National Network of Libraries of Medicine
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Regional Symposium Award

Description of Award

Funding is currently closed. New opportunities will open in early 2018 for projects starting May 14, 2018.

The goal of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) is to advance the progress of medicine, improve public health by providing U.S. health professionals with equal access to biomedical information, and improve individual's access to information to enable them to make informed decisions about their health. The NNLM is vital in the National Library of Medicine (NLM) outreach efforts to health professionals and the public to increase awareness of, facilitate access to, and provide training in the use of NLM's web-based information resources.


The purpose of the Regional Symposium Award is to support NNLM collaboration with Network members to plan symposia or large-scale professional development activities that address current trends in the healthcare landscape and their impact on information access and delivery. Activities must address methods to improve biomedical and health information access and delivery.

MAR staff is available for consultation on program topics. Contact to schedule.


Network members in the Middle Atlantic Region (Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania) are eligible to apply. 

Resources for Planning a Proposal:


Funding Period: 
Sunday, May 14, 2017 to Monday, April 30, 2018
Up to $13,500
Number of Awards Available: 
Minimum of 2
Additional Funding Information: 
  • Awards will be available on an ongoing basis until funds are expended.
  • Awards are cost-reimbursable and are issued to the institution and not an individual.


Continuous while funds are available
Application Instructions: 
  • Applications are being accepted for symposium or large-scale professional development activities held before April 30, 2018.
  • Complete the Regional Symposium Award Application and Direct Beneficiaries and Goals checklist.
  • To submit, send an email to with the application and checklist attached as one PDF file. Put Symposium Award in the subject line.

Budget Guidelines

  • A detailed budget and narrative justification is required as part of the application.
  • Funding will cover meeting expenses to include: honoraria for speakers, travel, publicity and promotion activities, equipment rental, video-conferencing, and facility rental.
  • Applying a portion of the funding to support travel stipends for MAR Network members is strongly encouraged.
  • Expenses are not allowed for food, furniture or promotional materials:  Promotional items include, but are not limited to: clothing and commemorative items such as pens, mugs/cups, folders/folios, lanyards, and conference bags that are sometimes provided to visitors, employees, grantees, or conference attendees. Typically, items or tokens to be given to individuals are considered personal gifts for which appropriated funds may not be expended.  More information is located at: HHS Policy on the Use of Appropriated Funds for Promotional Items.
  • Indirect costs (IDC) or Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Costs, if you wish to claim them, apply at your institution’s non-research rate (or, if your institution has no negotiated rate, a 10% Modified Total Direct Cost (MTDC) can be applied)

Evaluation of Proposal

  • Proposals and topic ideas will be presented to MAR Special Advisory Group members and selected based on nine criteria:  Significance, Evidence of Need, Target Audience, Objectives, Evaluation Plan, Project Plan and Implementation Schedule, Promotion Plan, Qualifications, and Budget.
  1. Significance:  The program will address current trends in the healthcare landscape and their impact on information access and delivery AND address methods to improve biomedical and health information access and delivery.
  2. Evidence of Need: The need is clearly justified and includes relevant healthcare or environmental information to support the need as it influences biomedical and health information access and delivery.
  3. Target Audience:  The program is reasonable for the target audience and includes a plan to achieve maximum attendance.
  4. Objectives:  Detailed objectives for the program about what will be done (outputs) and outcome-based objectives that specify what will happen or change as a result are provided.  Objectives include addressing techniques to improve biomedical and health information access and delivery.
  5. Evaluation Plan:  There is an effective evaluation plan to measure the success of the program as it relates to each objective. There is a plan to collect the required information for professional development and training that occur during the program and the plan explains how and when the NNLM forms will be used to collect the information.   **NOTE: Refer to the NNLM Evaluation Office’s NNLM Evaluation Materials web page for the type of information required to be submitted.    
  6. Project Plan and Implementation Schedule:  The overall program is appropriate for the goals and target population. The implementation schedule (timeline) for all activities to be undertaken during the project is feasible within the stated timeframe.  A detailed description of how the project will be implemented is provided, including what tasks will be performed and who will perform them.
  7. Promotion Plan:  A detailed plan for promoting the program to the targeted audience to achieve maximum participation is provided.
  8. Qualifications:  A description of planning group members and key personnel implementing the program is provided and briefly describes their experience and qualifications to plan and implement a successful large-scale program.  
  9. Budget:  The budget is well justified to meet the objectives of the program. Consider modifications that could be made to economize without jeopardizing the program.  (NOTE:  A detailed budget and narrative justification for each budget item is required.)
  • Criteria scoring will follow the point scale for each criterion’s line item (NOTE:  1 is the highest score – the lower the score the better.)
1 = Information is extremely relevant in support of NNLM goals as outlined in the award
2 = Information is good in support of NNLM goals as outlined in the award description
3 = Information is satisfactory in support of NNLM goals as outlined in the award
4 = Information is marginal in support of NNLM goals as outlined in the award
5 = Information is poor and does not support NNLM goals as outlined in the award
  • A separate, Overall Impact Score will indicate reviewer recommendation for funding as follows
1 = Program will have major impact on NNLM goals as outlined in the award.
2 = Program has strong potential to satisfy NNLM goals as outlined in the award.
3 = Program has limited impact or there are concerns about the proposed program.
4 = Program will not advance the goals of NNLM.
5 = Program does not fit in the award goals and NNLM mission. 
  • Applications with an average score of 3 or lower for each of the nine criteria AND an overall impact ranking of 2 or lower will be given priority until funds are expended.
  • Reviewer score sheets and comments will be shared with the applicant.  If further clarification is needed, the applicant will be given 1 week to submit more information.
  • MAR staff and/or advisory group members may provide input into program content and/or ask to participate on program planning.   
  • The University of Pittsburgh will provide a subcontract agreement for all approved projects. All subcontracts are cost reimbursement. Line item invoices must be submitted for reimbursement of expenditures. Invoices may be sent monthly.

