OSP Forums and Workshops

OSP Forums bring the MIT research administration community together to share knowledge and discuss research administration topics, both current and evergreen.

Most meetings featured short presentations followed by discussion, other meetings featured panel discussions. All meetings invited members of the MIT research administration community to participate in discussions and bring questions for the expert staff.

August 2017

New Federal Research Terms and Conditions Prior Approval Matrix (Part 1)

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview:  Federal agencies are required to follow Uniform Guidance for award terms and conditions. As you know, federal agencies develop their own policies and procedures, and update them regularly. Recently, a group of federal sponsors published an updated Research Terms and Conditions matrix, which incorporates the Uniform Guidance by reference, and provides a clear and streamlined guide to various sponsor terms. https://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/fedrtc/appendix_a.pdf

At this Forum, OSP will explain how the matrix works, tell you about sponsor specific terms and conditions, and present resources to help you understand sponsor terms for grants. This is Part 1 of a two-part session.

Presentation [PDF]: The New Federal Research Terms and Conditions Prior Approval Matrix [PDF]

June 2017

OSP Forum on the Federal Research Budget

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview:  OSP's June Forum was a talk on the federal research budget - the current state, the budget approval process and other insights.

President Trump's budget proposes deep cuts to discretionary spending, including cuts to most federal research and development programs. David Goldston, the new Director of MIT’s Washington office will be on campus to discuss the federal budget, what we know and don’t know, and how the budget process works.

Announcement about David Goldston http://news.mit.edu/2017/david-goldston-lead-mit-washington-office-0425

February 2016

OSP Forum: Kuali Coeus Update

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview:  The latest version of Kuali Coeus was released to campus over the February 13 - 15 weekend. The release addressed many of the known issues in KC Proposal Development and updated KC to the latest version available.

During this Forum, the Office of Sponsored Programs will discuss improvements to Proposal Development in the following areas:

  • Searches, Lookups and Navigation
  • Copy and Delete Proposals
  • Proposal Development Hierarchy
  • Proposal Development Budget, Printing and Lab Allocation
  • Proposal Development Certification and Disclosure
  • Proposal Development Routing and Approval
  • S2S Validations and Forms

Presenters: Carole Trainor, Senior Training Specialist, OSP and the Kuali Coeus Support Team:

  • Ian Cariolo, Senior Coeus Support Specialist, OSP,
  • Kara DeNutte, Senior Coeus Support Specialist, OSP,
  • Amy Holden, Data Analyst, OSP, and
  • Kimberly Mann, Senior Coeus Support Specialist, OSP. 

Presentation [PDF]:  Kuali Coeus Update, February 2016

December 2015 Forum

OSP Forum: Timely Closeouts of Federal Awards

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: The Uniform Guidance has placed increased emphasis on the importance of closing out federal awards in a timely manner. The complete closeout of federal projects is a collaborative effort involving the PIs, DLC administrators, OSP, and VPF and include the financial, technical, patent, equipment, and subaward reports.

Join VPF and OSP Wednesday, December 9th for an upcoming Forum which will clarify roles and responsibilities of the PIs, DLCs, and central offices. We will also highlight what has been done to help address various DLC pain points.

Presentation [PDF]: Timely Closeouts of Federal Awards

June 2015 Forums

OSP Forum: Kuali Coeus Post-Award for Experienced Coeus Users  

Target audience: AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: If you are an experienced Coeus user for post-award functionality, please join us for a KC post-award demonstration and Q&A session led by Mike Ferguson, Data Administrator, Office of Sponsored Programs. Mike will demonstrate where to locate in KC functions previously accessed in the Coeus Premium Award Module.

Cheatsheet Handouts and Presentations [PDFs] from this forum:


OSP Forum: Issuing and Managing Subawards – Changes you should know about!

Target audience: AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: OSP has made changes to how we manage subawards both to comply with the new Uniform Guidance requirements and to take advantage of new functions in Kuali Coeus.

