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National Science Foundation (NSF)

Find links to information about working with the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG)

  • 2023 PAPPGeffective for proposals submitted or due on or after January 30, 2023. Significant changes include:
    • Revisions to incorporate as the replacement for FastLane for proposal preparation and submission.
    • Information about the use of Broad Agency Announcements (BAAs) and the BAA Management System (BAAM).
    • Revisions to the certification for Responsible and Ethical Conduct of Research (RECR) for proposals submitted on or after July 31, 2023, which expands the training to faculty and other senior personnel as well as requires specific training mandated by the America COMPETES Act, as amended.
    • Use of Concept Outlines as a submission type and the Program Suitability and Proposal Concept Tool (ProSPCT).
    • Requirement for proposers to provide a certification regarding Safe and Inclusive Working Environments for Off-Campus and Off-Site Research.
    • Revisions to the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support formats to include certifications from the individual (as required by the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act,  Section 223) regarding information that is accurate, current, and complete.
    • Requirement for NSF program officers to request updated Current and Pending Support information prior to making a funding recommendation, in accordance with the NSPM-33 Implementation Guidance.
    • Requirements for use of SciENcv for the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support documents.
    • Implementation of Build America, Buy America statutes.
    • New sections on Research Security and Scientific Integrity.

You are encouraged to review the by-chapter summary of changes provided in the Introduction section of the PAPPG.

If you have any questions regarding these changes, please contact the DIAS/Policy Office at Account Information

About Account Management

The new account management functionality will enable the user to centrally sign into NSF systems to perform proposal and award activities. 

New NSF Accounts

To set up a account, go to the NSF Account Registration page:

  • Upon submitting your Account Registration, you will receive two emails, one with your NSF ID and one with a temporary password
  • Use this information to generate a permanent password by logging in to
  • Link your profile to UC San Diego by clicking on the “Add a New Role to Add and Manage Organizations” tool, and follow the directions to complete the process
  • The Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) will receive an email request from NSF to verify your account


User ID and Passwords

  • NSF ID: Users with existing NSF accounts can use the NSF ID Lookup to find their NSF ID.
  • Password: If you forget your password, use the Forgot Password option to reset your password.

Proposal Preparation and Submission via

The Proposal Submission System is now the official system for NSF proposals. Effective January 30, 2023, all new proposals must be prepared and submitted to or FastLane is no longer a preparation and submission option. The National Science Foundation strongly urges proposers to prepare and submit all eligible proposals in now, to support a smooth transition from FastLane proposal preparation and submission to in January 2023.

Proposal Development using UC San Diego’s Kuali Research

Create a Kuali Research Record: For tips and guidance related to entering various agreements into the enterprise system of record.

Kuali Research Systems Training: To register for various eCourses and Virtual Instructor Led training related to the various Kuali modules and to access the Kuali Research Training Guides.

Additional Resources and Help: To get more information on various resources, search the knowledge base and how to contact a Research Administration Client Experience agent.

To ensure researchers have the best chance of having their research projects funded, we need to ensure compliance with ever-changing regulations and identify inaccuracies or errors that can be fixed before proposals are reviewed by funding agencies. Refer to important proposal timeliness requirements to ensure your proposal receives institutional review by the SPO and is submitted accurately and by the sponsor deadline.

Preparing Proposals

Follow the Proposal and Awards Policies Procedures Guide (PAPPG) and any specific requirements in the program solicitation. 

Note: NSF uses the terms Sponsored Projects Office (SPO)/Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR). At UCSD, the SPO/AOR is referred to as the Sponsored Projects Office (SPO).

If you are submitting your proposal via, you will be allowed AOR access in the “Proposal Preparation” module. In the “My Desktop->Proposal Preparation” screen in, select the Temporary Proposal # of the proposal in which you are working. This will take you to the proposal screen. On the lower left-hand side, under “Proposal Actions”, click “Share Proposal with SPO/AOR.” This will take you to the “Share Proposal with SPO/AOR” screen. Click “Change Proposal Access.” The “Change Proposal Access” Screen appears. You will be presented with three options:

  • Proposal Not Shared
  • View Only Access
  • Edit Access (Edit Access has a second option of “Allow Proposal Submission- AOR Only”)
  • Please select Edit Access and Allow Proposal Submission-AOR Only.

SPO officers will submit a proposal only after they have received a final confirming email from the department contact.


Refer to the PAPPG for guidance on budgeting requirements.

Senior Project Personnel Salaries and Wages Policy

NSF limits salary compensation for senior project personnel to no more than two months of their regular salary in any one year. This limit includes salary compensation received from all NSF-funded grants. This effort must be documented in accordance with the applicable budget, justified in the Budget Justification, and must be specifically approved by NSF in the award notice.

Tuition Remission Category and Justification

UCSD charges tuition remission under its own Expenditure Category, Tuition/Fee Remission. As such, tuition remission is to be included in the Other Direct Costs category (Line G6) on the NSF budget page. Facilities and Administration (F&A) are not assessed on tuition remission.

