[Federal Register: July 23, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 140)]
[Notices]               
[Page 40127-40131]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr23jy07-37]                                              

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; Overview 
Information; National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation 
Research (NIDRR)--Research Fellowships Program; Notice Inviting 
Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 2008

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.133F-1.
    Dates:
    Applications Available: July 23, 2007.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: September 21, 2007.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the Research Fellowships Program 
is to build research capacity by providing support to enable highly 
qualified

[[Page 40128]]

individuals, including those who are individuals with disabilities, to 
perform research on the rehabilitation of individuals with 
disabilities.

    Note: This program is in concert with President George W. Bush's 
New Freedom Initiative (NFI) and NIDRR's Final Long-Range Plan for 
FY 2005-2009 (Plan). The NFI can be accessed on the Internet at the 
following site: http://www.whitehouse.gov/infocus/newfreedom.


    The Plan is comprehensive and integrates many issues relating to 
disability and rehabilitation research topics. The Plan, which was 
published in the Federal Register on February 15, 2006 (71 FR 8165), 
can be accessed on the Internet at the following site: 
http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers/nidrr/policy.html.

    Through the implementation of the Plan, NIDRR seeks to--(1) Improve 
the quality and utility of disability and rehabilitation research; (2) 
Foster an exchange of expertise, information, and training to 
facilitate the advancement of knowledge and understanding of the unique 
needs of traditionally underserved populations; (3) Determine best 
strategies and programs to improve rehabilitation outcomes for 
underserved populations; (4) Identify research gaps; (5) Identify 
mechanisms of integrating research and practice; and (6) Disseminate 
findings.
    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(ii), this priority 
is from the regulations for this program (34 CFR part 356.10).
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2008, this priority is an absolute 
priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3) we consider only applications that 
meet this priority.
    This priority is:
Research Fellowships Program
    Fellows must conduct original research in an area authorized by 
section 204 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (the Act). 
Section 204 authorizes research designed to maximize the full inclusion 
and integration into society, employment, independent living, family, 
support, and economic and social self-sufficiency of individuals with 
disabilities, especially individuals with the most severe disabilities, 
and to improve the effectiveness of services authorized under the Act.

    Program Authority: 29 U.S.C. 762(e).

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75.60 and 75.61, 77, 
82, 84, 85, and 97. (b) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 
356. (c) The regulations in 34 CFR 350.51 and 350.52.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: The Administration has requested 
$106,705,000 for new awards for the NIDRR program for FY 2008, of which 
we intend to use an estimated $505,000 for the Research Fellowships 
competition. The actual level of funding, if any, depends on final 
congressional action. However, we are inviting applications to allow 
enough time to complete the grant process if Congress appropriates 
funds for this program.
    Maximum Awards: We will reject any application that proposes a 
budget exceeding $65,000 for Merit Fellowships and $75,000 for 
Distinguished fellowships for a single budget period of 12 months. The 
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services 
may change the maximum amount through a notice published in the Federal 
Register.
    Estimated Number of Awards: Seven total, including both Merit 
Fellowships and Distinguished Fellowships.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 12 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Eligible individuals must have training and 
experience that indicate a potential for engaging in scientific 
research related to the solution of rehabilitation problems of 
individuals with disabilities. The program provides two categories of 
Research Fellowships: Distinguished Fellowships and Merit Fellowships.
    (a) To be eligible for a Distinguished Fellowship, an individual 
must have seven or more years of research experience in subject areas, 
methods, or techniques relevant to rehabilitation research and must 
have a doctorate, other terminal degree, or comparable academic 
qualifications.
    (b) To be eligible for a Merit Fellowship, an individual must have 
either advanced professional training or independent study experience 
in an area that is directly pertinent to disability and rehabilitation. 
In the most recent competitions, Merit Fellowship recipients had 
research experience at the doctoral level.

    Note: Institutions are not eligible to be recipients of research 
Fellowships.

    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not require cost 
sharing or matching.

V. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an 
application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following 
address: http://www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html.

    To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write, fax, or call the following: 
Education Publications Center, P.O. Box 1398, Jessup, MD 20794-1398. 
Telephone, toll free: 1-877-433-7827. Fax: (301) 470-1244. If you use a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call, toll free: 1-877-
576-7734.
    You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: 
http://www.ed.gov/pubs/edpubs.html  or at its e-mail address: 
edpubs@inet.ed.gov.

    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify 
this competition as follows: CFDA Number 84.133F-1.
    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application 
package in an alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, 
audiotape, or computer diskette) by contacting the person or team 
listed under Alternative Format in section VIII of this notice.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements 
concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you 
must submit, are in the application package for this competition. The 
application package will provide instructions for completing all 
components to be included in either the paper application or 
electronically using Grants.gov. Each application must include the 
required forms, an abstract, Human Subjects narrative, if applicable, 
Part III narrative, resume, and other related materials, if applicable.

