Office of Research Frequently Asked Questions - Office of Research

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How many facilities will obtain the designation as CRCF? Will it be only 5 as in the past?

A: The designation as CRCF is a new concept on the UC Davis campus and indicates critical needs for the research mission of UC Davis as well as exemplifies excellence in facility operation. All recent “centralized core facilities” that have operated under the auspices of the Office of Research need to apply for the designation as CRCF, and no target number exists! CRCFs identify models for facility operation that will define the state-of-the-art of best practices.


Q: My facility has recharge rates that are currently under development or pending review.  Am I still eligible to apply?

A: Yes.  You will need to indicate the status of the rate proposal in the RFA response.


Q: Is there a form for the “Letter of Intent”?

A: Expressions of Interest will be captured via the Research Funding web portal at the Office of Research Limited Submissions Program, which will be available 12/11/15


Q: Is clicking the “I’m Interested” button really sufficient or is a form also needed?

A: Yes.  Clicking “I’m Interested” is really all that is needed.


Q: What if I do not have PI status or are not delegated to submit on behalf of a PI via the Research Funding portal?

A: You do not have to have PI status to apply. Please contact [email protected] with a request for access to this program.


Q: Can individual cores within a Center apply independently?  How does each Core Manager/Technical Director get access to submit through the Research Funding System if they are not a PI?

A: Yes.  Cores within a Center should apply independently.  Contact [email protected] with a request for access to this program if the applicant is not a PI.


Q: If my facility is classified as a clinical research facility can I still apply?

A: Yes. All facilities that support research activities will be considered. This includes basic, translational and clinical research facilities. Facilities that provide only the analysis of clinical/patient samples are not eligible.


Q: What is the minimum size of operation for a core facility to be considered as CRCF?

A: There is no predetermined size based on facility personnel or recharge revenue. What is a factor is the size of the user community. Facilities that serve users from at least 3 or more colleges/professional schools will be considered. Indeed, more than 50% of the core facilities at UC Davis serve 4 or more colleges/professional schools.


Q: What is the review criteria based on? I.e, how will the reviewers know how great a facility we really are?

A: During the review process each facility will be evaluated based on the facility’s impact on scientific advancement, number of users and colleges/professional schools served, management and strategic planning, and training activities. 


Q: Should older cores submit for developing/younger cores?

A: No, each core facility needs to submit an individual application. However, smaller or younger cores may elect to combine efforts and form one new facility under one management structure to be considered as CRCF.


Q: When a core gets designated, will a core be able to tap into a more professional financial system?

A: CRCFs will have direct access to professional core facility management software at reduced cost. At a later stage, dedicated RCFP staff may become available to provide financial management/accounting. 


Q:  How many cores do you expect to cross the three college minimum criteria?

A: A recent survey carried out by RCFP revealed that more than 50% of the core facilities at UC Davis serve 4 or more colleges/professional schools.


Q:  What is the downside of becoming a CRCF?

A: A set of expectations for CRCFs is outlined in the appendix of the “Request for Application” document. Perceived downsides such as required annual financial reporting are by far outweighed by the official recognition as a Center of Excellence for facility operation, the consequential impact on leveraging extramural support, and the eligibility to apply for financial support by OR/RCFP.


Q:  Can a core list students employees as users?

A: Yes, but only if they are individuals that are paying recharge for services rendered. Student-based teaching activities within a facility should be noted in the Mission & Vision section of the application.


Q:  Will users be contacted for feedback after submission deadline?

A: No, users will not be contacted during the review process. However, it is likely that referees may in fact be users of the corresponding facility.


Q:  The RFA mentions potential interviews during the review process.  Will interviews be conducted with all applicants?  If so, what are the best preparations methods for the interview?

A: During the review process the Research Core Advisory Council may have additional questions. In such cases the applicants may be contacted directly by RCFP staff to provide clarification. Formal interviews are not planned!


Q: How much room is there on the application for supplying extra information?  Does my additional information impact the reviewers’ decision?

A: Submission of additional information (e.g., recent reviews by advisory panels or sponsors) is not required and will not be considered to ensure fairness among all applicants during the review process. 


Q:  Once a core is designated as CRCF, does a core receive dedicated marketing support?

A: Yes. Initially marketing will be provided through the new RCFP webpage ( and the RCFP Twitter feed (@DavisCores). The webpage is currently being supported by Office of Research communication staff.


Q: How should financial operations for the ongoing FY15/16 be reported in the application?

A: Please forecast the expenses and income for FY15/16 based on the already incurred values. 


Q: Will applicants receive feedback on their application?

A: Yes. An application score and specific comments of the reviewers will be provided.


Q: Is there a contact phone number or support if we have questions about the RFA process?

A: Should you have additional questions about the application process please contact Julie Auger at (530) 754-1272. For questions regarding the ResearchFunding portal please contact  [email protected] for assistance.