Getting Research Help from IRB

Research is a key part of the U.Va. experience for most undergraduate students. Many will embark on their own research projects before they graduate. But did you know that research involving human subjects is regulated by the federal government? Before anyone can start a research project involving human subjects they need to be approved by an Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB reviews each project to make sure that research subjects are protected throughout the research process.

That might sound intimidating, especially to a first-time researcher, but that’s why I’m here! My job is to work with student researchers at any point in the research and IRB process – from the first glimmer of an idea, to final IRB approval, or even after!

First, I can help you figure out if your project meets the definition of human subjects research. Second, U.Va. actually has two IRBs! One is for Health Sciences Research (HSR) and one is for Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) research. I can help you figure which one applies to your project, and answer your questions about the application process. I can even help you work out the details of your research project.

If you are trying to figure out if the IRB process applies to you, if you have questions about research, or if you have questions about the IRB application process, my contact information is listed on our website. You can email me anytime, or you can drop by my office hours (this semester, that’s Fridays 10:00am-1:00pm, Clemons 230). I look forward to learning about your research!

By Laura Loeb
Laura Loeb Research Compliance Manager