IMPORTANT NOTE: This guide is a general reference and is not meant to be a substitute for our University policies & regulations. Be sure to consult the University’s policies and/or contact us.

Research Administrators Roles

Research Administrators at the Core

Research Administrators have a central role in making our research projects successful, interacting with a wide range of staff and offices, as illustrated in the image below.

SPA Administator WheelThey also handle numerous Award Management actions, including the following:

  • Project File Maintenance
  • New Award Meetings
  • Guidance regarding Federal, State, University, & Sponsor Regulations
  • Pre-audit and Approval of Expenditures
  • Budget Revisions/Explanations
  • Release Time and Summer Salary
  • Equipment Acquisition/CAMS
  • Preaward Costs
  • Travel
  • Change in PI
  • Subcontract/Subaward Approval
  • Project Reconciliation
  • Task Billing – Milestones/Deliverables Scheduling
  • Project Reporting – both Interim and Final
  • Project Reconciliation Closeout – Interim/Final

If this is your role, explore this section of the SPA Guide for some tools and tips for handling the complexities of research project management. You will find more information on managing research projects in another section of this SPA Guide: Post-Award Fiscal Management.

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Check Out the Checklist!

With all of the details you must monitor in award management, you may find the “New Award Checklist” below helpful to post and use. With jobs like yours that are often so complex that it can be a challenge to keep up — doing everything correctly and on time — a checklist can often help to prevent oversights. Using a checklist can help you remember to do what you know needs to be done in the midst of multiple priorities.

The ‘Checklist Manifesto’ – Book Description

You may have heard of the Checklist Manifesto, the book that rocked the world of medicine when it was published in 2010. The author cites the introduction of checklists in one operating room for the prevention of 43 infections and 8 deaths as well as reducing the average length of patients’ stays in the ICU by half and saving $2 million dollars in patient care costs.

Many administrators in various work settings outside of the medical world have also discovered the power of checklists. They have found that the use of checklists helps their staff manage increasingly complex and cumbersome jobs with fewer errors and less stress.

New Award Checklist

The purpose of the checklist is to help make sure that you are thoroughly reviewing new awards and planning for the required award management actions and deliverables.

Feel free to print the checklist, try it out, and make copies for use in your college or department.

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SPA New Award Checklist

New Award Meetings



Office of Contracts and Grants staff can meet with college faculty and staff upon request to “kick off” projects in a New Award Meeting.

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss compliance issues, grant details, specific guidelines, and responsibilities.

Arrange one of these meetings through your college research office for new faculty or administrative staff or for particularly complicated or multi-year projects.

Contact us if you have any questions or would like to schedule a New Award meeting.

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Award Management Forms and References

Forms and Policies

You can find forms and references that you may need on the following Sponsored Programs & Regulatory Compliance Services (SPARCS) and Office of Contracts and Grants (C&G) pages:

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