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Research Requiring Review

All research conducted by Iona's faculty, students, or staff involving human subjects or human biological material is subject to review by the IRB (or its designee; see next section for details). Projects reviewed by the IRB are organized into three categories, as outlined below. The IRB reserves the authority to determine the category for any project. Additional technical considerations for application categories can be found here.


Projects that are not designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge may be exempt from IRB review and oversight. Examples of these kinds of activities include normal educational practices and strategies (such as innovative instructional techniques, alterations in curricula, and assessment of same), data collected to support the mission of the college (such as outcomes assessment), oral histories (see section titled Oral History), and the use of archival or publically available data. 

Research involving queries and analyses of the following databases do not require an application:  Center for Research in Security Prices databases (and all other publically available, aggregate financial databases),  Uniform Crime Reporting databases, United States Census databases, United States General Social Survey, World Value Survey  and the National Study of the Changing Workforce.
Faculty, students, and staff should contact the Chair of the IRB for determination of exempt status for any project that does not fall clearly within these examples.


The bulk of projects reviewed by the IRB fall within this category and have the following characteristics:

  • direct or on-line contact with the participant
  • designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge
  • intended for public dissemination of methods and results
  • involves minimal risk to the participant
  • does not include special populations (e.g., minors or prisoners)

Full Review

Projects similar to those above, but involving more than minimal risk to the participant or including special populations are subject to review by the entire IRB membership.

Biological Specimens

Projects involving human tissue, blood, fluid, cells, or DNA must be reviewed for compliance with applicable regulations. Faculty, students, or staff who wish to use such material must submit the Supplement for Biological Specimens.

Submitting an Application >>