Department of Health and Human Services
Part 1. Overview Information
Participating Organization(s)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Components of Participating Organizations

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)
National Library of Medicine (NLM)
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS)
Division of Program Coordination, Planning and Strategic Initiatives
Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP)
Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR)
Office of Research on Women’s Health (ORWH)
Office of Strategic Coordination (Common Fund)

Funding Opportunity Title

BD2K Research Education Curriculum Development:  Data Science Overview for Biomedical Scientists (R25)

Activity Code

R25 Education Projects

Announcement Type

New

Related Notices
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number

RFA-ES-16-011

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)

93.113; 93.242; 93.846; 93.350; 93.173; 93.847; 93.398; 93.866; 93.867; 93.853; 93.213; 93.865; 93.279; 93.286; 93.313; 93.856; 93.855; 93.121; 93.840; 93.839; 93.838; 93.837; 93.233; 93.172; 93.310; 93.273; 93.879; 93.351; 93.361

Funding Opportunity Purpose

The NIH Research Education Program (R25) supports research education activities in the mission areas of the NIH.  The over-arching goal of this BD2K  R25 program is to support educational activities that complement and/or enhance the training of a workforce to meet the nation’s biomedical, behavioral and clinical research needs.   

To accomplish the stated over-arching goal, this FOA will support creative educational activities with a primary focus on     Curriculum or Methods Development  in Big Data Science to augment current institutional curricula for the training of predoctoral level biomedical scientists and provide concentrated instruction in the tools, approaches and quantitative analysis concepts in data science. To facilitate the integration of data science into biomedical curricula nationally, this FOA seeks to support a cohort of institutions that will work collaboratively and collectively to produce curricular materials that are findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR).

Key Dates

 

Posted Date

August 10, 2016

Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)

November 7, 2016

Letter of Intent Due Date(s)

Not Applicable

Application Due Date(s)

New Date December 7, 2016 by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of non-AIDS applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on these dates.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early to allow adequate time to make any corrections to errors found in the application during the submission process by the due date.

AIDS Application Due Date(s)

Not Applicable

Scientific Merit Review

New Date March 2017

Advisory Council Review

New Date May 2017

Earliest Start Date

New Date September 2017

Expiration Date

New Date December 8, 2016 per issuance of NOT-RM-17-010. (Original Expiration Date: December 2, 2017)

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the Research Instructions for the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide 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 will not be reviewed


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

The NIH Research Education Program (R25) supports research educational activities that complement other formal training programs in the mission areas of the NIH Institutes and Centers. The over-arching goals of the NIH R25 program are to: (1) complement and/or enhance the training of a workforce to meet the nation’s biomedical, behavioral and clinical research needs; (2) enhance the diversity of the biomedical, behavioral and clinical research workforce; (3) help recruit individuals with specific specialty or disciplinary backgrounds to research careers in biomedical, behavioral and clinical sciences; and (4) foster a better understanding of biomedical, behavioral and clinical research and its implications.

The over-arching goal of this  NIH Big Data to Knowledge   R25 program is to support educational activities that   complement and/or enhance the training of a workforce to meet the nation’s biomedical, behavioral and clinical research needs       To accomplish the stated over-arching goal, this FOA will support creative educational activities with a primary focus on:

  • Curriculum and Methods Development: The development of coursework in Big Data Science for the training of predoctoral level students in the biomedical sciences; the integration of data science into biomedical curricula to improve biomedical, behavioral or clinical science education;  working in tandem with other awardees to formulate core competencies; and sharing the instructional material and educational tools developed with others who wish to include this instruction in their curriculum. Curricular materials are expected to reflect the FAIR principles.  

Training for the BD2K Initiative

Extracting useful knowledge from biomedical Big Data is a major limiting factor to understanding health and disease.  The focus of the Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) Initiative is to support the research and development of innovative and transformative approaches and tools with the goal of maximizing and accelerating the utility of Big Data and data science in biomedical research.  For the purposes of this FOA, biomedical is broadly defined to include biomedical, behavioral, clinical, or social science research focused on health.  To address the growing need for skilled researchers to fully utilize the vast amount of heterogeneous biomedical Big Data there must be an increase in the number of individuals: (1) trained in developing tools, methods, and analyses to make Big Data useful, and (2) knowledgeable about how to use the tools, methods, and analyses.   Thus, the primary goals of training and education efforts for the BD2K Initiative are 1) to increase the number of expert biomedical data scientists, and 2) to elevate general data science competencies of all biomedical scientists. 

