COINS Transformation Project

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In support of continuous improvement and our desire to always strive for excellence in Research, the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs and the Office for Research Protections (ORP) are pleased to announce that Penn State University is undertaking a transformation of COINS, the University’s system for the disclosure of Significant Financial Interests related to research. This implementation is supported by the Office of the Provost, Senior Vice President for Research, ORP Conflict of Interest (COI) Program, College of Medicine COI Program, and the Office of Research Information Systems (ORIS). 

We're forming a Key User Group (KUG) to assist the COINS Transformation Project team in identifying areas where additional user guidance or training about the transformed COINS system would be helpful. You will be evaluating instructions, help text, and training materials for the transformed COINS system. Your feedback will help ensure COINS instructions and training materials are easy to understand and use.

What's Involved?

  • Optional Kickoff Zoom Call: Learn more about the system and the feedback we need.
  • Test at Your Convenience: Follow and evaluate instructions, training materials, and system help text. No complex system features to test!
  • Testing Timeframe: Choice of May/June or July timeframe.
  • Total Time Commitment: Anticipate spending about 1 hour testing and providing feedback
  • Feedback Form: Share your insights to help us improve the experience.
  • Optional Zoom Discussion: Talk directly to the Project Team.


Sign Up:

Email Morgan Rhinehart at

  • Provide a single system to fulfill multiple University disclosure requirements for policies AC80, RP06, and AD83.
  • Increase compliance with federal sponsors and corresponding University policies.
  • Utilize the current provider of software solutions used by the University’s research compliance programs for COI, IRB, IACUC, and Biosafety.

We Heard You! Transformed COINS is Coming Fall 2024

As many in the research community have requested, starting in Fall 2024, you will have one system for Researcher and University Official COINS disclosures and AC80 Conflict of Commitment disclosures.


Same Disclosure Requirements but in a Single Disclosure Form. 

You will have the same disclosure requirements, but you will complete one online disclosure form that covers two primary disclosure policies for Researchers (RP06 and AC80) and addresses the disclosure requirements for University Officials (AD83). No more PDFs!


Is There Anything I Need to Do Right Now?

No. COINS and all the current disclosure processes will remain the same for Spring 2024. You will complete your Researcher and University Official Disclosures in COINS and your AC80 Conflict of Commitment disclosure in a PDF. We will contact you when you need to take action in the new system.


Will There Be Help Available?

Yes! From self-paced, just-in-time resources to informational webinars and 1-1 assistance, we will support you every step of the way. You will find help and resources in the Resources section of this webpage (as they become available).


Anticipate Further Communication

Stay tuned as we reach out later this spring and summer with more details about the upcoming changes. We look forward to making the disclosure process more seamless for you.  

COINS development is governed by multiple collaborative teams at various levels within the University, each serving a different but related purpose. The teams implementing the work have been charged with transforming processes and systems in the transition. The roles and members of each team are: 

COINS Executive Sponsors and Stakeholders

To guide the strategic direction of system development and remove high-level blockers. 

Members Include:

  • Candy Yekel, Associate Vice President of Research and Director of the Office for Research Protections
  • Clint Schmidt, Senior Director, Research Security and Conflict of Interest
  • Debra Thurley, Assistant Vice President for Research, Office for Research Protections
  • Kathy Bieschke, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs
  • Michael Stedelin, Director, Office of Research Information Systems

COINS Advisory Committee

To serve as subject matter experts to the development teams, act as decision makers and to champion the systems with researchers, faculty, and University officials.  

Members include: 

  • Clint Schmidt, Assistant Vice President of Research
  • Leah Carraway-Justice, Change Management Consultant
  • Lisa Urban, Research Compliance Educator
  • Marisa Klein, Conflict of Interest Manager, College of Medicine
  • Melanie Parenteau, IT Project Manager
  • Ming Ni, Developer/Technical Analyst
  • Morgan Rhinehart, Outside Professional Activities Analyst
  • Ryan Stroup, Developer/Technical Analyst
  • Sue Seman, Conflict of Interest (COI) Coordinator
  • Susan Bowser, Product Owner / Business Analyst

Key User Group

The primary focus of the key user group is to offer constructive feedback on essential elements such as question phrasing, help text, and training materials, ensuring that these components contribute to the understanding of required system tasks. 

Key User Group includes:

  • TBD

ORIS Development Team

To implement, configure and document quality software and process solutions used by researchers, faculty, and University officials in an efficient and timely manner. 

Development Team includes: 

  • Laura Sabolchick, Assistant Director, and Lead Business Analyst  
  • Ming Ni, Developer/Technical Analyst
  • Ryan Stroup, Developer/Technical Analyst
  • Susan Bowser, Product Owner / Business Analyst


  • The Conflict of Interest Program is developing role-specific resources to assist with disclosing outside activities and interests. Teaching Faculty, Tenure-Line & Research Faculty, University Officials, Postdocs & Research Staff, and Department Heads will soon have access to tailored role-based guidance on disclosure requirements and step-by-step instructions for using  the new version of COINS. 

Project Timeline

A release date is tentatively scheduled for Fall 2024. See the Project Timeline to view more details. 

Contact Us

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this COINS Transformation Project, please send them to us via this online form.