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Department of Defense (DOD)

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Recent news related to the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) can be viewed at: https://www.defense.gov/Newsroom/

Proposal Guidance

The Department of Defense (DoD) has several branches and offices, and MSU tracks our funding by the specific agency or office within DoD.  As a result, DoD should rarely be listed as the sponsor on a proposal. Please make sure to choose the correct sponsor based on the information within the solicitation. If you have questions, please contact your OSP Proposal Team.  

Grant Proposals

DoD grant proposal requirements are solicitation and agency specific. For this reason, it is very important to review the solicitation carefully, paying extra attention to the evaluation factors. The evaluation factors are used by the agencies to score and evaluate the proposal and select a grantee/contractor.

Submission system for grant proposals: DoD grant proposals are generally submitted in KC as System-to-System applications to Grants.gov.

Contract Proposals

Many contract proposals (FAR-based solicitations) require the review and negotiation of potential contract language at the time of proposal submission. OSP needs ample time to review the solicitation language, ask questions to the federal contractor prior to the deadline for asking questions as specified in the solicitation, and prepare an exception letter, if one is required to be submitted with the proposal. Representations and Certifications must also be completed. MSU is registered in the System for Award Management (SAM), where a majority of the certifications are completed. Please work with your Proposal Team if you have questions on what needs to be done for this requirement.

Submission of contract proposals: varies by solicitation and agency. Follow the instructions provided in the solicitation.

Agencies within the Department of Defense*

Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR)

AFOSR's mission is to discover, shape and champion basic science that profoundly influences the future of the Air Force. Proposals over $100,000 require the SF-LLL Disclosure of Lobbying Activities form to be submitted with the application. AFOSR instructions are available at Grants.gov and are proposal specific.

Army Research Lab (ARL) and Army Research Office (ARO)

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory's Army Research Office (ARO) mission is to serve as the Army's premier extramural basic research agency in the engineering, physical, information and life sciences, developing and exploiting innovative advances to ensure the Nation's technological superiority. ARL and ARO proposals generally have forms required at the proposal stage, which are located here: http://www.arl.army.mil/www/default.cfm?page=218.

Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP)

CDMRP manages Congressional Special Interest Medical Research Programs (CSI) encompassing breast, prostate, and ovarian cancers, neurofibromatosis, military health, and other specified areas. Research is aimed to prevent, control, and cure disease.

Submission System: CDMRP is a two-step process, with a pre-proposal and full proposal. Pre-proposals are PI-submitted through the Electronic Biomedical Research Application Portal (eBRAP); full proposals are submitted to Grants.gov via KC. For CDMRP proposals, choose US Dept of the Army (Sponsor Code 009092) as your Sponsor, as this is the branch within the Dept. of Defense that administers the funds for this program.

Tips for a successful transition from KC to eBRAP for full proposals:

  1. Remember to add the Log Number from the pre-application into field 4a of the SF-424. In KC, this is the Sponsor Proposal ID box on the Proposal tab, Sponsor & Program Information panel: Sponsor Proposal ID field highlighted on the Sponsor and Program Information panel
  2. Be sure the PI’s email address matches the email used to register in eBRAP: KC automatically pulls in the @msu.edu for an individual; if another one was used when registering in eBRAP (i.e., @egr.msu.edu or @hc.msu.edu), you’ll want to update this email. You can do this by going to the Key Personnel tab, clicking "show" next to the person’s name, "show" Person Details panel, and updating the email address in the left-hand column: Email Address and Credential fields highlighted on the Person Details panel
  3. Add the PI’s username from eBRAP into the "Credential, e.g., agency login" box under Person Details (the same section as #2 above).
  4. Add attachments on the Attachment Form in the same place outlined within the solicitation. For example, if the solicitation requests an optional attachment be attached as Attachment 8, and the optional attachment is not applicable to the project, skip Attachment 8 on the Attachment Form. This will ensure the right attachment goes to the right place within eBRAP.

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

DARPA is an agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for the development of new technologies for use by the military.

Submission System for Contracts only: https://baa.darpa.mil. Signing-up for a login for this system is based on solicitation; therefore, every time a solicitation is identified for proposal submission, a new login will need to be created.  

