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Cayuse Sponsored Projects at OSU

Cayuse Sponsored Projects functions as the central hub in which OSU researchers and research administrators gain full transparency into the entire sponsored research lifecycle. From pre-award to post-award, Cayuse Sponsored Projects lets us prepare proposals and awards, track projects, route for internal approvals, and manage each step of the sponsored project lifecycle. Most faculty members will work with a college-level sponsored programs specialist who will create a Cayuse proposal record. Members of the research team (e.g., PIs and Co-PIs) will have access to the Cayuse proposal record and will certify routing documents before the proposal is submitted to the sponsor. All OSU personnel will have access to Cayuse Sponsored Projects and will be required to use the platform to complete proposal forms and route them for certification and review/approval.


Because Cayuse Sponsored Projects serves as the main source for OSU proposal and award data, it is imperative that all extramural grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements are routed through the Division of the Vice President for Research to ensure the proposal submissions and awards are compliant with all related policies and that the researchers involved receive credit for their efforts and successes.

How-To Videofor PIs and CoPIs

Frequently Asked Questions - @ Cayuse

  • What is Cayuse Sponsored Projects?

    Cayuse Sponsored Projects is a software tool OSU has adopted for internally routing proposals, contracts, and other types of agreements, as well as sponsored programs reporting.


    Cayuse Sponsored Projects bridges the gap between outdated manual processes and current state of the art systems for proposal routing and approval. The University’s Adobe sign and email routing/approval process is now replaced by a data gathering electronic “Proposal Form” with autofill functionality.


    Cayuse Sponsored Projects is one component of the Cayuse Research Suite, a set of integrated, web-based software modules that deliver flexibility and control in research administration. OSU-Stillwater’s Cayuse Research Suite consists of several modules: Cayuse Sponsored Projects, Proposals S2S, Fund Manager, and Project Effort.

    • Cayuse Sponsored Projects is used for internally routing proposal submissions to department, college, and university administrators for review/approval, as well as monitoring and tracking award activity throughout the project’s lifecycle.
    • Proposals S2S can be used to submit proposals to federal granting agencies.
    • Fund Manager tracks research spending in a granular way to overspending and underspending, and it creates accurate spending forecasts for every research project.
    • Project Effort integrates with OSU’s business (e.g., payroll and HR) to view time and effort records and status by employee or project. It also allows the PI to digitally sign time and effort certification statements.
  • Do we have to use Cayuse to route proposals?

    Yes, as of June 15, 2023 the VPR’s Central Sponsored Programs Administration will no longer accept pdf copies (nor paper copies) of the routing form and is requiring that all proposals/awards are routed through Cayuse.

  • Why Cayuse Sponsored Projects?

    The OSU process for internally routing proposals, contracts, and other agreements will be replaced and modernized by Cayuse Sponsored Projects. Modernization aspects include:

    • Central Dashboard: A landing page/dashboard for easy access to all systems supporting research and sponsored programs.
    • Cloud-Based Platform: SAAS (Software as a Service) system that is delivered, maintained, backed up, secured, and upgraded by Cayuse with consideration of cloud storage for all associated documents and records.
    • Modern Look and Feel: Modern user experience and efficient workflows for processing and tracking projects, proposals, awards, sub-awards, and agreements for sponsored programs.
    • Integration with Other Systems: Seamless integration with other OSU compliant software platforms (e.g., Banner HR, O-Key) for seamless workflow. For example, Cayuse Sponsored Projects utilizes a single sign-on system; no additional password is needed.


    For Principal Investigators, Cayuse Sponsored Projects is your sponsored project life cycle management system in a flexible, user-friendly web application designed to reduce complexity, improve collaboration, and provide transparency from proposal development to award close-out. At its core, Cayuse Sponsored Projects is the central repository that allows management and visibility in each phase of the project’s life cycle.


