FAQs

Q. Is there any template to apply for TTSF? The general HEC eportal does not have a tab for this particular grant? 

A. Full details of the TTSF with template are available on the Higher Education Commission website available at downloads at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/Downloads.aspx The FPP template needs to be filled and uploaded on eportal in .pdf form. 

Q. What criteria/basis should we fill in the column of salaries/stipend of PI, Co PI and students involved in the proposal form? What is the amount to be consider according to the time spent per year?

A. Budget guidelines and other relevant details are available on the Higher Education Commission website available at downloads section in: https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/Downloads.aspx please fill your online form in accordance with the guidelines specified.

Q. Can a faculty member working in Pakistani university with foreign citizenship are eligible to apply under this grant?

A. All of our grant programs are open to faculty members as PI or Co-PI who are currently employed at Pakistani universities irrespective of their citizenship. In case they are not employed at Pakistani universities, they can still join the project as Co-PI but we will not be funding their participation.

Q: Can a collaborator be from a foreign university?

A: yes.

Q: Can PI include personal salary and travelling expenses for foreign faculty members?

A: PI can include limited costs for personal salary and travelling expenses for the foreign faculty to contribute to your research agenda but the equipment related costs for the foreign university will not be supported. Please see the details in "budget guidelines" document available at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/Downloads.aspx

Q. Is ERC certificate mandatory for all disciplines? Or certain disciplines (e.g. Management Sciences, Engineering & IT etc.) are exempted from ERC certificate submission?

 A. It is not mandatory for all disciplines. Research Projects which involves research on living organisms/personal data requires ethical certificate.

Q. Can faculty members who are serving in public sector universities on Adhoc or on IPFP, apply for TTSF?

A. No, they are not eligible.

Q. Are there any specific priorities areas for TTSF?

A. Priority areas of national interest can be seen in call for proposals guidance at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/Key-Areas.aspx

Q. Can research associate only include m-phil or Ph.D students, can I include graduates into my project as research associate?

A. Yes Please see the details in "budget guidelines" document available at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Documents/Financial%20Rules%20for%20HEC%20Competitive%20Research%20Grants.pdf

Q. Do we need to upload Final proposal on prescribed template as other documents?

A. Yes

Q. Can a Postdoctoral fellow work as part time with ongoing TTSF call for proposals?

A. Please see the details in "budget guidelines" document available at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Documents/Financial%20Rules%20for%20HEC%20Competitive%20Research%20Grants.pdf

Q.  I am a full time contractual faculty member in a university, I am not a permanent faculty member. Can I apply for TTSF grant?

A. Yes if contract is at least equal to length of the proposed project.

Q.  How many co-PIs can be added in one project? In how many projects a person can acts as Co-PI?

A.  It depends upon the scope of project, a project can have more than one Co-PIs as per project requirements. Furthermore there is no restriction for a person to be Co-PI in one project only.  

Q.  Can a PI apply for TTSF grant, if he/she is already executing any research project i.e. NRPU, TDF, etc?

A.    Yes

Q. Do PIs need to submit hard copies for TTSF 2020 grants, or only online proposal submission at HEC eportal is acceptable?

A.  For ongoing call for proposals of TTSF, no hardcopies are required, only softcopies are accepted which can be submitted on research.hec.gov.pk 

Q.  Can PI and Co-PI be from different universities?

A.  Yes they can be from different universities. 

Q. If Co-PI is from different University, do we need to add his/her details against the "Academic Collaborators" too?

A. Yes all desired details are required and must be incorporated with endorsement. 

Q. In previous calls funding limit was linked to the cumulative impact factor of the PI. Is this policy still valid? (Because I do not see any such limit in the new policy documents.)

A.  No, previous policy is not applicable for ongoing call for proposals. Please see the Call for Proposal document at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Documents/Call%20for%20proposals%20Guidance%20-%20TTSF.pdf

Q. Personnel Cost" for "Principal Investigator/Faculty Member" in the "Guidelines for Budget", (attached) "Personnel cost of Principal Investigator (PI) & Co-PI is linked with the proportionate time spent on the given project i.e. Gross pay of PI x % time spent. How personnel cost for each year should actually be calculated?

A. Personnel cost should be calculated as % of time multiplied with gross monthly pay of the PI/faculty member, multiple by 12 for the whole year. Please see the details in "budget guidelines" document available at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Documents/Financial%20Rules%20for%20HEC%20Competitive%20Research%20Grants.pdf

Q: Is it allowed to engage Co-PI from any other educational institution in Pakistan?

A: yes, it is allowed.

Q: A faculty does not have prior experience of NRPU/TDF etc. Can he apply for TTSF grant as a principal investigator?

A: Yes if he fulfils the eligibility criteria, he/she can apply for TTSF grant.

Q: Who is eligible to be a principal investigator?

A: Please see the eligibility criteria document available at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/Eligibility-Criteria.aspx and specific eligibility guidelines for TTSF in call for proposal document.

Q: If my application is not funded what can I do?

A: HEC research grants are competitive in nature. Grant applications can be submitted in next call for proposals after making necessary modifications.

Q: What type of work does TTSF support?

A: Please see the Call for Proposal document at https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/faculty/TTSF/Pages/default.aspx

Q: Is it mandatory for industrial partner to contribute in proposed TTSF project?

A: Yes, either in kind or cash up to 50% of the proposed budget must be incorporated from industrial partner.

Q: Can I submit multiple proposals for the same grant opportunity?

A: An applicant can submit only one application for the same grant opportunity. 

Q: What is required if a proposed project involves human/animals subjects research?

A: The proposal should have a description of ethical considerations relating to the study. This section should document the issues that are likely to raise ethical concerns. It should also describe how the Principal Investigator is planning to address it and how he/she plans to obtain informed consent from the research participants (the informed consent process). Ethical Certificate duly signed by Ethical Research Committee of Institute is required at submission of full proposal.

Q: Do I need to submit letters of support?

A: Yes, letters of support are required during the full proposal stage. 

Q: Is it possible to edit the application after submission, if the deadline is not passed?

A: No, Applications once submitted cannot be edited/resubmitted. You are required carefully review the application before submission.

Q: How does HEC decide which applications to fund?

A: All proposals are reviewed by independent peer review panels consisting of researchers and practitioners. This is followed by an in-depth evaluation by the Scientific Review Panels.

Q: Can two people from different universities be PIs for the same project?

A: No, there will be one PI for the project.

Q: My department is not visible on the academic tab of profile. What should I do? 

A: Please ask the HEC focal person in your university to add the missing department through the eportal and submit the request to HEC. Once the request is submitted, the same will be approved by Quality Assurance Division of HEC after review. Only then, the concerned department will be visible on the eportal. The list of focal person is available on HEC website https://www.hec.gov.pk/english/services/universities/pqr/Pages/HEIs-Focal-Persons.aspx