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Frequently Asked Questions


  1. Can the career awardee stay at his/her current institution in an unmentored phase?
    Yes. The NCI Staff must approve the transition to an unmentored phase at the same institution in the same way as if they were moving to another institution. The career awardee must show that he/she is independent of the mentor and performing as an independent researcher. The institution must demonstrate that this is a suitable position for the applicant to conduct independent research.

  2. Should the career awardee apply for other support (R01, R03, R21) immediately after change of phase from mentored to unmentored?
    There is no specific requirement as to when an individual should apply for independent research support. However, it is important that the career awardee become fully independent as soon as possible, and gaining independent funding is a major step to fully implement the purpose of this award.

  3. If the career awardee changes institutions during the mentored phase of the award must he/she designate a new sponsor?
    Yes. The NCI must approve the transfer from one mentor to another as well as a change of institution. This, however, is not recommended since the success of your application in peer review was based significantly on the sponsor's research environment and ability to provide mentorship.

  4. If a career awardee changes from a mentored to unmentored phase, will the salary remain the same?
    A change of institution or status may result in a change of salary. The new salary must be consistent with the established salary of other members of equivalent qualifications, rank and responsibilities in the organization. The institution may request up to $75,000 per year, plus fringe benefits, and commit to the career awardee a minimum of 75% full-time professional effort to conduct research and research career development. There will be a change in the Research Development support. During the mentored phase $30,000 will be provided for the career awardee. The amount will increase to $50,000 per year when he/she moves to an unmentored, independent research environment. These changes must be built into the original budget, not negotiated at the time of transition.

  5. Can I apply for a research grant from the PHS and still keep my career development award?
    Yes, however the rules regarding salaries have changed as of 2/1/04 (NOT-OD-04-007). Please contact NCI staff for your particular situation.

  6. If I submit a research grant application (e.g., R01) after receiving a Career Development Award, how does the NCI reconcile the percent level of effort commitment and salary on the research grant application with the requirements of the Career Development Award?
    The total percent level of effort commitment on the Career Award and the research grant cannot exceed 100 percent. The percent effort commitment permitted on the research grant will be negotiated at the time of award and will depend on the degree of overlap between the specific aims of the two funding sources. (Please contact the NCI Staff Contacts for the Career Award for additional detailed information on this issue.)

 Policy/Post Award

  1. What is the minimum time after award of the K01 that the career awardee (Principal Investigator) must remain in the mentored phase?
    The career awardee must spend at least one year, but not more than three years, in the mentored phase. The awardee and the mentor must agree when the change of phase will occur. The NCI Program Director must be notified well in advance of this transition.

  2. What is considered a suitable position for the independent phase of the award?
    The NCI believes that a tenure track position at a level reflective of the accomplishments and responsibilities of the career awardee is most appropriate. The NCI program staff will carefully review these aspects:

    • Resources offered to career awardee for independent research program;
    • Stability of position, e.g., tenure track or equivalent; and
    • Clear commitment for protective time to develop research program.

  3. If I have a K01 award and would like to ask for post award changes, how do I go about this?
    You must contact the NCI Grants Administration official to determine the appropriate procedures to use in making a request for post award changes in your grant. This also applies to any of your needs that require a prior approval from the NCI. In general, you will have to make a request that is signed by you and a business official of your institution. After receiving the request, the Grants Administration official will consult with the NCI scientific program staff as necessary to determine whether the request can be approved.