    Note: Part II, the budget section, is not required for this 
program and should not be included.

    Applicants submitting a paper application or electronically using 
Grants.gov must place their Social Security Number in Block 8b 
SF 424 form in place of the Employer Identification Number.
    Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) 
is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that 
reviewers use to evaluate your application. You must limit the 
application narrative (Part III) to the equivalent of no more than 24 
double-spaced pages. The following standards are recommended:
     A ``page'' is 8.5'' x 11'', on one side only, with 1'' 
margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.

[[Page 40129]]

     Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) 
all text in the application narrative. Single spacing may be used for 
titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as 
well as all text in charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
     Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller 
than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
    The page limit does not apply to Part I, Application for Federal 
Assistance; Part IV, the assurances and certifications; or the one-page 
abstract, the resume, the bibliography, or the letters of support. 
However, the page limit does apply to all of the application narrative 
(Part III).
    We will reject your application if--
     You apply these standards and exceed the page limit; or
     You apply other standards and exceed the equivalent of the 
page limit.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: July 23, 2007.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: September 21, 2007.
    Applications for grants under this competition may be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov), or in 
paper format by mail or hand delivery. For information (including dates 
and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in 
paper format by mail or hand delivery, please refer to section IV. 6. 
Other Submission Requirements in this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact 
the person listed under For Further Information Contact in section VII 
in this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the 
application process, the individual's application remains subject to 
all other requirements and limitations in this notice.
    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is not subject to 
Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79.
    5. Funding Restrictions: Applicants are not required to submit a 
budget with their proposal. The Merit Fellowships and Distinguished 
Fellowships awards are one Full Time Equivalent (FTE) awards. The 
Fellow must work principally on the fellowship during the term of the 
fellowship award. We define one FTE as equal to 40 hours per week. The 
Fellow cannot receive support through any other Federal Government 
grants during the term of the fellowship award.
    We reference additional regulations outlining funding restrictions 
in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under 
this competition may be submitted electronically or in paper format by 
mail or hand delivery.

a. Electronic Submission of Applications.

    To comply with the President's Management Agenda, we are 
participating as a partner in the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site 
in FY 2007. The NIDRR Research Fellowships Program, CFDA Number 
84.133F-1, is one of the programs included in this project. We request 
your participation in Grants.gov.
    If you choose to submit your application electronically, you must 
use the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at http://www.Grants.gov. 

Through this site, you will be able to download a copy of the 
application package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit 
your application. You may not e-mail an electronic copy of a grant 
application to us.
    You may access the electronic grant application for the Research 
Fellowship Program at http://www.Grants.gov. You must search for the 
downloadable application package for this competition by the CFDA 
number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search 
(e.g., search for 84.133, not 84.133F).
    Please note the following:
     Your participation in Grants.gov is voluntary.
     When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find 
information about submitting an application electronically through the 
site, as well as the hours of operation.
     Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time 
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must 
be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as 
otherwise noted in this section, we will not consider your application 
if it is date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. When we 
retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are 
rejecting your application because it was date and time stamped by the 
Grants.gov system after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date.
     The amount of time it can take to upload an application 
will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the 
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we 
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline 
date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
     You should review and follow the Education Submission 
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are 
included in the application package for this competition to ensure that 
you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov 
system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures 
pertaining to Grants.gov at 
http://e-Grants.ed.gov/help/GrantsgovSubmissionProcedures.pdf.

     To submit your application via Grants.gov, you must 
complete all steps in the Grants.gov registration process for an 
individual. You do not need to register in the Central Contractor 
Registry. The steps to register as an individual include--
    (1) Accessing the Grants.gov Credential Provider Web page, 
	http://apply.grants.gov/IndCPRegister and entering the funding opportunity 
number, which can be located when you search for this grant opportunity 
on http://www.grants.gov/applicants/search_opportunities.jsp;
    (2) Completing the credential information to obtain a credential 
username and password; and
    (3) Using the credential username and password, complete the 
registration at http://apply.grants.gov/IndGGRegister.

    Registration for individuals is complete, once the Grants.gov 
registration step is finished. Please note that the registration 
process may take one or more business days to complete, and you must 
have completed all registration steps to allow you to submit 
successfully an application via Grants.gov.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you submit your application in paper format.
     If you submit your application electronically, you must 
submit all documents electronically, including all information you 
typically provide on the following forms: Application for Federal 
Assistance (SF 424), the Department of Education Supplemental 
Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-Construction Programs 
(ED 524), and all necessary

