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How a Study Section works

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Presentation on theme: "How a Study Section works"— Presentation transcript:

1 How a Study Section works
Robert Freund, Ph.D. Scientific Review Administrator Virology B Study Section Center of Scientific Review

2 Subjects we will cover:
Submitting an application Review of the application The study section After the study section What next?

3 Dual Review System for Grant Applications
First Level of Review Scientific Review Group Provides Initial Scientific Merit Review of Grant Applications Rates Applications and Makes Recommendations for Appropriate Level of Support and Duration of Award Second Level of Review Council/Institute Assesses Quality of SRG Review of Grant Applications Makes Recommendation to Institute Staff on Funding Evaluates Program Priorities and Relevance Advises on Policy

4 Center for Scientific Review
Division of Receipt and Referral: Central receipt point for most PHS grant applications Institute assignment Assignment to Scientific Review Group Study Section: Conducts initial scientific merit review of most research applications submitted to the NIH

5 Applications Submitted to NIH
Over 60,000 grant applications are submitted to NIH each year.

6 CSR Study Sections Standing Study Sections when the subject matter of the application matches the referral guidelines for the study section. Each study section has members. Approximately 80 applications are reviewed at each study section meeting Ad Hoc Special Emphasis Panels (SEPs) when the subject matter does not fit into any study section, or when assignment of an application to the most appropriate study section would create a conflict of interest.

7 Submit Cover Letter Suggest appropriate Institute
Multiple institute assignments Suggest appropriate Study Section Go to web site: Description of Study Sections Study Section Rosters

8 How to choose a study section



11 Assignment Notification Letter
Assignment Number: 2 R01 HL A1 Dual Assignment: NS Scientific Review Group: Virology B (VirB) Information about SRGs may be found on the CSR Home page ( Scientific Review Administrator: DR. ROBERT FREUND , SRA CTR FOR SCIENTIFIC REV 6701 ROCKLEDGE DR RM MSC7808 BETHESDA MD (301) Institute/Center: NATL HEART, LUNG, & BLOOD INST DIV/EXTRAMURAL AFFAIRS RK NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH BETHESDA, MD (301)

12 CSR Study Sections Administrative Review Recruitment Assignments
Standing Members Temporary Members Assignments Match Expertise/Interests with Applications Conflict of Interest Issues Workload of Reviewers

13 Study Section Actions Unscored (lower half)
Scored, Scientific Merit Rating (priority scores and percentiles) Deferral (this cycle, next cycle)

14 Mock Study Section Video

15 Streamlining Reviewers categorize applications in “lower half” in scientific merit using preliminary scores. Lower half applications: Not discussed or scored Written critiques are provided to the applicant Not taken to Advisory Council In most cases, unscored applications have potential and are worth revising

16 Scored Applications Reviewers (usually 3) present opinions
Discussion (approx. 15 min. per application) Discuss other considerations (vertebrate animals, human subjects, bioharzards) Score Discuss Budget

17 Review Criteria Overall Evaluation & Score Reflects Impact on Field
Significance: Does the study address an important problem? How will scientific knowledge be advanced? Approach: Are design and methods well-developed and appropriate? Are problem areas addressed? Innovation: Are there novel concepts or approaches? Are the aims original and innovative? Investigator: Is the investigator appropriately trained? Environment: Does the scientific environment contribute to the probability of success? Are there unique features of the scientific environment? Overall Evaluation & Score Reflects Impact on Field

18 Scores & Percentiles Reviewers’ scores: 1.0 (best) to 5.0 (worst)
Priority Score: Average of all reviewers’ scores x 100 Range from 100 to 500 Percentiles (R01s only): Normalizes scores between different Study Sections Each application is ranked against all applications reviewed in the last year (3 review rounds)

19 Summary Statement Once applications are reviewed, the results are documented by the SRA in a summary statement and forwarded to the Institute (and the PI) where a funding decision is made: The summary statement contains: Overall Resume and Summary of Review Discussion Essentially Unedited Critiques Priority Score and Percentile Ranking Budget Recommendations Administrative Notes

20 Getting the Results Mailer: score & percentile Program staff:
Payline information Advice on revision The NIH Commons Summary Statement

21 After Review? Contact Program Officer Revise Application
Funding Decisions, advise and interpretation Revise Application Address everything in Introduction Don’t follow comments blindly Resubmit

22 NIH Grant Receipt, Review, and Award Schedule
Feb-March June-July Receipt Dates Oct-Nov June-July Oct-Nov Review Dates Feb-Mar Sept Feb National Advisory Council Board Dates June Dec 1 Apr 1 Earliest Possible Beginning Date July 1

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