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It is understandable that questions may arise as a result of change. In this section, we address some of the questions we have heard. Additional questions may be sent to univrs.support@usask.ca.

General FAQs

 Find information about UnivRS, timelines and other project details


 What is UnivRS?

The University Research System (UnivRS) is a web-based central repository for research-related activities and CV data management. It is intended to simplify the pre-and post-award and compliance processes, while producing reports and CV documents as needed. The data stored in UnivRS may help facilitate a research network among the faculty, finding shared research interests and building collaborations at the U of S. Additional information about the UnivRS project is available in the project charter.

 Why do we need UnivRS?

The implementation of UnivRS will address the infrastructure required to support, sustain and expand the U of S research enterprise. It is intended to be a central tool to collaboratively manage some research activities, including pre-and post-award, compliance processes (i.e. human ethics, animal care, biosafety and radiation safety) and clinical trials. This will also make research management more efficient and powerful by complying with reporting requirements from funding and other regulatory agencies.

UnivRS is intended to:

  • replace older, separate database systems with one centralized research and CV management tool at the U of S. The data stored within those separate systems will be migrated to UnivRS, including all research grants and contracts administered by the U of S since 1999, to preserve existing data and populate the U of S Standardized CV and Forms 1 and 2.
  • integrate with other systems at the U of S, such as AboutUS (the human resources system), PAWS (the university portal), the UDW (the university data warehouse (UDW) and the University’s identity management services. UnivRS plans to integrate with the Canadian Common CV (CCV) to streamline efforts needed to prepare funding applications.
  • Develop reports for academic unit(s) to promote research, scholarly and artistic work, and assist with annual reports and metrics. Administrative units may also have access to institutional metrics, such as publications per year, teaching activities and research funding history. Units can work with the UnivRS Team to develop reports in the system, which they can access and generate at any time.
  • increase transparency and optimization of business processes, and improve service delivery by integrating business processes and technology
  • develop inherent standards and controls within the system to ensure compliance with the Tri-Agency Agreement on the Administration of Agency Grants and Awards by Research Institutions, Controlled Goods Regulations and other known requirements.
  • enhance data sharing, accuracy and trust of information, and dynamic reporting increase support for communicating research to raise the U of S profile worldwide
 What is the total cost of the project?

The implementation of UnivRS was projected to cost $7.538M. Operational costs are being reallocated to support UnivRS throughout its implementation.

 What will UnivRS do for me as a faculty or staff member?

Save you time! UnivRS can be used to:

  • Generate your U of S Standardized CV and Forms 1 and 2. Faculty can add information to their CV from many sources, importing data from online publication databases such as PubMed, Web of Science and Scopus, while uploading information from personal BibTeX, Endnote (X1/X2/Tag), Reference Manager (RIS) and Refworks files. CV documents may be downloaded into a Word or PDF document at any time. The CV documents are pre-formatted to reduce administrative burdens and keep the information consistent.
  • Reduce the amount of time spent obtaining internal approvals for research grants and contracts. Those paper-based approvals are now obtained electronically in UnivRS to reduce administrative burdens on faculty and staff, and revert time back to research.
  • Comply with the Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research and related policies, Controlled Good regulations, and other internal and external requirements.
  • Monitor research projects and generate information to assist with annual reports or reviews.

UnivRS plans to:

  • Interact directly with the Canadian Common CV (CCV) to minimize the amount of effort needed to apply for funding (e.g., CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC) and keep CCV information up-to-date.
  • Generate CV documents in a variety of formats to adhere to accreditation standards and funding agency requirements.
  • Maintain your online web profile on your College/School/Centre website to promote research, scholarly and artistic work, and facilitate collaborations with colleagues and students.
  • Integrate with the U of S institutional repository to make research, scholarly and artistic work accessible to the public thereby complying with external requirements, such as the Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications.
 Was the software purchased from a vendor?

Yes, the software – CONVERIS - was purchased from Clarivate Analytics, who will jointly implement the system with the UnivRS team at the University of Saskatchewan.