Please list the total yearly amounts of the tuition remission in the budget justification.

  • For example: Year 1 = $x, Year 2 = $y).

Participant Support Costs

Participant Support Costs (PSC) include 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 meetings, conferences, symposia, or training projects.

For most NSF proposals, IDC is not calculated on participant support costs.

Biographical Sketch

The mandate to use SciENcv only for preparation of the biographical sketch will go into effect for new proposals submitted or due on or after October 23, 2023. In the interim, proposers may continue to prepare and submit this document via use of SciENcv or the NSF fillable PDF. NSF, however, encourages the community to use SciENcv prior to the October 2023 implementation.

Senior personnel are required to certify that the information is current, accurate, and complete. This includes, but is not limited to, information related to domestic and foreign appointments and positions. The certification language is included on both the NSF fillable PDF and SciENcv template.

NSF has issued an updated version of the table entitled NSF Pre-award and Post-award Disclosures Relating to the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support. The table dated April 20, 2022 updates information on postdoctoral scholars, students, or visiting scholars and differentiates between research activities that are intended for use on the project/proposal being proposed and those that are not. A definition of honorarium also has been added to the table.

Current and Pending Support

The mandate to use SciENcv only for the preparation of Current and Pending (Other) Support information will go into effect for new proposals submitted or due on or after October 23, 2023. In the interim, proposers may continue to prepare and submit this document via use of SciENcv or the NSF fillable PDF. NSF, however, encourages the community to use SciENcv prior to the October 2023 implementation.

Senior personnel are required to certify that the information is current, accurate, and complete. This includes, but is not limited to, information related to current, pending, and other support (both foreign and domestic).

NSF has developed a disclosure table entitled, NSF Pre-award and Post-award Disclosures Relating to the Biographical Sketch and Current and Pending Support, to identify where disclosures must be provided in proposals as well as in project reports. Proposers and awardees may begin using this resource immediately (January 30, 2023) to assist with completing the relevant proposal and project report sections. As a reminder, current and pending support information is used to assess the capacity of the individual to carry out the research as proposed, as well as to help assess any potential overlap/duplication with the project being proposed. In addition, the Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Current and Pending Support have been updated and new questions have been added. 

Data Management Plan

Dual Use Research of Concern (DURC)


This section applies to all research, for which NSF grant funds may be used, that potentially falls within the scope of the US Government Policy for Institutional Oversight of Life Sciences Dual Use Research of Concern as published in September, 2014, hereafter referred to as the "Policy".

Please see UCSD’s implementation of DURC for extensive guidance and information.

Post Award (Non-Financial)


  • The PI submits all project reports directly to NSF.
  • Getting Started Guide for submitting progress reports to
  • All NSF project reports must be submitted through
  • It is very important that all reports are submitted on time. NSF will withhold future funding until missing reports are submitted.

No-Cost Extension (NCE)

  • All NCE requests through (no additional forms are required by the Sponsored Projects Office (SPO)). Note that grantee-approved NCEs must be submitted at least 10 days before the project period end date, and NSF-approved NCEs must be submitted at least 60 days before the project end date.
  • The NCE request must clearly address reasons for delay, the estimated balance of funds remaining, a description of the work to be accomplished in the next year, and how the balance will be spent.

Prior Approval Requirements

Participant Support Costs

For requests to rebudget into Participant Support Costs (PSC) when PSC is not in the original award, and the request is not a change in scope1, NSF approval is not needed. To request a rebudget, departments need to provide their contract officer with the following:

  • the updated PSC budget is broken down into the PSC cost categories
  • a budget justification

The Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) will initiate the fund revision sent to the Sponsored Projects Finance (SPF) office to ensure the PSC is listed correctly.

NSF approval is always required for:

  • Rebudgeting out of the Participant Support Costs (PSC) category
  • Rebudgeting that involves change in scope1

Other Costs

Post-award Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) or Research Experience for Teachers (RET), and other training PSC are typically requested via supplemental funding requests in Fastlane. In cases where a PI would like to add an REU, RET, or other training component to an award into the PSC category, the PI should discuss this with the cognizant NSF Program Officer and reach out to the SPO, so that the appropriate Contract and Grant Officer can discuss it with the cognizant NSF Grants Officer. A formal prior NSF approval request will most likely be required.

Please see the Prior Approval Matrix for additional information on prior approval requirements for NSF.

1 Change in scope. See PAPPG 2019 - Section VIIB for NSF guidance. Change in scope is not specified but 25% of the total budget is the commonly applied rule. 

Revision to Terms and Conditions

The revised terms and conditions will apply to all new NSF awards and funding amendments to existing NSF awards made on or after May 13, 2022. All sets of award conditions are accompanied by a summary of changes made to that document. Read more about the revised terms and conditions.

Public Access to Copyrighted Material

NSF’s policy on public access to copyrighted material (Public Access Policy) reflects the Foundation’s commitment to making certain that, to the extent possible, the American public, industry and the scientific community have access to the results of federally funded scientific research. Please refer to NSF’s Public Access FAQsfor more information.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

For more information or questions email