Ethical review procedures

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Student Projects - Taught Degree Programmes

An ethical review should be undertaken as part of the drawing up terms of reference for the project. This comprises the following:

  • For ethical compliance to be embraced and be effective a procedure is adopted which is based on an escalation process dependent upon the severity of the ethical issue.
  • This review uses a simple form comprising a checklist of ethical issues and an outcomes section.  This review is in line with the guidelines provided by the University Human Research Ethics Committee.
  • The student/researcher completes the form and attaches appropriate supporting evidence, e.g. the terms of reference for the project, a copy of any consent form, and a copy of survey instrument, to ensure that the reviewer is able to assess the Human research ethics implications of the research project.
  • There are four possible outcomes to an ethical review:
  1. No ethical issues
  2. Minor ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  3. Major ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  4. Ethical issues that have not been resolved
  • The project supervisor should sign the ethical review form for those projects with the first two outcomes. The form should then be authorised by the second supervisor. The project supervisor should record the outcome of the ethical review in the appropriate way, e.g. on the Projects Database via Blackboard. The completed form duly signed should be kept by the student. The student must give a copy of the form to the supervisor who should keep it for reference. A copy of the form must be included in the project report when it is submitted for assessment.
  • Projects with the third outcome should be signed by the project supervisor and a copy of the review form submitted for information to the Faculty Human Research Ethics Committee. The completed form duly signed should be kept by the student. The student may start work on the project immediately.
  • Projects with the fourth outcome should be signed by the project supervisor and a copy of the review form submitted to the Faculty Human Research Ethics committee for resolution. These projects cannot commence until the matter is resolved.
  • Copies of Ethical Review forms to be considered by the Faculty Human Research Ethics committee should be handed in to the Technology Faculty Office, Gateway House 4.11, marked for the attention of the Committee.

Guidelines for students completing this form.   |

Research Degree Projects (MPhil/PhD) Procedure

Broadly the same procedures as are specified for undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes should be followed in that the Ethical Review form| should be completed.

  • The Research Student completes the form and attaches appropriate supporting evidence, e.g. copies of the ‘Application for Registration’ form (RDC: R form), the consent form, any survey instrument, or statement of competence to undertake research, to ensure that the reviewer is able to assess the Human research ethics implications of the research project.
  • There are the same four possible outcomes
  1. No ethical issues
  2. Minor ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  3. Major ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  4. Ethical issues that have not been resolved
  • The Research Student’s first supervisor should sign the Ethical Review form for projects in the first two categories. A copy of the signed form should be submitted to the Chair of the Faculty Human Research Ethics Committee for approval. A copy of the approved Ethical Review form signed by the Chair should be submitted to the Faculty Assessor with the student’s ‘Application to Register for a Higher Degree’ form. (See procedure for Registration for a Higher Degree.)
  • Projects with the third outcome should be signed by the Project supervisor and a copy of the review form submitted to the Faculty Human Research Ethics Committee for approval.
  • Projects with the fourth outcome should be signed by the project supervisor and a copy of the review form submitted to the Faculty Human Research Ethics committee for resolution. These projects cannot commence until the matter is resolved.
  • Copies of Ethical Review forms to be considered by the Faculty Human Research Ethics Committee should be handed in to the Technology Faculty Office, Gateway House 4.11, marked for the attention of the Committee. 

Contract research and consultancy

Broadly the same procedures as are specified for undergraduate, postgraduate taught and research programmes should be followed in that an Ethical Review form should be completed.

  • The principal investigator completes the form and attaches appropriate supporting evidence e.g. terms of reference for the project, statement of your competence to carry out the research or brief one page curriculum vitae for each applicant, including publications, to ensure that the reviewer is able to assess the human research ethics implications of the research project.
  • There are the same four possible outcomes
  1. No ethical issues
  2. Minor ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  3. Major ethical issues which have been addressed and concerns resolved
  4. Ethical issues that have not been resolved
  • The Principal Investigator and their Line Manager should sign the Ethical Review form for projects in the first three categories. A copy of the signed form should be submitted to the Chair of the Faculty Human Research Ethics Committee for approval. A copy of the approved Ethical Review form signed by the Chair should be retained by the Principal Investigator. Work on the research project may commence immediately.
  • Projects with the fourth outcome should be signed by the Principal Investigator and a copy of the review form submitted to the Faculty Human Research Ethics committee for resolution. Work on these projects cannot commence until the matter is resolved.
  • Copies of Ethical Review forms to be considered by the Faculty Human Research Ethics committee should be handed in to the Technology Faculty Office, Gateway House 4.11, marked for the attention of the Committee.
 
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