NIDCR Guidance on Applications in Response to Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research, PA-21-071

This document applies to applications for research supplement funding to active National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) grants in response to PA-21-071. The purpose is to clarify the application process and highlight NIDCR-specific requirements. This document is not intended to replace the full and detailed application information in the Program Announcement: PA-21-071.

Back to top

Application Submission

NIDCR accepts applications on a continuous basis. Administrative review may take up to 8 weeks. For PD(s)/PI(s) seeking diversity supplement awards before the end of the fiscal year (September 30), applications must be submitted by p.m. local time on July 16, 2023. Applications received after this date will be considered for funding in the next fiscal year, which begins October 1. Note: because of the budgetary cycle, no awards are made in October and November.

Back to top


Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) requesting research supplement funding must hold an active NIDCR grant. For supplements to grants with multiple PD/PI , the supplement should be requested by the contact PD/PI and submitted by the recipient institution of the parent grant. Mentor(s) of the diversity supplement candidate may be any or all the PD(s)/PI(s) on the grant.

Supplemental awards under this announcement are limited to citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States or to individuals who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States (i.e., in possession of a Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551) at the time of application submission. The candidate may be affiliated with either the recipient institution or another academic institution. Only one candidate may be identified in an administrative supplement application, although more than one application per NIDCR grant may be submitted for different candidates. Potential diversity supplement recipients may be supported at multiple stages during their research career, for example, at predoctoral and postdoctoral levels. Diversity supplements are not restricted to one time participation. Please note, the initial request for the post-baccalaureate career stage is limited to one year.

Back to top

Application Information

Statement of Candidate’s Eligibility: This document must be signed by the PI and an institutional official establishing the candidate’s eligibility for support under this program, including that the candidate is a US citizen or permanent resident of the United States. The statement must include: information on the nature of the candidate’s eligibility, circumstances, background or characteristics that enhance research workforce diversity as described in the NIH Interest in Diversity NOT-OD-20-031, and a description of the candidate’s current or previous NIH/PHS research grant support, or a statement that the candidate is not currently receiving NIH/PHS support, as applicable.

Biographical Sketch: As per the instructions, include a biosketch for the candidate, any mentors, and any senior or key persons directly involved in activities related to the supplement. For mentors/senior or key persons, personal statements should be specific regarding expertise related to the role in the project and interaction with and commitment to the diversity supplement candidate.

Mentors: If more than one mentor is proposed, the role of each mentor and the relationship to the candidate in the proposed Research Experience Plan must be clearly defined. Each mentor’s mentoring track record, including individuals previously mentored (preferably at the candidate’s career level) and their current positions if applicable, especially the current status of any previous diversity supplement candidates, should be described. If the primary mentor for the diversity supplement candidate is relatively junior, including an experienced co-mentor or mentoring committee may be helpful. The primary mentor does not have to be the PI of the parent grant, but the PI of the parent grant must provide a brief statement to concur with the supplement application.

Candidate’s Personal Statement: The application must include a personal statement describing the candidate’s short-term and long-term career goals. The candidate’s experience and commitment to the diversity goals of the program should be included. Candidates are strongly encouraged to submit career stage-appropriate grant applications during or at the end of the period of supplement support. Statements should include plans to develop such applications, if applicable. The Personal Statement can be included as part A of an NIH Biosketch or as a separate document. Scholastic Performance for candidates from the undergraduate through postdoctoral levels is required and provided in part D of the NIH Biosketch “Additional Information: Research Support and/or Scholastic Performance”.

Please ensure the proposed candidate for diversity supplement support has an eRA Commons profile.

Research Project: The proposed supplement project must be within scope of the parent grant. It must be relevant to the parent grant by contributing to, expanding, or extending one or more aims of the parent grant. The relevance needs to be explicitly explained in the application.

