National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Queen's as Lead Institution

Important Information

  • Research Services Submits the Application to NIH: Research Services submits all NIH grants on behalf of the institution. If you are planning to submit an NIH application as PI, contact a Research Projects Advisor 2-3 months before the deadline. They can meet  with your team to discuss NIH requirements, help ensure that your application matches NIH guidelines, and provide an administrative review of your application. Once complete, they will also forward your application to NIH on behalf of Queen’s.
  • Institutional Requirements: Queen's meets the institutional requirements to submit NIH grants (i.e., Queen's is registered in SAM and has a DUNS, UEI, and EIN numbers). Queen's researchers DO NOT have to register as individuals in any of these systems. Applicants will require an eRA Commons ID, which can be created by Research Services.
  • Foreign Justification: Foreign (non-US) applicants must include a foreign justification  in their proposal. This justification explains why the research must be conducted in a non-US setting. NIH reviewers assess whether the project presents special opportunities for furthering research programs through the use of unique talent, resources, facilities, populations, or environmental conditions that exist in other countries and are either not readily available in the US or augment existing US resources.
  • Sub-recipient Arrangements: If you are planning to have co-applicants from other institutions, your co-applicants will be required to provide documents as part of the subaward agreement with Queen’s (see NIH Applications where Queen's is a Sub-recipient page for reference ). Please contact a Research Projects Advisor for more information. Research Services can work with the research grants offices of partner universities to complete the required documentation.
  • Indirect Costs: The NIH budget must include funds for indirect costs. The Queen’s NIH indirect cost rate is 8% of the total direct costs (excluding equipment over $5000, tuition, patient care costs, rent, and sub-award costs (after the first $25,000)).

  • Step 1. Review the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA): The FOA will cover important information such as which NIH Institutes are supporting the funding call, NIH notices associated with the funding call, eligibility information, due dates, application requirements, and review criteria.  See this annotated FOA (PDF 224 KB) for an explanation of each section of the FOA.
  • Step 2. Select the Submission Portal: There are 2 application submission options  for NIH grants: i) ASSIST  and ii) Workspace . ASSIST is managed by NIH prepopulates fields from eRA Commons profiles, and is the most commonly used portal. Workspace is managed by, and requires additional user registrations through that system. 
  • Step 3. Review grant application instructions: A typical NIH application consists of several forms and freeform written sections (e.g. research proposal, facilities description, resource sharing plan). Detailed application information is available online  (instructions, budget information, page limits, etc.), as well as specific  instructions for research application forms (PDF 4.3 MB). NIH periodically updates the forms included in application packages (e.g. FORMS-G series  must be used for grant deadlines on or after January 25, 2022). Please ensure you are using the version of the SF424 (R&R) Application form instructions that correspond to your deadline date. NIH also has instructional videos  on completing and submitting applications.
  • Step 4. Special consideration - Sub-recipient arrangements: There are specific forms and requirements that must be completed when an NIH application involves co-applicants from other universities who will receive funding. Please contact a Research Projects Advisor for information on subaward agreements.
  • Step 5. Review sample applications: The NIH Institute NIAID has sample applications  (with reviewer feedback) available online. NIAID staff consider them examples of good grantsmanship, but note that the samples may not represent the most recent NIH application format or rules.

  • 2-3 months in advance of NIH deadline - Contact a Research Projects Advisor: Research Services can advise on NIH requirements, liaise with sub-recipient institutions, help ensure that your application matches NIH guidelines, and provide an administrative review of your grant.
  • 3 weeks in advance of NIH deadline - Submit TRAQ DSS: PIs must submit a TRAQ DSS  for NIH grants before Research Services can forward the application to NIH. Applicants must submit the TRAQ DSS 3 weeks in advance of the deadline (if the research is hospital-based  ) or 1-week in advance if the research is not hospital-based.
  • 2 weeks in advance of NIH deadline – Sub-recipients submit documents to Queen’s: If you will have any co-applicants from other institutions that will receive funds, they will be required to complete Queen’s subaward documents and submit their RR budget to Queen’s 2 weeks in advance of the deadline. Contact your Research Projects Advisor for forms requiring sign-off from the other institution.  
  • 1-week in advance of deadline - Submit  application: Research Services is required to submit NIH applications online for faculty. Faculty will be required to email Jennifer Robinson all of their NIH PDF forms so that she can upload them to Workspace . Submitting an NIH application involves two US data-systems: (via Workspace) and the eRA Commons . When Research Services submits the NIH application online using Workspace, both and the eRA Commons will perform a series of data quality checks. Applications with errors in them will be rejected and not submitted to NIHIf an application is rejected, the Queen's PI will be required to correct any issues (e.g., missing application components), update the required NIH PDF documents, and resend them to Research Services for upload & resubmission. NIH will NOT accept applications that miss the NIH application deadline because of difficulties submitting. Because of the potential for errors that can prevent submission, Research Services strongly recommends that PIs make their first online submission attempt at least 1-week before the deadline.

The NIH requires the disclosure of all sources of research support, foreign components, and financial conflicts of interest by all senior/key personnel named on a grant application. These disclosures are made prior to grant submission, and throughout the duration of the award.

Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI): All senior/key personnel must complete the following FCOI forms prior to grant submission, and yearly if awarded, in order to comply with NIH financial conflict of interest policies. These forms will be kept on file at Queen’s.

Biosketch and Other Support Documents: All senior/key personnel must disclose all positions and scientific appointments, and all resources and financial support for research activities, as part of the NIH Biosketch  and Other Support  documents.

Contact Information

Jennifer Robinson, Ph.D. Andrea Hiltz, M.Sc.

Research Projects Advisor (Health Sciences)
Research Services / Faculty of Health Sciences

Phone: 613-533-6000 ext. 32944

Research Projects Advisor (Health Sciences)
Research Services 

Phone: 613-533-6000 ext. 33108