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Institutional Review Board

This page provides information concerning Colgate’s policy on the use of human participants in research and the Institutional Review Board’s (IRB) procedures. If you are not familiar with IRB practices, you are strongly encouraged to contact your adviser (if you are a student) or the IRB chair for advice prior to submission. This can greatly increase the likelihood of approval on the first submission.

All student and faculty investigators are encouraged to read the document "Research with Human Participants: A Manual for Investigators."

General Policy

It is Colgate's policy (consistent with federal regulations) that all faculty and student research involving human participants be reported to the Institutional Review Board. Research that poses no risk to participants is exempt from review, but must be reported to the IRB and certified as exempt. All other research must be formally reviewed through either expedited review or full review procedures.

Important Note: The procedure for submitting expedited and full-review proposals has changed. All expedited and full-review proposals can be submitted through the proposal submission page.

Full-Review Proposal Deadlines for 2013-2014:
Fall Semester: September 27 (noon)
Spring Semester: February 14 (noon)

What Does the IRB Consider?

All research covered by Colgate's policy needs to be reviewed by the IRB to ensure that human research participants are treated in an ethical manner. The IRB seeks to ensure that researchers understand and uphold two standards: first, that human participants should not be placed at undue risk; second, that participants should give uncoerced, informed consent to their participation in the research.

IRB Proposal Categories

  1. Determine if project is defined as “research.” Learn whether your project falls under the federal definition of research. The IRB only reviews projects defined as research.
  2. Determine if project is defined as “exempt.” Research that poses no risk to participants is exempt from review, but must be reported to the IRB and certified as exempt.
  3. Determine if project should be submitted for “expedited” or “full” review. See the difference and to determine the proper category for your project.
Learn more about categories of IRB proposals.

Guidelines for Submitting IRB Proposals

  1. The proposal (for expedited or full review). Detailed instructions for what should and should not appear in the proposal.
  2. Certificate of informed consent. Details concerning how to create the consent form.
  3. Debriefing form. Determine whether your proposal should include a debriefing form.
  4. Example proposals. Examples of past successful proposals (expedited and full-review).

Learn more about the proposal guidelines.

Submitting Proposals for IRB Review

Expedited and full-review proposals can be submitted through the IRB Submission Website. Requests for exemption status (see IRB proposal categories) should be sent via email toIRB_exempt@psych.colgate.edu. Please contact the IRB Chair if you have any questions regarding your proposal.

The committee meets twice per year to consider proposals that require a full review. Meetings typically occur during the fourth week of the semester.

All requests for exempt and expedited reviews are handled on a rollng basis, typically within 10 working days.

Student proposals must be approved by their faculty sponsor prior to submission. A signature from the faculty sponsor is not required.

Federal Regulations

CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS, TITLE 45, PUBLIC WELFARE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, OFFICE FOR PROTECTION FROM RESEARCH RISKS, PART 46, PROTECTION OF HUMAN SUBJECTS