  • Research Experience Plan: Include a summary or abstract and specific aims of the parent grant. Describe the specific research project proposed for the candidate, including how the research extends one or more aims of the parent grant, if applicable. The application must describe the candidate’s research aims and design, methods and techniques, and how the proposed experience will enhance the candidate’s research potential. This program may not be used to provide technical support to NIH-supported investigators. The research experience should be appropriate to the candidate’s academic level:
  • High School and Undergraduate Students may require extensive oversight and supervision; however, students who indicate readiness for some degree of independence should be encouraged to do so. All students should be encouraged to participate in ongoing team discussions of research updates and findings, next steps, and future directions and present research findings at local and national meetings when appropriate. These candidates should be encouraged and prepared for a transition into a college or university and earn a baccalaureate degree in a biomedical field related to dental, oral, and craniofacial research. Mentors should encourage undergraduates to seek support and are expected to guide candidates applying to research-focused graduate programs, or for funding opportunities during their research training experience.
  • Post-baccalaureate and Post-master’s Degree Students are encouraged to engage in research while applying for admission to graduate (PhD or PhD equivalent programs) or dental/medical school. These candidates are expected to conduct a defined research project that is within scope of the parent grant to gain research experience and develop a research and technical skill set. Initial applications for candidates at this career stage will only be accepted for one year of proposed support. A second year may be requested to continue research progress from the initial year, if the candidate demonstrates research progress and active preparation for graduate (PhD)/dental/medical school. The PI must apply for a 2nd year of support at least 12 weeks before the first award ends. It is important to note that a 2nd year is not guaranteed. In addition to progress, NIDCR funding priorities and available resources will be considered.
  • Health Professional Students: D dental and medical students may include a research focus on partial or complete aspects of the parent grant’s original research plan, goals, or objectives.
  • Graduate Students are expected to conduct a defined research project that is a logical extension of the goals and objectives of the parent grant and will lead toward a new or more advanced research skill set contributing to the progress towards the graduate degree being pursued. The research experience plan is expected to include a grant writing experience and the submission of an application for individual support, for example:
    • PA-21-052 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Parent F31-Diversity)
    • PAR-21-060 NIDCR Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Transition Award for a Diverse Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Research Workforce (F99/K00 Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
  • Individuals in Postdoctoral Training and Investigators Developing Independent Research Careers: This program is intended for early career postdoctoral candidates, those with 6 or fewer years of experience, and junior faculty at the instructor and assistant professor levels who have least one year of research experience beyond a qualifying doctoral degree. These candidates are expected to conduct defined research projects that are a logical extension of the goals and objectives of the parent grant and support the candidate’s independent research trajectory. How the research experience will enhance the candidate’s research potential and support a research program independent of the PD/PI and parent grant must be described. The proposed research is expected to lead to publishable data and significantly enhance the candidate's ability to compete for independent grant support from NIH, such as a career development award or research project grant, or support from other sources. Applications must include a grant writing experience and plans for submission of a grant application prior to, or subsequent to, supplement support, such as:
    • PAR-22-050 NIDCR Mentored Career Development Award to Promote Diversity in the Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Workforce (K01 Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
    • PAR-21-271 Maximizing Opportunities for Scientific and Academic Independent Careers (MOSAIC) Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00 Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

    And see NIDCR funding opportunities for early career scientists:

Career Development Plan: Research training and career development should focus on developing the candidate’s technical (e.g., appropriate methods, technologies, and quantitative/computational approaches), operational (e.g., independent knowledge acquisition, rigorous experimental design, and interpretation of data) and professional (e.g., management, leadership, communication, and teamwork) skills. Include a candidate-specific career development plan that is consistent with the goals described in candidate’s personal statement and the proposed mentored research experiences. Career development plans are expected to go beyond program or institution requirement but tailored to the specific needs and interests aligned with the candidates needs and goals.

All supplement applications must include a defined plan for the candidate to interact with other individuals on the parent grant, to contribute intellectually to the research, to enhance her/his research skills and knowledge regarding the selected research area, and to contribute significantly to the research career development of the candidate including career exploration opportunities. The focus must be on the enhancement of the research capability of the candidate, and that the research experience is intended to provide opportunities for development as a productive researcher.

