Research Release Initiation, Approval & Allocation

Associate Dean for Research

Key Contacts

For questions about the process, please contact the Manager, Accounting & Financial Analysis in the Finance Office.


Faculty members shifting academic year salary to a grant, releasing general education fund salary and fringe. 

Policy Purpose and Description

To move faculty salary and fringe to a grant, which releases a portion of their GEF salary to a departmental research release account.  In these cases, the salary and 50% of the associated fringe is released to be used for research-related activities that are not covered by a grant.

Departmental grant support staff enter this information into the CLAS Research Release App to notify CLAS Budget and Finance staff that salary is being released and to indicate how these funds should be allocated.


Research Release:  Faculty with substantial external grant funding may buy out their research time using funds from those grants.  Grant funds will be used to pay the corresponding part of their salary.  CLAS will return the released funds to a research release account.  The faculty member may use the funds in this account for research-related activities that are not typically covered by a grant, such as: RA support, summer salary, course buyout, P&S support, or general expense such as lab supplies.

Course Buyout:  Faculty members in CLAS generally have responsibilities in fulfilling its teaching mission.  However, in order to fulfill the University's research and service missions, buyout of teaching responsibilities is sometimes warranted:

Course buyouts generally fall into two categories:

1. Release from teaching, through reduction in instructional FTE compensated by research or other grant activity, in order to devote needed time to research, writing, and other activities under the auspices of the grant; or

2. Release from teaching through reductions in FTE, in order to devote time to a professional development activity that leads to professional advancement in instructional, service, or research areas.


The first-time entering data into the Research Release App for each fiscal year, select the Add Research Release for Fiscal Year box.

Going forward, in the same fiscal year, when entering the App select the Create/View Research Release box.

Add Research Release for Fiscal Year:

  • Select fiscal year for which release is being created (should default to current year).
  • College should already be populated.
  • Select department from drop down (should only have their department(s) in drop down).
  • Click “Create Research Release”.

If the research release list for the year has already been created, the system will not allow a second list to be created. The message “Research Release list already exists |Edit Research Release List for FY20XX 11-<dept>|” will appear when they try, and they can navigate to their existing research release list by clicking the button.

Create/View Research Release:

  • College should already be populated.
  • Select department from drop down (should only have your department(s) in drop down).
  • Click “Search”.
  • In results area, click “view”.

Research Release – Summary Page:

Once the research release list has been created, information by faculty member can be added to the app.

To enter grant release information for a faculty member:

  • Click “Add New”.
  • Enter PI name and click search.
  • Select correct faculty from list.

Edit Research Release Grant:

Required fields:

  • Grant program (from the grant that is allowing the faculty member to release salary).
  • Grant end date.
  • Salary amount being released for this grant.
  • Fringe amount (this is the total fringe amount that corresponds to the salary being released and needs to be calculated using the current fiscal year’s fringe rate).
  • Effort period begin date.
  • Effort period end date.
  • HR CoS Transaction # (or a note that salary release was entered during budget process).
  • MFKs and amounts for where the funding should be allocated.


  • The released to college and released to department amounts on the form will auto-calculate based on the salary and fringe amounts entered on the form.
  • The effort period end date must be before the grant end date or the end of the fiscal year.
  • If the form is partially completed and is missing information, the form will save in draft, but it will not be able to be submitted.
  • The released to department amount and the sum MFK amounts must be equal to submit the form.
  • The release MFKs will validate, so a valid MFK is required to submit the form.
  • The Fund, Org, Dept and FN fields of the MFK are locked.
  • Once the research release is submitted it cannot be edited in the request.  If there are changes to the release, a new request should be submitted and either increase or decrease the request based on new information.

Process after Research Release is Submitted:

  • System will generate an email that is sent to the Faculty Budget accountant and the Research Budget accountant.
  • Faculty budget accountant will go in and review the form and pull back salary released from department salary account (00000000).
  • Once salary has been pulled back, the accountant will mark the salary entry box as complete.
  • Research accountant will go in and allocate funds to the requested MFKs in the “To Release MFK” section of the form. 
  • As entries are made, the accountant will go in and mark the allocation complete box.
  • Once all entries are done, the status on the research release list will change to COMPLETE.


Research Release App

Frequently Asked Questions


Related Information


Revision History