    Over time, PIs, department chairs, deans, etc., will have instant and full real-time visibility into their respective individual and unit proposal and award activity!  The Vice President for Research office’s reporting to the OSU leadership and community will be significantly enhanced with Cayuse Sponsored Projects, with greater depth and efficiency.


    The VPR’s Central Sponsored Programs Administration unit will be able to track and report on many aspects of a specific principal investigator’s, department’s and/or college’s proposals and awards (e.g., key personnel, scientific discipline, and compliance considerations).


    We hope you enjoy using Cayuse Sponsored Projects. If you have any questions, please contact Central Sponsored Programs Administration at

  • Cayuse Sponsored Projects: How Do I Start?

    I need to internally route a proposal/contract/agreement. How do I start?


    Reminder: Only university Authorized Organizational Representatives (AOR) may submit a proposal to a sponsor. (Faculty members do not submit directly to the sponsor.) Each academic college has a College Research Office (or Sponsored Programs Office) with professional staff who have the responsibility and authority to conduct pre-award and/or post-award activities for sponsored work. Your college’s Sponsored Programs Staff will prepare and route your proposal/contract/agreement package for necessary review/signatures with your college/unit and university.


    Your college’s/unit’s Sponsored Programs Staff will start by creating a proposal record in Cayuse Sponsored Projects. When the proposal package is ready for internal routing, you will use your OSU single sign-on (or SSO) username and password to log into Cayuse Sponsored Projects to review and certify the proposal information. Cayuse Sponsored Projects can be found at <to be published once we go live>.

  • Cayuse Sponsored Projects: How Do I Log in – and Technical Specifications


    1. Use Mozilla Firefox for best results.

    2. Login at: with your O-key short name and password.

    3. Select Cayuse Sponsored Projects.

    4. Email cayuse@okstate.eduif you are not able to login.



    • Cayuse Sponsored Projects runs entirely in a web browser. Upon navigating to Cayuse Sponsored Projects for the first time, your browser may present a security warning prompting you to accept a certificate. This is safe. Cayuse purchases and maintains electronic certificates that are approved for Internet commerce and are compliant with Internet security standards. Accept the certificate permanently, and you will proceed to the login screen.

    • What browsers can I use to access the system?

      • Cayuse works best with Firefox or Chrome. Although the vendor tells us that the system provisionally supports recent versions of Chrome and Safari, many users report being unable to upload attachments in these browsers.

    • I am using a supported browser, but I am still having problems. What do I do?


    Apple Devices:

    • Does the system support Macintosh, iPads, iPhones, and other mobile devices?

      • You can use Cayuse on your Macintosh computer. Firefox is the recommended browser.


    Mobile Devices:

    • Can I use my smartphone?

      • Mobile devices can be used to view, certify, and approval proposals/awards; however, it can be a bit challenging to navigate through the sections on a smartphone.


    Recovering Your User ID or Password:

    • Cayuse uses the same sign-on system used for your university email, the Canvas learning management system, and other OSU online services. If you are having trouble with your user ID or password, please contact the IT helpdesk at 405-744-4357 or

  • What is Certification?

    By certifying a proposal in Cayuse Sponsored Projects, the PI and other named members of the research team are affirming that they understand the responsibilities and requirements associated with proposal administration. Because PI and Co-PI certification is a vital piece of the proposal process, we are unable to assign a proposal for review until the PI/Co-PI certification has been provided. 


    Which Investigator Roles Must Certify a Proposal in Cayuse Sponsored Projects?

    • In Cayuse Sponsored Projects, the Lead PI and other Co-PIs must certify the proposal. Without certification, the OSU Division of the Vice President for Research will not review/approve your proposal (i.e., your proposal will not be approved for submission to the sponsor).


    Is Certifying a Proposal a Parallel Process for PIs and Co-PIs? Or is it Sequential?

    • It is simultaneous. When a proposal is submitted for routing, a certification request is sent to all named members of the research team (i.e., PI and Co-PIs).


    As a PI or Co-PI, how do I certify my proposal?