Data Science training and education needs in the biomedical workforce vary greatly based on an individual’s prior knowledge and their intended use of data.  Thus, BD2K programs to support training, education, and career development reflect a variety of needs within the workforce:

  • For biomedical scientists to become conversant in data science and learn to utilize existing tools, courses and open educational resources are available.
  • To address the growing need for specialists in biomedical data science, predoctoral students and early career scientists are supported.
  • To foster the development of new interdisciplinary teams consisting of biomedical scientists and data scientists, BD2K is collaborating with the National Science Foundation.
  • To train a diverse workforce, under-resourced institutions serving diverse populations are developing data science curriculum and providing short-term research experiences for students and faculty.

To ensure that BD2K’s training and education efforts have maximum impact in generating knowledge, educational resources should be findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR). 

The FAIR principles are applied in the development of an Educational Resource Discovery Index that will help biomedical scientists find and access the most appropriate data science educational resources to meet their training and educational needs.  The BD2K Training Coordination Center (TCC) is developing this Educational Resource Discovery Index and is providing coordination and communication among those interested in Big Data training and education (the BD2K Training Consortium). 

Taken together, the BD2K training and educational programs will improve the ability of the entire biomedical science community to utilize the growing volume and complexity of data. Additional information about BD2K’s portfolio of training and education awards is available online.

Curriculum Development for Biomedical Graduate Program with the BD2K Initiative

This Program will facilitate community-driven development and implementation of data science curriculum for graduate students in the biomedical sciences.  The FOA will support curriculum development activities at institutions interested in working collectively to define, develop, and test modules integrating data science into their existing biomedical science curriculum, with the intention that the modules can be adapted by other institutions.  Although the curricular material will be developed for use by students at the applicant institution, it will also be shared by producing an open educational resource that adheres to the FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, and reproducible) principles, such as video modules for a flipped classroom.

The program will be phased:  Year 1 will be devoted to planning and curriculum content development, year 2 will be devoted to implementation on a test scale, obtaining feedback and modification,  and year 3 will be devoted to full implementation and dissemination of curricular materials. 

It is expected that implementation of institutional curriculum changes will augment the existing curriculum for biomedical sciences with basic data science knowledge and skills.  This activity will take the active support of the university administration, and the commitment and cooperation of diverse departments.  Multi-PDs/PIs are encouraged so that the leadership team includes expertise in computational and quantitative sciences to include (1) computer science or informatics; and (2) statistics and mathematics.  PD/PIs must ensure continual input from all biomedical stakeholders at the institution, including behavioral, clinical, or social science research focused on health. Such input might come through an advisory committee with broad representation. 

This FOA will provide resources for the development of curriculum in big data science across a spectrum of institutional settings, including those that do not currently have NIH-funded training programs.  It is recognized that curriculum development will be tailored to the institution's curriculum for biomedical scientists in that institutional setting, and each curriculum will reflect the needs of  the types of biomedical graduate programs at that institution.  By supporting a variety of models, it is the intent of the BD2K program to develop curricular material that can be used as a model for the implementation of instruction at other institutions with similar biomedical graduate programs.  Therefore, developed curricula should be applicable across biomedical graduate programs, and should be strongly guided by biomedical stakeholders through consistent and meaningful input.

It is not the intent of this program to develop a single, unified curriculum for all institutional settings.  However, it is expected that funded institutions will work closely together through monthly working group teleconferences and meet two times per year to enable participants to share experiences from their  curriculum development activities and knowledge about relevant skills needed for data science research projects. Expected program activities include:

  • Development and testing of biomedical data science curriculum
  • Sharing of developed curriculum for use by the larger biomedical community
  • Community participation: Sharing or adoption of curriculum, materials, and ideas
  • Contributions to papers and journals on the subject of curriculum development in big data science for biomedical graduate students and core competencies being developed by the grants in the collaborative group.
  • Participation in group teleconferences and biannual in-person meetings

One of the funded grants will be chosen as the lead to organize these coordination activities and   additional funding will be provided.

Research education programs may complement ongoing research training and education occurring at the applicant institution, but the proposed educational experiences must be distinct from those training and education programs currently receiving Federal support. R25 programs may augment institutional research training programs (e.g., T32, T90) but cannot be used to replace or circumvent Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) programs.

See Section VIII. Other Information for award authorities and regulations.

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
Resubmission

The OER Glossary and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types.

Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

NIH intends to fund an estimate of 4-5 awards per year, corresponding to a total of $500,000 per year, for fiscal years 2017 and 2018. Future year amounts will depend on annual appropriations.

Award Budget

Applications that request costs for curriculum development may request up to $100,000 per year direct costs; Applications proposing to serve as the lead to coordinate the program may request an additional $50,000, for a total of $150,000 per year direct costs.

Award Project Period

The maximum project period is 3 years.

Other Award Budget Information
Personnel Costs

Individuals designing, directing, and implementing the research education program may request salary and fringe benefits appropriate for the person months devoted to the program. Salaries requested may not exceed the levels commensurate with the institution's policy for similar positions and may not exceed the congressionally mandated cap.

Participant Costs

Not Applicable

Other Program-Related Expenses

Consultant costs, equipment, supplies, travel for key persons, and other program-related expenses may be included in the proposed budget. These expenses must be justified as specifically required by the proposed program and must not duplicate items generally available at the applicant institution.   

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

  • Public/State Controlled Institutions of Higher Education
  • Private Institutions of Higher Education

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

  • Hispanic-Serving Institutions
  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
  • Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)
  • Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions
  • Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

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.

Institutions with existing Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) institutional training grants (e.g., T32) or other Federally funded training programs may apply for a research education grant provided that the proposed educational experiences are distinct from those training programs receiving federal support. In many cases, it is anticipated that the proposed research education program will complement ongoing research training occurring at the applicant institution.

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 not allowed.

Required Registrations

Applicant Organizations

Applicant organizations must complete and maintain the following registrations as described in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide to be eligible to apply for or receive an award. All registrations must be completed prior to the application being submitted. Registration can take 6 weeks or more, so applicants should begin the registration process as soon as possible. The NIH Policy on Late Submission of Grant Applications states that failure to complete registrations in advance of a due date is not a valid reason for a late submission.

  • Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) - All registrations require that applicants be issued a DUNS number. After obtaining a DUNS number, applicants can begin both SAM and eRA Commons registrations. The same DUNS number must be used for all registrations, as well as on the grant application.
  • System for Award Management (SAM) (formerly CCR) – Applicants must complete and maintain an active registration, which requires renewal at least annually. The renewal process may require as much time as the initial registration. SAM registration includes the assignment of a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code for domestic organizations which have not already been assigned a CAGE Code.
  • NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code – Foreign organizations must obtain an NCAGE code (in lieu of a CAGE code) in order to register in SAM. 
  • eRA Commons - Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the eRA Commons registration. Organizations can register with the eRA Commons as they are working through their SAM or Grants.gov registration. eRA Commons requires organizations to identify at least one Signing Official (SO) and at least one Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) account in order to submit an application.
  • Grants.gov – Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the Grants.gov registration.

Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD(s)/PI(s))

All PD(s)/PI(s) must have an eRA Commons account.  PD(s)/PI(s) should work with their organizational officials to either create a new account or to affiliate their existing account with the applicant organization in eRA Commons. If the PD/PI is also the organizational Signing Official, they must have two distinct eRA Commons accounts, one for each role. Obtaining an eRA Commons account can take up to 2 weeks.

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(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) is invited to work with his/her organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from diverse backgrounds, including underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and women are always encouraged to apply for NIH support.

For institutions/organizations proposing multiple PDs/PIs, visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF424 (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.

Multiple PD(s)/PI(s) are encouraged.  The leadership team must include expertise in both computer science or informatics, and in statistics and mathematics, as described above.

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.

The NIH will not accept duplicate or highly overlapping applications under review at the same time.  This means that the NIH will not accept:

  • A new (A0) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of an overlapping new (A0) or resubmission (A1) application.
  • A resubmission (A1) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of the previous new (A0) application.
  • An application that has substantial overlap with another application pending appeal of initial peer review (see NOT-OD-11-101).
Section IV. Application and Submission Information
1. Requesting an Application Package

Buttons to access the online ASSIST system or to download application forms are available in Part 1 of this FOA. See your administrative office for instructions if you plan to use an institutional system-to-system solution.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the Research Instructions for the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, including Supplemental Grant Application Instructions 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 will not be reviewed.

