Who can serve as Principal Investigator and Co-Principal Investigator?

Full time faculty members, Emeritus faculty members, A&P staff, and post-doctoral employees can serve as a Principal Investigator or Co-Principal Investigator on a sponsored project proposed to a Federal, State, foreign or local governmental agency, commercial entity, and foundation.

Graduate student employed by the university as either Graduate Teaching Assistants/Associates (GTAs), Graduate Research Assistants/Associates (GRAs), or Graduate Associates (GAs) can serve as a Principal Investigator for any fellowship authorized by the sponsoring agency; GTAs, GRAs, and GAs also may serve as Co-Principal Investigator on any grant or proposal being submitted with a member of the university community already authorized to submit proposals. Undergraduate students can serve as a Principal Investigator under a fellowship authorized by the sponsoring agency.


Exceptions to this policy must be processed in accordance with the procedures delineated in the Procedures section, found at Who Can Serve as a PI Guideline.

Huron Research Suite (HRS) – Grants

If you plan to submit a proposal for funding, please fill out the COS Huron Proposal Form and submit it to COSpreaward@ucf.edu. The Primary Purpose and Research Purpose responses must align. Please see Research Purpose Matrix for more detailed information. The COS Pre-award team will create the Funding Proposal (FP) on your behalf.


Budget Templates

Be careful to ensure no “overwriting” of formulas as calculations may return erroneous results.

Single PI Budgets (Fringe Rates effective July 1, 2023):    1-Year Budget    2-Year Budget    3-Year Budget    4-Year Budget    5-Year Budget 

Multi PI Budgets (Fringe Rates effective July 1, 2023):       1-Year Budget    2-Year Budget   3-Year Budget    4-Year Budget   5-Year Budget

Person Months

Is the metric for expressing the effort (amount of time) PI(s), faculty and other senior personnel devote to a specific project. The effort is based on the type of appointment of the individual with the organization; e.g., calendar year (CY), academic year (AY), and/or summer term (SM); and the organization’s definition of such.

Conversion of percentage of effort to person months is straight-forward. To calculate person months, multiply the percentage of your effort associated with the project times the number of months of your appointment. For example:

25% of a 9 month academic year appointment equals 2.25 (AY) person months (9 x 0.25= 2.25)

10% of a 12 month calendar appointment equals 1.2 (CY) person months (12 x 0.10 = 1.2)

35% of a 3 month summer term appointment equals 1.05 (SM) person months (3 x 0.35= 1.05)

10% of a 0.5 FTE 12 month appointment equals 0.6 (CY) person months (12 x .5 X .1 = 0.6)

Another example:

If the regular pay schedule of an institution is a 9 month academic year and the PI will devote 9 months at 30% time/effort and 3 months summer term at 30% time/effort to the project, then 2.7 academic months and .9 summer months should be listed in the academic and summer term blocks of the application (9 x 30% = 2.7 person months; 3 x 30%= .9)

See Person Months Conversion Chart


Cost-share is the portion of the project or program cost not borne by the sponsor. It is the University’s share in the cost of conducting the project/program. The University is moving towards a prohibition of voluntary committed cost-share. Please alert your COS Proposal Manager as soon as you know your project will include “voluntary committed cost-share,” i.e. no salary requested for you or any Key Personnel.

If you plan to request cost-share funds from OR via the P3 Program, please note that your request must be submitted for approval ten (10) business days in advance of the Sponsor’s deadline to allow the VP of Research to review. 

Budget Justification

This template is provided as a “guide” and can be revised as needed.

Budget Justification Template (Fringe Rates effective July 1, 2023)

Facilities and Other Resources

This template is provided as a resource to revise as needed.

COS Facilities and Other Resources

UCF Fringe Benefit Rates

UCF composite fringe benefit rates are available at https://fa.ucf.edu/cfbr-ucf-cfbr/.

UCF Facilities and Administrative Rate Agreement

Facilities and Administrative also referred to as Indirect and/or Overhead costs are costs that are incurred for common or joint objectives and therefore cannot be identified readily and specifically with a particular sponsored project, an instructional activity, or any other institutional activity.

Unless the Sponsor stipulates in their guidelines or via publication on their website, UCF defined F&A rates (also known as Indirect Costs) will apply to all funding proposals submitted. Please see most recent agreement linked below:

University F&A Rate Agreement

For exceptions please see the Indirect Cost Rate Reduction Request Form.

A reduced rate may be considered if:

  1. The sponsor has a published limited rate less than our negotiated rate for organized research, 49% MTDC. If the sponsor limits the rate we may charge or does not allow F&A to be charged, then we will honor that rate and adhere to the guidelines. The guidelines and the proposal needs to be submitted through workflow to meet the 5-day rule.
  1. The F&A Rate Reduction Form may be completed for non-federal proposals (with the exception of SBIR Phase 1) if they meet one of the eligibility criteria on the form to request consideration of a reduction in F&A to 10% TDC if approved. This form, along with the budget and SOW, should be submitted in advance prior to sending the HRS/FP in workflow to allow for approval to be received and budget to be finalized. Per the form, this should be submitted 10 business days prior to the deadline.
  1. Requests for use of F&A Rate (IDC) other than our federally negotiated Organized Research Rate (49% MTDC) must be submitted and approved prior to submitting the HRS/FP in workflow with final budget. This should be submitted 10 business days prior to the deadline.

