Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Now that I’ve received a grant, where is my money?
A. For external funding, the money will come to ORA through the awarding agency and they will place it in and set up an account. For internal funding, it will be transferred from the awarding office or center into the account determined to be appropriate by the Fiscal Officer Rick Hanson.
Q. How do I get an account number? What if I need to buy something before I have it?
A. ORA will assign one for an external grant; the fiscal officer will determine which account is best for internal funds. For an external grant, an advanced account (formerly known as underwrite) can be requested before the final award is received by IU, so an account can be set up to get to work.
Q. How do I know my grant account number?
A. As PI, you will receive an electronic Award Report from firstname.lastname@example.org when your externally funded project is fully awarded. The account number is at the top of the first page once you open the document. External grant accounts will start with a 4 or a 5. Internal grant accounts will vary. Some may start with a 2, others may be set up in a designated department sub account, and sometimes the money may be placed directly into your department sub account. Eric Hamilton, Grant Fiscal Specialist, will work with you and our Fiscal Officer, Rick Hanson, to determine the appropriate method.
Q. How do I charge something to my grant account?
A. Most of the internal processing systems (purchasing, hiring, payroll) allow a simple placement of the account number into the document to properly charge the account.
Q. What if I need to buy something I can’t charge to my grant account?
A. There are other options depending on the item. Eric Hamilton has a credit card to order online supplies or services, etc. Visit or contact Eric!
Q. How do I hire someone onto my grant project?
A. You will work with Eric Hamilton to get that done.
Q. If I have a question, who can I call for help?
A. You can call Edith Millikan or Eric Hamilton for help at any time. Please see the Faculty-Staff intranet Research home page for contact information.
Q. Where can I find information about budgeting rates such as indirect cost and fringe benefits?
Q. What is the difference between fringe benefits and indirect costs (ICR’s)?
A. Fringe benefits are all benefits earned along with salary, such as medical insurance and retirement. They are real costs covered by the School and your department. They don’t show up in your paycheck stub; only the medical insurance and retirement contribution you make appear there. The fringe benefits rates change every July. The ORA website has a link to current fringe rates. Indirect cost rates (aka Facilities & Administration/F&A) are amounts that are written into a grant to recover overhead costs, such as central administration, School administration, utilities, building maintenance, and a host of other expenses.
Q. Do I have to pay for an RA’s tuition and insurance?
A. Whether you pay these things is up to you, and potentially the student. You will need to work with your department to determine who is responsible for paying these for a student with an academic appointment.
Q. Are there certain things I can’t charge to my grant?
A. Background checks for hiring can never be charged to a grant account. In general, any supplies or services that were not budgeted cannot be paid for by a grant.
Q. If I’m going to travel, who sets that up and how?
A. Eric Hamilton can work with you to get you set up in the Travel system, and you will work together to make the needed arrangements.
Q. What happens if I don’t spend all my grant money?
A. This depends on both whether it is internally or externally funded, and what the original agreement with the funding agency states. Generally, any unspent funds are returned to the agency (external) or institution/center (internal) that supplied them.
Q. If someone already works for IUPUI, can they work for me too? If so, what are the restrictions?
A. This will vary depending on the situation. Please see Eric Hamilton to discuss your specific situation to determine the best and most efficient way to get someone hired.
Q. How can I find out what grants are out there for me to apply to?
A. Please visit the Faculty-Staff Intranet Research/Research Development page for links to internal and external funding opportunities.
Q. Where is my ICR money?
A. ICR’s are distributed biannually depending on expenditures in either the first or second half of the year. They are distributed in mid to late August for January 1 – June 30, and sometime in mid- February for July 1 – December 31.
Q. When is summer salary paid?
A. Summer salary is generally paid over 3-4 months in the summer. It is possible in May or August to earn academic year pay as well as summer salary.
Q. What happens to equipment/computer programs I purchased for a grant, once that grant is over?
A. This depends on the kind of equipment, but generally it becomes property of IUPUI.
Q. How do I get IRB approval?
A. The IRB process is now entirely electronic. For further information, please see http://researchcompliance.iu.edu/hso/index.html. Both Edith and Eric can help you with this if needed.
Q. At what point in the process with the SLA Research Support staff get involved?
A. The SLA Research Support team members are here to help you with any and every phase of the research project. We are willing to sit down in the beginning to help lay out some ideas so that you can better plan your proposal, as will work closely every step of the way to ensure a smooth project.