    1. From the Dashboard where “My Tasks” are listed, select the applicable Proposal number.

    2. The “Proposal Form” tab will open. Review the content in all proposal sections for accuracy.

    3. Select “Certify Proposal”.


    Why is my name showing my legal name, rather than my preferred name?

    • Cayuse SP automatically creates and updates user profiles throughout the entire Cayuse suite via a file feed from Banner HR. The Cayuse Research Suite contains Cayuse S2S, a system-to-system submission module that auto-populates Cayuse data into federal grant proposals. For this reason, we need all user’s legal names to populate Cayuse user profiles.

  • What are the Principal Investigator's Responsibilities?

    Please be responsive to your sponsored programs staff. They are essential partners working with you under the pressure of deadlines to submit competitive, strong proposals and to have them favorably reviewed and awarded.


    The PI is the individual with primary responsibility for:

    • The scientific integrity and management of the project.

    • The financial management of project funds.

    • Adherence to all university policies.

    • Adherence to externally-imposed sponsor terms and conditions including reporting and record keeping requirements contained in the award document.

      • The award document is the funding agency’s official obligation of funds for a project. Many awards cover a multi-year project period made up of several shorter (usually 12-month) budget periods. Funds often are awarded in budget period installments.


    Proposal Stage:

    1. Confirm you are an eligible investigator according to sponsor guidelines.

    2. Prepare the Scope of Work.

    3. Prepare the Budget and Budget Justification or provide all necessary details to your sponsored programs staff.

    4. Prepare non-administrative proposal documents.

    5. Confirm that required approvals are in place or that all necessary steps to get them are complete (e.g., IACUC for animal studies; IRB for human subjects; hazardous materials; export controls; financial Conflict of Interest documents).

    6. During proposal routing, certify the Proposal Form in Cayuse Sponsored Projects.


    What does the PI certify?

    By certifying the Cayuse Proposal Form, the Principal Investigator and other named members of the research team (e.g., Co-PIs) certify all of the following:

    1. That the information submitted within the proposal/application is true, complete, and accurate to the best of their knowledge;

    2. That they will comply with sponsor and University policies and regulations;

    3. That the named members of the research team (e.g., PI and Co-PIs) listed on the project are aware that their names have been included in the proposal and that each is willing to provide support to the project.


    Award Stage

    1. If a Notice of Award (NOA) is received, immediately forward a copy to your sponsored programs staff member along with your Cayuse Sponsored Programs proposal number. They will initiate an award routing and link it to your proposal.

    2. Review the requirements and restrictions in the contract or grant award agreement.

      1. If any terms or conditions are unclear, it is the PI’s responsibility to contact Central Sponsored Programs Administration’s Contracting Officer for clarification and guidance.

      2. Notify Central Sponsored Programs Administration’s Contracting Officer of any problematic terms or conditions.

        1. Ensure the Scope of Work in the agreement is accurate.

        2. Ensure the deliverables are acceptable.

        3. If the terms of an individual award are more strict than federal guidelines and University policy, the terms of the award take precedence.

          1. For example, travel expenses are allowable under federal and University policy, but may be specifically excluded or limited by your specific award.

    3. Upon receipt of the fully executed award, make note of important conditions including, but not limited to:

      1. Reporting deadlines

      2. Unallowable costs

      3. Areas that may require prior approval such as re-budgeting or no cost time extensions

      4. Publications may require sponsor’s review prior to dissemination.

    4. Work with your sponsored programs staff on the establishment of a specific account (known as fund code) for the project.

    5. Regularly monitor the award to ensure adherence to award terms and conditions.

      1. Financial reviews should be performed at least once a month.

        1. The office of record for expenditures is University Grants and Contracts Financial Administration.

    6. Principal Investigators and others committing effort must certify their effort after the effort has been expended.

      1. Certified effort indicates the actual effort, as a percentage of time, spent on the project.

      2. Effort reporting ensures that the effort charged or committed to each research award has actually been met.

  • What are the Responsibilities of the Department Chairs, Directors, and Deans?

