The University of Iowa

xTrain (Managing NIH Trainee Appointments) at the University of Iowa

What is xTrain?
Can I use xTrain now?

xTrain Login for PIs, ASSTs, & Trainees

NIH eRA Commons                  
Use your NIH eRA Commons username & password to
log in, and then click the "xTrain" tab.

 Need an NIH Commons USERNAME and PASSWORD?        

New X-Train Features Added 07/19/2010


NIH has Required the Electronic Submission of Appointment Forms and Termination Notices via xTrain for Research Training, Fellowship, Education, and Career Awards since January 2011
Click here for the details: NOT-OD-10-072


NIH xTrain on the NIH eRA Commons 
xTrain information for TRAINEES
xTrain information for PIs (principal investigators) and ASSTs (assistants)    
xTrain is required for submitting Appointment Forms and Termination Notices for Institutional NIH Training Grants, Career Development Awards, and Research Education Awards (KM1, K12, KL2,T15, T32, T34, T35, T90, TL1, TU2, R25, R90, TL1, TU2).  xTrain is also required for submitting Termination Notices for individual NRSA Fellowships (F30, F31, F32, F33), but Individual Fellowship Activation Notices must still be submitted on paper.  Here is a link to the Individual Fellowship Activation Notice:


xTrain Help:

NIH Research Training Coordinator
Jennifer Sutton
X-Train Questions

Bamidele Alarape
xTrain Questions
Questions regarding stipend levels and the Period of Appointment and/or stipend amounts on the Appointment Forms and Termination Notices
UI Grant Accounting Office, 335-0062

Contact to establish an NIH eRA Commons account
UI Sponsored Programs Office

eRA Commons Help Desk


xTRAIN - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is xTrain?

 xTrain gives NIH Training grant program directors, university administrators and Trainees the ability to electronically process the required forms (e.g., Appointment Forms and Termination Notices) associated with

  • NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award institutional research training grants (T32, T34, T35, T90, TL1, TU2). 
  •  NIH institutional career development awards (KM1, K12, KL2),
  • NIH research education awards (R25, R90)
  • "other" NIH training grants (T15)
  • NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Fellowships (F30, F31, F32, F33) - TERMINATION NOTICES ONLY

It also is used by NIH grants management specialists to process training grant appointments and terminations made electronically.

  1. Are we REQUIRED to use xTrain now?

Yes.NIH now requires the Electronic Submission of Appointment Forms and Termination Notices via xTrain for Research Training, Fellowship, Education, and Career Awards (As of January 1, 2011).  Click here for the details: NOT-OD-10-072

  1. What type of NIH training grants are eligible for xTrain?

xTrain can be used for all INSTITUTIONAL NIH Training Grants (T15, T32, T34, T35, T90, TL1, and TU2 research training grants, scholar appointments to K12 and KL2 institutional career development awards and appointments of participants to R25 and R90 research education awards ).   Click here to see a list of all NIH grant types, including all "T," "F," "K," and "R" awards.

  1. Is all of the current Trainee information (previously submitted on paper forms) already in xTrain?

Yes. Current Trainee lists and individual Trainee information for your particular NIH institutional training grant can be viewed now on xTrain.   

  1. Can I use xTrain right now?

Yes.  However, (until the PI delegates xTrain rights to an ASST) only the PI can log in to see his/her own Training grant and Trainee roster.  (The PI can delegate on the NIH Commons MOST (but not all) xTrain duties to an NIH Commons user who has an ASST (assistant) role.   For an overview of all the xTrain duties and associated "players," see xTrain roles and functions.)

    • Are INDIVIDUAL NIH fellowships ("F" awards) eligible for xTrain?

    Yes, but only for TERMINATION NOTICES.  The ACTIVATION NOTICE for "F" awards must still be submitted on paper.

    1. Can I use xTrain to APPLY FOR an NIH Training Grant?

    No.  xTrain is only for processing Appointment Forms and Termination Notices.  xTrain has no role in the NIH grant submission process.

    1. What specific NIH forms will be processed by xTrain?

    Statement of Appointment Form (PHS 2271) - Initiating Appointments via xTrain
    Termination Notice (PHS 416-7) - Initiating Terminations via xTrain
    Payback Agreement (PHS 6031)

    The Payback Agreement form is available for download/printing on xTrain with instructions for signing and submitting the agreement via postal mail.  xTrain will populate the basic information prior to printing, but the Payback Agreement (PHS 6031) must still be mailed - it is NOT processed electronically via xTrain.

    Form-specific information for all of the above forms (PHS 2271, PHS 416-7, PHS 6031) can be found at:

    NIH Forms & Applications

    1. What are the specific roles for xTrain users?  Who does what?

    Click here to see a detailed table (go to PAGE THREE) of xTrain functions and roles by specific xTrain user types.

    Business Official (BO)

    Person who has signature or other authority related to administering training grants and is authorized to submit Termination Notices on behalf of the institution

    Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI)

    Person responsible for the overall direction of the training program and is authorized to submit Appointments, Re-appointments and Amendments on behalf of the institution

    PD/PI Delegate

    Person, delegated by the PD/PI, with the authority to perform xTrain-related functions (except submitting Appointments) on the PD/PIs behalf; holds Assistant (ASST) role in eRA Commons


    Person at grantee institution who will be appointed as a Trainee on a training grant

    • What specific information do TRAINEES need to know to use xTrain?

    Click here to see an xTrain reference guide specifically for TRAINEES.

    1. How can a PI (Principal Investigator) delegate xTrain duties?

    A PI can delegate xTrain duties to someone who has an ASST (assistant) role in the NIH eRA Commons.  Note that the ONE xTrain function that the PI cannot delegate is the "Submit New Appointment to Agency" function, as can be seen at the following overview of xTrain roles and functions.

    1. How do you initiate a Trainee Appointment using xTrain?

    Click here for an overview of the Trainee Appointment process.

    1. How do you initiate a Trainee Termination using xTrain?

    Click here for an overview of the Trainee Termination process.