University of Florida word mark

Select Expense Categories


In accordance with the Florida Board of Governors Regulation 9.002. effective July 1, 2011, UF defines equipment as an item that meets all of the following criteria:

  • Has an acquisition cost of $5000 or more.
    • Includes: Invoice amount, sales tax, freight costs, installation costs, and other cost incurred to acquire; less trade or trade in discounts and/or educational allowances.Excludes: insurance, maintenance and warranty costs.
  • And has normal expected life of 1 year or more

Equipment also includes hardbound books purchased through a department (not including the main library systems) where the value or cost of which is $250.00 or more.

Note: Repairs and maintenance expenses, service contracts, and extended warranties are not additions to the capital assets.

Participant Support Costs

Participant support costs are direct costs for items, such as stipends or subsistence allowances, travel allowances, and registration fees paid to or on behalf of participants or trainees (but not employees) in connection with conferences or training projects. These costs are defined by Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.1 

  • Participant support costs are excluded from the MTDC base when calculating F&A costs.

This category is NOT used for the following, unless specifically allowed by sponsor written instructions or sponsor prior approval:

  • For general travel to conferences or to bring collaborators together to meet and discuss the project
  • For payments to participants in human subject research studies
  • For any other purpose or for non-participant support categories of expense

Separate Project will be Established for Participant Support Costs:

  • When an award is received that includes participate support costs, a separate project must be established to separately account for the participant support costs.

Agency Guidance:

  • NSF Guidance: Participant Support 
  • NIH Guidance: For the purposes of Kirschstein-NRSA programs, this term does not apply. NIH will continue to use the terms trainees, trainee-related expenses, and trainee travel in accordance with NRSA Regulations.

Research Participant Payments

Research Participant Payments (RPP) system streamlines the coordination, disbursement and tracking of the payment process for participants in UF research studies. As a result of using the RPP system, participants and study administrators will benefit due to greater efficiencies. The RPP System is open and available to all of UF’s campus. Anyone who pays research participants will need to use the RPP system.

For more information, please visit the UF’s Finance & Accounting Research Participant Payments webpage.

Consultant Payments

An individual or business procured to provide professional services for a fee. The individual/ business acts as an independent contractor, gives professional advice or service to a project in exchange for compensation.

Contracted Services are budgeted as a direct cost and should be justified as essential and necessary for the project performance.

Contact UF’s Purchasing Office to assist in procurement of Contracted Services. It’s important to comply with all statutory requirements of the State of Florida, standard practices of the University of Florida. For more information, visit Consultant Services as well.

Hiring Research Personnel

The Office of Human Resources website is a good starting point to understand a wide range of employment and hiring information at the University of Florida. However, when when it comes to helping researchers with questions about the employment of individuals working on sponsored projects and distributing those salaries to grants and contracts, Principal Investigator’s are encouraged to work closely with their department’s HR staff person.

If you are looking for information sorted by academic pay plans, you can also visit these links for more specific information:

Clerical and Administrative Salaries

To comply with the Federal government’s Cost Accounting Standards (CAS) and the Cost Principles for Educational Institution’s found in the Uniform Guidance 2 CFR Part 200, Clerical and Administrative salaries may not be charged directly to federally funded project, unless direct charging can be justified in accordance with University of Florida’s Cost Accounting Policy and the Division of Sponsored Programs approves an exemption to UF Policy.


The Office of Human Resources also supports numerous Training Programs to help improve the performance of UF faculty and staff.

In addition, if you will be involved in the administration of grants and contracts or are just interested in a more thoroughly understanding of research and sponsored programs management, DSP’s Research Administration Training Series is for you.



UF Purchasing supports the purpose and goals of the University of Florida—its educational, research, patient care, and public service missions—by purchasing and providing quality goods and services at competitive prices and providing responsive and responsible service to all University departments.  Please visit the Purchasing website for all purchasing policies, procedures, forms, and contacts.


Most sponsors will cover reasonable and necessary travel costs incurred by the project personnel for travel that is directly related to the activity being funded.

All travel and travel reimbursements shall follow the UF Travel Directives and Procedures.

Another great resource is the UF Traveler’s Brochure which walks you through the UF travel procedures.

All travel should be approved in advance. A formal travel authorization (TA) must be completed for the following:

  • Conference / Convention
  • International travel (see international travel section below for additional information)
  • Registration Fees
  • Any trip that requires an advance

Most sponsors will cover reasonable and necessary travel costs incurred by the project personnel for travel that is directly related to the activity being funded.

All travel and travel reimbursements shall follow the UF Travel Directives and Procedures.