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

Page Limitations

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

Instructions for Application Submission

The following section supplements the instructions found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and should be used for preparing an application to this FOA.

SF424(R&R) Cover

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

SF424(R&R) Project/Performance Site Locations

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

SF424 (R&R) Other Project Information Component

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

Facilities & Other Resources. Describe the educational environment, including the facilities, laboratories, participating departments, computer services, and any other resources to be used in the development and implementation of the proposed program. List all thematically related sources of support for research training and education following the format for Current and Pending Support.   

Other Attachments. An Advisory Committee is not a required component of a Research Education program.  However, if an Advisory Committee is intended, provide a plan for the appointment of an Advisory Committee to monitor progress of the research education program. The composition, roles, responsibilities, and desired expertise of committee members, frequency of committee meetings, and other relevant information should be included. Describe how the Advisory Committee will evaluate the overall effectiveness of the program. Proposed Advisory Committee members should be named in the application if they have been invited to participate at the time the application is submitted.  Resubmission applications with Advisory Committees should include the names of all committee members during the past project period.  Please name your file “Advisory_Committee.pdf”

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

SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile Expanded

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

The PD/PI's biographical sketch should reflect the PD/PIs’ prior experience in curriculum and/or program development as well as his/her knowledge of the skills needed for data science research.

R&R Budget

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

  • Include all personnel other than the PD(s)/PI(s) in the Other Personnel section, including clerical and administrative staff.
  • Up to 3 person months may be requested for each of two PD(s)/PI(s), if using Multiple PD/PI.
  • Funds should be requested to attend two meetings per year not to exceed $1500 per trip:  the BD2K all hands meeting each year, plus one additional meeting for coordination of the program.
  • Programs including a proposal to assume the role of lead institution may include an extra $50,000 per year for these activities.  Items to be included in the budget include personnel and costs to direct the coordination effort and to lead meetings and teleconferences, to host one in-person meeting per year, to contributions to papers and journal articles on curriculum development for big data science for biomedical graduate students and the core competencies developed by the grants in the collaborative group, to  facilitate development and dissemination of curricular material, and  to solicit and encourage community participation.    
PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement

Follow all instructions provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

PHS 398 Research Plan Component

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed, with the following additional instructions:

Research Strategy

The Research Strategy section must be used to upload the Research Education Program Plan, which must include the following components described below:

  • Proposed Research Education Program
  • Program Director/Principal Investigator
  • Institutional Environment and Commitment
  • Evaluation Plan
  • Dissemination Plan

Research Education Program Plan

Proposed Research Education Program. While the proposed research education program may complement ongoing research training and education occurring at the applicant institution, the proposed educational experiences must be distinct from those research training and research education programs currently receiving federal support. When research training programs are on-going in the same department, the applicant organization should clearly distinguish between the activities in the proposed research education program and the research training supported by the training program.

Program descriptions should include:

  • Vision for innovative and sustainable educational activities to enable all the institution’s biomedical predoctoral students to gain adequate and appropriate knowledge in the data sciences
  • Justification that there is a need for the development of this coursework and material at this institution
  • Preliminary ideas about what data science core competencies are needed by the institution’s biomedical predoctoral students, including descriptions of the statistical/mathematical, computational, and ethical competencies needed. A description of any existing data science curriculum, whether at the applicant institution or not, domestic or foreign, that the program will build upon.
  • How the training in big data science will complement the training in rigor and reproducibility at the institution.
  • Evidence of institutional commitment to integrating data science into the curriculum of all biomedical scientists, including a description of the biomedical graduate programs in the institution and how the program will be designed to address the general educational needs for the diversity of biomedical graduate programs at the institution.
  • A description of program activities planned.  Expected program activities include
  • development and testing of biomedical data science curriculum.
  • Participation in group teleconferences and biannual in-person meetings
  • Timeline for development, implementation, and evaluation.

