Welcome to SPU's Institutional Review Board Website
The purpose of the SPU Institutional Review Board (IRB) is to protect the rights, health, and privacy of individuals who participate in research that is conducted through the University. Protection of human participants is the primary goal of these policies.

The policies of the SPU IRB are also designed to protect University members who conduct research, and students who conduct research under their supervision. These policies apply to all research activities that involve human participants.

Definition of Research
The definition of Research used by the SPU IRB comes from the Office of Human Research Protections (OHRP), the federal agency within the Department of Health and Human Services that oversees IRB's. Research is defined as “a systematic investigation (i.e., the gathering and analysis of information) designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge.” Research designates, “an activity designed to test an hypothesis, permit conclusions to be drawn, and thereby to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge (expressed, for example, in theories, principles, and statements of relationships). Research is usually described in a formal protocol that sets forth an objective and a set of procedures designed to reach that objective.”

More simply put, The IRB is responsible to review and approve any proposed research with human participants that occurs outside of established or commonly accepted educational settings involving normal educational practices such as regular course evaluations or student assessment. OHRP refers to this as the “common rule” when ascertaining the need for IRB review.







Any project outside of the common rule that meets all of the following criteria needs to submit an IRB application for data collection approval.

  1. Systematically collects data from multiple human participants and. . . .
  2. Stores the data for analysis, and. . .
  3. Publicly presents or archives in printed / electronic form a summary of the results that will be available to others outside of normal classroom activities at SPU.


Before completing your IRB application please read the SPU IRB User guidelines. You can find both documents at the link below. You may also need to document informed consent. You can find the template and checklist for informed consent below. If you are unsure if you need to document informed consent form, please see the FAQ link below or check with your IRB Member.

Submit two hard copies of the application with any documented protocol (such as the questionnaires or assessment instruments that you propose to use) to your School or Department IRB Member. DO NOT submit via e-mail.


Full Review: 2013-14 Deadlines



For Meeting On:

September 26, 2013

October 10, 2013

October 31, 2013

November 14, 2013

November 21, 2013

December 5, 2013

January 2, 2013

January 16, 2013

January 30, 2013

February 13, 2013

February 27, 2013

March 13, 2014

April 3, 2013

April 17, 2014

April 24, 2013

May 8, 2014

May 29, 2013

June 12, 2014


If you require expedited or exempt IRB review outside of these dates, please contact your School or Department’s IRB member, or the IRB Chair.



IRB Members
College of Arts and Sciences

Cara Wall-Scheffler, Chair

College of Arts and Sciences

Dale Cannavan

College of Arts and Sciences

Karen Snedker

Office of Student Life / Non-Academic Research

John Glancy

School of Business & Economics

Kim Sawers

School of Education

Tom Alsbury

School of Health Sciences

Susan Casey

School of Psychology, Family, & Community

Beverly J. Wilson

School of Theology

Contact a CAS Representative

Community Advocate
Sarah Sutton









IRB Forms
Research Resources
Reseach with Human Subjects
Federal Human Subject Assurance Training
IRB Application Form
SPU IRB User Guidelines
IRB Policies
On-line Training Program
IRB Status Report
Risk Guidelines for Exercise and Testing Prescription
Informed Consent Template A    
SPU IRB Charter  
Informed Consent Template B    
Sample Debriefing Form
Non-Documented Informed Consent Template    



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