The University of Chicago submits eSNAP applications via the NIH eRA Commons system. eSNAP, the electronic Streamlined Non-competing Award Process, is a component of the NIH eRA Commons. eSNAP allows extramural grantee institutions to submit an electronic version of a Type 5 (non-competitive) progress report to the grants management community via a web interface. Principal Investigators and Administrators working on eSNAP applications must have active NIH eRA Commons User Account (An account is identified by a unique combination of username and password).

NIH Research Performance Progress Reports (RPPR)

What makes RPPR different from eSNAP?

  • RPPR data fields are specific to your grant type and grant number only. This means that all active sections are or can be relevant to your grant. Data fields not relevant to your grant will be grayed out.
  • After you have submitted the first RPPR, future applications will be pre‐populated with information from other databases, proposals and previous progress reports. If you think that the pre‐populated information is incorrect and the system does not allow you to change it, then you can either change it in the source database or contact NIH Program Official.
  • Text boxes only accept rich text format. Do not enter any symbols. Scientific report on accomplishments is attached as a PDF document and can include symbols.
  • If the question is not applicable to your grant or if you have no change or progress to report just select "nothing to report."

For additional information:

  • RPPR PowerPoint Presentation April 4, 2013
  • RPPR Handout

If you experience any difficulty with the NIH Commons, please DO NOT call the Help Desk yourself. Contact the University’s NIH eRA Commons AA at for assistance.


Due Date

eSNAPs are due to NIH 45 days prior to the start of the next budget period. Typically, this is the 16th day of a given month. If the eSNAP report is not submitted by the 16th day of the month that it is due, the word Overdue will be displayed in the Due Date field.

Department Administrators should route eSNAPs and the completed ETF to their GCA at least 4 business days prior to the deadline in order to ensure timely review and submission. All files must be route to the GCA in order for the review and submission process to begin.

Preparing the Report

All files should be saved and uploaded in Adobe PDF format. Attempting to upload a non-PDF file will generate an error which reads, Invalid File Extension:doc (ID:20227).

Do not use any PHS 2590 fillable form pages for any file uploads. Text inserted into the fillable form pages is not saved once the eSNAP Progress Report is submitted to NIH and will appear blank when viewing the eSNAP Report.

The Upload Science tab is used to upload information associated with the Progress Report and for the PI to associate publications with the report. Access to the Upload Science screen is granted to PD/PIs or PI delegates when the PI is the current reviewer, however only the PI can associate publications. PDF Documents are uploaded, attached to the eSNAP, and viewable within the eSNAP Report. The Upload Files section of the Upload Science screen allows the administrator to upload the following files:

  • Progress Report File
  • Research Accomplishments File
  • Other File
  • Cover Letter

Research Accomplishments File: Ignore this upload unless specifically directed by the Program Officer to provide it.

Other File: This is the appropriate place to upload additional information that may be necessary, e.g., bibliographical sketch for new senior/key personnel. All file uploads must be 6 megabytes (6MB) or less. Files larger than 6MB are not accepted by the system.

Publications: The Publications section is used in the eSNAP to select and report publications resulting directly from the selected grant that have not been previously reported. PD/PIs enter citations into Commons using the bibliography management tool “My Bibliography” (MyBib) that is available in My NCBI, a system developed by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), National Library of Medicine, for using NCBI search tools and data.

For a manuscript submitted through the NIH Manuscript Submission System (NIHMS – to be deposited in PubMed Central PMC), eRA Commons also reports whether the NIHMSID is valid (Yes) or invalid (No) and out of compliance with the NIH Public Access Policy. This column is available in the Personal Profile Publication screen (Figures 29, 30) and the eSNAP Upload Science screen (Figure 31). This flag also prints in the Publications section of the eSNAP Report. Note: As of October 22, 2010 eRA Commons will no longer display citations on the List of Publications screen that a PD/PI has manually entered into eRA Commons.

The PI needs to associate the relevant manuscripts with the eSNAP by checking the box next to the citation in the “Associate with this eSNAP” column. NIH does not permit delegation of this task. Publications must be managed and associated by the PI. In cases where citations are not in Commons or are otherwise not able to be associated with the eSNAP through this screen, they may be listed in the Progress Report Summary.

Publications must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy. Compliance is demonstrated by listing the PMCID at the end of the citation. Please note: PMIDs do not fulfill this compliance requirement. For more information, click here. The PMID to PMCID convertor is a useful tool.

The Edit Business tab is used to include institutional information and complete the reports and questions NIH requires. It includes:

  • Org Info
  • Project / Performance Sites
  • All Personnel
  • Research Subject
  • SNAP and Other Progress Report Questions & Checklist
  • Inclusion enrollment

Org Info: Choose the appropriate URA Grant and Contract Manager as the AO and the URA Grant and Contract Administrator as the SO.

Project/ Performance Sites: The primary site should be the address of the lab, not the main University address. Update the address to the PI’s Lab address.

All Personnel: On the All Personnel screen, the PD/PIs names are pre-populated, as well as personnel previously reported. List all other personnel (salary and unsalaried) at the applicant organization or elsewhere, who participate in the project during the current budget period for at least one person month or more, regardless of the source of compensation.

The eRA Commons ID is required for all PD/PIs and all individuals with a postdoctoral role. You can check for the Commons IDs under the tab Admin >; Accounts >; Manage Accounts and search by first or last name. Each user must have a unique Commons ID.

All users with a postdoctoral-like role should select Postdoctoral Scholar, Fellow, or Other Postdoctoral Position from the drop-down list of project roles. A Commons User ID is required for all individuals with a postdoctoral role who participate in a project for at least one person month or more. The postdoctoral individual should have a Commons account with a user role of at least POSTDOC. Failure to have the POSTDOC role on the postdoctoral individual’s Commons account will result in an error when trying to add personnel.

Contact if you need to establish a Commons ID for any user or if you are having trouble finding an already existing Commons ID for any specific user.

SNAP and other Progress Report Questions & Checklist: If there has been a change in key personnel, mark the box and include the biosketch in the “Other File” section of the Upload Science tab. In the space given below the check box, explain the changes, whether it is the change in effort or existing Key Personnel or the addition of new Key Personnel.

Inclusion Enrollment: If activities involving human subjects were performed at any time during the preceding budget period, the population data must be reported in this section. This applies whether or not the activities are exempt from the Federal regulations for the protection of human subjects and whether or not the activities were performed at either the applicant organization or at any other performance site or collaborating institution. If the report is required, it will appear as a link in the Inclusion Enrollment tab. If it is not required, a statement will appear saying so.


All ESNAPS should be routed via AURA to the URA Grant and Contract Administrator assigned to your departmentally assigned team. Validate the eSNAP in Commons before routing it to your GCA.

The AURA AMR should inlcude: continuation smartforms, PI endorsed Other Support, Other Support signature certification, and any other necessary documents. Once uploaded submit to URA for approval. Review cannot begin until both the AURA AMR is received and the eSNAP is routed in Commons.  Remember, the PI must log-in and complete their COI within their AURA Continuation workspace before it can be forwarded to URA.

Submission issues: Please do not use the Comments feature in Commons as it has caused errors. If there are comments, please use view 7.10 in AURA.

Once an eSNAP has been successfully received at NIH the grantee cannot recall the file through eRA Commons.

If you encounter problems, please contact or the URA Grant and Contract Administrator assigned to your department.


Last updated 3/30/23