Research Compliance & Training

URA’s Research Compliance & Training team monitors sponsored award regulatory policies and practices across the University and works to ensure the University is compliant with all applicable regulations and policies. The team makes recommendations for the management of sponsored awards, assures appropriate and cost-effective management of institutional risk, provides audit support, and facilitates research compliance and process training. Additionally, the Research Compliance & Training team houses the University's Export Control Office (ECO) and provides support in the areas of physical exports, deemed exports, license requests, and training. 

Financial Compliance & Audit

Sponsor Request Management - Assist in establishing positive relations with funding agencies by ensuring correct and consistant information is provided to sponsors. The team completes and manages the following request from sponsors: 
  • Internal Controls & Financial Questionnaires - Complete request from sponsors about UChicago financial monitoring, policies, procedures, and approval processes. May include information about payroll, procurement, equipment, cost transfers and subrecipient monitoring
  • Desk Reviews and Audits - Complete request from sponsors to provide back-up support documentation for payroll and non-payroll expenses. May include information about UChicago financial monitoring, policies, procedures, and approval processes. The desk review or audit could include a programmatic component that is the responsibility of the unit. The financial component is managed by URA who works with shared services and the unit.
  • Subrecipient Monitoring - Complete Single Audit certifications and finding verification forms for pass-through entities. May include a request for UChicago Single Audit report, financial statements, or negotiated benefits and F&A agreement.
Subrecipient Monitoring- In compliance with the subrecipient monitoring provisions of the Uniform Guidance, the team completes the following reviews:
  • Annual Financial Review - Request and review the subrecipient's financial documents, this includes their single audit, financial statements or completion of the UChicago financial questionnaire.
  • Desk Review - Request and review back-up support documentation for a paid invoice. The support documentation may include a transaction report for all expenses listed on the paid invoice and source documents such as timecards, effort report, payroll verification report, patient reimbursement list, invoices, payment receipts, rate agreements, and any other relevant information. 
Compliance Review  The team conducts reviews on sponsored award processes to mitigate institutional risk. Topics for review are identified from a variety of sources including regulation and statutory changes, OMB Compliance Supplement, OIG work plans and audit recommendations. Prioritization and selection is based on the immediate needs of research administration and institutional risk. The Compliance Review process assists in ensuring the applicable regulations and laws are encapsulated in our research administration policies and procedures. 
Single Audit  The team manages the Research and Development (R&D) Cluster of the Single Audit and works with university units to provide the required information. A Single Audit is an organization-wide financial statement and federal awards’ audit of a non-federal entity that expends $750,000 or more in federal funds in one year. It is intended to provide assurance to the Federal Government that a non-federal entity has adequate internal controls in place, and is generally in compliance with program requirements. Copies of past audits can be found here

Questions related to compliance, policy, and audit, should be directed to:

Training & Communications

The Research Administration (RA) Process & Compliance Trainers collaborate with various members of URA and campus departments to identify gaps in training, prepare training documentation, facilitate training sessions, and develop a curriculum for sponsored award training at the University. The URA Training team also manages the biweekly URA Newsletter providing campus with upcoming training opportunities and the latest in research administration news.

Questions on Training & Communications, may be directed to:

Export Controls 

The Export Controls Office (ECO) is responsible for helping the University community understand and comply with export control laws and regulations. The ECO will assist in navigating export control issues as they arise, determine when the regulations are applicable, and provide assistance in applying for export licenses as necessary. The ECO oversees both physical and deemed exports, and provides training to the University community on export control laws and regulations. 

Questions on Export Controls, may be directed to:

Additional information on Export Controls and guidance can be found here

Research Administration Trainee Program

The Research Compliance & Training team includes three Research Administration (RA) Trainees. RA Trainees provide support to various teams within URA and have broad exposure to all tasks related to research administration. The goal of the RA Trainee program is to prepare employees for careers within research administration, both inside the central office and within departments.

Questions on the Research Administration Trainee Program, should be directed to Jennifer Ponting, AVP Research Administration.