5.1 IRB Research Understanding

Department of Communication
IRB Research Understanding
Presented to and Accepted by the IRB during 2007-2008

Research activities including the following do not need to be submitted to the IRB because they do not constitute human subject research:

  1. Research on publically available data bases (e.g., American National Election Survey, Annenberg National Election Survey, U.S. Census Data)
  2. Research on publically available texts (e.g., published articles, chapters, and books, publically broadcast information and programs)
  3. Research conducted by students as part of class assignments for internal purposes only (i.e., not for scholarly publication) such as interviews or questionnaires needed to complete class requirements including those necessary to work with a community client or organization.
  4. Research involving analysis of researchers' previously collected data bases so long as the data do not have identifiers and no additional data is being collected.

In addition, Continuing Review Reports (CRR) only need to be submitted if data collection is continuing or the data from a previous study contains identifiers that could easily be used to identify participants and put them at risk. Once data collection is completed the researcher can state that the human subjects research is complete and the file may be closed even if he/she continues to analyze the data in the future.