Instructions for use of human participants research review




Investigators and others will recognize that conducting research with human participants is not a right but a privilege. This privilege is granted to investigators who after thorough scrutiny by the IRB can demonstrate that they intend to conduct important high quality research that provides appropriate protection to human participants (National Institute of Health, 2002).

In filling out the attached forms, please keep in mind that participants must be treated with respect for their right to be well-informed prior to the study about what will happen to them and what behaviors are requested of them. They should be aware of any risks involved in the study and must then freely give their consent to participate. The option not to participate or to terminate participation at any time must be explained clearly. Participants must also be guaranteed confidentiality for any information they provide and for any information about themselves. It is also important, in terms of maintaining the good will of our participant population, to make provisions to inform participants of the purpose of the study and the importance of their role in it.

Please use the following forms to complete your application for research:

  • Secondary Data Only - short form (PDF)
  • IRB Application for Research Study - Human Participants long form (PDF)
  • Anonymous Survey Form (PDF)
  • Anonymous Survey Form (Word)
  • IRB Request for Exemption (PDF)
  • Consent to Participate in a Research Study Form (PDF)
  • Consent to Participate in a Research Study Form (Word)
  • Study Completion Form
  • Study Continuation Form
  • Study Modification Form
  • Unanticipated Problem Report Form

Completed applications should be delivered in person to Michele Pearson - Upland Center 223.

1. Introduction
2. Review of Research Involving Human Participants
3. Human Participants Research Application

The Review Procedure
Complete and securely attach the following:

*Please note that it is the responsibility of the researcher to submit the application and supporting documentation in its entirety to the IRB. Submissions will only be accepted in hard copy with an original signature indicating the advisor's approval.

  • The Review of Research Involving Human Participants Form -The Human Participants Research Application
  • A copy of the Informed Consent Form that you will use
  • If required, copies of Assent Forms and/or organizational/institutional authorizations
  • A copy of your feedback to the participants or the material you intend to use during a debriefing
  • Any questionnaires, tests, written material, software, etc. that you will use to collect data during this study.
  • Copies of certificates of completion of the Human Participants Education Online Training Course for both the researcher and the advisor.
  • Copies of certificates of completion of the Financial Conflict of Interest training course for both the researcher and the advisor.  This is only required for faculty, staff, graduate, and doctoral research. Undergraduate students do not have to complete the FCOI training.

1. Submit your completed proposal with all attachments to the IRB by the appropriate date (see IRB meeting and deadline schedule). Failure to submit proposals in a timely manner may delay academic progress.

2. Upon determination that proposal is complete, the IRB will inform the researcher and advisor of the proposal’s anticipated review path: either expedited or full review. Incomplete proposals will be returned to the researcher.

3. IRB committee will review all full review proposals and will make one of three decisions regarding the project: Fully Approved, Conditionally Approved, Disapproved, or Incomplete. Expedited proposals will be reviewed by the research assistant for the IRB.

4. After the IRB has made a project decision, the researcher and advisor will receive notification via email or mail-within three working days concerning the status of the proposal. (Please consult with your advisor.)

5. Those individuals with approved proposals may begin research upon receipt of approval.

6. Those individuals granted conditional approval MUST meet the terms of conditions as denoted in the written notification and receive notification of full approval by the IRB PRIOR to beginning research.

7. Proposals that are not approved may NOT be initiated.

8. If your proposal is approved, you will be required to submit a Progress Report to the IRB on your activity at the conclusion of your study, or at the 1 year anniversary of the granting of approved by the IRB Committee. Failure to complete the Progress Report may result in sanctions (for example, an incomplete for the course or inability to obtain an academic transcript). A copy of the Study Completion/Continuing Review Form is available here.

9. The IRB will conduct audits of randomly selected research projects.

Researchers may wish to consult the following websites for information about national guidelines on human participant research. 

Members of Alvernia University’s IRB Committee are available for consultation.

Approval of the research by the IRB Committee does not absolve the researcher(s) from the responsibility to engage in ethical research, respecting the rights of participants.

Institutional Review Board