programs has  been developed to promote and support the training of racial and ethnic minorities and other populations underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research.  Moreover, NIMHD also recognizes that improving minority health and eliminating health disparities requires innovative collaborations and partnerships.  The Minority Health and Health Disparities International Research Training (MHIRT) program is one program that provides both training experiences and the opportunity for innovative research collaborations and partnerships.  

Program Objective

The overall goal of the MHIRT program is to provide short-term global research training opportunities for qualified undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, or graduate students in the life, physical, or social sciences; or medical students, dental students, or students in other health-professional programs who have not yet received terminal degrees, and who are from ethnic and racial minority and other populations underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research.

Specific objectives of the MHIRT program include the following:

The training program must be in the basic, biomedical, clinical, or behavioral and social research aspects of the health-related sciences, and should be of sufficient depth to enable selected trainees, upon completion of the program, to have a thorough exposure to the principles underlying the conduct of research. The proposed institutional research training program may complement other ongoing research training and career development programs at the applicant institution, but the proposed research training experiences must be distinct from those research training programs currently receiving Federal support.

Programmatic Approach

MHIRT programs are expected to accommodate at least eight to ten students per year as the annual budget allows. The training should occur in a single session anticipated to be 10 to 12 weeks in duration during the summer or for one semester during an academic year. MHIRT programs may accept applications from qualified students from non-grantee institutions as well as from the grantee institution to expand access to a diverse talent pool.  At least 75 percent of a grantee's MHIRT trainees must be undergraduate students.  Post-baccalaureates accepted into graduate programs are eligible to participate in the summer after graduation, prior to their initiation of graduate studies. Post-baccalaureates are considered graduate students for the purposes of percent allocation of trainees.

Applicants must provide a description of the proposed program that incorporates the elements listed below and include projected timelines for the program, expected outcome(s), and methodology for the assessment of the effectiveness of the training. Trainees may be involved in primary data collection and/or secondary data analysis. However, all research activities must be in the service of training. Trainees cannot be assigned routine clinical or laboratory work that is not directly in support of their training.

Required activities:

Section II. Award Information
Funding Instrument

Grant: A support mechanism providing money, property, or both to an eligible entity to carry out an approved project or activity.

Application Types Allowed

New
Renewal

The OER Glossary and the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types.

Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

NIMHD intend to commit an estimated total of $5 million in FY 2014.

Award Budget

Application budgets are limited to $250,000 in annual direct costs.

Award Project Period

Scope of the proposed project should determine the project period. The maximum period is 5 years.

Other Award Budget Information
Stipends, Tuition, and Fees

Trainee Stipends: Trainees may be paid a stipend to help defray living expenses during the foreign research training experience according to their academic professional level experience.  The approved stipend levels are $1200 per month for undergraduates (Junior/Senior), $1600 per month for Post-baccalaureate/Master level degree students, and $2000 per month for Pre-doctoral degree level students.  Trainees are not viewed as employees of either the Federal government or the awardee institution. 

Foreign Faculty Mentors: Foreign mentors may request funds up to $500 for use in research support activities related to hosting the trainee.  This amount may be offered to only mentors from foreign institutions that do not charge student bench fees or tuition.  Support for foreign faculty may not be requested if support is requested for a U.S. faculty mentor for the research training period at that foreign country site.

U.S. Faculty Mentors: Applicants may request salary support for up to 3 calendar months for a U.S. faculty mentor at a foreign country training site where adequate foreign faculty mentorship is not available to the trainees.  U.S. faculty salary support equivalent to U.S. institutional salary may be requested only if no institutional or federal salary support is available during the research training period as documented by the applicant institution administrative official, and such practice is consistent with institutional policy.  Applicants can request support for a maximum of two U.S. faculty mentors for up to 3 calendar months in two foreign countries annually. The 3 calendar months of salary support may be used for multiple faculty mentors if a single mentor is not able to remain in the foreign site for the duration of the training program.

