NIH Changes to Application Forms – Phase 1 Now in Effect

The NIH updates for competitive research grants and most career development award applications for due dates of 1/25/16 to 5/24/16 are now in effect. Another round of changes, which will apply to deadlines on or after 5/25/2016, is expected to be released by the NIH by 3/25/2016. Highlights of the changes are summarized below.

The major changes from Phase 1, which are now in effect, are as follows:

  1. Change to Significance and Approach Sections in Research Strategy of Research Plan: Rigor and Reproducibility requirements
  2. New Authentication of Key Resources Document (for applicable projects)
  3. Change to Human Subjects Section in Research Plan: NIH Lowers the Age Individuals are Defined as Children from under 21 to under 18
  4. Change in Vertebrate Animals Section in Research Plan

For more information, refer to NIH’s updated Application Submission Guide (FORM C 11/25/15 version), the Rigor and Reproducibility webpage, Rigor and Reproducibility FAQs,  and NIH’s Open Mike Blog.

The NIH is planning a Phase 2 of application changes, including the release an updated Application Guide in a new FORMS D version by 3/25/16.  The major changes center around new forms and other clarification and highlights are as follows:

  1. New Data Safety Monitoring Plan Form
  2. Updated Inclusion Enrollment Forms
  3. New PHS Assignment Request Form
  4. Change to Font Guidelines to Add Flexibility
  5. Biosketch Clarifications
  6. Appendix Changes

The above is not an exhaustive list of NIH application changes. If you would like more information, please e-mail for GCO’s “Special Series” e-mails or refer directly to NIH Notices NIH-OD-16-004, NIH-OD16-008, NIH-OD-16-009.