During this Forum, the Office of Sponsored Programs will:

  • Describe MIT’s implementation of the UG for subawards
  • Discuss changes in how subawards are now treated at proposal stage
  • Introduce the new subawards website
  • Discuss new functionality for subawards in Kuali Coeus

Presenters: Michelle Christy, Director, OSP and Craig Newfield, Assistant Director, OSP

Presentation [PDF]: Changes in Subaward Management: Implementing UG and Changes in KC

February 2015 Forums

Introducing the Award Budget Project

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: After a long hiatus, MIT will return to maintaining sponsor-approved budgets in a central system of record for all sponsored project cost objects. During this Forum, staff from the Offices of Sponsored Programs and the Vice President for Finance will:

  • provide the vision for the Award Budget process
  • discuss the drivers for this change
  • describe how the process will work and what the DLC role will be
  • discuss special issues that may require DLC action

Presenters: Michelle Christy, Director, OSP and Basil Stewart, Controller, VPF 

Presentation [PDF]: Introducing the Award Budget Project

Research Funder Open Access Requirements from Federal Agencies

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: Stay up-to-date on funder requirements for researchers in your DLC. This session will teach you about new requirements from the federal government for open access: in 2013, the White House directed all large federal agencies to develop requirements for open access to publications and data created through research they fund. These requirements are now being implemented, starting with the Department of Energy (DOE).

In the session, staff from the Office of Sponsored Programs and the Libraries will:

  • provide an overview of the new requirements
  • focus on the requirements that have been issued from the Department of Energy as an example
  • describe services at MIT that can help researchers comply with these requirements

Presenter from the Office of Sponsored Programs: Michelle Christy, Director

Presenters from the MIT Libraries: Ellen Finnie Duranceau, Program Manager for Scholarly Publishing, Copyright, & Licensing; and Katherine McNeill, Research Data Librarian 

Presentation [PDF]: Research Funder Open Access Requirements Presentation

October/November 2014 Forums

New and Revised Proposal Types

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: There was a Coeus upgrade on Thursday evening, November 6th that focused primarily on Proposal Types, including the introduction of new types and updates to existing types.

These new and revised Proposal Types affect everyone who prepares proposals. 

Presentation [PDF]: Presentation from OSP Forum “Proposal Types”

August 2014 Forum

Uniform Guidance: What we know so far, and future plans

Target audience:  AOs, FOs, and other staff involved with research administration

Overview: The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance)were released on December 26, 2013. Uniform Guidance supersedes and streamlines requirements currently contained in eight different OMB Circulars, including A-110 (Administrative requirements), A-21 (Cost principles), and A-133 (Audit requirements). The Uniform Guidance will apply to new and incremental funding awarded on or after December 26, 2014.

Presentation [PDF]: Presentation from OSP Forum “Uniform Guidance: What we know so far and future plans”

July 2014 Forum

Electronic Document Storage


  • Coeus Electronic Document Storage - The storage of key award and proposal documents in Coeus, for access by the MIT Research Community.
  • Who will have access, and to which awards, proposals, and files
  • New Coeus User Roles for Electronic Document access
  • Integration with the MIT Roles Database: Roles Database vs. Coeus Assigned Roles
  • The CoeusLite My Awards: Project Documents interface – a single-page view into the electronic documents stored in Coeus which allows a user to easily access all related electronic files
  • PI Access to My Awards: Project Documents electronic files
  • Document Types & Naming Conventions
  • Resources and Support

Presentation [PDF]: Presentation from OSP Forum “Coeus Electronic Document Storage”

April 2014 Forum

Workload Balancing

Target audience:  AOs, FOs and any other staff engaged in helping submit proposals to sponsors

Overview: For the last few months OSP has been working on a couple of projects that we would like to tell you about.  Both have the same goal -- to eliminate some of the work that MIT administrators do on proposal preparation and review. Please join us for an OSP Forum to discuss these recent efforts:

  • Workload Balancing:  In collaboration with a team from MIT’s Operations Research Center, OSP will soon be implementing an algorithm to assign proposals more evenly to OSP Contract Administrators. Tools to make the business process changes transparent have also been developed based on input from DLCs.
  • Administrative Quality of Proposals: OSP proposal review data shows key areas where MIT proposals consistently present issues with either MIT policy or the sponsor’s policies. This means re-work for OSP and department administrators where time should be better spent elsewhere. Together, we need to identify ways to reduce the number of issues in proposals, and set goals for the number of “no issue” proposals. Working with VPR, Assistant Deans and DLCs, OSP has been providing Schools with data from a Coeus-based proposal tracking tool to assist DLCs in improving administrative quality around key issues. You will have received the data for your department prior to this session.

