FAQ's

General FAQs

Q- Where can I find a wealth of information about acquisition training and certification at NIH?

A- Visit the Acquisition Career Programpage for more information.

Q- How do I sign up for an acquisition or COR course?

A- Visit the Acquisition Trainingpage for information regarding acquisition training, Basic FAC-COR Training for FAC-COR training, or the FAC-P/PM Training Sources

Q- How do I receive a FAC-C Certification?

A- You complete an application which goes to the Department for approval. See the acquisition certificationspage for details.

Q- How do I get a warrant?

A- First, get certified (see above), then have your office request a warrant for you. Note that this is typically Contract Specialists above $25,000, and to Purchasing Agents up to $25,000. See the Warrantspage for more information.

Q- How do the 1102 Qualification Standards work?

A- Visit the 1102 Qualificationpage for more information.

Q- How does the requirement for Continuous Learning Points (CLP’s) training for 1102s effect me?

A- Visit the Continuous Learning Points (CLP’s)page for more information.

Q- How do I get a Purchase Card?

A- Purchase cards are processed through Purchase Card Office in OLAO. Please visit their website at: http://olao.od.nih.gov/or you can contact the Purchase Card office at: CreditCard@od.nih.gov

For questions, please contact:



FAC-COR Certification – FAQ’s

(FAC-COR : formerly known as FAC-COTR)

  • How do I apply for FAC-COR certification or re-certification?
    Follow the directions on the following link: COTR-FAC-CERT
  • Where can I search for my current certification status?
    You can search for your status at the following link: COTR-FAC-CERT
  • What are the differences between Levels I, II and III?
    New Departmental guidance was announced in January, 2012 requiring COR certification in three levels. All those who had FAC-COR certification prior to January 1, 2012 have been grandfathered in at a Level II. For more guidance, go to this page: COTR-FAC-CERT
  • Do I need to apply for re-certification every two years?
    Yes, your certification is only valid for two years from the date it is issued. You must apply for re-certification every two years. Please review policies at this link: GetYourRefresherTraining
  • What is fulfillment?
    Fulfillment is reserved only for initial certification and will not be allowable for re-certification. It is the process by which an employee can demonstrate attainment of the required competencies for certification through alternative training, experience, education, certification by another recognized organization or other developmental activities is referred to as fulfillment. Review fulfillment policies at: ApplyFAC-COR-ViaFullfillment
  • How do I document my training & why is documentation necessary?
    You should complete the form found on the website and then submit copies of all your training certificates from the classes completed the last two years to: FAC-COR@mail.nih.gov . If you’re unable to produce a training certificate (for attendance at offsite conference, video-cast, etc.), please be able to self-certify and have your supervisor certify that you completed the training.
  • Where can I take the initial COR training?
    There are many options for taking the basic course. The following link provides a description of where training is available: BasicCOR-Trn-Optns
  • What counts for CLP credit?
    After you obtain your FAC-COR certification, you must earn refresher training every two years in order to keep that certification. The training period tracks from the date of issuance of your FAC-COR certificate. A CLP is a continuous learning point. It’s roughly equal to an hour of training, but broadens the training concept to include formal education, team leadership activities, publication of papers, professional examination, formal rotational assignments and conference attendance. See HHS Guidance on Meeting the Requirements for Continuous Learning Points.
  • What is the difference between FAC-COR & FAC-P/PM certification?
    FAC-COR certification is required for all those functioning as a COR on a contract. FAC-P/PM certification is only required for IT and Construction program and project managers. Other staff are allowed to apply for this certification but aren’t required at this point. Acquisitions requiring an OMB Exhibit 300, HHS Form 300, or equivalent are considered “major capital investments” and the program/project managers in charge of such programs are required to get FAC-P/PM certification.
  • Why do I need to take Appropriations Law training to be a COR?
    The Secretary of HHS, Kathleen Sebelius recently required several professions involved with the acquisition process at HHS, to complete Appropriations Law training. This requirement, which is being used to address contract funding practices within the Department, was presented at the NIH Executive Officer’s Meeting in an effort to educate the community. Please review requirements as documented on our website: acp
  • What if a training class does not provide any documentation of completion?
    You should describe the training you completed in as much detail as possible – for example if you completed webcast training, provide a short description of the training, the date you completed it, etc. Please have your supervisor certify that you completed the training by signing the form.
  • Do I need to complete CPARS to be eligible as a FAC-COR?
    Yes, CPARS training is now required for initial certification as well as re-certification as of January 1, 2012. Please register for CPARS at the link provided on our website. CPARS specific questions should be sent to: CPARS@mail.nih.gov
  • What if I can’t find the answer to the question here?
    Please submit all other questions to: FAC-COR@mail.nih.gov