 How long will it take to implement?

The goal is to fully implement UnivRS by 2019 in stages. A general progressive implementation plan for UnivRS is as follows:

- Stage 0: Set up of Standard System

- Stage 1: Pre-and Post-Award Management

  • Implement grant and contracts data module and associated workflows
  • Implement identity management, delegation and electronic approvals
  • Implement preliminary research reporting
  • Preliminary integration with internal system (e.g., Research Ethics, Biosafety, IDM)

- Stage 2 and 3: Compliance, CV and Advance Reporting

  • Implement ethics review workflows and meeting management
  • Implement publications data module and associated workflows
  • Implement public web capabilities and services
  • Implement advance reporting capabilities
  • Incorporate data exchange capabilities with agency(ies)

- Stage 4: Clinical Trials and Graduate Students

  • Implement clinical trials data module and associated workflows
  • Implement graduate students data module and associated workflows

There are no foreseen disruptions in service during implementation. Existing systems will remain active until UnivRS has been thoroughly tested.

 Will UnivRS address Tri-Agency compliance requirements?

Yes, UnivRS will address Tri-Agency compliance requirements by ensuring internal controls are in place to monitor and track controlled goods, conflicts of interest and ethical compliance requirements for research projects. It will also support internal initiatives, such as: the internal approval processes for Tri-Agency funded research; institutional policies for research administration, eligibility and institutional costs of research; and the development of an institutional repository for the U of S.

 Will information entered into UnivRS be secure?

Yes, the information entered or migrated into UnivRS will be secure because it is stored on University of Saskatchewan servers. It does not require any plug-ins or third party software, and can be used on mobile devices with support for Android, iOS and Windows Phones.

 Who will have access to UnivRS?

User accounts in UnivRS are maintained through the University's identity management services. These services assign the necessary permissions to faculty and staff through role-based access in UnivRS.  Each role allows a faculty or staff member to carry out a wide range of tasks, such as approving a research grant or contract.  Role-based access can be easily created and/or modified as the needs of the U of S evolve, without having to update the permissions of each end user. Additional information about the types of roles in UnivRS is available on UnivRS resources webpage.

 Will UnivRS connect to any systems?

Yes, UnivRS connects to other systems on campus to simplify processes and avoid duplication, such as Access databases in Safety Resources and the Research Services and Ethics Office, AboutUS (the human resources system), PAWS (the university portal), the UDW (the university data warehouse), and the University’s identity management services.  These connections also provide information necessary to comply with the University’s Eligibility to Apply for, Hold and Administer Research Funding policy and sponsoring agency requirements. Connections to other internal and external systems, such as the Canadian Common CV, ResearchGate and Google Scholar may be included in a future release.

Pre-and Post-Award Management

 Find information about the research grants and contracts process
 Can I submit my funding application to the funding agency through UnivRS?

No, funding applications must be submitted to the funding agency using the method outlined by the agency. UnivRS is currently intended for internal purposes only, such as obtaining University of Saskatchewan academic and institutional approvals prior to submission to the funding agency.

 Can UnivRS automatically download my funding application from the funding agency web portal?

No, there is currently no link between funding agency systems and UnivRS. Information similar to what is entered on the Research Services Intake Form is entered into UnivRS, including an electronic copy of the application, created from the funding agency system, which must be uploaded to UnivRS prior to submitting the Project Application for academic and institutional approval.

 Do I need to collect signatures and submit a hard copy of the funding application to RSEO if I submit my funding application through UnivRS?

You only need to collect signatures if the funding agency requires pen-to-paper signatures on the funding application. The academic and institutional approvals required by the University of Saskatchewan will be obtained electronically through UnivRS. You should not submit a hard copy of the funding application to RSEO if a copy of the funding application with all required attachments is uploaded into UnivRS.

 How do I give access to my facilitator to review a Project Application?

You can add your facilitator to the Project Application under the field ‘Pre-Award Support Personnel’ on the Key Information tab. This will give the facilitator the ability to view the Project Application and any documents uploaded under ‘Working Documents’ and ‘Final Project Documents’ on the Documents tab.