Find out what these process improvements will mean for you.

Presentation [PDF]: Presentation from the Workload Balancing forum

Presentations from Past Forums

Change in Capital Threshold

March 2014: Note - see this page for important update on Equipment Threshold!

Date Presented: January 31, 2013

Overview: As mentioned in the January 10, 2013 memo from OSP Director Michelle Christy and Vice President for Finance Michael Howard, effective July 1, 2013 (FY 2014), the Institute will raise the capitalization threshold on purchased and fabricated equipment from $3,000 to $5,000 per item. Please join us for a discussion of this recently announced change. During this Forum we will discuss:

  • The background and rationale for this change in capital threshold
  • Key aspects of the process
  • Implications for OSP, VPF, Departments, Labs, and Centers at MIT
  • Questions and areas for clarification around this change

Presentation [PDF]: Presentation PDF from the Forum

Implementation of MIT’s New Conflict of Interest Policy:  
Changes Impacting Administrators and Principal Investigators

Date Presented: July 18, 2013

Speaker: Rupinder Grewal

Overview: On August 24, 2012, MIT will adopt a new Policy on Conflicts of Interest in Research. This new policy will apply to all Principal Investigators and their research activities, regardless of sponsor. The policy also includes a PHS Addendum which details additional changes affecting only NIH Investigators.

Changes affecting all Principal Investigators:

  • Changes in the proposal process
    • New online PI certification
    • Streamlined conflict of interest disclosure
  • Change in reporting threshold of significant financial interests
  • Implementation of new Conflict of Interest Module and timing of Annual Disclosure process

Additional Changes affecting NIH Investigators (Principal Investigators, Co-Investigators and Key Persons):

  • New Just-in-Time and award setup process
  • Process for verifying and maintaining key persons throughout life of the award
  • COI training requirement
  • Key implementation dates

Presentation [PDF]: Implementation of MIT’s New Conflict of Interest Policy: Changes Affecting Administrators and Principal Investigators

Review of the OSP Subawards Process and Recent Improvements

Date Presented: Thursday, March 22, 2012

Overview: Taking advantage of Coeus functionality and the OSP web site, the Research Subawards Team (RST) is making improvements to communications with departmental administrators about the subawards process. In this forum Tom Egan, RST Assistant Director, will review the subawards process and offer a view into the subawards work taking place in OSP. Those who attend will learn about new communications to inform departmental administrators about the progress of a subaward. We will also introduce the web-based subaward closeout checklist. We look forward to talking with you about these and other improvements, answering questions, and providing a review for those unfamiliar with the subawards process.

Sample Notice Letters [PDF]: Subaward Email Notifications

Process Chart [PDF]: Subawards Status and Task Flow

Presentation [PDF]:OSP Subawards Process and Recent Improvements

Humans and Animals in Research

Date Presented: Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Presentation [PDF]: Animals and Human Subjects: Policy and Process

Overview: This presentation highlighted recent changes and improvements to the special review process and the way Coeus supports those changes, Judith Medeiros-Adams and Cheryl Cheney join OSP presenters to review key aspects of CAC and COUHES policy and processes and discuss the impact of administrative changes.

Presenters and Panelists: Wendy Barrigar, Data Analyst, Office of Sponsored Programs, Cheryl Cheney, CPIA, Protocol Officer, Committee on Animal Care (CAC), Laureen Horton, Manager, Contracts and Grants, Office of Sponsored Programs, Judith Medeiros-Adams, Human Research Compliance Administrator, Office of the Provost.

Washington Update

Date Presented:  Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Speaker: William Bonvillian, Director, MIT Washington Office

Overview: The director of the MIT Washington office shared his perspective on factors influencing the current federal budget, prospects for research funding in particular, and implications.

Presentation [PDF]:Federal Budget and Impact on R&D Funding
Washington Office Newsletter

Project Next: Engineering Solutions for What's Next in Research Administration

Date Presented: Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Speakers: Michelle Christy and project leaders, including Pat Greer, Colleen Leslie, Steve Michaels, John D. Roberts, and Carol Wood.

Presentation [PDF]: Project Next: Engineering Solutions for What's Next in Research Administration