Continuity of Research, Creative, and Scholarly Activities

Dear Colleagues,

The Office of Research is committed to assisting you to the fullest extent possible under the current circumstances during this difficult time to ensure continuation of your research, creative, and scholarly activities. Our staff is mostly teleworking, but can be reached by email or by phone at their campus number. Please contact us at or@appstate.edu or 262-7459 with specific questions. Please continue to follow the general guidelines for campus operations. 

The information below provides research-related guidance as of 8/27/2020. We will continue to update this page as needed. 

General information on continuity of research, creative, and scholarly activities:

1. Faculty research, creative, and scholarly activity: All on-campus and field research/creative activity that does not require in-person interactions with human subjects or travel outside the state is allowed to resume. Please see Research-related travel below for more information. Human subjects research is being phased in as a tiered approach; please see more information on the Ramping up Research and Creative Activities at App site. Occupancy restrictions in research and creative spaces must follow general campus regulations for physical distancing.

2. Student research: Faculty do not need to receive approval from the VPR to engage students in research/creative activity that do not involve in-person human subjects research or travel outside of the state. These decisions should be made at the departmental level. However, we strongly recommend that faculty endeavor to provide remote options for students that are interested in research/creative activity.  Please see more information about student research that involves in-person interactions with human subjects on the Ramping up Research and Creative Activities at App site.

3. Shared facilities: Some shared facilities continue to operate at reduced capacity and may require additional safety precautions (Vivarium, microsopy facility, etc.). Facility directors should be contacted for more information prior to using these facilities.

4. Research-related travel: The travel restrictions mandated by the UNC System in March are still in place. University-sponsored in-state travel to gatherings of 10 or more people indoors or 25 or more people outdoors remains suspended, and all travel outside the state remains suspended, unless otherwise approved as an exception or authorized on the Travel Authorization by the Chancellor, Provost, a Vice Chancellor, or Athletic Director.

5. Research-related travel funds:

a. For questions related to travel supported by external awards, contact your Sponsored Programs grants manager.

b. For questions related to travel supported by internal awards contact the administering unit (Office of Research, respective colleges etc.).

6. Internal grant funds: For grants funded through the Office of Research (URC, Board of Trustees Travel, Scholarship of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion), if the work plan is altered due to a current ban on travel or other limitations, faculty should outline and submit an alternative work plan and budget to grs@appstate.edu.

7. Research-related expenditures: If state funds are being used to pay for expenditures, chairs can approve expenses up to $500. Anything over $500 must be approved by Academic Affairs. Grant funds (internal and external), foundation funds, and other non-State funds used for research-related expenditures up to $5,000 can be spent in accordance with the grant budget or donor’s wishes without approval by Academic Affairs. Individual colleges may require these to be approved by the dean; therefore, it is recommended that you speak about this with your dean. If the expense is above $5,000, it has to be approved by Academic Affairs.

8. IACUC and IBC applications: IACUC and IBC are continuing to review applications. Please visit IACUC and IBC sites for additional guidance (COVID 19 links can be accessed through the menu items on the left of the pages).

9. Data access and management for conducting scholarship off campus:

a. Employ use of secure campus servers as a general rule while working remotely.
b. Please follow guidance provided by IT here and here.
c. Remember to back up data to secure campus servers regularly.
d. Follow mobile device security guidelines.

10. Remote access to software available only on campus computers:

a. If the university has a site license, you may be able to access these programs through UDesk. Go to UDesk click HTML Access. Accept prompt about computer lab 1 and 2. Log in with your university ID to access the virtual desktop. If the program you need is not available on the virtual desktop, please fill out a tech support ticket and request computer assistance.
b. If the program you need is only on a specific computer on campus, you may be able to access it using PulseSecure VPN and Microsoft Remote Desktop. Please  fill out a tech support ticket to make arrangements for this type of access. If a graduate student needs access, please indicate this on the ticket.

Additional Information specific to OR Units:

Sponsored Programs:

  1. Principal Investigators who anticipate a delay in project deliverables related to current conditions should immediately communicate work plan adjustments to their Program Officer in writing and copy the Director of Sponsored Programs (grants@appstate.edu) on this communication. Sponsored programs staff is available to assist with this communication as needed. 

  2. Sponsored Programs will monitor sponsor communications and convey guidance  to campus administration and affected PIs.

  3. International travelers who have been recalled will work with SP staff and sponsors to address interrupted activities. 

  4. US Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has allowed federal agencies to adopt some flexibility in the management of federal grants.  We are tracking how the federal agencies are exercising this flexibility in the OMB Guidance for Federal Grants during COVID19 Google sheet as information is released.  

  5. See the end of this page for sponsor-specific links.

Research Protections: (IRB, IACUC, IBC, Export Controls, Intellectual Property, Conflicts of Interest):  All committee meetings will be held as scheduled and will be moved to Zoom if necessary.  Other updates will be added to https://researchprotections.appstate.edu/ as needed.

Grants Resources and Services:

  1. Internal grant funds (travel): (URC, Board of Trustees Travel, Scholarship of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion): If work plan is altered due to current ban on travel or other limitations, PI should outline and submit alternative work plan and budget to grs@appstate.edu.

  2. Internal grant funds (other): Funds from URC or Scholarship of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion grants can continue to be spent; however, current limitations of the North Carolina stay-at-home order and current campus policies must be followed. If needed, PI should outline and submit alternative work plan and budget to grs@appstate.edu.

  3. To receive recent funding opportunities and new research developments including NIH, NSF, Other Federal Funding, Foundations/Corporate Funding Opportunities, and Research Development related news, sign up for the Research Google group by clicking here and scrolling down to “Research.”

Research Design and Analysis: Contact the Director (rda@appstate.edu) with any questions regarding methodological design and statistical analyses. Meetings can be arranged by phone or Zoom. 


Institution and Agency Specific Guidelines:

Council on Government Relations (COGR)

NC DHHS

Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS)

Fulbright Scholars - All recalled with Alumni Status

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

National Science Foundation (NSF)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

South Arts, Inc.