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Institutional Review Board

Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to frequently asked questions about the Rollins Institutional Review Board.

1. Will the IRB reject my research?

It is highly unlikely that the IRB would reject your research. The IRB may suggest modifications to your research methodology in order to protect the individuals who participate in your research.  Here are some guidelines to help you plan your research.

2. What is research?

Research is the process of gathering information to address issues in which there are practical problems and potential solutions (Cozby, 2004). The research process typically gathers information from samples of individuals and then attempts to generalize findings to a population.

3. Who is a participant?

A participant is an individual (i.e., human) who agrees to take part in a specific research study.

4. What is informed consent?

The process of informing, in advance, participants in a research study of all aspects of the research that might influence their decision to participate (Cozby, 2004).

5. What is minimal risk?

Minimal risk means that the risks of harm are no greater than the risks encountered in daily life or in routine physical or psychological tests. Examples include recording routine physiological data from adult participants, moderate exercise by healthy volunteers, and research on individual or group behavior or characteristics of individuals such as studies of perception, cognition, game theory, or test development in which the researcher does not manipulate participants’ behavior and the research will not involve stress to participants (Cozby, 2004).

6. What are special populations?

Research involving individuals from special populations as participants require full-review by the institutional review board. Such special or vulnerable populations include but are not limited to children under the age of 18, participants who are incarcerated, or participants who are mentally ill.