Tuition and Fees: Funds for tuition and fees associated with the international research experience may be requested up to a maximum level of $2000 per trainee, regardless of academic professional level.  Tuition at the U.S. institution or bench fees at the foreign institution during the 10-12 week foreign research training period will be allowed only if such charges are required of all persons in similar training status at the applicant or host foreign institution. Tuition for specific coursework related to the project, such as language courses at the U.S. or foreign institution can be supported.  The program may provide funds to cover fees for visas required for trainee participation in the program.  All expenses in this category of tuition and fees should be itemized and justified for each foreign site.

Trainee Travel

Airfare and local ground transportation to each foreign site may be requested for trainees and U.S. faculty mentors.  Foreign site housing and  living expenses(included within per diem costs) of up to $2400 per month may be requested for trainees and U.S. faculty mentors (when appropriate and supported by applicant's program plan). Trainees from other institutions may be supported for travel and per diem expenses to attend orientation and responsible conduct of research training as well as post-travel activities associated with the MHIRT program at the PD/PI’s institution or at a collaborating site designated by the PD/PI.

Trainee travel to attend scientific meetings and workshops that the institution determines to be necessary for the individual’s research training experience is an allowable trainee expense. 

Training Related Expenses
Program Administration

Training Related Expenses: Funds to support trainee research costs (such as lab supplies, computer access, interpreters) at the foreign site may be requested for up to a maximum level of $1000 per month per trainee, regardless of academic professional level.

Additional funds may be requested to cover other expenses directly related to the MHIRT program activities, including program and cultural orientation, responsible conduct of research training, and health insurance. Each cost must be itemized in the budget justification section.  The applicant must ensure that all trainees have comprehensive medical and international travel insurance for the duration of the trainees’ international research experiences.  If institutional or personal medical insurance does not adequately cover trainees during foreign travel, self-only medical insurance may be charged to the grant only if such practice is consistent with institutional policy.

Program Administration: The applicant institution may request up to $50,000 in salary support for the PD/PI, other administrative personnel, or other administrative costs related to the MHIRT program.  The administrative duties and responsibilities and time commitments for personnel receiving salary support should be thoroughly described and justified in the application. 

U.S. faculty mentors from other institutions may be supported for travel and per diem expenses to attend training advisory committee meetings. Travel and per diem expenses may be requested for short-term visits (less than 1 month stay) of foreign faculty mentors to the U.S. applicant institution to participate in MHIRT program associated student training activities and/or training advisory committee meetings.

The PDs/PIs are encouraged to attend the annual NIMHD Grantees Meeting, held at or near NIH, Bethesda, MD.  Co-Investigators or other members of the project team may also attend as warranted.

Funds for travel to this meeting should be included in the budget request.

Indirect Costs

Indirect Costs (also known as Facilities & Administrative [F&A] Costs) are reimbursed at 8% of modified total direct costs (exclusive of tuition and fees and expenditures for equipment), rather than on the basis of a negotiated rate agreement.

NIH grants policies as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement will apply to the applications submitted and awards made in response to this FOA.

Section III. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants

Eligible Organizations

Higher Education Institutions

The following types of Higher Education Institutions are always encouraged to apply for NIH support as Public or Private Institutions of Higher Education:

The sponsoring institution must assure support for the proposed program. Appropriate institutional commitment to the program includes the provision of adequate staff, facilities, and educational resources that can contribute to the planned program.

Foreign Institutions

Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are not eligible to apply. Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are not eligible to apply.
Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are allowed.

Required Registrations

Applicant organizations must complete the following registrations as described in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide to be eligible to apply for or receive an award. Applicants must have a valid Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number in order to begin each of the following registrations.

All Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD(s)/PI(s)) must also work with their institutional officials to register with the eRA Commons or ensure their existing eRA Commons account is affiliated with the eRA Commons account of the applicant organization.

All registrations must be completed by the application due date. Applicant organizations are strongly encouraged to start the registration process at least 6 weeks prior to the application due date.

Eligible Individuals (Program Director/Principal Investigator)

Any individual(s) with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research as the Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) is invited to work with his/her organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for NIH support.

For institutions/organizations proposing multiple PD(s)/PI(s), visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide.

The PD/PI should be an established investigator in the scientific area in which the application is targeted and capable of providing both administrative and scientific leadership to the development and implementation of the proposed program. The PD/PI will be expected to monitor and assess the program and submit all documents and reports as required. 

