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Workshops

For a list of upcoming scheduled workshops, please refer to the OSP Calendar.

To register for OSP workshops or to complete online training, please go to OSP's training system by clicking here. Once in the training system, you will be asked to register and create a password. You can use this registration and password from then on to register for workshops or complete online training.

The following workhops are taught regularly by OSP to the SI community. If one of the workshops below is not currently listed on the OSP Calendar, you can request that a workshop be scheduled by calling the OSP main line at (202) 633-7110. OSP is happy to schedule workshops for specific units or groups or to design a new workshop that is not listed below.

  1. Principal Investigator Orientation - This orientation guide offers an overview for all new or potential PI's. Topics that are discussed include responsibilities, award management, and reporting requirements. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Finding Funding Sources - This workshop offers valuable information on how to take advantage of the internal and external resources available to you. Learn how to identify potential sponsors for your research, exhibits, education, and training. Discover web-based resources and databases available to Smithsonian staff. Topics to be discussed include SPIN, SMARTS, Grants.gov, and print resources. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Grant Writing - This workshop covers the basics of preparing and understanding the grant process from proposal to award. Whether you are just beginning to formulate your project or setting out to dazzle grant makers, this intensive session provides helpful instruction and excellent examples. Integral proposal components to be discussed include credibility statements, needs assessments, proposal writing tips, and budget development. Participants are encouraged to bring an “idea” that needs funding.
  1. Preparing a Grant Budget - Developing a sound budget is one of the most challenging aspects of proposal preparation. This workshop takes you step by step through the budget planning process. Find out more about how to estimate the true cost of your project and review some real life budgeting problems. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Proposal Submission to External Sponsors - Are you unsure how to get institutional approval to submit your grant proposal to external sponsors? Uncertain about the differences between private and government grants? This workshop reveals practical information that every Smithsonian Principal Investigator or Project Director should know. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Is it a Gift or a Grant? - Now that you have that check in hand, what do you do with it? Come to this workshop and learn how to interpret award terms and conditions, get a spending account set up, correctly deposit payments, and understand the basic differences in handling gifts and grants. Real life examples will be used. Presented by the SI Office of Development and OSP. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Cost Sharing Principles - This workshop provides guidance regarding the circumstances in which cost sharing on externally funded grants and contracts is permitted by the Institution. It also provides information regarding the contractual, financial, and administrative implications that result from the commitment to cost share. Noncompliance with cost sharing commitments has serious implications for the Institution; once an award is accepted, failure to comply with the cost-sharing commitment may result in a loss or return of project funds to the sponsor, as well as internal institutional sanctions. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Financial Compliance and Audit - This workshop is targeted to administrative officers and is open to Principal Investigators, budget and financial management staff with responsibility for government grant/contract activities. Topics to be discussed include basic considerations for acceptable costs and the level of documentation required to avoid audit problems. Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to understand the impact of those policies on the management of government grants and contracts, understand components of indirect cost rates, know what constitutes allowable project costs and gain knowledge that will help avoid audit exceptions. (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Financial Management of Grants and Contracts - This course is required for new fund managers and is open to Principal Investigators and Project Directors. Participants will learn about managing and keeping within budget, the SI indirect cost rate structure, and planning and monitoring expenditures in accordance with SI and sponsor guidelines. An introduction will be provided to the federal sponsor requirements contained in OMB Circulars A-110 (uniform administrative requirements) and A-122 (cost principles for non-profits). (PowerPoint Presentation)
  1. Fund Manager's Focus Group - The purpose of this focus group is to obtain feedback and raise issues of concern that are important to those who financial manage grants and contracts ("fund managers"). Key discussion points include: cost sharing, closeout, PeopleSoft issues, overhead rates, budgets, and deficits.
  1. Introduction to NSF Fastlane - NSF Fastlane, a web based application, is used to facilitate business transactions and the exchange of information between the National Science Foundation and its client community including researchers, reviewers, research administrators, and others doing business with NSF. This workshop will introduce the basics of this system including the purposes it can serve, how to access the system, and the features of NSF Fastlane. (For more information click here) This workshop can be presented on-site upon request.
  1. Introduction to Grants.gov - Grants.gov, a web based application, seeks to provide a simple, unified electronic storefront for interactions between grant applicants and the Federal agencies that manage grant funds. Grants.gov seeks to serve as a single source for grant opportunities, a standardized system for applying to grants, and a source for a simplified application process. This workshop will introduce these features of Grants.gov for better understanding and use of the system. (For more information click here) This workshop can be presented on-site upon request.

Grants Forum

The Office of Development and Office of Sponsored Projects annually hold a Grants Forum. The purpose of this forum, which is free and open to all Smithsonian staff, is to increase the knowledge of public and private grant funding opportunities. Please refer to the OSP Calendar or call our main line at (202) 633-7110 for the date and theme of this year’s forum.

Stay tuned for information on future Grants Forums.

Online Training

OSP offers the following online training modules:

  1. "AS/PO: Administrative Services/Project Oversight"
  2. "Cost Sharing"
  3. "Grant Proposal and Award Management"
  4. "Care and Use of Animals Involved in Research, Testing, orTeaching at the Smithsonian Institution"

OSP is currently working to add additional online training modules. To take online training, please see the OSP Training System.