Education and Broadening Participation DEB supplement requests:

The information below describes education and broadening participation supplement requests that are considered by the Division of Environmental Biology. These include:

  • Career Life Balance (CLB)
  • Non-Academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN)
  • Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)
  • Research Experience for Teachers (RET)
  • Research Assistantships for High School Students (RAHSS)
  • Research Opportunity Award (ROA)

Other types of supplement requests should be discussed with your Program Officer. If you have any additional questions, please contact the relevant DEB Program (check the DEB staff listings on the NSF website).

Target Date:
Requests for CLB and INTERN supplements may be submitted at any time. Requests for REU, RET, RAHSS and ROA supplements should be submitted by the third Tuesday in January annually. This is a target date, requests beyond the target date will be considered only as budgets allow. Supplement requests must be submitted through FastLane.

Eligibility:
Supplements are only available to PIs and Co-PIs with active awards. If you have more than one award, you may request supplements for each award. Please note that some of the special programs accept supplement requests, and others do not. The availability of supplements for LTER awards varies year to year; contact your Program Officer directly with any questions.

If your program is not listed here and/or if you have questions about supplement eligibility, please contact your cognizant Program Officer.


No Deadline Target Date: 3rd Tuesday in January

Program

CLB

INTERN

RET

RAHSS

ROA

REU

Core DEB

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

DISES (formerly CNH and CNH2)

N

N

N

N

N

N

Dimensions of Biodiversity

Y

N

N

N

N

N

EEID

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Genealogy of Life

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

LTREB

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

MSB-NES

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y


Before submitting a supplement request, review the guidance for that specific type of supplement and keep the following in mind:

  • No supplements can be awarded if there are any overdue project reports associated with anyone on the award including Co-PIs and all members of a collaborative.
  • Supplemental funds generally must be expended by the expiration date of the original award.
  • The IRB/IACUC documentation must be up-to-date and include the timeframe of the supplement.
  • If the award budget already included Participant Support funds to support students or teachers, you must clearly explain the extenuating circumstances leading to the request for additional funding.
  • As budgets allow, DEB typically provides funds for only one REU student per year. However, programs will consider supporting two REU students if the PI can demonstrate a unique opportunity for broadening participation from traditionally underrepresented groups in the biological sciences.
  • Unless otherwise stipulated in your original award, the indirect cost rates for any supplements should be the same as the original award, see PAPPG X.D for more information on indirect cost rates.

How to Submit: To submit a supplement request, go to https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/fastlane.jsp.. Click on "Proposals, Awards, Status", log in, click on "Award and Reporting Functions", and click "Supplemental Funding Request". You will be presented with a list of your current awards. Choose the one that you wish to supplement and follow the instructions. If you wish to request more than one type of supplement (i.e., an REU and an RET), please submit each one separately in FastLane. For questions related to the use of FastLane, contact the FastLane Help Desk: fastlane@nsf.gov or telephone 1-800-673-6188.

After you have prepared the request for supplemental funding, forward it to your organization's Sponsored Research Office for submission.

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Career Life Balance (CLB):

NSF's CLB initiative is an approach to help attract, retain, and advance graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and other researchers in STEM fields. This effort aims to help reduce the rate at which early-career researchers depart from the STEM workforce. These can provide an opportunity for supplemental funding to help researchers who are confronted with a short-term increase in dependent care responsibilities ensure that the research activities supported by an NSF award can continue. The Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) enthusiastically supports these supplemental awards.

The CLB Supplemental Funding Request must:

  • Clearly specify that this is a CLB supplemental funding request;
  • Provide a description of how a technician, research assistant, or equivalent would be used to sustain the research effort while the PI, co-PI or other member of the Senior Personnel is on family leave, the NSF Graduate Research Fellow is on medical deferral for a family leave situation, or the postdoctoral researcher or graduate student is on family leave;
  • Provide a budget and budget justification in support of requested costs;
  • Identify the proposed period of performance for the technician, research assistant, or equivalent; and
  • Include the following statement:
    • "The Authorized Organizational Representative hereby certifies that the request for a technician (or equivalent) is because the (PI/co-PI/senior investigator/Fellow/postdoctoral researcher/graduate student) is, or will be, on family leave status (or equivalent) from the institution in accordance with the institution's policies. The Authorized Organizational Representative also affirms that it is able to fill the position for which funding is being requested, in an appropriate timeframe."
No privacy-related information should be provided in this request, i.e., the rationale for leave should not be disclosed to NSF.

CLB supplement requests may be submitted at any time (there is no target date).

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Non-Academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN):

The goal of INTERN is to provide graduate students with experiential learning opportunities through research internships to acquire core professional competencies and skills to support careers in any sector of the U.S. economy. The Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) enthusiastically supports these supplemental awards. Further information is available in the INTERN Dear Colleague Letter. Each supplemental funding request must include the INTERN DCL title and DCL number in the summary section of the proposal and include the following components:

  • A two-page summary that describes the internship. The request must include a concise statement from the graduate student describing how the activity will better prepare the graduate student to enter the workforce.
  • A resume of the graduate student (up to 2 pages) that contains (but is not limited to) the following information:
    • Educational Preparation (Institution, Major, Year of Study)
    • Summary of graduate coursework completed
    • Professional employment history
    • Publications
    • Other information relevant to the proposed internship
  • A letter of collaboration from an authorized official at the host organization that describes the internship opportunity and the mentoring that will be provided to the student during the internship. This letter should include a statement confirming that neither the graduate student nor the PI has a financial interest in the organization hosting the internship.
  • A letter from the PI that confirms that the student meets the eligibility requirements specified in this DCL. The letter must describe how the proposed internship activity will contribute to the student's graduate education experience and how it may impact time to degree. The PI must describe activities that are synergistic with the scope of the PI's NSF Grant to be supplemented.
  • The NSF awardee and the organization hosting the graduate student must agree in advance as to how intellectual property (IP) rights will be handled. A signed agreement on IP (including publication and patent rights) must be submitted prior to the award of the supplemental funding. NSF is responsible neither for the agreement reached nor the IP information exchanged between the NSF awardee and the host organization.
  • A budget and a clear justification for all requested budget costs, which must not exceed $55,000 per student per six-month period.
INTERN supplement requests may be submitted at any time (there is no target date).

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Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)

The “Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)” supplements (NSF 19-582) support NSF awardees in providing integrated research experiences for undergraduates.

Funds to support REUs should be included in the original proposal. A limited number of post-award supplements may be available if such activities were unforeseen at the time of submission and the request broadens participation in STEM fields. DEB is particularly interested in increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in biological research and education such as women, persons with disabilities, and underrepresented minorities [1] [2], and those from geographically underrepresented areas in STEM. REU supplement requests are strongly encouraged to involve members of these groups. Proposers are also strongly encouraged to consider involving veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces as part of NSF's broader effort to promote veteran involvement in STEM research and education.

http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/edlite-minorityinst-list.html.

High-quality mentoring is important in REU Supplements, and REU projects should involve students in meaningful ways in research projects. An REU supplement should enable undergraduates to participate fully in a research enterprise, from inception and design of the project, to completion and dissemination of results. Additionally, investigators should give serious attention not only to developing students' research skills, but also to involving them in the culture of research in their discipline and providing opportunities for high-quality interaction with faculty and/or other research mentors, access to appropriate facilities, and professional development opportunities. Hence, the request should emphasize expected student involvement in all aspects of the project, and include a detailed plan for mentoring.

DEB programs normally consider supplement requests to fund only one REU student per year, per award, but exceptions will be considered if well justified.

Components to include in an REU Supplement request (limited to 3 pages of project description):

  • A specific statement in the project summary that this is a request for an REU supplement.
  • A detailed mentoring plan, and a plan to measure the impact of the research experience on the student.
  • A description of the form and nature of the student's involvement in the PI's NSF research project, including expected learning outcomes for the student.
  • An explanation of the unforeseen circumstances that led to this request for post-award supplemental funding.
  • A description of the selection criteria used for selecting the student participant(s) - or a detailed description of the process that will be used to select the participant(s). Remember that priority will be given to requests that aim to broaden participation in STEM fields (as described above). Additionally, the student must be an undergraduate throughout the entire period of the REU supplement (REU supplements may be used to support high school students who have been accepted to college), and be a citizen or permanent resident of the U.S. or its possessions (or will be by the REU start date).
  • A brief description of the PI's prior experience involving undergraduates in research - results from the most recent REU supplement must be described, if applicable.
  • The desired start date and duration of supplement.
  • The expiration date of the parent award (the supplement must be expended by the time the award expires).
  • A brief biographical sketch of the student(s) if already selected should be included in Supplementary Documents.

Budget for an REU supplement request:

  • Typical student stipends for summer projects average around $600 per student per week, in addition to other participant costs which should be explained in the budget justification (which would be "other" in section F of the budget), such as: room and board, fees, and travel. Academic-year stipends should be comparable on a pro rata basis.
  • All person-related costs, including stipends, travel, room and board, and fees, should be placed in Participant Support Costs (section F) on the budget. Indirect costs should be calculated only on the amount listed in section G.1.
  • A modest amount of materials and supplies can be requested, and should be included under section G.1. of the budget.
  • All costs should be clearly explained in the budget justification.
  • DEB recommends costs on the order of $7250 per student, although they have ranged from $7000-$9000 in the past depending on the proposed activities and availability of funds.

REU supplement requests should be submitted by the target date of the third Tuesday in January.

If you have questions, please contact the cognizant DEB Program (check the DEB staff listings on the NSF website).

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Research Experience for Teachers (RET)

The Dear Colleague Letter: Research Experience for Teachers (RET): Funding Opportunity in the Biological Sciences describes how NSF awardees can provide integrated research and education experience for K-12 teachers by including the active participation of these teachers in funded research projects. The Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) enthusiastically supports these supplemental awards.

The intent of this endeavor is to facilitate professional development of K-12 science teachers through mentored research experiences at the cutting edge of science.

We strongly recommend discussing a potential RET submission with a Program Officer after studying the "Dear Colleague Letter" and prior to submitting the proposal.

Components to include or consider in an RET Supplement request (limited to 3 pages of project description):

  • A specific statement in the project summary that this is a request for an RET supplement.
  • Clearly articulate, in some detail, the form and nature of the prospective teacher's involvement in the PI's research.
  • A description of the selection process used for identifying the teacher(s). DEB encourages the recruitment of teachers who are members of underrepresented groups (including minorities, persons with disabilities, veterans) or whose school is located in an underserved community. Please note that RET support is limited to U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
  • Describe how the experience will lead to transfer of new knowledge to classroom activities, and how those activities help fulfill curriculum goals or teacher training stated by the relevant school system. The inclusion of a plan for broad dissemination of new teaching products is encouraged.
  • Describe what follow-up would be provided to help in translating the teacher's research experience into classroom practice.
  • An explanation of the unforeseen circumstances that led to this request for post-award supplemental funding.
  • A brief description of prior experience working with K-12 teachers. Results from the most recent RET supplement must be described, if applicable.
  • The desired start date and duration of the supplement. The duration of the RET supplement will generally be one year, and the project may be carried out during summer months, during the academic year, or both.
  • The expiration date of the parent award (the supplement must be expended by the time the award expires).
  • Include a biographical sketch for each teacher of no more than 2-pages in Supplementary Documents.

Budget for an RET supplement request:

  • Person-related costs, such as stipends, travel, and lodging should be entered in Participant Support Costs (section F) on the budget. Non-person related costs, such as materials or supplies, should be appropriate for the proposed activities and included under section G.1. of the budget. Indirect costs should be calculated only on the amount listed in section G.1.
  • All costs should be clearly explained in the budget justification.
  • Typical requests include a teacher stipend and up to $1,000 for the cost of materials, equipment, software and other supplies for developing classroom instructions and experiments.
  • Total expenses for each teacher participant should generally be under $15,000.
  • Funds may be available for up to two teachers, but exceptions will be considered. If exceptional circumstances require additional funds, please consult with the relevant DEB Program Officer.