2. Cost Sharing

This FOA does not require cost sharing as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

3. Additional Information on Eligibility

Number of Applications

Only one application per institution (normally identified by having a unique DUNS number or NIH IPF number) is allowed. For institutions of higher education, separate institutions for purposes of this FOA are entities governed by different Chancellors or Presidents.

NIH will not accept any application that is essentially the same as one already reviewed within the past thirty-seven months (as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement), except for submission:

Mentors

Researchers from diverse backgrounds, including racial and ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities, and women are encouraged to participate as mentors. Mentors should have research expertise and experience relevant to the proposed program. Mentors must be committed to continue their involvement throughout the total period of the award. It is expected that trainees will have a U.S. faculty mentor and an international mentor from a collaborating foreign site, both with experience with international research collaboration. U.S. faculty mentors may serve as the international mentor for trainees at foreign training sites where adequate foreign mentorship is not available.

Trainees

Trainees must be undergraduates, eligible post-baccalaureates, or graduate students in the life, physical, or social sciences; or medical students, dental students, or students in other health-professional programs who have not yet received terminal degrees. It is recommended that all undergraduate participants being considered for the program have completed at least two years of coursework in a major related to biomedical or behavioral health science and have a minimum GPA of 3.0.  At least 75 percent of trainees each year must be undergraduate students.

Citizenship

Trainees must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence (i.e., possess a currently valid Alien Registration Receipt Card I-551, or other legal verification of such status). Non-citizen nationals are generally persons born in outlying possessions of the United States (e.g., American Samoa). Individuals on temporary or student visas are not eligible to participate in the MHIRT Program.

Groups Underrepresented in Biomedical, Behavioral, Clinical and Social Sciences Research

In a number of health areas that disproportionately affect minority and underserved populations, there is a critical need for trained researchers in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences. Especially in the life, physical, and social sciences, where small numbers are insufficient to meet the increasing needs in these areas  (http://www.nap.edu), published reports from AAMC, NSF, National Academy of Sciences, American Federation For Medical Research (http://www.afmr.org), and others (J. National Medical Association 97, 1063 (2005)) indicate that there is a need to replenish and diversify the U.S. workforce. The situation is especially grave for minorities underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences. NIMHD recognizes that through the development of training programs directed at these underrepresented groups, the knowledge and skills needed to conduct  research and to prepare trainees for successful careers as biomedical and behavioral scientists to eliminate disparities in health and disease experienced by members of minority communities is greatly enhanced.

Trainees for this FOA must be individuals from a group underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences.  This includes members of racial and ethnic groups that have been identified by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in biomedical research (including Blacks and African Americans, Hispanic Americans or Latinos, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders); rural; and low socio-economic groups.   

Low-income individuals are defined as individuals who come from a family with an annual income below established low-income thresholds. These thresholds are based on family size, published by the U.S. Bureau of the Census; adjusted annually for changes in the Consumer Price Index; and adjusted by the Secretary for use in all health professions programs. The Secretary periodically publishes these income levels at http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/index.shtml. For individuals from low income backgrounds, the grantee must be able to demonstrate that such candidates (a) have qualified for Federal disadvantaged assistance; or (b) have received any of the following student loans: Health Professional Student Loans (HPSL), Loans for Disadvantaged Student Program; or have received scholarships from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under the Scholarship for Individuals with Exceptional Financial Need.

Individuals from rural backgrounds are defined as those who come from a family residing in an area designated by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as non-metropolitan (http://www.census.gov/population/www/metroareas/metroarea.html). The home address of prospective trainees can be entered into the Rural Assistance Center’s ‘Am I Rural’ website (http://ims2.missouri.edu/rac/amirural/) to obtain a Core Based Statistical Areas designation of Metropolitan, Micropolitan, or Rural. Prospective trainees from areas with Micropolitan or Rural designations meet MHIRT eligibility requirements.

Applicants must describe, as well as provide demographic data on, all categories of the eligible student populations that are available for recruitment to the program at their institution and other institutions. 