For Sponsored Awards Under $10,000 a 0% indirect cost rate will apply, see standard operating procedure for Streamlined Indirect Cost Rates for Sponsored Awards Under $10,000. The process is as follows:

  1.  At the time of proposal, the research coordinator in their home unit will work with the Pl to create the proposal budget.
  2. Budgets for projects up to and including $10,000 will use a 0% indirect cost.
  3. In order to comply with consistent treatment for Federal funds, Federal projects with a total project period budget of $10,000 or less will receive the same benefit.
  4. Should supplemental funding resulting in greater than $10,000 be awarded, the budget for supplemental funding would be subject to and would include the appropriate indirect cost rate for the entire supplement.
  5.  At award closeout, the procedures which are in place at the time of closeout will govern the disposition of any residual funds. Projects will not be penalized for following the streamlined procedures. These projects will be treated as if they were granted full indirect costs.


Graduate Research Assistants (GRA) Stipend

If you have questions regarding stipends and tuition, please consult with your COS Pre-award assigned team member for guidance.

GRA Stipend per Department
Student Tuition Rates

Course and Research Buyout

Research Buyouts and Salary Savings – Research & Facilities


UCF and Sponsors of funded projects have specific requirements for travel allowances. Always check the sponsor’s guidelines for special requirements. When traveling internationally, UCF uses the U.S. Department of State rates. For estimates such as flights, travel search engines can be used such as “Expedia.com.” If travel is to occur during a future fiscal period, adding a 3-5% increase to the flight cost is recommended.

Resourceful Travel Links:
UCF Travel Reference Guide
UCF Quick Summary for Travelers
UCF Travel Manual
International Travel Per Diem
Travel Cost Quick Reference


Other Resources:


Subtracting is defined as employing a person or business outside of one’s company to do work as part of a larger project.

Subcontract Proposals MUST include the following information (sponsor specific requirements may also apply):

UCF/OR Subaward Policy and Procedure

1. Scope of Work (aka Statement of Work or SOW)

2. See required forms below and definitions for use:

UCF Subaward Letter of Intent (LOI) to be used for all subcontractors on UCF proposals.

Sub-recipient Commitment Form to be used only if UCF subcontractor is not located in the Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) Clearing House- https://fdpclearinghouse.org/.

Audit Certification and Financial Status Questionnaire to be used if the subcontractor is not subject to the Single Audit Act. The LOI and Subrecipient Commitment form are also required.

Subaward Predetermination Form or a Statement of Rationale to be used for all subcontractors on UCF proposals (if applicable-this form is completed internally by the Office of Research).

3. OR Sub-award Checklist

4. Budget

5. Budget Justification


A person(s) who provide professional or expert advice.

Collaborative Proposals – Subcontract or Not

Collaborative proposals are when 2 or more organizations propose to work on one project. How the award is established, determines whether there will be a sub-award.

  1. If a single award will be made, then issue sub-awards, the lead institution submits one proposal inclusive of the sub-awardee’s proposal information i.e. SOW, bio-sketches, budget, etc.
  2. If multiple awards will be made, the proposal is a true collaborative. Each organization creates a proposal for submission with unique titles. There may be one lead organization and the other organization(s) link to the lead proposal.

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Process

  1. Each submission to the IRB will be initially reviewed to ensure that it is human subject research. Investigators who believe their work to be exempt can now use a form in the HRS/FP system to request early determination. In some cases, the submission will be determined to be exempt and the review will be completed within a week of submission. Those submissions requiring further review will be examined by an administrator and an IRB board member regardless of whether the submission needs full board review or not. This should make the process faster. Those requiring further review will be flagged earlier.
  1. A “IRB 101” document is now posted on the IRB website at http://www.research.ucf.edu/Compliance/irb.html

– The document explains the IRB process and includes a “Top 10 Errors to Avoid” list to help applicants avoid unnecessary delays.

When we reviewed the backlog of applications, we found many submissions were not completed because IRB staff were unable to get responses from the principal investigator or his/her research team. IRB staff often ask for additional information or for changes, to better position the investigator’s protocol for approval.

  1. Responding in a timely manner – within 30 days – ensures a quicker resolution.
    • Investigators who respond within 14 days of such requests for additional information or changes, will be fast-tracked for final determination or board review.
    • Those who respond at 30 days can expect reviews to take about 30 days.
    • Those who do not respond or respond after 30 days will see their protocols administratively withdrawn and the applicant will have to start all over again.

We all need to work together to succeed. IRB staff are here to help you get the approvals necessary. But that means we need shared responsibility.

  1. ‘IRB at your Doorstep’
    • To improve communication between the research community and the IRB Office, IRB staff will be available in person to help faculty understand the new process and answer questions. “IRB at your doorstep” is scheduled to get started in Feb. 2018. Jennifer Neal-Jimenez at Jennifer.Neal-Jimenez@ucf.edu is happy to schedule days and times.

Link to UCF Institutional Information i.e. DUNS, EIN, Cognizant Agency, etc.


Office of Research (OR)


OR Research Development Office


UCF Research Foundation