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Auburn University Scholarship Incentive Program



Externally sponsored academic activity involving University faculty—whether teaching, research, outreach, or service—is presumed to satisfy the academic needs of the University and the academically-related objectives of the sponsoring agency. The University provides faculty and facilities while the sponsor provides funds for the activities. Because faculty time and effort are required, it is reasonable for the University to request funds from the sponsor to support faculty effort. Whenever possible, it is prudent for the University to dedicate released funds in ways that enhance its academic activities. The purpose of this policy is to provide a direct incentive to faculty who receive extramural funding that includes salary support.


  1. When appropriate salaries supporting faculty time and effort are charged to sponsoring agencies and such salaries have been initially budgeted on Auburn University base funds, professional fees or Scott Ritchey Endowment earnings in the annual budget, the original budgeted funds released can be considered as the maximum amount of eligible funds for calculation of any eligible Scholar Incentive Program payment. Ineligible funds include any other sources of support for the original budget of the faculty salary, including, but not limited to, unrestricted soft funds, federal appropriations and dummy contract accounts.

  2. Eligible funds released when a faculty activity (i.e., teaching, research, outreach or service) is supported by an extramural grant or contract may be used to create an incentive pool within each department to further its academic activities.

  3. The incentive pool may be used to provide funds for faculty salary supplements.

  4. Each department or unit may determine the manner of distributing its own incentive funds with the intent of providing an incentive to the faculty member generating the funds. Departments should review their incentive policy at least every 3 years.

  5. Incentives for faculty members with joint appointments or with appointments funded from multiple sources should be negotiated between the funding units.

  6. The base salary or contract salary of individual faculty members may not be altered by the receipt of incentive salary.

  7. This policy does not restrict the amount that may be secured for summer salary for faculty with 9-month appointments.

  8. The particular incentive to be received, as described in 2.3 above, is to be negotiated between the faculty member receiving the eligible extramural funding and the appropriate department head or chair.

  9. The Provost and Vice President for Research must approve each department or unit’s plans for distributing funds (Request for Payment form).


Faculty members who apply for externally funded grants or contracts should request a percentage of their total salary, including fringe benefits, from the extramural source, consistent with the time commitment to conduct the proposed academic activity, unless excluded by the funding agency.

Individuals, who are split-funded from eligible and ineligible sources, will be eligible to participate with that portion of their salary supported by eligible funds.

A faculty member may be eligible for an incentive supplement from the incentive pool not to exceed 20% of their annualized base salary. The faculty member and the department chair will execute a written contract for the specific amount of the incentive award. The academic incentive allocation to faculty will be made once a year on or before the payroll deadlines established for the February 28 pay date.

Each Auburn University Scholarship Incentive Program Request for Payment must be approved by the appropriate dean, appropriate Vice President, and Provost.

Auburn University Scholarship Incentive Program Implementation Requirements

Scholarship Incentive Program Request for Payment

Last Updated: September 12, 2013