Section IV. Application and Submission Information

1. Requesting an Application Package

Applicants must download the SF424 (R&R) application package associated with this funding opportunity using the “Apply for Grant Electronically” button in this FOA or following the directions provided at Grants.gov.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide except where instructed in this funding opportunity announcement to do otherwise. Conformance to the requirements in the Application Guide is required and strictly enforced. Applications that are out of compliance with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

For information on Application Submission and Receipt, visit Frequently Asked Questions – Application Guide, Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.

Letter of Intent

Although a letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and does not enter into the review of a subsequent application, the information that it contains allows IC staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan the review.

By the date listed in Part 1. Overview Information, prospective applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent that includes the following information:

The letter of intent should be sent to:

Robert Nettey, MD
Chief, Scientific Review Branch
Office of Extramural Research Administration
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)
6707 Democracy Blvd., Suite 800, MSC 5465
Bethesda, MD 20892-5465
Telephone: (301) 496-3996
Fax: (301) 480-4049
Email: netteyr@mail.nih.gov

Required and Optional Components

The forms package associated with this FOA includes all applicable components, mandatory and optional.  Please note that some components marked optional in the application package are required for submission of applications for this FOA. Follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide to ensure you complete all appropriate “optional” components.

Page Limitations

All page limitations described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and the Table of Page Limits must be followed.

SF424 (R&R) Other Project Information Component

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide for Preparing Institutional Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA), with the following modifications:

Project Summary /Abstract

Provide an abstract of the entire application, including the long-term goals and objectives of the program. Include the rationale and design of the program, the planned duration of the program and the projected number of trainees, including their levels (i.e.,  undergraduate, graduate).

Advisory Committee (Uploaded via the Other Attachments section)

A plan must be provided for the appointment of an Advisory Committee to monitor progress. Composition, responsibilities, frequency of meetings, and other relevant information should be included. Describe the composition of the Advisory Committee, identifying the role and the desired expertise of members. A plan for Advisory Committee approval and selection of trainees should be included. Describe how the Advisory Committee will function in providing oversight of the development, implementation, and evaluation of recruitment strategies, the recruitment and retention of candidates, and the evaluation of the overall effectiveness of the program. Note that proposed Advisory Committee members should not be named in the application, particularly if they include individuals from outside the institution. However, renewal applications with Advisory Committees should include names of existing external advisors. Please name your file “Advisory_Committee.pdf”

The Advisory Committee should contain at least six members. It should include at least 4 U.S. and foreign faculty members directly involved in the MHIRT program and at least 2 faculty members from appropriate fields who are not involved in the MHIRT program.

The filename provided for each “Other Attachment” will be the name used for the bookmark in the electronic application in eRA Commons.

Research and Related (R&R) Budget Component

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide with the following modifications:

PHS 398 Research Training Program Plan

All Supplemental Instructions to the SF424 (R&R) for Preparing Institutional Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Application must be followed, with the additional instructions described below:

Particular attention must be given to the required Training Data Tables.

Program Administration (Component of Program Plan)

Describe the strengths, leadership and administrative skills, and scientific expertise of the Training PD/PI. Include the planned strategy and administrative structure to be used to oversee and monitor the program. For applications with multiple PDs/PIs, address the Leadership Plan and how the combined knowledge, skills and experience of the individual PDs/PIs will enhance the likelihood of success of the program. Applicants must also provide evidence of their ability and expertise to manage an international training program, including logistical and scheduling demands, scientific coordination, and managerial oversight of the foreign activity to ensure compliance with U.S. government requirements for training and training-related research. Applicants must also describe a process for contingency planning in the event that training at a proposed foreign site cannot begin or must be discontinued due to U.S. State Department travel restrictions or other safety issues.

Program Faculty (Component of Program Plan)

Describe in general terms the complementary expertise and experiences of the proposed mentors. Provide an overview of their active research and other scholarly activities, as well as track records of mentoring and training. Applicants must also provide information regarding the history of international research and/or training collaboration.