Sponsor Restrictions Do Apply

Certain sponsored projects may contain award provisions that prohibit or limit the amount and type of travel and/or travel reimbursements. Principal Investigators and appropriate sponsored projects personnel should make sure any proposed travel is in accordance with the sponsored project’s agreement before the travel begins.

If you have any questions about your specific grant or contract and possible travel limitations you should contact your assigned Contract and Grant Accounting RA.

Budgeting Travel in Proposals

Many agencies request specific cost information for each proposed trip, including a narrative justification describing the travel to be taken.

When budgeting travel you should include destination, number of trips planned, number of travelers, airfare, lodging, meals, ground transportation, conference fees, and other costs allowed to be reimbursed. If mileage is to be paid, provide the number of miles and the cost per mile.

For travel for both federal and non-federal proposals you must use the state travel reimbursement rates for per diems and mileage.

Foreign travel meals may be budgeted for and will be reimbursed based on the GSA Foreign Per Diem Rates.

International Travel

Registration and Insurance

As required by university policy one must register all UF business related international travel with the UF International Center at  The UF International Center (UFIC) can also provide you with information on various insurance options for those traveling overseas.  To obtain information on insurance contact UFIC Insurance directly at 352 273-1542.

Traveling with Equipment Outside of U.S.

When traveling with equipment, check with the Asset Management Services (Property Office)  60-90 days before traveling with equipment outside of US to resolve any export licensing issues. Best practice for international travel with a laptop is to take a clean laptop (i.e., one that does not contain any specialized software or controlled/restricted data).  Complete the Asset Management Off-Campus certification process if you will be taking any UF property out of the US on a temporary or permanent basis.  The requirement for completing an off campus certification applies irrespective of the dollar value.  In other words one would have to complete an off campus certification for a $5,000 scientific instrument as well as a $900 computer.

The use of state or non-state funds made available to state universities to implement, organize, direct, coordinate, or administer activities related to or involving travel to a designated terrorist state is prohibited by Florida Statute 1011.90. For purposes of this section, “terrorist state” is defined as any state, country, or nation designated by the United States Department of State as a state sponsor of terrorism.

Please contact the Division of Research Compliance 60 – 90 days in advance if you plan to travel to or through a designated terrorist state using funds other than those made available to UF (i.e., personal funds or funding awarded directly to you).  The Division of Research Compliance in collaboration with the traveler, UF International Center and the General Counsel’s office will determine if a US Government authorization and/or license is necessary.

Currently, the U.S. Department of State assigns that designation to four countries: Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Syria.

Travelers should read appropriate U.S. Department of State advisories before beginning travel to a foreign destination.

Additional factors to take into consideration when traveling overseas:

  • Verify whether or not a the destination country(ies) requires an import certification or other approval for any item, software or material being brought into the country;
  • Verify whether or not the destination country(ies) require a license or other authorization to conduct the research;
  • Are there any import or export taxes required to be paid on any equipment or assets being imported into and/or exported out of the destination country(ies);
  • Are any of the persons and/or entities to be visited a restricted party requiring US Government authorization prior to implementing project and/or commencing travel;
  • Does the country(ies) of destination require a permit, license or other government authorization prior to removing any research artifacts (i.e., historical artifacts, archeological finds, biological materials, animal parts, live animals, etc.)
  • Does my Sponsor require prior approval before starting any international travel (even if already identified and approved in the budget); and,
  • If the project is subject to a Technology Control Plan has the traveler(s) contacted the Division of Research Compliance before initiating any international travel associated with the project.

Please contact the Division of Research Compliance (DRC) at 352 392-9174 if you have any questions regarding international travel.  DRC will answer your question or identify the appropriate party for your specific issue.

Use United States Flag Carriers when Federal Funds Are Involved

The Federal Travel Regulations, 41 CFR 301-10.131, titled “Use of United States Flag Carriers” more commonly known as the “Fly America Act” requires that all air travel paid for with federal funds (sponsored projects in Fund 201) must be on a US flag carrier or a US flag carrier service provided under a code-share agreement.

To help ensure compliance with this federal regulation please follow the UF Travel Directives and Procedures on this topic.

Exceptions are permitted under the Fly America Act (see Directives and Procedures above for a list of exceptions).

All Exceptions must be documented prior to travel and pre-approved by the UF Travel Office. In no case is the use of a foreign air carrier justified because of cost, convenience, or traveler preference.

To receive an exception you must complete the Fly America Act Exceptions Form and submit to the UF Travel Office Approval.


Publication costs are generally allowable as direct costs provided they meet the guidelines set forth in 2 CFR 200.461 and the universities costing policy.  Costs which benefit multiple sponsored projects should be allocated based on proportional benefit.