If the applicant institution proposes to serve as the lead, a description of their plan and experience in program coordination should  be included. A description of how the lead institution plans to coordinate the outreach to the larger community to facilitate the sharing and adoption of curriculum, materials and ideas developed.  The plan for the lead institution should also describe any ideas for coordination of contributions to publications about the curricula and core competency content being developed by members of the group.            

Program Director/Principal Investigator. Describe arrangements for administration of the program.  Provide evidence that the Program Director/Principal Investigator is actively engaged in research and/or teaching in an area related to the mission of NIH, and can organize, administer, monitor, and evaluate the research education program. For programs proposing multiple PDs/PIs, describe the complementary and integrated expertise of the PDs/PIs; their leadership approach, and governance appropriate for the planned project. Applications should describe the PDs/PIs prior experience in curriculum and/or program development as well as the PDs/PIs knowledge of the skills needed for data science research. If the PDs/PIs are applying to be the lead in the coordination activities, their prior experience in coordination roles should be described.            

Institutional Environment and Commitment. Describe the institutional environment, reiterating the availability of facilities and educational resources (described separately under “Facilities & Other Resources”), that can contribute to the planned Research Education Program. Evidence of institutional commitment to the research educational program is required. A letter of institutional commitment must be attached as part of Letters of Support (see below). Appropriate institutional commitment should include the provision of adequate staff, facilities, and educational resources that can contribute to the planned research education program.  The letter of institutional support should also include a commitment to implement the curricular changes in the biomedical graduate training and a plan to continue the instruction after the completion of the grant period.     

D. Women faculty at doctorate-granting research institutions that have an appointment in XXXX field and are underrepresented according to national data such as the National Science Foundation National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics: Women, Minorities, and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering, special report available at , especially the table describing science, engineering, and health doctorate holders employed in universities and 4-year colleges, by broad occupation, sex, years since doctorate, and faculty rank (Table 9-23 of Special Report NSF 13-304 from 2013).

Evaluation Plan. Applications must include a plan for evaluating the activities supported by the award.  The application must specify baseline metrics, as well as measures to gauge the short or long-term success of the research education award in achieving its objectives. .

Dissemination Plan.A specific plan must be provided to disseminate nationally any findings resulting from or materials developed under the auspices of the research education program, e.g., sharing course curricula and related materials via web postings (such as OERCommons.org , MERLOT.org, AMSER.org, CNX.org, and FREE.ed.gov), presentations at scientific meetings, workshops.  A goal for this FOA is to release educational materials into the public domain. Use of a public domain license such as Creative Commons http://creativecommons.org/is strongly encouraged.  The dissemination plan should describe how widely and freely the course materials are shared, including whether they are in a form that adheres to the FAIR principles (findable, accessible, interoperable and reproducible.

All open educational resources, including course components, tests, and e-publications developed under this FOA should be produced to maximize interoperability, exchange, and reuse.

1.  Attribution and License:  Although proper attribution through citation is expected as a community norm, licensing for use is also important.  Prior to release, all OERs (Open Education Resources) must be licensed for free, attributed public use and distribution.  In general, such licenses should comply with the Open Knowledge Definition of an open license. Examples of open licenses are listed below:

Creative Commons Zero Public Domain Dedication (CC0), e.g. https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY), e.g. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

2.  Metadata:  Applicants must identify, in the application, the industry standard they intend to use for metadata to describe the resource. Metadata are "tags" attached to digital resources that make it easier to publish, discover and reuse educational content. These tags allow learning systems to accurately generate data on how resources are used by educators in diverse learning environments across the Web. BD2K grantees should tag their resources using a widely-used metadata standard for educational resources such as the Learning Resource Metadata Initiative (LRMI) standard.  For details about the current state of metadata for educational resources, visit http://www.bigdatau.org.

3.  Repositories:  As early as possible, but no later than the end of the grant period, all OERs must be placed in a public repository for educational materials.  Examples of such repositories are https://www.skillscommons.org, http://cnx.org, https://www.oercommons.org, and https://www.merlot.org.

4.  Reusability and machine-readability:  To enable others to easily access and work with all BD2K-funded OER content, content should be made available in file formats that allow anyone to natively and directly edit the content, to the extent possible. Content should also be made available in a machine-readable format

Letters of Support

A letter of institutional commitment must be attached as part of Letters of Support (see section above:”Institutional Environment and Commitment.