Proposed Training (Component of Program Plan)

Provide an overview of the proposed program: Describe the immediate and long-term objectives of the program, including activities that will be used to ensure that the objectives of the program are met. Include information about planned courses, curricula, seminars, workshops, or tutorials that will be incorporated into the training program. Institutions with existing training or career development programs must explain what distinguishes this program from the others, how the programs will synergize, if applicable, and justify that the faculty, pool of potential trainees, and resources are robust enough to support additional programs. The description should include planned strategies to be used to ensure that the objectives are met. The PD/PI should also describe past research career development activities/experiences including those of mentors, documenting the success of former trainees in establishing independent productive scientific careers. In addition, applicants must also provide the following:

Program Evaluation (Component of Program Plan)

Describe an evaluation plan to review and determine the effectiveness of the program. This should include plans to obtain feedback from current and former scholars to help identify weaknesses and to provide suggestions for program improvements, as well as plans for assessing trainees’ career development and progression. Metrics should include, but are not limited to, the following:

Specified evaluation metrics should be tied to the goals of the program. Evaluation results should be included in future competing continuation (renewal) applications and in the Final Progress Report.

Trainee Candidates (Component of Program Plan)

Describe in general terms the pool of potential candidates including information about the types of prior clinical and research training and the expected career level required for the program. Do not name prospective trainees. Describe plans to recruit candidates and explain how these plans will be implemented (see also section on Recruitment and Retention Plan to Enhance Diversity). Describe the evaluation criteria to be used in the selection of trainees. Provide brief summaries of training plans that the program will employ. The application should contain a description of how training plans will be tailored to the needs of the prospective candidates, taking into account their past experiences and competences.

Institutional Environment and Commitment to the Program (Component of Program Plan)

The application must include a statement from the applicant institution describing the commitment to the planned program. The institution must assure that essential time will be allowed for the PD(s)/PI(s), other faculty and mentors.

Recruitment and Retention Plan to Enhance Diversity

Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for Recruitment and Retention Plan to Enhance Diversity as provided in Chapter 8 of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide. 

Plan for Instruction in the Responsible Conduct of Research

Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for Plan for Instruction in the Responsible Conduct of Research as provided in Chapter 8 of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide. 

Appendix

Do not use the Appendix to circumvent page limits. Follow all instructions for the Appendix as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

3. Submission Dates and Times

Part I. Overview Information contains information about Key Dates. Applicants are encouraged to submit in advance of the deadline to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission.

Organizations must submit applications via Grants.gov, the online portal to find and apply for grants across all Federal agencies. Applicants must then complete the submission process by tracking the status of the application in the eRA Commons, NIH’s electronic system for grants administration.

Applicants are responsible for viewing their application in the eRA Commons to ensure accurate and successful submission.

Information on the submission process and a definition of on-time submission are provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

4. Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)

This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

5. Funding Restrictions

All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

Pre-award costs are allowable only as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.     

6. Other Submission Requirements and Information

Applications must be submitted electronically following the instructions described in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide.  Paper applications will not be accepted.

Applicants must complete all required registrations before the application due date. Section III. Eligibility Information contains information about registration.

For assistance with your electronic application or for more information on the electronic submission process, visit Applying Electronically.

Important reminders:

All PD(s)/PI(s) must include their eRA Commons ID in the Credential field of the Senior/Key Person Profile Component of the SF 424(R&R) Application Package. Failure to register in the Commons and to include a valid PD/PI Commons ID in the credential field will prevent the successful submission of an electronic application to NIH.

The applicant organization must ensure that the DUNS number it provides on the application is the same number used in the organization’s profile in the eRA Commons and for the System for Award Management (SAM). Additional information may be found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

See more tips for avoiding common errors.

Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness and responsiveness by NIMHD, NIH. Applications that are incomplete and/or nonresponsive will not be reviewed.  

Post Submission Materials

Applicants are required to follow the instructions for post-submission materials, as described in NOT-OD-10-115.

Section V. Application Review Information

1. Criteria

Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process. As part of the NIH mission, all applications submitted to the NIH in support of biomedical and behavioral research are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.

Overall Impact

Reviewers will provide an overall impact/priority score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the program to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved, in consideration of the following review criteria and additional review criteria (as applicable for the project proposed).