 Do we still need signatures for Co-Principal Investigators or Co-Investigators, and their Department Heads and Dean/Associate Dean Research/Director?

No. UnivRS will obtain the Department Head and Dean/Associate Dean Research/Director approvals for the Lead Principal Investigator. Co -Lead Principal Investigators and co-Investigators will receive a notification from UnivRS when they are added to a Project Application. The co -Lead Principal Investigators and co-Investigators respective Department Heads and Deans/Associate Deans Research/Directors will also be notified when an individual affiliated with their unit is added as an applicant on a Project Application.

 What do I do if I am a Co-investigator on an application and the Lead Principal Investigator is at another institution?
Submit the Project Application in UnivRS as if you were the Lead Principal Investigator. If there are several co-Investigators from the University of Saskatchewan, choose one of the co-Investigators to submit the Project Application in UnivRS as the Lead Principal Investigator and add the rest of the University of Saskatchewan researchers as co-Investigators. The researcher listed as the Lead Principal Investigator on the Project Application is responsible for informing RSEO when the agency notifies the Lead Principal Investigator at the lead institute of the results. RSEO will update the Project Application and funding to co-Investigators at the University of Saskatchewan will be tracked through separate Projects.
 Can I get copies of my old funding applications from UnivRS?
All of the data stored in the old or ‘legacy’ research system maintained by RSEO was migrated into UnivRS on September 22, 2014. The legacy system did not require electronic copies of the funding applications to be uploaded, so older funding applications may not be available for download.
 Who can see my Project Applications in UnivRS?

Your Department Head, Associate Dean Research/Dean/Director and select staff in the Office of the Vice-President Research and Financial Services Division have some access to your Project Applications. Anyone named on the Project Application under the Applicant tab (e.g., co-Principal Investigator, co-Investigator, Other Team Member) including their Department Head and Associate Dean Research/Dean/Director as well as anyone named under ‘Pre-Award Support’ may also have access. Authorized users may also gain access to view your Project Applications by being delegated a role which has access to view your Project Applications.

 How do I update my application in UnivRS after I have submitted the Project Application for approval?

Once you have submitted the Project Application in UnivRS you no longer have access to upload a revised copy of your application under Final Documents. The Research Services and Ethics Office can upload revised versions of your application to the Project Application for you. Send the revised copy of your application via email to your Grants Specialist with a request to upload the revised application. If you don’t know who your Grants Specialist is send the request with a copy of the application to research.services@usask.ca.

 Do external collaborators have access to UnivRS?

External collaborators do not currently have access to UnivRS. External access may be permitted at a later time.

 How do I name the documents I upload to UnivRS?
It is recommended that documents uploaded to ‘Final Project Documents’ be named with a descriptor and the date the document was uploaded (e.g., Application 2015-09-17, CCV 2015-09-27) since UnivRS does not automatically show the date the file was uploaded. You may choose to use the same format for documents uploaded under ‘Working Documents’ and ‘Personal/Confidential Documents’.

Compliance

 Find information about ethics processes (e.g. human ethics, animal care and use, biosafety and radiation safety)
 What is the Compliance Module?

The Compliance Module effectively manages and reports on projects involving human participants at the U of S.  It also ensures the U of S aligns with external regulatory bodies and policies, such as the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. Projects involving biosafety and radiation safety materials, and animals will continue to be managed as a paper-based process until 2019.

 When will it be released?

The Compliance Module will be released internally to Office of the Vice-President, Research (OVPR) and centralized ethics review committees on May 7, 2018. The OVPR staff and ethics review committees will pilot the product before it is released to the campus community.

 Who will have access to this module?

During the internal release, the Compliance Module will only be accessible by OVPR staff, and individuals associated with centralized ethics review committees

 Who has been involved in the development of this module?

