As the most significant cost to sponsored programs is salaries, wages, and related fringe benefits, ensuring proper management of these funds is a priority of the University of Florida. To ensure compliance with the Federal government’s effort management requirements, the University of Florida established an Effort Reporting Policy and related Directives and Procedures. For more information about the University’s management of effort, visit the Effort Certification webpage. Guidance for and information regarding the entry of effort commitments in UFIRST and myUFL is available using the UF Commitment Entry Guidelines (pdf).
Training in effort management and certification is required by University faculty and support staff engaged in sponsored activities. Both courses can be accessed in the University’s online training system, through myUFL.
RSH220 Effort Fundamentals is required of all faculty members with sponsored projects, all department chairs, deans and center/institute directors, and all grant management staff. This interactive session discusses the most essential concepts related to effort, including Total University Effort, committed effort and cost sharing. It also covers the activities that are allowable and unallowable on sponsored projects.
RSH230 Effort Management is required of all grant management staff. This session discusses the importance of managing effort throughout the sponsored research life cycle – from proposing effort to managing commitments to certifying effort.
Student Augmentation Effort Guidance
According to University of Florida Effort Reporting Procedures & Directives section 2.1, “no committed effort from the PI is required for… student augmentation grants” if there is no explicit commitment. Student augmentation programs are primarily for the benefit of the student; if the student leaves the lab or University, the funds do not remain with the UF faculty for general furtherance of their program. Doctoral dissertation programs and undergraduate and graduate fellowships fall into this criteria.
The student augmentation exemption is based upon 2 CFR 200.430 which recognizes that faculty duties (research, teaching, service, and administration) in an Institute of Higher Education are often intermingled in an academic setting.
This guidance was created to help determine if an award is student augmentation or if the scope of the project involves more substantial input from faculty and student alike.
If there is a quantifiable commitment communicated to the Sponsor, tracking of effort commitments for the PI, Co-PI, Co-I, or other key personnel as listed in the Commitment Guidance is required. If there is no quantifiable commitment, the scope of work and budget justification (not simply the award or project title) should be reviewed to determine if the project meets the University definition of student augmentation. If the student retains the funds and if the PI is simply serving as a mentor, the project likely falls under student augmentation.
If the PI has substantial involvement, including responsibility for the conduct of any of the research (performing analysis, project design, or project implementation), the project does not meet the definition of student augmentation and lacking any quantifiable commitment, the Effort Reporting Procedures & Directives requires at least the 1% de minimus effort for the named Award PI.
Some indicators of whether the project is student augmentation or research are listed below: