Modifications and Extensions
It is necessary for such requests to be submitted through official channels. Your assigned Research Administrator should be familiar with the terms and conditions of your award. He or she can help you prepare your request.
The most commonly requested award changes are the following:
It is important not to wait until the last minute to request an extension for your project. Most awards require that you submit any such request several months prior to the end date of a project. Late requests may be rejected. In other cases, sponsors may be limited by certain statutory requirements from extending an end date beyond a certain point. Thus, if you think you may need additional time to complete your project, you will want to consult the terms and conditions of your award as soon as possible.
Many federal grants are issued under the Research Terms and Conditions. These grants generally include an option to extend the end date of a project for up to one year without requesting the sponsor's approval. Penn State is always required to notify the sponsor prior to exercising this option. The Project Extension Notification (PEN) form includes instructions on how to submit such notifications. Your assigned Research Administrator can help you complete this form. (A copy of the completed form should be forwarded to OSP for inclusion in the contract file, along with a copy the PEN Transmittal Memo.)
In almost all other cases, it will be necessary to receive the sponsor's prior written approval before extending the end date of a project. Many sponsors will not accept a request for an extension unless it is submitted by an authorized organizational official. Your assigned Research Administrator can help you prepare an appropriate request. A copy of this request should be forwarded to OSP for inclusion in the contract file.
Many federal and industrial projects provide the Principal Investigator with broad latitude to re-budget funds as necessary to meet program objectives. However, such latitude is never absolute. All purchases must be consistent with the sponsor's Terms and Conditions along with Penn State's Cost Accounting Standards. In addition, the terms and conditions of the award may require the recipient to request the sponsor's prior approval before shifting funds from one budget category to another. Other awards may require the sponsor's prior authorization of certain expenditures. For example, it is frequently necessary to get the sponsor's prior approval before issuing subcontracts, purchasing capital equipment, or spending project funds on foreign travel. Copies of formal requests should be forwarded to OSP for inclusion in the contract file.
It is necessary to request the sponsor's prior written approval before changing the Principal Investigator (even if the change is only temporary). Many sponsors also require approval of any changes to "Key Personnel" (this term may be defined differently by different sponsors, but generally includes all faculty members and other researchers making a significant contribution to the project). Typically, the sponsor requires biographical sketches, as well as a justification for any changes in PI or Key Personnel.
For a change of PI or addition of a Co-PI, please submit the appropriate form below along with the biographical sketch, justification for the change, and a pdf copy of the original IAF to OSP.
- Change of Principal Investigator or Administering Unit
- Addition of Co-PI (replacement of an existing Co-PI or addition of a Co-PI
Please refer to the Change of Project Personnel Instructions for specific details of the approvals required in each circumstance above.
It is always important to keep the sponsor informed of any changes in the scope of work. Significant changes to the scope of work will require the sponsor's prior approval. Copies of all official correspondence related to changes in the scope of work should be forwarded to OSP for inclusion in the contract file.