CLAS Budget Tool for proposal budget development

Spreadsheet models for budget development

The CLAS Budget Tool has been developed for administrator and faculty use in working together for project planning. The budget tool should be used to formulate estimates during proposal development. Once a budget is drafted, the estimates should be reviewed by the departmental administrator and may be used to support the full proposal application. You should use the budget's categorical descriptions to determine where to place the amounts in your proposal budget.

Download your preferred version of the budget tool:

Template use instructions

  • The workbook will open to a PRINT Summary Budget worksheet. You should examine this worksheet to ensure that all totals are zero before beginning your project budget
  • To navigate the workbook, click on an Input Tab to enter estimates for personnel, GRA support, supplies, travel, etc. To begin, navigate to the Project Input tab

Tab to "Project Input"

Project input data is basic information about your project and allows you to set reference limits for budget annual and project total direct costs, and to establish an escalation (inflation) rate for salaries and tuition.

The white background areas are for data entry. Gray areas are protected from data entry.

  1. Project Title – Enter a project title.

  2. Project Period – Enter a project begin and end date mm/dd/yy. These dates are used to flag attempts to budget beyond the project period.

  3. Principal Investigator – Enter the name of the principal investigator.

  4. Sponsor – Enter the name of the sponsor.

  5. Indirect Cost Rate - Enter the indirect cost rate category anticipated for the project. Indirect cost is calculated once you have entered estimates and you may change the rate on the Summary Budget. The ability to change the forecasted indirect cost recovery is useful where you have ability to negotiate a rate or base on a non-federal project.  Federal projects must use negotiated rates.

  6. Direct Cost Limit Total - Input a value here if you have been provided a direct cost limit or wish to stay under this value for the project period. The Personnel budget maintains a running total at the top and each year for ALL costs against the balance provided here.

  7. Direct Cost Limit Annual - Input a value here if you have been provided a direct cost limit or wish to stay under this value for each year. The Personnel budget maintains a running total for ALL costs against the balance provided here.

  8. Inflation factor for Salaries – Default value is 3%. You may input a different decimal value for salaried personnel inflation. Inflation is not applied to hourly personnel estimates.

  9. Inflation factor for Tuition - Default value is 8%. You may input a different decimal value for tuition inflation.

Tab to "Input Personnel"

Personnel is used to calculate salary and wage basis staffing costs. You may input salary or override salary for hourly-paid staffing. The running project totals for all expense categories show on this worksheet to assist you in maintaining budget parameters for annual and total cost. If you have input budget limits on the Project Input tab, the remaining balances will show in the yellow highlight areas of this worksheet. Amounts you have provided for inflation calculate in years 2-5. To escalate for year 1 (project beginning late in the fiscal year), use an already inflated amount to begin.

White background areas are for data entry. Gray areas are protected from data entry. Yellow highlight areas are used for key figures, balances, and web resources.

  1. Name – Enter name(s) of personnel. The first three (3) names will print on the Summary Budget, others will be grouped into the total amount.

  2. Project Role – Enter role on project.

  3. Base Salary – Enter current base salary per NBAJOBS or if salary will significantly change, use that amount. Amounts you have provided for inflation calculate in years 2-5. To escalate for year 1 (project beginning late in the fiscal year), use an already inflated amount to begin.

  4. Effort – Enter estimated effort for the period. Use a separate budget line for academic vs summer effort. Percentage of effort should be based on the percentage of time committed during the entire academic year or summer term. Course buyouts requests should be funded by a 12.5% effort commitment and follow the College's course buyout review procedures.

  5. WSU Job Title – Select a job classification. Faculty should use the nine-month classification for an academic year appointment, and summer classification for a non-academic year or supplemental to base effort.

Note: Years two to five will auto-populate and escalate for inflation for salaried personnel. For hourly personnel, you will need to enter an estimate of time each year. Once the formula for salary is overridden by hourly, it cannot be refreshed. Consider placing hourly staff at the bottom of the personnel worksheet to preserve your auto-populated formulas.

Tab to "Input GRA"

GRA is used to calculate graduate research assistant support costs. Tuition costs will calculate based on the plan of hours and number of academic terms committed for support, and will escalate based on the Project Input amount used for "Inflation factor for tuition." You may use the standard rates for a stipend or override the stipend amounts to higher.  Stipend amounts are not subject to escalation.

White background areas are for data entry. Gray areas are protected from data entry. Yellow highlight areas are used for key figures, balances, and web resources.

  1. Grad Student 1 – Enter name(s) of student. The first three names will print on the Summary Budget, others will be grouped into the total amount.

  2. Select beginning term – Select term this student is anticipated to begin the effort.

  3. Year – Input fiscal year this student is anticipated to begin the effort.

  4. Expected credits per term –  Input the average credits per term funded by the project.

  5. Academic terms – Input the number of academic terms the student is anticipated to work over the life of the project.

  6. Summer terms – Input the number of summer terms the student is anticipated to work over the life of the project.

  7. Academic discipline – Select the discipline category, i.e., social science and humanities, physical and life sciences.

  8. Annual stipend – Amount auto-populates minimum stipend based on discipline selected. You may override this amount by inputting a value. Lower values than minimum are visually flagged in red.

Note: Years will auto-populate based on the number of terms input for the student's support. If the number of terms exceed the project period, you will see columns headers in "red" as a visual flag. Amounts input for lower stipend than minimum will also be visually flagged in "red". The Budget Tool permits you to simulate scenarios based on project needs. Please remember to confirm the sponsor's funding and the university's guidelines for graduate student support.