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Participant Support Costs - B05.08


This procedure includes general guidelines regarding participant support costs. Participant support costs charged to federal grants is regulated under the OMB Uniform Guidance 2 CFR §200.456 – Participant Support Costs as defined by §200.75. Per the Uniform Guidance, participant support costs (PSC) are direct costs for items such as stipends or subsistence allowances, travel allowances and registration fees paid to or on behalf of participants or trainees in connection with conferences or training projects. Sponsor approval must be obtained before incurring participant support costs on sponsored awards.


This procedure applies to all sponsored projects subject to OU Policy 19.045 Administering External Grants and Contracts set up as separate accounts in the OHIO Financial Management System (FMS).


A participant is defined as the recipient, not the provider, of a service or training associated with a workshop, conference, seminar, symposium or other short-term instructional or information-sharing activity.  Participants may include students, scholars, and scientists from other institutions, individuals from the private sector, teachers and state or local government personnel. Employees of Ohio University are not eligible to receive participant support.

Participant support costs are associated with special programs that provide research experience for participants, such as Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) and Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) on National Science Foundation grants.

Use object Codes as follows:

Participant Living Expenses 718730

Participant Other 718740

F&A on participant support costs

The Uniform Guidance states that participant support costs are exempt from F&A on federally sponsored projects. For Non-Federal awards, sponsor-specific and/or award-specific guidelines should be reviewed at the time of proposal to determine if F&A is allowable.  

Unallowable Costs

The intent of participant support is solely to provide financial assistance for participants to attend conferences and training. Unallowable costs include honoraria for guest speakers, expenses for the PI, project staff or collaborators to attend, and payments made to research subjects as an incentive for recruitment or participation in a research project. Costs for hosting the conference or training should be budgeted and charged to the project in the appropriate cost object.

Generally, participant support may not be formally or informally rebudgeted without written approval from the sponsor. Please review your award document and/or the sponsor’s terms and conditions.


Training is available through ORSP upon request. Submit request for training to ORSP@ohio.edu.

Forms and Templates

Budget template

Roles and Responsibilities



APPROVER: Chair, Dean


Federal Uniform Guidance

NSF Allowability of Costs

Research Experience for Undergraduates