Resource Sharing Plans

Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for the Resource Sharing Plans  as provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, with the following Guide

When relevant, applications are expected to include a software dissemination plan if support for development, maintenance, or enhancement of software is requested in the application.  There is no prescribed single license for software produced. However, the software dissemination plan should address, as appropriate, the following goals:

  • Software source code should be freely available to biomedical researchers and educators in the non-profit sector, such as institutions of education, research institutions, and government laboratories. Users should be permitted to modify the code and share their modifications with others.
  • The terms of software availability should permit the commercialization of enhanced or customized versions of the software, or incorporation of the software or pieces of it into other software packages.
  • To preserve utility to the community, the software should be transferable such that another individual or team can continue development in the event that the original investigators are unwilling or unable to do so.

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 .

PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report

When conducting clinical research, follow all instructions for completing PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.  

PHS Assignment Request Form

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed. 

3. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM)

See Part 1. Section III.1 for information regarding the requirement for obtaining a unique entity identifier and for completing and maintaining active registrations in System for Award Management (SAM), NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code (if applicable), eRA Commons, and Grants.gov

4. Submission Dates and Times

Part I. Overview Information contains information about Key Dates and times. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications before the due date to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission. When a submission date falls on a weekend or Federal holiday, the application deadline is automatically extended to the next business day.

Organizations must submit applications to 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. NIH and Grants.gov systems check the application against many of the application instructions upon submission. Errors must be corrected and a changed/corrected application must be submitted to Grants.gov on or before the application due date and time.  If a Changed/Corrected application is submitted after the deadline, the application will be considered late. Add Applications that miss the due date and time are subjected to the NIH Policy on Late Application Submission.

Applicants are responsible for viewing their application before the due date 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.

5. Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)

This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

6. 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.

7. Other Submission Requirements and Information

Applications must be submitted electronically following the instructions described in the SF424 (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. If you encounter a system issue beyond your control that threatens your ability to complete the submission process on-time, you must follow the Guidelines for Applicants Experiencing System Issues. For assistance with application submission, contact the Application Submission Contacts in Section VII.

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 SF424(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 compliance with application instructions by the Center for Scientific Review and responsiveness by BD2K Training Subcommittee, NIH. Applications that are incomplete, non-compliant and/or nonresponsive will not be reviewed.  

Post Submission Materials

Applicants are required to follow our Post Submission Application Materials policy.        

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, behavioral, and clinical research are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.

For this particular announcement, note the following: The goal of this R25 program is to support educational activities that facilitate community driven development of data science curriculum for biomedical scientists at the graduate level, foster the development and implementation of institutional curriculum change, and develop models for curricula in big data science for biomedical scientists that can be adapted by other institutions.

Overall Impact

Reviewers will provide an overall impact score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to strongly advance research education by fulfilling the goal of this R25 Education Program, 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.

Significance

Does the proposed program address a key audience and an important aspect or important need in research education? Is there convincing evidence in the application that the proposed program will significantly advance the stated goal of the program?Is evidence presented that the proposed curriculum is needed and will significantly enhance training in data science at the institution?

Investigator(s)

Is the PD/PI capable of providing both administrative and scientific leadership to the development and implementation of the proposed program? Is there evidence that an appropriate level of effort will be devoted by the program leadership to ensure the program's intended goal is accomplished? If applicable, is there evidence that the participating faculty have experience in mentoring students and teaching science? If applicable, are the faculty good role models for the participants by nature of their scientific accomplishments? If the project is collaborative or multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise; are their leadership approach, governance and organizational structure appropriate for the project? Do the PD/PIs have prior experience in curriculum and/or program development?  Do the PD/PIs demonstrate knowledge of the skills needed for data science research?  If the investigator proposes to serve as the lead institution, does the person demonstrate experience in multi organization program coordination?

Innovation

Taking into consideration the nature of the proposed research education program, does the applicant make a strong case for this program effectively reaching an audience in need of the program’s offerings? Where appropriate, is the proposed program developing or utilizing innovative approaches and latest best practices to improve the knowledge and/or skills of the intended audience?   

Approach

Does the proposed program clearly state its goals and objectives, including the educational level of the audience to be reached, the content to be conveyed, and the intended outcome?  Is there evidence that the program is based on a sound rationale, as well as sound educational concepts and principles? Is the plan for evaluation sound and likely to provide information on the effectiveness of the program?  If the proposed program will recruit participants, are the planned recruitment, retention, and follow-up (if applicable) activities adequate to ensure a highly qualified participant pool?  Is the proposed curriculum well adapted to the institutional setting and needs of the biomedical graduate programs  of that institution?  Is the proposed curriculum likely to result in institutional curriculum change?  Is the timeline for implementation realistic and likely to be achieved?  Dissemination Plan:  Is the proposed plan for dissemination of the educational program strong and of high quality?  Are the developed resources openly accessible in the public domain?  Does the dissemination plan address communication of the availability of the developed resources?

Environment

Will the scientific and educational environment of the proposed program contribute to its intended goals? Is there a plan to take advantage of this environment to enhance the educational value of the program? Is there tangible evidence of institutional commitment? Is there evidence that the faculty have sufficient institutional support to create a sound educational environment for the participants?  Where appropriate, is there evidence of collaboration and buy-in among participating programs, departments, and institutions? Is there institutional commitment to implementation and integration of data science into the overall curriculum?

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 score, but will not give separate scores for these items.

If the application proposes to serve as the lead institution to coordinate the development of the various curriculum models and disseminate the results, are the plans to achieve this activity well thought out and likely to be effective?   

Protections for Human Subjects

Not Applicable

Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children 

Not Applicable

Vertebrate Animals

Not Applicable

Biohazards

Not Applicable

Resubmissions

For Resubmissions, the committee will evaluate the application as now presented, taking into consideration the responses to comments from the previous scientific review group and changes made to the project.

Renewals

Not Applicable

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 score.

Recruitment Plan to Enhance Diversity

Not Applicable

Training in the Responsible Conduct of Research

Not Applicable

Applications from Foreign Organizations

Not Applicable

Select Agent Research

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

Resource Sharing Plans

Reviewers will comment on whether the following Resource Sharing Plans, or the rationale for not sharing the following types of resources, are reasonable: 1) Data Sharing Plan; 2) Sharing Model Organisms; and 3) Genomic Data Sharing Plan. If support for development, maintenance, or enhancement of software is requested in the application, the reviewers will comment on the proposed software dissemination plan.

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 CSR, in accordance with NIH peer review policy and procedures, using the stated review criteria. Assignment to a Scientific Review Group will be shown in the eRA Commons.


As part of the scientific peer review, all applications:

  • May undergo a selection process in which only those applications deemed to have the highest scientific and technical merit (generally the top half of applications under review) will be discussed and assigned an overall impact score.
  • Will receive a written critique.

Appeals of initial peer review will not be accepted for applications submitted in 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 NIH Multicouncil Working Group and the National Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

  • Scientific and technical merit of the proposed project as determined by scientific peer review.
  • Availability of funds.
  • Relevance of the proposed project to program priorities.  
  • Geographical balance
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. Refer to Part 1 for dates for peer review, advisory council review, and earliest start date. 

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 terms and conditions found on the Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants website.  This includes any recent legislation and policy applicable to awards that is highlighted on this 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.

Recipients of federal financial assistance (FFA) from HHS must administer their programs in compliance with federal civil rights law. This means that recipients of HHS funds must ensure equal access to their programs without regard to a person’s race, color, national origin, disability, age and, in some circumstances, sex and religion. This includes ensuring your programs are accessible to persons with limited English proficiency.  HHS recognizes that research projects are often limited in scope for many reasons that are nondiscriminatory, such as the principal investigator’s scientific interest, funding limitations, recruitment requirements, and other considerations. Thus, criteria in research protocols that target or exclude certain populations are warranted where nondiscriminatory justifications establish that such criteria are appropriate with respect to the health or safety of the subjects, the scientific study design, or the purpose of the research.

In accordance with the statutory provisions contained in Section 872 of the Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2009 (Public Law 110-417), NIH awards will be subject to the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS) requirements.  FAPIIS requires Federal award making officials to review and consider information about an applicant in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS) prior to making an award.  An applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through FAPIIS and comment on any information about itself that a Federal agency previously entered and is currently in FAPIIS.  The Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to other information in FAPIIS, in making a judgement about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in 45 CFR Part 75.205 “Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.”  This provision will apply to all NIH grants and cooperative agreements except fellowships.