RET supplement requests should be submitted by the target date of the third Tuesday in January.

If you have questions, please contact the relevant DEB Program (check the DEB staff listings on the NSF website).

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Research Assistantships for High School Students RAHSS

The Dear Colleague Letter: Research Assistantships for High School Students (RAHSS): Funding to Broaden, Participation in the Biological Sciences describes how NSF awardees can foster interest in the pursuit of studies in the Biological Sciences; and Broaden participation of high school students, particularly those who are underrepresented minorities, persons with disabilities, and women in sub-disciplines where they are underrepresented. The Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) enthusiastically supports these supplemental awards.

Components to include in an RAHSS Supplement request (limited to 3 pages of project description):

  • A specific statement in the Project Summary that this is a request for an RAHSS supplement.
  • Clear description of the meaningful and intellectually challenging activities in which the student(s) will be involved.
  • A detailed mentoring plan, and a plan to measure the impact of the research experience on the student(s).
  • A plan for encouraging the advancement of the RAHSS student(s) beyond participation in the research program.
  • An explanation of the unforeseen circumstances that led to this request for post-award supplemental funding.
  • A brief description of the PI's other experience involving high school students in research. Results from the most recent RAHSS supplement must be described, if applicable.
  • The desired start date and duration of supplement.
  • The expiration date of the parent award (the supplement must be used up by the time the grant expires).
  • A brief biographical sketch of the student(s), if already selected, should be included in Supplementary Documents.

Budget for an RAHSS supplement request:

  • Budgets for RAHSS activities are generally under $6,000 per student, and should include a student stipend.
  • Person-related costs, such as stipends, travel, and lodging should be entered in Participant Support Costs (section F) on the budget. Non-person related costs, such as materials or supplies, should be appropriate for the proposed activities and included under section G.1. of the budget. Indirect costs should be calculated only on the amount listed in section G.1.
  • All costs should be clearly explained in the budget justification.
  • If exceptional circumstances require additional funds, please consult with the relevant DEB Program Officer.

RAHSS supplement requests should be submitted by the target date of the third Tuesday in January.

If you have questions, please contact the cognizant DEB Program (check the DEB staff listings on the NSF website).

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Research Opportunity Award (ROA)

The goal of a Research Opportunity Award (ROA) activity is to enhance the research productivity and professional development of science faculty at primarily undergraduate institutions (including community colleges) through research activities that enable them to explore the emerging frontiers of science. Such research not only contributes to basic knowledge in science but also provides an opportunity to integrate research and undergraduate education. The Division of Environmental Biology (DEB) enthusiastically supports this activity. Further information is available in the RUI Program Announcement NSF-14-579.

We strongly recommend discussing a potential ROA submission with a Program Officer prior to submitting the proposal. The following can assist you in preparing an ROA supplement request:

  • The formal ROA supplement request should clearly describe, in some detail: the research to be conducted by the ROA visitor; a statement from the host about his/her role in the proposed research efforts; the contribution of the proposed work to the visitor's future research plans and impact on his/her home institution; a budget with appropriate explanatory justification, and a biographical sketch for the visitor
  • ROA activities are most frequently summer experiences, but partial support of sabbaticals may also be provided.
  • ROA supplements are generally about $25,000, including indirect costs
  • Except for major instrumentation or equipment, almost anything allowable in a regular grant proposal (see the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) for details) may be included in an ROA budget.

The decision to award an ROA supplement will be based on internal review by the Program Officer and availability of funds.

ROA supplement requests should be submitted by the target date of the third Tuesday in January.

If you have questions, please contact the cognizant DEB Program (check the DEB staff listings on the NSF website).

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Broadening Participation at the National Science Foundation: A Framework for Action, 2008 https://www.nsf.gov/od/broadeningparticipation/framework_report.jsp

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