Tips and FAQs

Q: Multiple staff in my department request Specials, so what is the best way to see all submissions by department?

A: The Graduate School (TGS) recommends that programs with multiple staff create a role-based net id with a shared group password. This way multiple staff can submit from the same account and also review what others in the department have submitted. Your department/school IT staff can assist you in establishing a role-based NetID.

Q: Am I responsible for requesting Specials on awards, such as NSF Fellowships, that flow through the institution centrally?

A: No, TGS will continue to enter the Specials for awards that come to TGS such as NSF Fellowships, Ford Fellowships and ACLS funding.

Q: Will I be able to do bulk entry, enter multiple students on the same award and amounts?

A: You may do so by selecting “Submit and add another student to this award” at the bottom of the form.

Q: Will I be able to edit or cancel a request after submission?

A: Yes, requestors are able to edit or cancel requests after submission. Visit the “Review Specials Submitted” for the appropriate aid year to find all of your Pending Requests. Then select “Edit” or “Cancel Request.”

Q: The award crosses over two award years. How do I handle this?

A: You will need to complete the form for two years and upload the documentation for both years. It would be helpful to indicate this situation in the notes section so TGS reviewers are aware of the entire funding picture.

Q: I need to request a specials for a year in which there is no form (prior to AY2012). What do I do?

A: You will need to send an email to tgs-fa@northwestern.edu with your request and documentation. TGS staff will determine eligibility and, if approved, will process the award.

Q: The award notice is not in English. Do I need to obtain a translation before uploading the document?

A: Yes. The award notice needs to be in English and include the time period of the award and the specific dollar amounts (either monthly or total). 

Q: The dollar amounts of the award are not in USD (US Dollars). Do I need to convert the funding to USD?

A: Yes. You can use this currency converter website to convert the funding to USD. You need to convert the funding to be able to enter the award and the requested amounts. The conversion rate will be as of the date you submit the request. TGS does not alter the requested funding once it has been processed since the conversion rate changes daily.

Q: What do I do if the student’s name does not appear when entering an ID?

A: First, check that you have used the SES ID and not a myHR ID, which may be different. If you still cannot locate the student, send an email to tgs-fa@northwestern.edu since the student may need to be added to the application.

Q: Do I need to enter stipend if I am only requesting tuition from TGS?

A: Yes, TGS staff needs to view the entire funding that a student is receiving. Also, if you are only requesting a stipend and no tuition, you should indicate the tuition amount being provided from the external source.

Q: What should I enter into the Notes field?

You should enter anything that will make it easier for TGS staff when reviewing your request. For example, if the start and end dates are not easily found, indicate them. If you have converted the award to USD you may want to indicate the conversion rate information and the date you did it. For institutional training grants, you may want to indicate from which training grant the student is being supported. There will be staff reviewing these requests that have not done so previously.