Human Subjects Research

What exactly qualifies as human subjects research?

Any systematic investigation (including pilot studies, program evaluations, qualitative research), that is designed to develop or contribute to generalizable (scholarly) knowledge, and which uses living humans or identifiable private information about living humans qualifies as human subjects research.

All human subjects research, and all other activities, which in part involve human subject research, regardless of sponsorship, must be reviewed and approved by the IU IRB, or registered exempt by the Office of Research Administration prior to initiation. This includes all interventions and interactions with human subjects for research such as:

  • surveys and questionnaires
  • interviews and focus groups
  • analyses of existing data or biological specimens
  • epidemiological studies
  • evaluations of social or educational programs
  • cognitive and perceptual experiments
  • medical chart review studies

To learn more and/or submit your study for review go to: