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Grants and Funding: Extramural Programs (EP)

FAQ Pages – K01 Grants

Q: What is the purpose of the K01 award?
A: To provide support for promising junior investigators as they launch their research careers in biomedical informatics research. NLM supports research career development in clinical/public health informatics, bioinformatics, translational informatics and consumer health informatics. The award is intended to promote the career development of informatics researchers who intend to make a long term commitment to biomedical informatics research. Candidates who received their training at one of NLM's university-based biomedical informatics training programs are encouraged to apply.

Q: Who is eligible?
A: The K01 award is available to individuals with health professional or research degrees. To apply, a candidate must be in the first two years of her/his initial position, at an assistant professor level (or equivalent) at the time of initial application or resubmission.

Q: I have an MD and am working on a PhD. Can I use this award to support me while I finish my PhD?
A: No, the award is for those who have completed their education and are starting their careers as researchers/informaticians.

Q: I have a PhD in Computer Sciences and postdoctoral experience in software development. Can I apply for this award?
A: That depends. If you are currently in the first two years of your initial position in a relevant informatics field, you may be eligible. See Q1 above.

Q: I have a PhD in Nursing, specializing in care for the dying. Can I apply?
A: That depends. The award is available only to those who are starting careers in informatics research.

Q: I just got a faculty position in a medical school. Can I apply?
A: Yes, if the position is in a biomedical informatics field relevant to the mission and/or research priorities of NLM and you are in the first or second year of the position.

Q: My teaching and clinical responsibilities take up 50% of my time. Can I apply for this support to cover the rest of my salary?
A: An NLM K01 award will provide a salary up to $85,000 plus fringe benefits. The total salary requested must be based on a full-time, 12-month staff appointment requiring the candidate to devote a minimum of 75 percent effort to conducting informatics research, with the remaining effort being devoted to activities related to the development of a successful research career. The salary must be consistent both with the established salary structure at the institution and with salaries actually provided by the institution from its own funds to other staff members of equivalent qualifications, rank, and responsibilities in the department concerned.

Q: What is the salary ceiling for this award?
A: An NLM K01 award will provide a salary up to $85,000 plus fringe benefits. The total salary requested must be based on a full-time, 12-month staff appointment requiring the candidate to devote a minimum of 75 percent effort to conducting informatics research, with the remaining effort being devoted to activities related to the development of a successful research career. The salary must be consistent both with the established salary structure at the institution and with salaries actually provided by the institution from its own funds to other staff members of equivalent qualifications, rank, and responsibilities in the department concerned.

Q: What can the research and development funds be used for?
A: Up to $50,000 per year will be provided to cover the expenses of starting up a research program, including: (a) salaries for technical support, consultant costs, equipment, supplies; (b) travel to scientific meetings and training; (c) statistical services (including personnel and computing resources); and (d) other research-related expenses. Restrictions: Salary for mentors, secretarial and administrative assistance, etc. is NOT allowed.

Q: Who will review my application?
A: Your application will be reviewed by an NLM scientific review committee.

Q: What criteria will be used to evaluate my proposal?
A: The review criteria are as set out in section V.1 of the K01 funding opportunity announcement (FOA): Candidate, Career Development Plan, Research Plan, Mentors, Consultants and Collaborators, Environment and Institutional Commitment to the Candidate. Please refer to the FOA for details

Q: What type of budget is required?
A: Use the SF424 (R&R) R&R Budget component, as stated in the FOA in section IV.2., and follow the instructions in section   7.4.6 of the Application Guide.

Q: Do I need a mentor for my K01 award?
A:  Yes. Please see Section IV. 2 of the FOA, “Statements by Mentor, Co-mentor(s), Consultants, Contributors".

Q: Should I continue the research I've been doing in my postdoctoral years?
A: Your K01 project should be a well-designed research project appropriate to launching your research career, showing innovation and likely to set the stage for new research directions. The project should be relevant to the mission and/or research objectives of NLM. You should contact the NLM Program Officer listed on our NLM K01 Web page as appropriate to your informatics research area to address any questions on the relevance of your project.

Q: If I am successful in getting an R01 grant before my K01 ends, what happens?
A: The level of your effort on the K01 will be adjusted to no less than 50 percent; the career award may also be adjusted to avoid budget overlap. See http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-08-065.html for more details.

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