Since 2016, many stakeholders were consulted to develop the Compliance Module. These stakeholders included, but were not limited to, the following: OVPR staff; Safety Resources staff; Chairs of ethics review committees; the UnivRS Steering Committee and UnivRS Reference Group; and other internal and external stakeholders. Since November 2016, over fifty (50) stakeholders actively beta tested the Compliance Module.

 Are faculty and staff impacted by the release of this module?

Yes, faculty and staff will be asked to complete new and/or modified paper-based forms for projects involving human participants starting on April 30, 2018.  These new and/or modified forms were posted for two primary reasons: 1) to provide opportunities for the campus community to share feedback about the forms in advance of the campus-wide release; and 2) to streamline the transfer of paper-based ethics forms into UnivRS by the Research Services and Ethics Office staff.

 Will existing data be transferred to UnivRS?

Yes, all information recorded in the Access database maintained by the Research Services and Ethics Office will be migrated to UnivRS by May 7, 2018. There are no foreseen disruptions to active projects during the migration.

 Will there be any disruptions in service during the rollout?

Minor disruptions may occur as the OVPR staff and centralized ethics review committees become familiar with the Compliance Module.  Resources have been hired to assist with the transition and to provide dedicated support to impacted end users.

 What are some of the possible risks associated with this release?

Some of the possible risks include: resistance to new and/or modified paper-based forms for projects involving human participants; and changes in external policies and/or regulations that may impact business processes and the system design.

U of S Standardized CV 

 Find information about the changes to the U of S Standardized CV

The University implemented a revised U of S Standardized CV format in 2016. The revised format is available on the Office of the Vice-Provost, Faculty Relations website.

 Why was the U of S Standardized CV changed?

The U of S Standardized CV format was changed to better align with university priorities and external initiatives, such as the Canadian Common CV (CCV). Much of the terminology in UnivRS aligns with the Canadian Common CV and the Consortia Advancing Standards in Research Administration Information (CASRAI).

 When will the new U of S Standardized CV format become mandatory?

Faculty are not required to use the revised U of S Standardized CV format and Forms 1 and 2 until July 1, 2020. Faculty are encouraged to adopt the new CV format starting July 1, 2019.

 Are faculty expected to use UnivRS to generate their U of S Standardized CVs?

Yes, faculty are encouraged to use UnivRS to generate their U of S Standardized CV. The Colleges of Medicine and Nursing will continue to use CVMS until the data has been migrated to UnivRS.

 Are there any resources available to support faculty during the transition to UnivRS?

Yes, the Office of the Vice-Provost, Faculty Relations and the UnivRS Sponsors hired students to assist faculty with the transition to UnivRS and the revised U of S Standardized CV format. Faculty are encouraged to send their CV to univrs.team@usask.ca by September 30, 2018 to take advantage of this transitional support. Once your CV is entered into UnivRS, you will receive a copy of your draft CV along with any notes the students made when entering its contents into the system. It is your (or your staff’s) responsibility to validate, correct and update the new CV.

If a faculty member does not provide their CV to the UnivRS team by September 30, 2018, they will be responsible for adopting the new format and entering the information into UnivRS themselves.

Training is offered through ICT Training Services. Additional sessions may be scheduled with ICT Training Services, if more than 15 people are in attendance.

 How can I provide feedback about the U of S Standardized CV?

Questions or comments about the U of S Standardized CV may be sent to: standardcvupdate_feedback@usask.ca

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

 Find information about CV records in UnivRS
 How do I find my CV-related records?

Instructions on how to find CV records are included in the ‘Quick Start Guide – Where to Find and Update CV Entries’ available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

 How do I add a record in the online CV? Are there any short-cuts?

Instructions to add a CV Activities or Contributions record in UnivRS are included in the ‘UnivRS – Information Guide: CV Activities and Contributions Modules’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage. Some short-cuts include: 1) cloning a record from a list page in UnivRS; 2) importing a publication from PubMed, Web of Science or Scopus; and/or 3) importing information from a file, such as BibTex, Endnote (X1/X2/Tag), Reference Manager (RIS) or Refworks. Instructions on how to use these short-cuts are included in the ‘UnivRS – Information Guide: CV Activities and Contributions Modules’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

 Do I need to complete all the sections and fields in the online CV?

