Include equipment, travel, and other expenses costs as appropriate. General purpose equipment items, such as personal computers, must be separately listed and estimated under equipment costs. Justifiable costs associated with data collection/coding, such as the need for additional data transcription services (other than that provided by the Candidate) for qualitative data, are allowable. Candidates can request up to $1,500 in travel costs to attend appropriate scientific meetings or conferences focusing on his/her research topic that take place in the United States, Mexico or Canada. The applicant must provide justification for each budget item requested in the detailed budget for the total period of support being requested. In particular, proposed computer-related purchases need to be fully justified in terms of not being readily available to the student for the conduct of the research.
Allowable Costs: The Candidate is the person completing the dissertation. Stipend/salary compensation can be requested for the Candidate up to the current fiscal year NRSA pre-doctoral stipend level (information for FY 2012 can be found at ). Salary must be consistent with the established salary structure at the institution if it were using its own funds to support other staff members of equivalent qualifications, rank, and responsibilities at the institution. Fringe benefits can be requested only if the candidate is employed by the applicant organization.
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Research Strategy: Part of the research strategy must describe any potential outcomes, products and/or impact of the proposed dissertation on policy or practice, as well as dissemination plans, which involve traditional academic as well as nontraditional means of communicating relevant research findings to policymakers or health care delivery personnel. A clear description of the unique contribution of this effort must be included, especially if the research builds upon ongoing or previously conducted work by the principal investigator, or other dissertation committee member/faculty. Note: As described in the SF 424 (R&R), the “Project Summary/Abstract” and “Project Narrative” are separate from the Research Strategy
As noted above, individuals supported under National Research Service Award (NRSA) mechanisms, including T32, F31 and F32 research training awards, are eligible to apply for a dissertation award, with funding limitations as described above. In such instances, the application must include a statement describing the expenses requested under the dissertation grant application which are not supported through the active training grant or fellowship. The request for support must also satisfy applicant institutional policies. Recipients of mentored career development awards are not eligible for dissertation support.
The mission of AHRQ is to improve the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care for all Americans. As part of this mission, applications submitted to AHRQ to support health services research dissertations are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the AHRQ peer review system. Reviewers will include in their overall and individual assessments both the research project and the potential of the candidate to become an independent health services researcher (based on assessments of such items as: letters submitted, biosketches, etc.)
Level of Effort: The candidate must devote at least 40 hours per week to the dissertation for a minimum of nine months beginning at the time of award. The requested start date of award must be estimated to begin no less than four months from the submission date. Receipt of additional compensation (e.g., pay) from other sources for performance of work that is distinctly separate from the actual work involved in the conduct of the dissertation is allowable, but cannot exceed a paid level of effort greater than 20 hours per week.
The only allowable tuition-related costs are those associated with dissertation credits and matriculation fees that are required during the course of the grant period. Tuition related costs should be itemized in the budget. If requested, health insurance fees should also be listed in the budget, as well as other direct costs associated with completing the dissertation, such as materials, supplies and ADP services.
Research & Related Senior/Key Person Profile: The dissertation candidate, who must be matriculated in an accredited doctoral program, will be the designated PD/PI. The mentor for the PD/PI must be listed as a key person. The only other listed key persons are the other members of the dissertation committee. Attach a biographical sketch for the PD/PI, mentor, and all other key personnel. It is strongly encouraged that the doctoral dissertation committee includes recognized health services researchers with appropriate interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary expertise necessary to fully support the research activities.
Scored Review Criteria. Reviewers will consider each of the review criteria below in the determination of scientific and technical merit of the proposed research project and the candidate, and give a separate score for each criterion. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact. For example, a project that by its nature is not innovative may be essential to advance a field.
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Individuals supported under National Research Service Award (NRSA) mechanisms, including T32, F31 and F32 research training awards, are eligible to apply for a dissertation award. However, such individuals may only request up to $20,000 direct costs for additional, non-salary expenses; no funds may be requested for salary support. In such instances, the application must include a statement describing the expenses requested under the dissertation grant application which are not supported through the active training grant or fellowship. The request for support must also satisfy applicant institutional policies. Recipients of mentored career development awards are not eligible for dissertation support.
. Does the proposed dissertation project address an important problem unique to the mission of AHRQ? If the aims of the project are achieved, how will scientific knowledge, health care delivery, or clinical practice be advanced? What will be the effect of this research on the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, preventative interventions, or health care policies that drive this field?