K-Award Effort Certification

Majority of K-Award programs require the following:

  • The K-Award PI (K-Awardee) must commit a minimum of 9 person months, equivalent to 75% full-time professional effort, directly to their research project and career development activities.
  • The remaining effort (up to 25%) can be devoted to additional research, teaching, clinical work, or other efforts complementary to career development of the K-Awardee.

Salary support is another component of the K-Award:

  • The NIH (National Institute of Health) provides some salary support. The NIH's Guide Notice NOT-OD-17-094 clarifies that salary supplementation for the K-Awardee’s time spent devoted to the career development award and directly related to the research project is allowable, but must be from non-Federal sources, which can include institutional sources, and must not require extra duties or responsibilities that would interfere with the goals of the K-Award.
  • It's likely for institutions to supplement the salary of K-Award PIs to a level that matches the institution’s salary scale.
  • For additional research projects, K-Award recipients may devote effort not directly committed to the K-Award with compensation, from Federal or non-Federal research projects as Principal Investigator, or in another role (e.g., co-Investigator), as long the objectives of the other supporting grant(s) differ from those of the K-Award (see Figure 1 below). K-Awardees may also be compensated for effort devoted to teaching or clinical activities.

100% Full-Time Professional Percent Effort for K award PIs (PDF)

Percent effort for mentored K award Pl with independent federal funding during the final 2 years of their K award (PDF)