Office of Naval Research (ONR)

ONR provides worldwide science & technology-based solutions for current and future naval challenges. Opportunities are available for both basic and applied research. Proposals over $100,000 require the SF-LLL Disclosure of Lobbying Activities form to be submitted with the application.  For required forms in an ONR grant proposal, see https://www.onr.navy.mil/work-with-us/how-to-apply/submit-grant-application.

* - There are other agencies within the Department of Defense that award grants/contracts, however, our proposal activity with those agencies is too small to warrant including here.

Budget Guidelines

Most DoD agencies require detailed budget information. DARPA budgets require detail in various types of breakdowns: phase, task, month, etc. Ask your Proposal Team contact for a budget template, if needed.

The guidelines listed here are generally applicable to this sponsor. Please refer to the solicitation for any deviation to standard guidelines or specific requirements for a program.

Personnel

Salary
Salaries must be based on KC values unless a known increase/decrease is expected, for example due to a change in title/rank; salaries are usually escalated in the out years by 2-3%. DOD may ask for salary in terms of hourly rates. If you must budget using hours, please include a disclaimer in the "additional comments" as follows: "Hourly rates are being provided for comparison purposes only. MSU does not maintain documentation of hours worked for its faculty and staff, with the exception of undergraduate students, but rather maintains documentation to support time expended on federal projects based on percentages of effort worked.  This documentation is maintained in accordance with 2 CFR Part 200- Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, FAR 31.3."
Fringe
Fringe must be based on KC values
Research Associate (Post Doc) Salary
Salaries must be based on KC values if a current employee; the current minimum salary for a Post Doc can be found at this link; see the Salary category above for the hourly rates disclaimer
Research Associate (Post Doc) Fringe
Fringe should be based on KC values; Post Docs are eligible for retirement in the 4th year of employment or upon hire if they had participated in a retirement plan at a previous employer that made employer contributions. Please contact HR for more information.
Graduate Student Stipend
Stipend amounts should be based on standard/published college/department levels or HR levels; see the Salary category above for hourly rates disclaimer
Graduate Student Fringe
Appropriate health benefits should be applied based on the current Grad Fringe Chart; 7.65% for summer hourly work, or standard health benefits during AY
Undergraduate Labor
Usually based on hourly rates; see HR standard rates
Undergraduate Fringe
Fringe of 7.65% applied during the summer; fringe only applied during AY if student is not expected to be enrolled full time
Administrative Staff
Allowable per UG if justified and necessary for the project; salaries and fringes must be based on KC values; see the Salary category above for hourly rates disclaimer

Equipment

Allowable items ordinarily will be limited to research equipment not already available for the conduct of the work; cost basis (e.g. quotes) should be provided or on-file with the PI or administrator

Travel

Domestic
Allowable for employees who travel on business related to the project; includes U.S, Canada, Mexico, and U.S. possessions; justification should be itemized to include the purpose of travel, destination, anticipated or known dates of travel, duration, number of individuals, type of travel (mileage/air), lodging & food (per diem) for each trip
Foreign
Allowable for employees who travel on business related to the project; justification should be itemized to include the purpose of travel, destination, anticipated or known dates of travel, duration, number of individuals, type of travel (mileage/air), lodging & food (per diem) for each trip

Other Direct Costs

Communications
Usually allowable; provide explanation of the need within the budget justification
Computer Services/ADP
The cost of computer services may be requested; provide the established computer service rates in the justification
Conferences
Refer to the solicitation for guidelines on what may be requested in the budget
Consultant Services
Provide the consultant name, service to be provided, hourly or daily rate, and estimated time devoted to the project; consulting expenses (travel, meals, lodging) may be allowable and should be itemized
Equipment/Facility Rental
Usually allowable; provide hours and rates for rental costs
Graduate Student Tuition & Fees
Must match the graduate student tuition chart unless applying to a fellowship solicitation; tuition must be prorated based on project dates
Honoraria
Unallowable
Materials & Supplies
Generally unallowable; prohibited by ONR
Meals/Refreshments
Provide a basis of costs (e.g. vendor quotes, catalog prices, prior invoices, etc.)
Publication/Dissemination
Generally allowable
Service Charges/CORE Services
Internal MSU service centers must be based on Financial Analysis approved rates; quotes or other justification for how service rate was determined may be requested by DoD; if not provided to OSP at the time of budget review, quotes/justification should be kept on file by PI/research administrator for use at the JIT/award negotiation stage
Subaward
Subaward budget, justification, scope of work, and commitment form must be on file internally and may be required in the proposal; refer to the solicitation for guidelines

Contingency
/Misc.

