Building Sponsored Project Budgets:
Guidelines for Course Release


  • Course releases need to be negotiated as early as possible in the budget building process between faculty members & the relevant Department Head (DH). The College’s Office for Educational Research (OER) will encourage faculty members to talk with the DH before building an initial budget and will share the initial budget with the DH once it is prepared.
  • The College expects faculty members to remain engaged with instruction and generally sets a maximum buyout limit at 3 courses per year. Faculty members should work closely with their Department Heads when scheduling buyouts to ensure program coherence and quality. It is the prevailing practice in the College to charge 15% of a faculty member’s time for a course buyout.
  • Faculty time charged to a project needs to correspond to when the time is actually being spent. In particular, it is not appropriate to load time in the summer when the actual work is occurring during the academic year.
  • Before any summer effort is included in a funding request (assuming this is permissible according the sponsor’s budget guidelines), the faculty member’s research effort should be charged at a minimum of 5%-time commitment for the academic year. This may be part of the 15% of a faculty member’s time for a course buyout. The OER and the DH’s will remind the faculty of this prevailing practice.