Chart of Accounts (COA), Finance

Chart of Accounts (COA), Finance

About PTAEO - Project

About Project

All activities undertaken by the University are organized into projects. Projects enable departments to track work activities from budget set-up through completion of the activity. Projects:

  • must have budgets,

  • should not be used for purposes covered by other segments (such as award or expenditure type), and

  • have a unique 7-digit number that is automatically assigned.

There are three types of projects:

  • Operating - Operating projects are activities supported by all fund sources other than sponsored awards. As a general rule, an operating project cannot be linked to a sponsored award. Any project funded wholly or in part by a sponsored award will likely be classified as a sponsored project.

  • Sponsored - Sponsored projects are activities funded wholly or in part by sponsored awards, most notably by grants and contracts. Sponsored projects may only be linked to non-sponsored awards when the sponsored award specifies mandatory or voluntary-committed cost sharing (see University Policies 1306 and 1316). Important aspects of the project (e.g. its start and end dates) are determined by the terms of the associated sponsored award.

  • Capital - Capital projects are a specific type of operating project undertaken to extend the useful life of an asset or to create a new asset. This project type is used for the purchase or construction of buildings and fixed equipment where the cost will equal or exceed $50,000. All renovations and alterations of buildings or fixed equipment ›= $50,000 or that will extend the planned useful life for more than two years should also be captured in capital projects. Moveable Equipment (MEI) must cost ›= $5,000 and have an estimated useful life greater than one year. If you think a project your organization is considering might be a capital project, please contact the Office of Capital Management at 203-432-8012.

Project/Award & Project/Organization Linkages

In order for a project (and its tasks) to accept charges, it must be linked to an award and organization (creating a valid PTAO). These linkages are established during the set-up process. They are used to validate data entry and ensure that only the appropriate project/award and project/organization combinations are charged. A project can generally be linked to any organization for charging purposes. There are certain limitations for award linkages; please see the discussion of operating and sponsored projects in the “About Projects” section above.

About Functional Classifications

Each project is classified according to its primary purpose in one of the following functional classes. Each project must have one (and only one) functional classification. A full description of each functional class is below (examples may not be all-inclusive).

The School of Medicine also uses functional classifications to allocate financial activity across the three core missions (clinical, research and education) to facilitate easier mission-based financial reporting. The table below shows how the School of Medicine maps the functional classifications to the lines of business.


Med School
Academic Support
Student Life & Services
Organized Research
Research Training
Research Support
Professional Practicum
Public Services
Other Scholarly Activities
Institutional External Affairs


01 Education All educational activities offered either for credits toward a degree or certificate, or on a non-credit basis.
  • Academic courses
  • Educational programs (including lectures and course-related workshops that focus on the student population as primary audience)
02 Academic support Resources and programs to support the academic missions of the University, such as:
  • Libraries, museums, and galleries (except public access and events)
  • Academic computing, audio-visual and photographic services
  • Recruitment and start-up for faculty, fellows, and residents primarily engaged in teaching
  • Lectures, seminars and conferences whose primary target audience is faculty, rather than students
  • Study abroad programs
03 Student life and services Programs and resources provided for the benefit and support of students outside the context of the formal academic/instructional program, such as:
  • Residential colleges and programs
  • Student activities including varsity and intramural athletics
  • Student administrative offices such as the Registrar, Bursar, Admissions, and Financial Aid (including departmental projects for student aid)
  • Seminars and conferences whose primary target audience are students
  • Fellowships and Scholarships
04 Organized research Research efforts that are separately budgeted and accounted for, including cost sharing where required by the award, and which meet at least one of the following criteria:
  • There is a competitive or review process to establish the project (ex: grant), or
  • There is a specified scope and deliverables (ex: contract).
This classification includes:
  • Sponsored research projects including clinical drug trials
  • Institutionally funded research projects meeting the definition above.
05 Research training Activities directed toward provision of practical research training, usually at the postgraduate (including postdoctoral) level.
  • Sponsored research training programs
  • Research fellowships
06 Research support Resources and programs that support the research missions of the University, include:
  • Core scientific facilities
  • Biological, chemical and radiation safety
  • Research administration
  • Recruitment and start up for faculty primarily engaged in research activities.
07 Professional practicum Professional/clinical practice and training. These activities take place primarily in the professional schools and include the following:
  • Patient care services and practice administration
  • Clinical training such as residency programs
  • Drama productions and legal clinics/services
  • Recruitment and start up for faculty primarily engaged in professional practice and training
08 Public services Programs and activities directed toward the community (external of Yale University). These may be funded from a variety of sources, both institutional and external. Examples include:
  • Libraries, museums and galleries public access and events only (typically driven by admissions; for all other Lib/Mus/Gallery projects, see #02)
  • Community services and outreach activities
09 Other scholarly activities Research, development and/or scholarly activities that are neither organized research nor direct educational and instructional activities, and may not be formally/regularly budgeted. Examples include:
  • Faculty sabbaticals (for non-sabbatical leave, see #10)
  • Journals and editorships
  • Faculty directed activity not readily assignable to other classifications
10 Administration Planning and management of financial, physical and human resources. Examples include:
  • Institutional, school or departmental administration
  • Information technology and computing support
  • Dean, department chair or other administrator recruitment
  • Faculty or staff leave of absence (for Faculty sabbatical, see #09)
11 Facilities Operation and maintenance of physical plant, including:
  • Custodial services
  • Grounds maintenance
  • Non-capital alterations and renovations
  • Facilities administration
12 Institutional external affairs Activities directed toward external constituencies (examples below) on behalf of the institution
  • Development and fund raising (both for University funds and charitable benefits)
  • Public affairs
  • Government relations
  • Alumni


Last Updated: January 2, 2014 (ap).