Submission Requirements

Important Note:  As of April 1, 2014, the IRB will not accept applications from students.  Faculty members supervising students should sign and submit the IRB application on the student's behalf.

The CSU Institutional Review Board (IRB) accepts and reviews research protocols involving the use of human subjects. For clarification, please refer to the federal definitions of these terms below. No research project can begin until written authorization is received by the investigator from the CSU IRB. Deadline dates for IRB submissions are indicated on the Meeting Schedule link.

There are three different types of review that can be requested depending on the type of study and the judgment of the IRB. These are as follows:

  1. Exempted Review
  2. Expedited Review
  3. Full Committee Review

The type of review will depend on the nature of the proposed research. Descriptions of criteria for exempt and expedited review are contained in the "Application for Initial Review", accessed through the "Forms" link. Researchers are required to indicate which type of review they are requesting, but the final determination of which review category the proposed research involves remains the purview of the IRB.

Please note: If the proposed research involves more than minimal risk to the potential subjects or involves a vulnerable class of persons under the federal code, the project does not qualify for exempt review. If the protocol involves collecting audiotape or videotaped data sets, the project does not qualify for exempt review. Finally, if the protocol involves minors, prisoners, pregnant women, handicapped or mentally disabled persons, it is the policy of the CSU IRB to require a full committee review.

Please consider the following definitions in determining the type of review you are requesting:

Definition of Human Subject:

"Any living individual(s) about whom an investigator (whether professional or student) conducting research obtains (1) data through interaction or intervention with the individual, or (2) identifiable private information."

45 CFR 46 §102 (f)

Definition of Research:

"Any systematic investigation, including research development, testing, evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge."

45 CFR 46 §102 (d)

 This means that any data collection activity including surveys, theses, dissertations, interviews, focus groups, assessments or evaluation instruments (other than for educational purposes), public presentations utilizing data collected from human subjects (as opposed to publicly available information) requires IRB review. No research involving human subjects can be conducted without the written authorization from the CSU IRB. If you are uncertain if your proposed research falls within the categories listed above, please contact Dr. Thomas Lyons at (773) 995 - 2241 or for assistance.

Submission Guidelines:

For all research and research-related activities involving human subjects, please download the "Application for Initial Review" under the "Forms" link at left. This document also contains a set of application instructions, an "Investigator Agreement" form and an "Application Checklist" to ensure a complete submission. Please submit an electronic copy of your application (PDF is preferred) to: In addition, please submit a signed hard copy of your application to the IRB office in New Academic Library Room 202. Submission of both an electronic and hard copy application is needed before the Institutional Review Board can review your application. If you have questions concerning the submission process or the status of your application please contact Daniel Gibboney Jr, IRB coordinator, at irb@csu.eduor at (773) 995-5078.

Note: Please allow up to five business days for receipt of your submission and up to two weeks for and/or notification of approval. Written notification will be promptly mailed to the primary investigator in their respective department unless otherwise requested or specified. Please allow four weeks for a full committee review. Final approval must be received before initiating the research study.

Please note that the above specified timelines for protocol approval are contingent upon completion and receipt of all protocol application materials including initial application form, investigator agreement, consent forms, completion certificates, surveys, tests, and advertisements (where applicable), approval notices from outside institutions (where applicable) and letters of access from agencies or institutions other than Chicago State University.