Washington State University

Revised 9-08
Controller's Office

Research or Conference Account Request

PDF link


University personnel use a Research or Conference Account Request (RCAR) form to request a new account when:

An internal competition is a competitive process in which WSU serves as the grantor or granting agency. The awarding department/area may choose to use an RCAR as the award document if there is no other award document. In some cases an official award letter is issued, rather than an RCAR.

Blanket research accounts are for use by College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS) personnel only.

Other Uses of RCAR

Other uses of the RCAR include requests for accounts for conferences, seminars, or workshops not related to sponsored agreements. Such requests require approval from General Accounting; telephone 509-335-2013 for assistance.

Account criteria include: beginning date, name of principal investigator, program-budget-project account coding, and appropriate signatures. NOTE: Check the applicable box if requesting a transaction code for credit card processing.

New account requests for purposes other than those listed above require approval from the Office of Research Operations and Support (OROS) and/or General Accounting, as applicable.


Direct questions regarding the Research or Conference Account Request to Sponsored Programs Services (SPS), telephone 509-335-2058.


This process is not intended to provide a means to by-pass standard institutional approval systems for sponsored programs.


Monies deposited to such accounts are expended in accordance with existing state and University policies.

Title to Equipment

Title to purchased equipment resides with the University.

Intellectual Property

Intellectual property developed using a Research or Conference Account is subject to University intellectual property policies. See Chapter 35 and the Faculty Manual.


By approving the Research or Conference Account Request, the department chair or designee acknowledges that the department is responsible for any overdrafts or disallowances related to the use of the account.


Use of Funds

Use of account funds is subject to University policies and procedures and state of Washington regulations and statutes. Regardless of the source, these funds are considered assets of the University. Funds must be expended in a manner that promotes the University-related purposes as documented and approved on the Research or Conference Account Request. If not fully expended, any remaining balance will not be returned to an employee.


The Internal Revenue Service does not allow an individual to claim as a tax deduction a contribution to a research account under his or her control.


Checks payable to WSU from external sponsors may not be deposited to a self-sponsored research account. Accounts supported by external sponsors must be established and approved through the process described in 40.02.


Proper completion and routing of a Research or Conference Account Request (RCAR) form helps ensure that the account request has the support of area and department officers and is approved by OROS when required. Complete and/or print the master on 40.07.6 to obtain copies of the form.

Completing the Form

The following numbered instructions correspond to numbers on the sample in the PDF version of 40.07.3. Unexplained form sections are considered self-explanatory.

Department Contact (1)

Enter the name of the administrator who completed the RCAR form and is able to answer questions regarding the sponsored project.

Ag Research Code (2)

For use by College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS) Finance Office personnel only.

OROS # (3)

Complete, if known. Include the activity number, if applicable. This number is available in the OROS database.

To view the OROS database, go to:


Account Number (4)

New Accounts

Enter the applicable 4-digit budget number. Sponsored Programs Services (SPS) or designee completes this block when the account number is assigned.

Existing Accounts

Provide the program-budget-project number of the existing account.

Principal Investigator (5)

Enter the name of the principal investigator (PI) responsible for the requested project. Enter the full name, not a nickname. If more than one PI is responsible for the requested account, enter the additional names under Remarks.

Begin Date of Account (6)

For all new accounts, enter the appropriate begin date.

For new sub-accounts, enter the begin date which is assigned to the home account.

For existing accounts, leave this field blank.

Termination Date of Account (7)

Enter the appropriate termination date.

New Sub-account

For new sub-accounts, enter the termination date assigned to the home account.

Extension to Existing Account

When requesting an extension to an existing account, enter the revised termination date.

Home Account (8)

If the project account has or will have a home account, enter that account number (program-budget-project). (The home account is the primary account assigned to the project.)

Type of Account (9)

Check the appropriate box to indicate the type of account requested. Account types are:

Account Extension (10)

If the account is to be renewed after the original termination date, complete a new form at renewal and mark this section.

Refund the Balance (10)

Mark this section if the remaining balance is to be refunded when the account is closed. NOTE: Refunds are not made to WSU employees.

Request Transaction Code (10)

Check this box if the department wants to accept payment through web point of sale (POS) transactions.

Purpose of Account/Reason for Extension/Remarks (11)

Provide a summary explanation and attach documentation to support the action required.

Budget Distribution

Enter the budget distribution for the project account, as applicable.

Single Account Budget (12)

Use this column to enter the budget distribution for a single account budget.

Transfer from Home Account to New Sub-account (13)

The department generally uses these columns to enter the budget distribution from the home account to the new sub-account.

SPS may approve the use of these columns to request a budget transfer from/to accounts other than a home account and/or new sub-account. SPS determines approval for such exceptions on a case-by-case basis. Contact SPS for assistance.


Transfers from an account must not exceed the object balances for the account. Transfers must be from an object to a like object, unless the sponsor allows rebudgeting.

Expenditure Restrictions (14)

Any approving administrator may impose restrictions on the expenditure of account funds.

Enter the restrictions by budget-object number, if applicable.

NOTE: For expenditure restrictions on funds to be transferred from one account to another, signatures are required from the PIs responsible for both the From and the To accounts.

Approvals (15)

An approving administrator is responsible for assuring that the purpose of the account is consistent with department, college, and University objectives. NOTE: Review and approval of this form is subject to the same criteria as review and approval of other University accounts, including extramural accounts processed in accordance with 40.02.

Route each request through the approval chain indicated at the bottom of the form.


SPS reviews the form after it has been approved by the other offices and establishes the account.

See the PDF form:
40.07.6: Research or Conference Account Request
Complete and/or print as needed.