Institutional Review Board (IRB)

All research activities involving human subjects conducted by faculty, staff, or students at the University of Central Arkansas are under the review and approval jurisdiction of the Institutional Review Board (IRB). This includes research development, preliminary investigation, pilot studies, testing and evaluation, interviews, observation, and surveys designed to contribute to generalizable knowledge.

In addition, all research involving University of Central Arkansas students, faculty, or staff conducted by an outside party is under the review and approval jurisdiction of UCA’s IRB. It is the responsibility of the principal investigator to submit proposed research for approval in a timely manner and before recruiting subjects or collecting data.

The IRB has the responsibility and authority to perform the following actions:

  • Approve, disapprove, or modify the research protocol as it pertains to human subjects.
  • Conduct continuing review of research.
  • Observe / verify changes.
  • Suspend or terminate approval.

The main function of the IRB review is to assure that...

  • Risks are minimized and are reasonable in relation to anticipated benefits.
  • There is informed consent.
  • Rights and welfare of subjects are maintained.
  • Research complies with federal and state laws and requirements.

Ethical principles guiding the IRB review are based on the 1979 Belmont Report. This report sets forth three basic principles for conducting research involving human subjects as follows:

  • Respect for persons involves a recognition of the personal dignity and autonomy of individuals, and special protection of those persons with diminished autonomy.
  • Beneficence entails an obligation to protect persons from harm by maximizing anticipated benefits and minimizing possible risks of harm.
  • Justice requires that the benefits and burdens of research be distributed fairly.



Name College/Dept. Term
Chris Bentley, Capt. UCAPD


Yuen Chan, PhD CoB/Mktg. & Mgmt.


Steve Floyd, EdD Non-Affiliated


Kevin Garrison, PhD CHBS/Physical Therapy


Sheri Cook Cunningham, PhD CFAC/Music


Sunjung Kim, PhD CHBS/Comm. Disorders


Steve Beal, MBA Research Compliance


Jeff Padberg, PhD CNSM/Biology


Jacquie Rainey, DrPH CHBS/Health Sciences


Gordon Shepherd, PhD CLA/Sociology


Bi-Ling Chen, PhD CLA/English


Rhonda McClellan, PhD CoE/Leadership Studies



Pamela Ashcraft, PhD CHBS/Nursing


Lisa Ray, MS CHBS/Health Sciences
Joan Simon, PhD CHBS/Psych & Counseling


Angela Webster-Smith, PhD CoE/Leadership Studies


Seven members must be present to constitute a quorum.  One non-scientific member must also be present. 

2014-2015 Convened Meetings


Required Education

Federal regulations require education in human subject protections for all investigators and key research personnel before research may be conducted. Education must be re-taken every three (3) years.

NOTE:  If your research project qualifies for IRB Exempt approval, you do not have to complete the required education.

The Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) course site provides research ethics instruction in various aspects of responsible conduct of research including human subjects protection, health information privacy and security, laboratory animal welfare, research misconduct, data management, authorship, peer review, conflict of interest, mentoring and collaborative science.

If you are an INSTRUCTOR or STAFF MEMBER submitting an IRB application or involved in a research project (even in an advisory or mentoring capacity), you must complete the CITI Basic course titled "Research Investigators (Students, faculty, staff)".  You must also complete Conflict Of Interest (COI) training.  Remember that any students/co-investigators involved in your project must receive appropriate training as well.

If you are a STUDENT submitting an IRB application or involved in a research project, you must complete the CITI Basic course titled "Research Investigators (Students, faculty, staff)".

If you are ANYONE working on a project involving a National Institutes of Health (NIH) or National Science Foundation (NSF) grant, you must complete the CITI RCR course appropriate to your field of study.  The course title will contain the words "Responsible Conduct of Research Course".  This course is to be completed in addition to the CITI Basic course required of all researchers at UCA.

Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI)

IRB CITI Instructions for New Users


Application Forms and Templates

*When filling out forms in PDF format please save to your computer and open with the latest version of Adobe Reader.*

All forms should be saved to your computer before completion.  Your computer will probably automatically open the form *.pdf file in your browser.  Do NOT attempt to complete the form opened in your browser!  Entered information will not be saved.  After filling out the forms, please submit according to the guidelines below.

If you are having trouble filling out, saving, or printing the PDF forms, use the following steps to configure your computer:

  1. Download the most current version of Adobe Reader.  Make sure that Adobe Reader is your default program for opening *.pdf files.
  2. On this page, right click on the link to the form you want and click "Save As. . ." to save it your computer.  Do NOT open the form in your browser and fill out the form in your browser.
  3. After saving to your computer, open the form with Adobe Reader.  You should be able to save the form during and after editing and print the completed form.
  4. If you have any problems, feel free to contact the Research Compliance Office at 852-7460 or


IRB Application Checklist

IRB Application for Exempted Review (updated 10.14.14)

IRB Application for Expedited Review (updated 10.14.14)

IRB Application for Full Review (updated 10.14.14)

IRB Informed Consent Cover Letter Template

IRB Informed Consent Agreement Template

IRB Parent/Guardian Permission

IRB Assent/Assent Script Template for Minors

IRB Study Personnel


Form Submission Guidelines

1.  For all applications, submit one *.pdf file of a complete scanned application (including signature pages, supplementary materials, attachments, etc.) to  Do NOT password protect or otherwise encrypt the submission.  Please only submit *.pdf files.  Do NOT submit any hard copies of the application or its supplementary materials.

Scanned and digital signatures are now acceptable; there is no longer any need to deliver us original signatures as long as the scan clearly depicts the necessary signatures.  Please include complete signature pages in your application.

2.  For all revisions, submit one *.pdf file consisting of revised application pages and/or requested supplementary materials. Please highlight revisions to facilitate your project approval process.  Submit the file to  Do NOT password protect or otherwise encrypt the submission.  Please only submit *.pdf files.

Hard copies of IRB-related documents are usually not required for submission.  All IRB documents (electronic or otherwise) are date stamped and logged into a database when received in the Office of Research Compliance. Do NOT submit IRB-related documents via campus mail. We can not assume responsibility for documents submitted via campus mail.


Post-Approval IRB Monitoring

1.  Pay close attention to your IRB approval expiration date.  Research projects may not continue past their approval expiration date.  The date on which your project's IRB approval expires can be found on the official IRB approval memo.  Generally, IRB Exempt projects are approved for three years; Expedited and Full Review projects are approved for one year.  If you are unsure of your project's approval expiration date, please contact Research Compliance.

2.  If you wish to continue your research project beyond its original approval expiration date, electronically submit an IRB Application for Continuing Review at least but not more than 30 days before the project's expiration date.  Projects may be continued twice over the course of three years total project time.  As indicated on the Continuing Review application, be sure to submit as attachments any amendments or modifications to the project as well as any changes to consent documents.

Research that originally qualified for Exemption does not require continuing review.

3.  When you finish your research project, you must electronically submit a IRB Final Report for Research.  This report communicates to us that your research has concluded properly.  Research for which a Final Report has not been received may be considered non-compliant.