Scored Review Criteria

Reviewers will consider each of the review criteria below in the determination of scientific merit, and give a separate score for each. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact.

Training Program and Environment

Are the objectives, design, direction, and quality of the proposed short-term research training program appropriate? Does the proposed program provide suitable training for the levels of trainees (e.g., undergraduate, graduate) being proposed and the area of science to be supported by the program? Is the quality of proposed course contents and training experience appropriate for all levels of trainees to be included in the program? Does the program have access to candidates for short-term research training and the ability to recruit high quality, short-term trainees from the applicant institution or some other health-professional school? Are the research facilities and research environment conducive to preparing trainees for successful careers as biomedical scientists? Is the proposed program of training likely to ensure that trainees will be prepared for successful and productive scientific careers?  Do the courses, where relevant, and research training experiences address state-of-the-art science relevant to the aims of the program? Does the program provide training in inter- or multi-disciplinary research and/or provide training in state-of-the-art or novel methodologies and techniques?  Is a significant level of institutional commitment to the program evident?  Has a plan for local monitoring, oversight and mentoring of trainees at the foreign site(s) been established?  

Training Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s))

Does the Training PD/PI have the scientific background, expertise, and experience to provide strong leadership, direction, management, and administration of the proposed research training program? Does the Training PD/PI plan to commit sufficient time to the program to ensure its success? Is sufficient administrative and research training support provided for the program?

For applications designating multiple PD/PIs: Is a strong justification provided that the multiple PD/PI leadership approach will benefit the training program and the trainees? Is a strong and compelling leadership approach evident, including the designated roles and responsibilities, governance, and organizational structure consistent with and justified by the aims of the training program and with the complementary expertise of each of the PDs/PIs?

Preceptors/Mentors

Are sufficient numbers of experienced preceptors/mentors with appropriate expertise and funding available to support the number and level of trainees proposed in the application? Do the preceptors/mentors have strong records as researchers, including successful competition for research support in areas directly related to the proposed research training program? Do the preceptors/mentors have strong records of training pre- and/or postdoctorates?

Trainees

Is a recruitment plan proposed with strategies to attract high quality trainees? Are there well-defined and justified selection criteria and retention strategies? Is a competitive applicant pool in sufficient numbers to warrant the proposed size and levels (predoctoral, postdoctoral and/or short-term) of the training program in evidence? 

Are the quality of the applicant pool and plans for the selection of individuals appointed to the short-term training program appropriate?  Are the size and quality of the applicant pool adequate to support the program?  Are the recruiting procedures, and trainee selection criteria, appropriate and well defined?  Are there advertising plans or other effective strategies to recruit high-quality trainees?

Training Record

How successful are the trainees (or for new applications, other past students/fellows in similar training) in completing the program? How productive are trainees (or for new applications, other past students/fellows) in terms of research accomplishments and publications? How successful are trainees (or other past students/fellows) in obtaining further training appointments, fellowships, and career development awards? How successful are the trainees in achieving productive scientific careers, as evidenced by successful competition for research grants, receipt of honors or awards, high-impact publications, receipt of patents, promotion to scientific leadership positions, and/or other such measures of success? Does the program have a rigorous evaluation plan to assess the quality and effectiveness of the training? Are effective mechanisms in place for obtaining feedback from current and former trainees and monitoring trainees’ subsequent career development?     

Additional Review Criteria

As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will evaluate the following additional items while determining scientific and technical merit, and in providing an overall impact/priority score, but will not give separate scores for these items.   

Protections for Human Subjects

Generally not applicable. Reviewers should bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer.  

Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children 

Generally not applicable. Reviewers should bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer.

Vertebrate Animals

Generally not applicable. Reviewers should bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer.

Biohazards

Generally not applicable. Reviewers should bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer.

Resubmissions

Not Applicable

Renewals

For Renewals, the committee will consider the progress made in the last funding period and the success of the program in attracting and retaining individuals from diverse populations, including populations underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral science. Does the application describe the program’s accomplishments over the past funding period(s)?  Are changes proposed that would improve or strengthen the training experience?