Additional Information

508 Compliance: 

Section 508 requires that all website content be accessible to people with disabilities. This applies to Web applications, Web pages and all attached files on the intranet, as well as, internet.

The National Library of Medicine is a part of the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Recipients of National Library of Medicine funding through the NNLM must meet all requirements under section 508.

 [Information on 508 Compliance is located at].   

Reporting Requirements: 
  • One final report must be entered and submitted to the Outreach Application and Online Contract Reports System.  This will be due no later than 14 days after completion of the exhibit.
  • An Activity Report must be submitted in the Outreach Application and Online Contract Reports System on or before the last day of each month following the end of the activity.  
  • If the program includes training and/or professional development activities, specific information must be submitted using forms provided by NNLM.
  • NNLM MAR will provide additional information on accessing the online system and submitting the required reports and forms.
  • Awardee may be asked to participate in a Lunch with the RML session or write a MAR newsletter article providing follow-up information on exhibit activities and outcomes.
  • Final reports may be posted to the NNLM MAR website.
  • The project lead shall provide copies of all communications, materials produced, press releases, advertisements, photographs and articles for newsletters related to the project. In accepting the award, the project lead gives permission for use of such materials by the NLM and NNLM.
NIH Public Access Policy: 

Recipients of NNLM funding are required to deposit any peer-reviewed manuscript upon acceptance for publication in PubMed Central in accordance with the NIH Public Access Policy.

Data Sharing and Development of Training Materials: 

In order to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge and information associated with the NNLM Cooperative Agreement Award, all awardees are required to share any data or training material resulting from funding. This information must be submitted to the following collection sites as applicable:

  • National Networks of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) website;
  • Other site specifically designated by the NLM as part of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (considering changes in the project and data repositories required to maintain sharing within the Network).

In addition, recipients of funding are expected to use or adapt existing training materials before developing new materials. Consult with MAR and the NNLM Training Office (NTO) prior to developing materials.

Publication and Copyrighting: 

Per Section 8.2.1. - Right in Data (Publication and Copyrighting) of the NIH Grants Policy Statement,  the NIH must be given a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and irrevocable license for the Federal government to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use any materials developed as a result of funding and to authorize others to do so for Federal purposes, i.e. the ongoing development of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine. Data developed by a subawardees/consortium participants and consultants are also subject to this policy.

NIH Acknowledgement: 

Any resources developed with project funds must include an acknowledgment of NIH grant support and a disclaimer stating the following:

Developed resources reported in this [publication, press release, internet site] are supported by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), National Institutes of Health (NIH) under cooperative agreement number UG4LM012342 with the University of Pittsburgh, Health Sciences Library System. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Need Assistance: 

To request assistance, contact us at or (412) 648-2065.

Professional Development