Institutional Review Board

All research conducted at Benedictine University which involves human or animal subjects must first be reviewed by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). The mission of IRB is to assure that ethical guidelines for research are followed. IRB reviews each research proposal and will either approve the proposal or make a formal request for changes to meet NIH and/or APA ethical guidelines for human subjects research. In cases of animal or other sensitive research, the proposal will be considered by a subcommittee designed specifically with that expertise. The committee consists of several faculty members representing all four colleges and a few community experts, most of whom engage in original research in addition to their academic responsibilities.

Applications for review of research are accepted by IRB at any time, and are reviewed by the committee typically on a two week turn around during the academic calendar year.  Applications received outside of the academic calendar year or sensitive and full board reviews are completed as time permits.  All applications should use the IRB Application Cover Sheet and follow the steps listed below.  Applicants are encouraged to access specific handbooks for advice in completing projects for specific research projects with the appropriate templates (consent forms, parent permission, institutional agreements, etc.)

Application Process:

  • Complete the IRB Application Cover Sheet (with all appropriate signatures).
  • Complete either the expedited or exempt form (see criteria check boxes to determine which to use); or
  • In rare instances, complete the full board review form
  • Outline your description of proposed project by following the check list (see IRB application checklist)
  • Attach any auxiliary materials (the questionnaire you plan to use, permission letters from data collection sites, certification for NIH training) to the above documents.
  • Review the documents with your advisor, get advisor signature of approval, ask advisor to submit materials to IRB Chair.
  • Advisors or Faculty Researchers: Send one electronic copy to and deliver one hard, signed copy (both student and faculty signatures) of the application to Alandra Devall in Kindlon 255.

Applicants should plan ahead, as IRB committee member schedules and the volume and complexity of proposals fluctuate. Most applicants will hear back from the committee two weeks after the Chair has received a complete, clearly assembled application from advisors. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Applications sent by students will not be reviewed. If revisions are recommended, the two week turn around process restarts from the time the IRB Chair receives materials.