Research Accounts

I am working from home – how do I get a research invoice processed and paid?

  • Academic/research member of staff: Please e-mail your school finance officer to advise on the process within your school.
  • School finance officers:
    • Please follow the Finance guidelines regarding e-mail approvals/format etc. but send documents for research expenditure to the relevant Research Accounts Officer instead of Payments. We will then approve and forward on to Payments.
    • Research Accounts Officers will be maintaining a log of documents for which we will need to retain a signed hard copy in Research Accounts for audit purposes. When we return to campus working, we will provide each school finance team with a schedule of the signed hard copies that need to be sent to us – they should be clearly marked as a copy already sent via e-mail.
    • If you are working on campus, hard copies can continue to be sent via the internal mail to Research Accounts as someone will be attending the office once a week to deal with these and provide to Payments for the following week’s payment run. However, the electronic process is advised for the time being in the majority of cases.

I have to complete timesheets to record the time I have spent on my research project(s) but I am unable to get this signed off by my line manager/supervisor – what should I do?

  • Please continue to complete your monthly timesheets as normal.
  • Once completed, take a scan or photo of your timesheet and attach it to an e-mail – send this to the person who needs to approve your timesheet. Alternatively, attach a copy of the timesheet in Excel or preferably PDF format if completing it on a computer.
  • The approver should forward this e-mail on to the Research Accounts Officer who supports the project confirming their approval of the timesheet. We will accept an e-mail with multiple timesheet scans/photos/files attached.
  • On return to campus, hard copies of the timesheets should be provided to the relevant Research Accounts Officer signed and dated in accordance with the dates in the e-mails (i.e. date e-mail sent by the person completing the timesheet and date e-mail approval sent by person approving the timesheet).
  • This ensures that, for audit purposes, we can show that timesheets have been completed and approved in a timely manner and that we can continue salary recharges to projects where they are based on timesheets.

Research Ethics & Governance

Advice for ongoing or planned research involving human participants

Staff and students with ongoing or planned research projects involving face-to-face interaction with participants are asked to take note of Government guidance to reduce social contact and move to remote contact where possible.

Where amendments are required to research that has been previously approved by a University Research Ethics Advisory Group (REAG), to accommodate remote rather than face-to-face interaction, these can be implemented immediately.

However, please notify the relevant approving REAG with details of changes to methodology and updated supporting documents, in order that they can update their records.  Please use track changes or otherwise highlight all amended text.

If face-to-face contact is required for safety monitoring, please update risk assessments accordingly.

If significant changes to the research design are required, please submit a project amendment in the usual way.

For projects that have a favourable opinion from an NHS REC, guidance on COVID-19 can be found here:

The Health Research Authority (HRA) advice on student research COVID-19: guidance on health and social careresearch projects for educational purposes

Message from Dr Janet Messer, Director of Approvals Service, HRA

During the COVID-19 pandemic the Health Research Authority (HRA) is prioritising the review of studies related to COVID-19.  There is also significant pressure on the NHS and health and social care, limiting its ability to participate in research studies unrelated to COVID-19.

The decision has therefore been taken by the HRA to stop reviewing applications for individual undergraduate and master’s student projects until further notice.

‘More information on reviewing and managing COVID-19 research in the NHS is available here:

Please see the new guidance that relates to health and social care research projects conducted by undergraduate and master’s students: