Since NIH’s release of the new human subjects and clinical trial data form in January 2018, VUMC has submitted more than 750 human subjects proposals using the new form. We have all learned a lot from this experience. This month the Coeus team invites interested administrators to discuss best practices for submitting human subjects and clinical trial proposals to NIH. Potential topics include: Granting investigators permission/access to eCat Determining data/specimens vs. human subjects Dividing a clinical trial proposal into multiple studies Exemption 4 vs. data/specimens The ‘Date of First Enrollment’ field There is limited room available, so if you are interested, please complete the form below. Interested parties will receive further communication regarding time, place, and content. Please feel free to contact us with any questions. The Coeus team is also open to additional relevant topics and hopes this session is more of a discussion than purely an informational session.
Earlier this week, we told you about the future of Coeus and some of the existing upgrades to the version of Coeus previously called CoeusLite. If you haven’t already read these posts, we encourage you to do so, because they provide a lot of context for today’s announcement. OSP and the Coeus team are excited to announce that the new CoeusWeb budget is available to proposal creators! To use the new budget, open your proposal and click the ‘Budget’ menu item: The budget will open in ‘View Mode’ and display a list of budget versions: You can switch to ‘Edit’ mode by clicking the blue button at the top left or continue in ‘View’ mode without editing. Creating or editing a budget is as simple as following the menu items on the left side of the screen. Begin by adding salary information and checking rates. Then create line items using the ‘Budget Details’ subsections. At the bottom of the menu
Yesterday we shared our plans for the future of Coeus at VUMC. That future includes a new, browser-accessible interface for Coeus. Some components of CoeusLite have already been upgraded to the modern CoeusWeb look and feel for improved functionality. This post will review those existing upgrades. You can try out any of these changes here. Home Screen and Search The login screen, home screen, and search screens have all been upgraded. Users now have access to a generic search box on the toolbar that searches by proposal number, PI, title, lead unit, and sponsor without the need for asterisks. In addition, an ‘Advanced Search’ tool allows for more fine-grained or complex searches. Inbox CoeusWeb’s Inbox is fast, color-coded, and better organized to display and identify urgent needs. Attachments (Narratives and Bio Documents) In Coeus Premium narrative documents and biosketches are uploaded in different areas. CoeusWeb consolidates the uploading process on one screen and organizes documents into three categories: proposal narratives, personnel
Some OSP blog readers may know that a web version of Coeus is under construction. VUMC’s “CoeusWeb” will be a modern, user-friendly tool for proposal development and submission. Parts of the web interface are already available for use (see here). Since its original deployment at VUMC in 2002, Coeus has been upgraded and heavily modified to meet VUMC business needs with minimal disruption to researchers or support staff; however, we have also identified many areas in which it could be better. Before anyone panics–the Coeus “Premium” desktop software you know and love isn’t going away in the foreseeable future. Coeus Premium is a stable workhorse that users trust, but it isn’t without flaws. Coeus Premium was designed for incredible flexibility, but its terminology, icons, menus, and tools can be confusing to new and experienced users alike. Simple Coeus tasks take extensive training and practice to learn and use effectively. Furthermore, installing client software on desktops is no longer the preferred
Many Coeus users might be familiar with the process for uploading subaward budgets into Coeus–uploads of these forms are required for detailed budget submissions to federal agencies through Grants.gov. In fact, we have several posts published on the Coeus website regarding uploading and translating subaward forms. For situations that do not require an uploaded subaward form, however, Coeus users have often created the budget line items manually. Did you know there is an easier way? While the Coeus subaward budget screen is used to translate forms, it can also be used to create subaward line items without ever using a form. Simply key the direct and indirect amounts for each budget year, and Coeus will handle the rest: Step 1: Make sure your subaward organization is listed on the proposal’s ‘Organization’ tab: Step 2: Confirm that all budget periods have been generated: Step 3: Use the budget’s ‘Sub Award Budget’ screen to create an entry for your sub: Step 4:
In an effort to make the Coeus budgeting process more accurate, we have made several changes to the available list of Coeus budget cost elements. Starting immediately, these changes include the removal of old cost elements and the addition of some new cost elements to make Coeus budget creation easier and more accurate. Removing University Cost Elements VUMC Coeus no longer maintains fringe rates, indirect rates, or other financial information related to Vanderbilt University budget expenses. Therefore, the Coeus cost elements associated with the University have been disabled and will no longer appear in the budget selection list. This includes item such as 50200UF and 50600F for faculty academic and summer salaries. Please note that budget items associated with Vanderbilt University expenses are typically captured in the subaward budget and do not need to appear in the VUMC budget detail. In situations where VU expenses must be captured directly in a VUMC budget, Coeus users are encouraged to use ‘TBD’
VUMC’s Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) recognizes that foundations who sponsor VUMC projects may not award budgets inclusive of our full indirect costs. In such situations we accept either the foundation’s published policy or, in the absence of published policy, a minimum of 15% indirects on total direct costs. Pursuant to this approach, on Monday April 22, Coeus will debut a new indirect cost rate option that will charge TDC 15% by default for foundations. Of course, users can override this rate to match the foundation’s published policy if needed. This might be a good time for a review: Modified Total Direct Costs (MTDC): VUMC and the federal government periodically negotiate indirect cost rates applicable to federally funded projects. Not all direct charges receive corresponding indirects. Equipment, patient care, and subcontract costs over $25,000 are excluded from MTDC. In Coeus, several indirect rate-types qualify as MTDC, including ‘Research,’ ‘Sponsored Training,’ and ‘Other Sponsored Activities.’ Coeus automatically excludes these costs for
Coeus utilizes up to three (3) sets of validations to ensure that proposals routed through the system are consistent, accurate, and in compliance with both sponsor and VUMC guidelines. Proposal creators are urged to use all available and applicable validations before a proposal is routed for approval. Coeus Validation Checks – All Proposals Coeus validation checks were created by OSP staff and are based on sponsor guidelines and VUMC procedures to ensure that proposal data is accurate and consistent. For example, a proposal labeled as ‘Activity Type: Training’ should use the corresponding training overhead rate within the budget. These validations are automatically applied prior to routing regardless of submission type; however, they also can be selected and run at any time within a Coeus record by navigating to the ‘Action’ menu and selecting ‘Validation Checks.” Grants.gov and NIH Validation Checks – Electronic Submissions Two additional sets of validations are available for those proposals electronically submitted to the sponsor from Coeus (system-to-system).
Due to recent changes in program instructions, federal sponsors have reissued several funding opportunities. Before routing a Coeus proposal, please verify that the chosen opportunity is still currently active and does not expire in the near future. To do this, check the “Closing Date” on the Grants.gov screen of the proposal: If the opportunity expires before the chosen submission date, please look up the currently listed opportunity on Grants.gov to determine the new opportunity identifier. The page for the expired opportunity should list the new opportunity identifier under the “Version History” tab: When changing opportunity numbers in Coeus, remember to first use the “Delete Opportunity” button on the Coeus Grants.gov screen before then saving the proposal and inputting the new opportunity number: Note: do not merely erase the opportunity number from the “Funding Opportunity” field: Please review the relevant guidelines and incorporate any changes from the previous opportunity number into the updated proposal before routing. For questions or concerns, please
On October 21, 2018, Grants.gov changed the way it posts funding opportunities. If you (a) connected your proposal to Grants.gov before this date or copied a proposal created prior to this date, and (b) intend to submit after this date, you will need to refresh your Grants.gov connection in Coeus. The process is outlined below: Here is an example of a proposal with an invalid connection. Notice the irregular Package ID: The next screenshot is an example of a proposal with a valid connection–note that the Package ID starts with ‘PKG’: To correct this, use the ‘Delete Opportunity’ button on the Grants.gov screen within the Coeus record, re-enter your funding opportunity number on the first tab of the proposal, and connect to Grants.gov again. If you have questions, or encounter difficulty, please contact the Coeus Help team at CoeusHelp-VUMC@vumc.org