[[Page 40130]]

assurances and certifications. Please note that two of these forms--the 
SF 424 and the Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 
424--have replaced the ED 424 (Application for Federal Education 
Assistance).
     If you submit your application electronically, you must 
attach any narrative sections of your application as files in a .DOC 
(document), .RTF (rich text), or .PDF (Portable Document) format. If 
you upload a file type other than the three file types specified in 
this paragraph or submit a password-protected file, we will not review 
that material.
     Your electronic application must comply with any page-
limit requirements described in this notice.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that 
contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates 
receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The 
Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send 
a second notification to you by e-mail. This second notification 
indicates that the Department has received your application and has 
assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified 
identifying number unique to your application).
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
forms at a later date.
    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues 
with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting 
your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov 
Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a 
Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.
    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your 
application on the application deadline date because of technical 
problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension 
until 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to 
enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand 
delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing 
instructions described elsewhere in this notice.
    If you submit an application after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, 
on the application deadline date, please contact the person listed 
under For Further Information Contact in Section VII in this notice and 
provide an explanation of the technical problem you experienced with 
Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number. We will 
accept your application if we can confirm that a technical problem 
occurred with the Grants.gov system and that problem affected your 
ability to submit your application by 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, 
on the application deadline date. The Department will contact you after 
a determination is made on whether your application will be accepted.

    Note: The extensions to which we refer in this section apply 
only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the 
Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed 
to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before 
the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem 
you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.

b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.

    If you submit your application in paper format by mail (through the 
U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier), you must mail the 
original and two copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the applicable 
following address:

By mail through the U.S. Postal Service: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133F-1), 400 
Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260; or
By mail through a commercial carrier: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Center, Stop 4260, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133F-
1), 7100 Old Landover Road, Landover, MD 20785-1506.

    Regardless of which address you use, you must show proof of mailing 
consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service.
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier.
    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 

not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark.
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.

    Note: The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated 
postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your 
local post office.

c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.

    If you submit your application in paper format by hand delivery, 
you (or a courier service) must deliver the original and two copies of 
your application by hand, on or before the application deadline date, 
to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of 
Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.133F-
1), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, 
DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, 
Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you 
mail or hand deliver your application to the Department--
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by 
the Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including 
suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are 
submitting your application; and
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a 
notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not 
receive this notification within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

 V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition 
are from 34 CFR 356.30 through 356.32 and are listed in the application 
package.
    2. Review and Selection Process: Additional factors we consider in 
determining the merits of an application are as follows:
    The Secretary is interested in outcomes-oriented research projects 
that use rigorous scientific methodologies. To address this interest 
applicants are encouraged to articulate goals, objectives, and expected 
outcomes for the proposed research activities. Proposals should 
describe how results and planned outputs are expected to contribute to 
advances in knowledge or improvements in policy and practice. 
Applicants should propose projects that are optimally designed to be 
consistent with these goals. Submission of the information identified 
under this paragraph is not required by law or regulation, but is 
desired.

 VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S.

[[Page 40131]]

Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award Notice 
(GAN). We may notify you informally, also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section in this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section in this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: At the end of your project period, you must submit a 
final performance report, in accordance with 34 CFR 356.51, that must 
contain, at a minimum, an analysis of the significance of the project 
and an assessment of the degree to which the objectives of the project 
have been achieved.
    4. Performance Measures: To evaluate the overall success of its 
research program, NIDRR assesses the quality of its funded projects 
through review of grantee performance and products. Each year, NIDRR 
examines a portion of its grantees to determine the extent to which 
grantees are conducting high-quality research and related activities 
that lead to high quality products. Performance measures for the 
Research Fellowships program include--
     The percentage of NIDRR-supported fellows, post-doctoral 
trainees, and doctoral students who publish results of NIDRR-sponsored 
research in refereed journals;
     The percentage of grantee research and development that 
has appropriate study design, meets rigorous standards of scientific 
and/or engineering methods, and builds on and contributes to knowledge 
in the field; and
     The number of publications per award based on NIDRR-funded 
research and development activities in refereed journals.
    NIDRR evaluates the overall success of individual research and 
development grants through review of grantee performance and products. 
NIDRR uses information submitted by grantees as part of their final 
performance report for these reviews. Approved final performance report 
guidelines require grantees to submit information regarding research 
methods, results, outputs, and outcomes.

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Donna Nangle, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 6030, PCP, Washington, DC 
20202. Telephone: (202) 245-7462 or by e-mail: donna.nangle@ed.gov.
    If you use a TDD, call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, 
at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Alternative Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an alternative format 
(e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) by 
contacting the Grants and Contracts Services Team, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 5075, PCP, Washington, DC 
20202-2550. Telephone: (202) 245-7363. If you use a TDD, call the FRS, 
toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
    Electronic Access to This Document: You can view this document, as 
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the 
Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister.

    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have questions about using PDF, call the U.S. 
Government Printing Office (GPO), toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or in 
the Washington, DC area at (202) 512-1530.

    Note: The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at: 
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html.



    Dated: July 18, 2007.
John H. Hager,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
 [FR Doc. E7-14179 Filed 7-20-07; 8:45 am]

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