Describe the career skills to be gained during the supplement experience and career-stage appropriate activities such as academic coursework, technical and grant writing workshops, professional networking opportunities and benchmarks to be reached, including, but not limited to, abstract and publication submissions, oral presentations (local, regional, or national meetings), and grant submissions. Provide a detailed plan that will help the candidate transition to the next level of education or career stage. Grant writing experience should lead to the submission of an application for individual support. A timeline of activities and anticipated milestones is strongly encouraged.

All applications must demonstrate that the PD(s)/PI(s) is/are committed to the candidate’s research progress and willing to provide appropriate mentorship. This may be provided in the Biosketch personal statement or in a letter of support.

Investigators are encouraged to contact the NIDCR Program Contact for the diversity supplement program, Dr. Anissa J. Brown at and the Program Officer of the parent grant prior to submission. Budget related questions should be directed to the NIDCR Grants Management Specialist of the parent grant.

Back to top


Can a candidate for the Diversity Supplement Program be supported by the parent grant at the time of application?
No, the goal of the program is to recruit students in need of training to the PI's lab and to support them in their early years of training when the supplement will have the greatest impact. It is not intended to provide an alternate means of support to someone already supported on the parent grant.

Can graduate students or postdoctoral fellows currently supported by an institutional Kirschstein-NRSA award be supported by a diversity supplement?
If the candidate is on a NIH-funded T32 at their current intuition, they cannot start a diversity supplement until the end date the T32 appointment. They can apply for a diversity supplement in advance but cannot terminate the T32 appointment early to start the supplement.

Can an individual be awarded a diversity supplement more than one time in their research career?
Yes, an individual can be supported by a diversity supplement multiple times at different stages of their research career.

Can a Post Baccalaureate student apply for more than one year of support?
Yes, a Post Baccalaureate student can be considered for 2 years of funding, however the initial supplement support application for a post baccalaureate student must be for one year. To be considered for a 2nd year, the Post Baccalaureate student must submit a new application including research training and career development accomplishments for the previous funding period with the supplement, a strong justification for an additional year, and a detailed plan to transition to the next research career stage. It is important to note that the 2nd year of funding is not guaranteed. Research training and career development progress, NIDCR funding priorities, and funding resources will contribute to funding decisions.

What is the minimum duration of training support for high school students?
PD(s)/PI(s) are encouraged to seek high school students who will devote at least two years to this program (i.e., equivalent to two three-month, full-time periods). Exceptions to the latter will be considered, depending on the circumstances of the applicant, the parent grant, and the specific request.

What is the minimum duration of training support for undergraduate students?
Students are expected to devote the equivalent of at least three months of full-time effort to the research project and related activities in any one year; in most cases, the period of support for any individual should last at least two years. Exceptions to these requirements will be considered, depending on the circumstances of the applicant, the parent grant, and the specific request.

Is there a biosketch template with special instructions?
Biosketch format pages, instructions and samples can be found here.

What is the suggested page limit for the Career Development Plan and in what section should it be uploaded?
The career development plan is expected to be incorporated into the Research Plan. Applicants can determine the length of the career development plan within the page limitations stated here.

Should the applicant include a personal statement outside of the information included in the biosketch?
The Personal Statement can be included as part A of a NIH Biosketch or as a separate document.

Can supplement funds be used for trainee travel?
PIs are encouraged to use supplement travel funds to support the trainee in networking activities including but not limited to the participation in national and local conferences, workshops, and meetings.

How is an ORCID ID established?
Diversity Supplement awardees are encouraged to follow the ORCID link from Personal Profiles in the eRA Commons, where one can either link their eRA profiles to existing ORCID accounts or create ORCID profiles and link them back to the eRA Commons.

Where should career development progress be detailed in the RPPR?
Career development progress can be described in the PIs response to B.3 Competitive Revisions/Administrative Supplements and B.4 What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided? of the RPPR.

Back to top
Last Reviewed
September 2022