Unallowable

F&A

Applicable MSU NICRA rate should be used based on the activity type, unless limited by the solicitation

Cost Share

Only include if required by the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA)

Compliance

Export Control

All DoD grant and contract proposals require an Export Control & Open Research Review Worksheet (ECORRW) completed prior to execution of the award. For some contract solicitations, OSP may require the ECORRW completed prior to proposal submission. Information about Export Control policies can be found here

Human Subjects

If the project includes human subject’s research, IRB approval will be required prior to account set-up.

Animal Subjects

If the project includes animal subjects, IACUC approval will be required prior to account set-up.

Award Guidance

As with any federal agency, FAR based contracts may be awarded, as well as grants subject to the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, at 2 CFR 200. There is always a possibility that E-verify requirements may apply and the award should be reviewed for publication and/or participation restrictions. Federal agencies can also issue an ‘award without discussion’ solicitation. Therefore, careful review and approval of solicitation terms may be necessary, prior to proposal submission. 

DoD agencies have ‘Other Transactions Authority’ and may issue an ‘Other Transactions Agreement’ (OTA). These agreements are not standard. They are not procurement contracts and are not generally subject to the federal laws and regulations that apply to government procurement contracts (not subject to FAR/DFARS). OTAs allow for freedom of the agency to contract with flexibility, to encourage development and use of technology, to broaden the industrial base available to the agency, and to foster new relationships and practices. Terms are not standard and must be reviewed carefully. There is usually mutual termination, potential for upfront/milestone payments, and there is no requirement for the publication of results, unless the work is deemed basic research.    

Subawards

DoD is not an FDP Participating Agency, and therefore subawards are drafted by OSP. Before Proposal Submission, gather the budget, justification, scope of work, and signed subrecipient commitment form, from each subrecipient. Once the award from the DoD is signed, OSP can issue the subaward(s). In addition to the documents from proposal submission, OSP needs copies of the subrecipient’s indirect cost agreement and financial audit. OSP will work to obtain signature, and then request that CGA set up the subcontract in CGA Account Explorer.

Prior Approvals

The guidelines listed here are generally applicable to this sponsor. Please refer to the award notice for any deviation to standard guidelines or specific requirements for a program.

General DoD Terms and Conditions

(Applies to all Defense Agency awards): Please see the DoD Research and Development (R&D) General Terms and Conditions, July 2018 R&D General Terms and Conditions.

https://www.onr.navy.mil/Contracts-Grants/submit-proposal/grants-proposal/grants-terms-conditions.aspx

The following changes require prior approval:

  • A change in the scope or objective of the project or program
  • A change in key person(s) identified on the award cover page
  • The PI’s disengagement for more than 3 months or a 25% or more reduction in effort
  • Subawards to other entities under which a substantive portion of the project or program will be performed and was not previously included in the approved budget**
  • Any change in cost sharing or matching that was included in the approved budget

**The recipient's request for subaward approval shall include the following supporting data:

  • Basis for contractor selection;
  • Justification for lack of competition when competitive bids or offers are not obtained;
  • Basis for award cost or price, to include price or cost analysis performed by the recipient; and approval of the Grants Officer (GO)

AFOSR Specific

See DOD General Prior Approvals above.  AFOSR follows UG and DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions.

https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title02/2cfr200_main_02.tpl

ARO Specific

See DOD General Prior Approvals above and consult the award terms. ARO follows UG and DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions.

DARPA Specific

See DOD General Prior Approvals above and consult the award terms. DARPA follows UG and DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions.