Revisions

Not Applicable

Additional Review Considerations

As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will consider each of the following items, but will not give scores for these items, and should not consider them in providing an overall impact/priority score.   

Recruitment & Retention Plan to Enhance Diversity

Peer reviewers will separately evaluate the recruitment and retention plan to enhance diversity after the overall score has been determined. Reviewers will examine the strategies to be used in the recruitment and retention of individuals from underrepresented groups. The review panel’s evaluation will be included in an administrative note in the summary statement. Plans and past record will be rated as acceptable or unacceptable, and the summary statement will provide the consensus of the review committee.

Training in the Responsible Conduct of Research

Taking into account the specific characteristics of the training program, level of trainee experience, and the particular circumstances of the trainees, the reviewers will address the following questions.  Does the plan satisfactorily address the format of instruction, e.g., lectures, coursework and/or real-time discussion groups?  Do plans include a sufficiently broad selection of subject matter, such as conflict of interest, authorship, data management, human subjects and animal use, and laboratory safety?  Do the plans adequately describe how faculty will participate in the instruction?  Does the plan meet the minimum requirements for RCR, i.e., eight contact hours of instruction every four years?  Plans and past record will be rated as acceptable or unacceptable, and the summary statement will provide the consensus of the review committee.

Select Agent Research

Reviewers will assess the information provided in this section of the application, including (1) the Select Agent(s) to be used in the proposed research, (2) the registration status of all entities where Select Agent(s) will be used, (3) the procedures that will be used to monitor possession use and transfer of Select Agent(s), and (4) plans for appropriate biosafety, biocontainment, and security of the Select Agent(s).

Budget and Period of Support

Reviewers will consider whether the budget and the requested period of support are fully justified and reasonable in relation to the proposed research.

2. Review and Selection Process

Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by (an) appropriate Scientific Review Group(s), convened by NIMHD, in accordance with NIH peer review policy and procedures, using the stated review criteria. Review assignments will be shown in the eRA Commons.

As part of the scientific peer review, all applications:

Appeals of initial peer review will not be accepted for applications submitted response to this FOA.

Applications will be assigned to the appropriate NIH Institute or Center. Applications will compete for available funds with all other recommended applications submitted in response to this FOA. Following initial peer review, recommended applications will receive a second level of review by the National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

After the peer review of the application is completed, the PD/PI will be able to access his or her Summary Statement (written critique) via the eRA Commons

Information regarding the disposition of applications is available in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

Section VI. Award Administration Information

1. Award Notices

If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization for successful applications. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document and will be sent via email to the grantee’s business official.

Awardees must comply with any funding restrictions described in Section IV.5. Funding Restrictions. Selection of an application for award is not an authorization to begin performance. Any costs incurred before receipt of the NoA are at the recipient's risk. These costs may be reimbursed only to the extent considered allowable pre-award costs.      

Any application awarded in response to this FOA will be subject to the DUNS, SAM Registration, and Transparency Act requirements as noted on the Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants website.

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

All NIH grant and cooperative agreement awards include the NIH Grants Policy Statement as part of the NoA. For these terms of award, see the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General  and Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities. More information is provided at Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants.

Leave Policies

In general, trainees may receive stipends during the normal periods of vacation and holidays observed by individuals in comparable training positions at the sponsoring institution. For the purpose of these awards, however, the period between the spring and fall semesters is considered to be an active time of research and research training and is not considered to be a vacation or holiday. Trainees may receive stipends for up to 15 calendar days of sick leave per year. Sick leave may be used for the medical conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth. Trainees may also receive stipends for parental leave as described in NOT-OD-08-064. A period of terminal leave is not permitted, and payment may not be made from traineeship funds for leave not taken. Trainees requiring periods of time away from their research training experience longer than specified here must seek approval from the NIH awarding component for an unpaid leave of absence. Trainees supported by academic institutions should refer to the NIH Institutional NRSA training grant guidelines in the NIH Grants Policy Statement for further guidance regarding vacations and requested leave. 

Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

Not Applicable

3. Reporting

The Non-Competing Continuation Grant Progress Report (PHS 2590) and financial statements as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement are required annually. Continuation support will not be provided until the required forms are submitted and accepted. Chapter 8 of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, Additional Instructions for Preparing a Progress Report for an Institutional Research Training Grant, Including Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards, must be followed.

Failure by the grantee institution to submit required forms in a timely, complete, and accurate manner may result in an expenditure disallowance or a delay in any continuation funding for the award.

The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (Transparency Act), includes a requirement for awardees of Federal grants to report information about first-tier subawards and executive compensation under Federal assistance awards issued in FY2011 or later.  All awardees of applicable NIH grants and cooperative agreements are required to report to the Federal Subaward Reporting System (FSRS) available at www.fsrs.gov on all subawards over $25,000.  See the NIH Grants Policy Statement for additional information on this reporting requirement. 

Other Reporting Requirements

Within the non-competing progress report and final progress report, the following information is required:  (1)  reporting of trainee U.S. citizenship or status as non-citizen national or permanent resident; (2) reporting of the percentage of MHIRT trainees that are undergraduate students and the percentage of other types of eligible students; (3) reporting of information indicating that all trainees were from qualifying groups underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences research designated in this FOA; (4) the GPA of each trainee, and (5) a list of all foreign sites, with the following information about each foreign site: name, telephone number and email address of each of the foreign collaborators; institution name; city and country; and total cost of each of the foreign components/sites for the year that is ending.

A final Progress Report and the expenditure data portion of the Federal Financial Report are required for closeout of an award as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement. Evaluation results should be included as part of the final Progress Report.

4. Evaluation

In carrying out its stewardship of human resource-related programs, the NIH may request information essential to an assessment of the effectiveness of this program from databases and from participants themselves. Participants may be contacted after the completion of this award for periodic updates on various aspects of their employment history, publications, support from research grants or contracts, honors and awards, professional activities, and other information helpful in evaluating the impact of the program.

Within ten years of making awards to undergraduates and within seven years of making awards to graduates under this program, NIMHD will assess the program’s overall outcomes, gauge its effectiveness in enhancing research workforce diversity, and consider whether there is a continuing need for the program.  Upon the completion of this evaluation, NIMHD  will determine whether to (a) continue the program as currently configured, (b) continue the program with modifications, or (c) discontinue the program. 

For programs involving undergraduate students:

For programs involving graduate students:

Section VII. Agency Contacts

We encourage inquiries concerning this funding opportunity and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants.

Application Submission Contacts

Grants.gov Customer Support (Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and submission, downloading or navigating forms)
Contact Center Phone: 800-518-4726
Email: support@grants.gov

GrantsInfo (Questions regarding application instructions and process, finding NIH grant resources)
Telephone 301-435-0714
TTY 301-451-5936
Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov

eRA Commons Help Desk (Questions regarding eRA Commons registration, tracking application status, post submission issues)
Phone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)
TTY: 301-451-5939
Email: commons@od.nih.gov

Scientific/Research Contact(s)

Rick Berzon, PhD
Program Official
Division of Scientific Programs
National Institute on Minority Health & Health Disparities (NIMHD)
Telephone: (301) 402-1366
Email: rick.berzon@nih.gov

Peer Review Contact(s)

Robert Nettey, MD
Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute on Minority Health & Health Disparities (NIMHD)
Telephone: (301) 496-3996
Email: netteyr@mail.nih.gov

Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Priscilla Grant, JD
Chief Grants Management Officer
National Institute on Minority Health & Health Disparities (NIMHD)
Telephone: (301) 594-8412
Email: grantp@mail.nih.gov

Section VIII. Other Information

Recently issued trans-NIH policy notices may affect your application submission. A full list of policy notices published by NIH is provided in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

Authority and Regulations

Awards are made under the authorization of Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as amended (42 USC 241 and 284) and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR 63A and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92.


Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices


Office of Extramural Research (OER) - Home Page Office of Extramural
Research (OER)
  National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Home Page National Institutes of Health (NIH)
9000 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
  Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) - Home Page Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS)
  USA.gov - Government Made Easy
NIH . . . Turning Discovery Into Health

Note: For help accessing PDF, RTF, MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Audio or Video files, see Help Downloading Files.