No, the online CV represents all the information that can possibly be requested in the U of S Standardized CV and the Canadian Common CV. The U of S and most funding agencies request only a subset of this information. When integration with the Canadian Common CV occurs and you choose a funding source and CV type, only the information requested by that organisation will appear in the output. Specific instructions on information expected in the U of S Standardized CV or Forms 1 and 2 is available in the U of S Standardized CV Comparison Documents.

 How do I validate a record in the online CV?

To validate a record: Open the desired record, click the ‘Save & Update Status’ button, select 'Validated’ in the pop-up window and then click the 'Done' button. Once the workflow is set, the respective list page will be displayed and the record you recently validated will appear at the top of the list. Note: Only records set to ‘Validated’ will appear in a CV generated by UnivRS. Additional instructions are available in the ‘Quick Start Guide - How to Find, Validate and Discard CV Entries’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

If your CV was entered by a student, you may ask the UnivRS team to set the status of all your CV-related records to 'Validated' by emailing univrs.team@usask.ca. This will allow you to update and generate your complete U of S Standardized CV from UnivRS.

 How do I delete a record in my online CV?

Faculty may choose to discard any CV Activities and/or Contributions records in UnivRS. To discard a record: Open the desired record, click the ‘Save & Update Status’ button, select ‘Discarded’ in the pop-up window and then click the ‘Done’ button. Once the workflow is set, the respective list page will be displayed and the record you recently edited will appear at the top of the list. Note: Only records set to ‘Validated’ will appear in a CV generated by UnivRS. Additional instructions are available in the ‘Quick Start Guide - How to Find, Validate and Discard CV Entries’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage

 How does the system know where to place my items in the U of S Standardized CV?

Data entered in UnivRS determines the placement of a record in the U of S Standardized CV, Form 1 and Form 2. Details regarding the placement of a record in the U of S Standardized CV are included in the ‘UnivRS and U of S Standardized CV Comparison’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

 What information appears on my U of S Standardized CV?
The guidelines and format for the U of S Standardized CV are available on the Office of the Vice-Provost, Faculty Relations website.
 How can I delegate my role to a staff member?

Faculty members may choose to delegate their role in UnivRS to a staff member at the U of S. Instructions to delegate your role are included in the ‘UnivRS – Information Guide: CV Activities and Contributions Modules’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

 How do I exclude a CV-related record from appearing in my U of S Standardized CV?

Faculty may choose to exclude a record from their U of S Standardized CV, Form 1 and Form 2. To exclude a record, check ‘Yes’ to the question ‘Exclude from Public Reports’ in any CV Activities or Contributions record. Once completed, click ‘Save & Update Status’, set the workflow status to ‘Non-Validated’ or ‘Validated’ in the pop-up window and click the 'Done' button. Records may be updated by the faculty member or their delegate at any time.

 How do I generate my U of S Standardized CV, Form 1 or Form 2?

Instructions to generate a U of S Standardized CV, Form 1 or Form 2 are included in the ‘UnivRS – Information Guide: CV Activities and Contributions Modules’ document available on the UnivRS resource webpage.

 How do I transfer my CV to the Canadian Common CV?
The ability to import and export information to other systems, such as the Canadian Common CV (CCV), is planned for a future release. Please watch the UnivRS Updates and Releases webpage to learn more about this and other items on the projects' roadmap.
 Where can I find more information about the changes to the U of S Standardized CV?

Additional information about the changes to the U of S Standardized CV format are available on the Office of the Vice-Provost, Faculty Relations website.

More Information

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UnivRS Resources and Training

Submit Feedback to the UnivRS Team

General Inquiries and Support

E-mail: univrs.support@usask.ca

Hours: 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday (except when the University is closed due to holidays)

All submitted requests are logged and responded as soon as possible.  If you require a response within a specific time frame, please provide this information in your request.

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