ONR Specific

See ONR Addendum to the DoD R&D and consult the award terms - January 2019: ONR Addendum to the DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions and ONR Programmatic Requirements – Domestic Research or Foreign Research.

https://www.onr.navy.mil/work-with-us/manage-your-award/manage-grant-award/grants-terms-conditions

Reporting

The guidelines listed here are generally applicable to these sponsors. Please refer to the award notice for any deviation to standard guidelines or specific requirements for a program.

Financial Reporting

General DOD

  • Generally, for grants, recipients must request payment using an SF270 Request for Advance or Reimbursement submission. The SF270 may be submitted through the Wide Area Work Flow (WAWF) portion of the iRAPT application or may be submitted using a different method as specified in the agreement.
  • The Federal Financial Report (SF425) may be required intermittently throughout the life of the project (quarterly, semi-annually or annually) or at just the closeout of the project. Submission methods for the SF425 vary depending on the agreement and the DoD agency. The final SF425 is due within 90 days of the award end date and should be submitted as directed in the agreement.

ONR Specific

See ONR Addendum to the DoD R&D and consult the award terms - January 2019: ONR Addendum to the DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions and ONR Programmatic Requirements – Domestic Research or Foreign Research.

Other DOD Sub-Agencies

See General DOD financial reporting above and consult the award terms.

Progress Reporting

General DOD

  • Final performance report, including SF298 Report Documentation Page must be submitted to both the Program Manager and Grant Officer.
  • Consult the award for specific submission instructions.

AFOSR Specific

  • Annual performance reports must be submitted to the Program Manager and uploaded to http://afosr.reports.sgizmo.com/s3/.
  • The final performance report, including the SF298 Report Documentation Page must be submitted to the Program Manager and uploaded to http://afosr.reports.sgizmo.com/s3/
  • Recipients must include an acknowledgement of the Government’s support when publishing any material based on or developed under this award in any medium. The acknowledgement must be stated in the following terms:
    • “This material is based upon work supported by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research under award number XXXXXXXXXX.”
  • All materials except scientific articles or papers published in scientific journals must also include the following disclaimer:
    • “Any opinions, finding, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the United States Air Force.”

ONR Specific

In general, consult the terms and conditions specified in block 29 of the award, and special requirements specified on the last page of the award. Information is also available within the addendum January 2019: ONR Addendum to the DoD R&D General Terms and Conditions and ONR Programmatic Requirements – Domestic Research or Foreign Research.

Other DOD Sub-Agencies

See specific award terms.

Other Reporting

The final invention report DD882 is due within 90 days of the award end date, if required.

Property reports may be required, consult award terms.

Effort Reporting / Cost Share

Effort Reporting

MSU effort reporting overview and FAQ’s can be found on the Sponsored Program Administration website at the following link: https://www.spa.msu.edu/PL/Effort/EffortReportingTools.aspx

Effort reporting instructions can also be located on the Sponsored Program Administration website: https://www.spa.msu.edu/PL/Portal/231/EffortReportingInstructionsEffortAdministrators

For additional questions and information, please contact the CGA Effort Reporting inbox at effortreporting@cga.msu.edu

Cost Share

Information on cost share can be found on the Sponsored Programs Administration website at the following link:

https://www.spa.msu.edu/PL/Portal/249/CostSharePolicy

In cases where salaried cost share has been committed, MSU uses the effort reporting system for tracking and documentation.  Non-salary cost share is documented through PI certified operating statements.

Record Retention

Record Retention period, except as provided in Section B and D of the DoD Research General T&Cs:

https://www.onr.navy.mil/Contracts-Grants/submit-proposal/grants-proposal/grants-terms-conditions.aspx

Unless agreement terms specify otherwise, records pertinent to DoD grants must be retained for a period of at least three years from the date of submission of the Final Federal Financial Report (SF425) while DoD contracts require documents be retained for three years from final payment. 

Sponsor Resources

Department of Defense (DoD)

Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR)

Army Research Lab and Army Research Office (ARL)

Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP)

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

Office of Naval Research (ONR)

Forms and Templates

DoD proposal instructions and application forms such as 270/425/298/DD882 can be found at: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/forms.html

Archives

None at this time

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