    By reviewing and approving any proposal intended to be submitted seeking extramural support for projects conducted in their units, the respective Department Chair, Director, and/or Dean verifies the following:

    • An individual’s eligibility for Principal Investigator status;
    • Verification of the consistency of the proposed project with the educational, research, and/or public service objectives of the organizational unit;
    • Determination that the appropriateness and acceptability of faculty/researcher time, space, equipment, and university financial commitments contained in proposals for sponsored projects;
    • Ensuring that project scope of work is consistent with internal University policies, with externally imposed sponsor terms and conditions, and with the organizational unit’s educational, training, and/or other objectives; and
    • Identifying appropriate funding sources to cover project costs not covered by the project sponsor’s funds or by other funds available to the Principal Investigator.


    After verifying the above items, the Department Chair/Director/Dean will approve the Proposal Form in Cayuse Sponsored Projects, and the proposal will move forward in the routing chain. This process provides the department chair/director/dean authorization for the University to accept, within University policies, award(s) that may result from the proposal.


    These responsibilities may not be delegated to staff. If the Department Chair/Director/Dean is unavailable to review and approve proposals, or if the Department Chair/Director/Dean has a personal financial interest in the proposed sponsor of a project, then another academic member of the unit should be delegated to do review/approve the proposal.

  • What are the Sponsored Program Staff Responsibilities?

    Before routing for certification/review:

    1. Review the list of “Teams” in the Cayuse Sponsored Projects “Routing” tab.

    2. Be certain that every necessary unit is listed before routing for review. Failure to include needed units may result in having to reroute for review/approvals.


    Keep ahead of the submission deadline:

    1. To ensure sufficient time for department, college, and central administration review, route the Proposal Form in Cayuse Sponsored Projects 10 to 14 days ahead of the sponsor’s deadline.

    2. Monitor the routing to ensure no holdups.

  • Who Do I Contact for Help in Using Cayuse Sponsored Programs?

    We know that new systems can be challenging to navigate, and we are here to help!

    • For sponsored programs staff members, a users’ guide is available online at the Canvas community web site.

    • Additionally, while in Cayuse Sponsored Projects, you may notice an orange question mark in the bottom right corner. This is Cayuse’s "Help Center" tool, and it can be very helpful with basic navigation in Cayuse Sponsored Projects. However, please know that instructions in this help tool are not specific to OSU.

    • For technical assistance using the system, first contact Central Sponsored Programs Administration at 405-744-9991. If unavailable, you can contact Cayuse at 503-297-2108 x201, M-F from 9:00am to 8:00pm ET. Additional support is available on the Cayuse website at


Frequently Asked Questions - General

  • When is a proposal required to be routed through the Vice President for Research for review and approval?

    University policy requires that proposals in any form (i.e., pre-proposals used in lieu of a formal proposal, full proposals, supplemental requests, etc.) for grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements be submitted to the office of Central Sponsored Programs Administration for review and approval prior to being submitted to a sponsor (organization or entity). This requirement is broadly defined in OSU P&P 1-0305.

  • What are the minimum proposal documents for routing?

    The following attachments are REQUIRED for each proposal routed:

    1. Final Budget in Excel
    2. Final Budget Justification
    3. Statement of Work (SOW) - May be in draft form for Proposal routing and must be in final form at time of Award routing
  • What is a typical proposal timeline?

    Your college/unit’s sponsored programs staff will establish a timeline for key/critical activities prior to proposal routing and submission. Typically, these activities (and associated due dates) include reading the sponsor’s guidelines (e.g., determining institutional and PI eligibility); confirming required approvals are in place (e.g., IRB for human subjects; IACUC for animal research; hazardous materials; export control approval; financial conflict of interest documents, etc.); developing the budget; routing the proposal in Cayuse Sponsored Projects for approvals; finalizing the proposal package within the sponsor’s electronic Research Administration (eRA) system; submitting the proposal to the sponsor through the eRA system.

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