NIH NRSA Training Grants

A National Research Service Awards (NRSA) institutional research Training Grant is an Award to develop or enhance research training opportunities for individuals who are training for careers in specified areas of biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research. A single Training Grant can support multiple trainees.

Training Grants may be made for competitive segments of up to five years and are renewable. Grants within an approved competitive segment normally are made in 12-month increments, referred to as budget periods. Support for additional non-competitive years depends on satisfactory progress, submission of all required trainee-related documents, and availability of funds.

Trainee Costs


Trainees receive a stipend as a subsistence allowance to help defray living expenses during their appointment. Stipends must be paid in accordance with NIH stipend levels in effect at the time of appointment. Stipend amounts may be adjusted only at the time of appointment or reappointment.

Trainees may be appointed at any time within the budget period for a 12-month appointment, even if the the 12 months extends beyond the end date of the awarded budget period. No trainee may be appointed under a regular NRSA institutional research training grant for less than 9 months except with NIH prior approval.

An appointment or reappointment may not exceed 12 months without NIH prior approval.

All trainees are required to pursue their research training on a full-time basis. Full-time is generally defined as devoting at least 40 hours per week to the program.

Please note, trainees can only receive stipend payments on training grants, they cannot receive any wages on training grants.

Stipend Expenditure Types

When paying a PreDoc a stipend please use expenditure type 7005A.

When paying a PostDoc a stipend please use expenditure type 7006A.

Stipend Supplementation

Stipends can be supplemented by non-Federal funds as long as there are no additional obligation to the trainee.


Tuition and fees are allowable trainee costs only if such charges are applied consistently to all individuals in a similar training status at the organization, without regard to their source of support.

Tuition at the postdoctoral level is limited to that required for specific courses in support of the approved training program and requires NIH prior approval.

Tuition and fees are provided under the following policy:

For Predoctoral Trainees. An amount equal to 60% of the level requested by the sponsoring institution, up to $16,000 per year, will be provided. If the program supports formally combined dual-degree training (e.g., M.D.-Ph.D, D.D.S.-Ph.D.), the amount provided will be up to $21,000 per year.

For Postdoctoral Trainees. An amount equal to 60% of the level requested by the applicant institution, up to $4,500 per year, will be provided. If the program supports postdoctoral individuals in formal degree-granting training, the amount provided will be up to $16,000 per year.

Tuition and fees are awarded as a lump sum that can be allocated (without NIH prior approval) based on recipient needs.

Trainee Related Expenses

Funds are provided to defray costs such as staff salaries, consultant costs, equipment, research supplies, staff travel, trainee health insurance (self-only or family as applicable), and other expenses directly related to the training program. Funds are requested and awarded as a lump sum on the basis of the predetermined amount per predoctoral and postdoctoral trainee approved for support. 

Trainee Travel Costs

If requested by the recipient, NIH may provide grant funds to cover the costs of trainee travel, including attendance at scientific meetings, which the organization determines is necessary to the individual's training. Trainees must be appointed to the training grants at time of the actual travel for this to be an allowable cost. Funds may not be expended to cover the costs of travel between the trainee's place of residence and the training institution, except that the recipient organization may authorize a one-way travel allowance in an individual case of extreme hardship.


Funds may be rebudgeted only as follows:

Trainee-Related Expenses - Rebudgeting of funds awarded in a lump sum for trainee-related expenses does not require NIH prior approval.

Trainee Costs - For rebudgeting purposes, trainee costs include funds awarded in the stipends or tuition/fees budget categories. These costs may not be used for other purposes except under unusual circumstances and then only with NIH prior approval. Unless otherwise restricted, rebudgeting into or within the stipends and tuition/fees is allowable without NIH prior approval.

Trainee Travel - For rebudgeting purposes, trainee travel is not considered a trainee cost and, therefore, may be rebudgeted into any other budget category without NIH prior approval.

Facilities and Administrative Costs

Recipients, other than State, local, or Indian tribes, will receive F&A costs at 8 percent of modified total direct costs (exclusive of tuition and fees, childcare costs, consortiums in excess of $25,000, and expenditures for equipment) rather than on the basis of a negotiated rate agreement.


xTrain User Guide

xTrain Statement of Appointment User Guide

Payback Agreement Guide and Form

Termination Notice Guide and Form

Stipend Levels

NIH Grants Policy Statement on NRSA Training Grants

NIH NRSA Training Grant FAQs





Last Updated