For additional guidance regarding how the provisions apply to NIH grant programs, please contact the Scientific/Research Contact that is identified in Section VII under Agency Contacts of this FOA. HHS provides general guidance to recipients of FFA on meeting their legal obligation to take reasonable steps to provide meaningful access to their programs by persons with limited English proficiency. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/resources/laws/revisedlep.html. The HHS Office for Civil Rights also provides guidance on complying with civil rights laws enforced by HHS. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/section1557/index.html; and http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/index.html. Recipients of FFA also have specific legal obligations for serving qualified individuals with disabilities. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/disability/index.html. Please contact the HHS Office for Civil Rights for more information about obligations and prohibitions under federal civil rights laws at http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/office/about/rgn-hqaddresses.html or call 1-800-368-1019 or TDD 1-800-537-7697. Also note it is an HHS Departmental goal to ensure access to quality, culturally competent care, including long-term services and supports, for vulnerable populations. For further guidance on providing culturally and linguistically appropriate services, recipients should review the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care at http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/omh/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlid=53.

3. Reporting

When multiple years are involved, awardees will be required to submit the Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) annually. Continuation support will not be provided until the required forms are submitted and accepted.  

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. 

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.

In accordance with the regulatory requirements provided at 45 CFR 75.113 and Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75, recipients that have currently active Federal grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from all Federal awarding agencies with a cumulative total value greater than $10,000,000 for any period of time during the period of performance of a Federal award, must report and maintain the currency of information reported in the System for Award Management (SAM) about civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings in connection with the award or performance of a Federal award that reached final disposition within the most recent five-year period.  The recipient must also make semiannual disclosures regarding such proceedings. Proceedings information will be made publicly available in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS).  This is a statutory requirement under section 872 of Public Law 110-417, as amended (41 U.S.C. 2313).  As required by section 3010 of Public Law 111-212, all information posted in the designated integrity and performance system on or after April 15, 2011, except past performance reviews required for Federal procurement contracts, will be publicly available.  Full reporting requirements and procedures are found in Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75 – Award Term and Conditions for Recipient Integrity and Performance Matters.

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.

4. Evaluation

In carrying out its stewardship of human resource-related programs, the NIH or its Institutes and Centers will periodically evaluate their R25 research education programs, employing the measures identified below.  In assessing the effectiveness of its research education investments, NIH may request information from databases, PD/PIs, and from participants themselves.  Where necessary, PD/PIs and participants may be contacted after the completion of a research education experience for periodic updates on participants’ subsequent educational or employment history and professional activities.

Upon the completion of a program evaluation, NIH and its ICs will determine whether to (a) continue a program as currently configured, (b) continue a program with modifications, or (c) discontinue a program.

In evaluating this research education program the BD2K expects to use the following evaluation measures:

  • Aggregate number and demographic characteristics of participants exposed to the new curricula or methods
  • General educational level of participants
  • Effectiveness of the new curricula or methods assessed by skills/competencies gained compared to existing curricula or methods
  • Dissemination and/or adoption of the new curricula or methods
Section VII. Agency Contacts

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

Application Submission Contacts

eRA Service Desk (Questions regarding ASSIST, eRA Commons registration, submitting and tracking an application, documenting system problems that threaten submission by the due date, post submission issues)
Finding Help Online: https://grants.nih.gov/support/ (preferred method of contact)
Telephone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)

Grants.gov Customer Support (Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and submission, downloading forms and application packages)
Contact Center Telephone: 800-518-4726

Email: support@grants.gov

GrantsInfo (Questions regarding application instructions and process, finding NIH grant resources)
Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov (preferred method of contact)
Telephone: 301-945-7573

Scientific/Research Contact(s)

Carol Shreffler, Ph.D.
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Telephone:  919-541-1445
Email: bd2k_training@mail.nih.gov

Peer Review Contact(s)

Mark CapraraCenter for Scientific Review (CSR)
Telephone: 301-613-5228
Email: Mark.Caprara@nih.gov

Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Barbara Gittleman
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Telephone: 919-541-0585
Email: bd2k_training@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 Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 75.

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