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Request IRB Review

All research involving human subjects requires approval from the Institutional Review Board. Please complete the steps below and allow at least 7-10 days for standard proposal review and three to four weeks for proposals requiring full board review.

Learn more about Agnes Scott's commitment to research integrity.

Agnes Scott subscribes to the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI Program). Complete the basic CITI online training course in human subject protection relevant for your area of study.  To complete the training, go to the CITI website and register. For additional instructions see Academic Affairs Student Info on the MyAgnes portal.

All Agnes Scott College affiliates can complete CITI courses. Faculty and staff members with equivalent human subjects research certification (such as the NIH certificate) may submit them in lieu of the CITI course.

Download and complete the appropriate form from the list below.

Review the IRB Instructor Guidelines.

If you intend to use a research instrument (e.g. a written or online survey, elicitation images or words, etc.) to collect data from human subjects, you must include it with your application materials.

Survey Guidelines

  1. Determine if your study is anonymous or confidential. An anonymous survey is one in which information obtained is recorded in such a manner that human subjects cannot be identified directly or through identifiers linked to study participants. In other words, your data is being submitted by unidentifiable sources.
    • Information obtained in confidential surveys is recorded in such a manner that researchers can identify human subjects directly or through identifiers linked to participants.
  2. Explain the following to potential respondents at the beginning of the survey (for additional guidelines, see our sample consent forms):
    • the project involves research
    • the purpose of the research
    • that participation is voluntary
    • whether you will ensure anonymity or confidentiality of participants
    • the time necessary to complete the survey
    • anticipated number of respondents
    • money or other remuneration offered to respondents for participating
    • contact information for the researcher(s)
  3. Provide contact information if the respondent has questions or concerns. You may use language similar to the following example:
    • You may make inquiries concerning this research project and its procedures by contacting my research supervisor, Professor [name], Department of […], Agnes Scott College, Atlanta, GA 30030 via phone at [number] or [email address].
    • If you feel you have not been treated according to the descriptions in this form, or your rights as a participant in research have not been honored during the course of this project, or you have any questions, concerns, or complaints that you wish to address to someone other than the investigator, you may contact the Agnes Scott College Institutional Review Board at 141 E. College Avenue, Decatur, GA, or email
  4. Send the actual survey to the IRB along with your other application materials. This applies to all survey research.

If you are collecting information that can be linked to a particular human subject, or if you are interacting with the human subject, you will need an informed consent form. Informed consent forms are necessary to demonstrate that human subjects have agreed to participate in a research project.

For example, informed consent is required for interviews, and whenever a human subject is being audio-recorded or video-recorded. 

Review the Informed Consent Form Checklist to learn more.


Once IRB approval is granted, the researcher will distribute informed consent forms, to be signed by both the human subject and the researcher. One copy will be given to the human subject and another copy will be retained by the researcher.

Informed consent forms are unnecessary when research is being conducted anonymously or unobtrusively:

  • Anonymous research is when data is collected on human subjects whose identity is unknown to the researcher (for example, anonymous surveys).
  • Unobtrusive research is when the researcher observes human subjects from a distance and does not interact with them (or when the researcher uses documents or other materials with information about human subjects).

If you are unsure if informed consent is necessary, contact the IRB at

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