Institutional Review Board

The interest of the Trine University Institutional Review Board (IRB) is to protect the safety, rights, and welfare of human research subjects. Given the current circumstances regarding COVID-19 pandemic, the IRB must continue to prioritize public health and safety during any Trine University research activities involving faculty, staff, students, and the community. Until further notice, the Trine IRB will require information on how any in-person research activities will adhere to the current CDC, Indiana, and Trine University guidelines regarding reducing the spread of COVID-19. This includes providing information on the IRB application regarding how investigators plan to incorporate social distancing, personal protective equipment, and cleaning/sanitizing procedures, etc. Applications that do not address concerns regarding reducing exposure to and spread of COVID-19 will be sent back to primary investigators for revision. Please contact the Chair of the Trine IRB, Dr. Kinsey Kelly if you have any questions.

The Institutional Review Board (IRB) of Trine University reviews and approves all research involving human participants or animal subjects conducted by campus faculty, staff or students. All research involving human participants or animal subjects conducted by Trine University faculty, staff, or students must be approved by the IRB before research can begin.

The Board’s mission is protect the rights and welfare of all human participants and animal subjects recruited for research projects by university faculty, staff and students. Further, the Board seeks to assist faculty, staff and students in developing and conducting research that complies with all federal, state and local regulations, as well as Trine University policies.

The Board is guided by the following four primary principles in approving research projects.

  • The privacy and dignity of participants are guarded and respected by the research party.
  • The participants have been informed of the procedures and have given voluntary written consent for participation.
  • Participants are exposed to minimal risk while, at the same time, maximizing the benefits of the study.
  • Selection processes of research participants are fair and do not discriminate of the basis of sex, gender, race, sexual orientation, nationality, or age, unless there is a specific, documented and approved justification for excluding participation of a specific group.

Instructions for Applying for IRB Review

Research Project Review

Any research projects requiring human participants or animal subjects being proposed by faculty, staff, or students that involve “a systematic investigation, including research development, testing and evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge” require review by Trine University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). A systematic inquiry implies (1) an intentionally planned collection of data, (2) designed to answer specific research questions, (3) provide analysis and discussion of the data for peer and/or public audiences, (4) to improve knowledge or theoretical understanding of a specific topic and/or provide recommendations for changes to policy or practice.

Projects that meet at least 1 of the following criteria require reviewOpens in new window.

  • Use of Human Participants or Animal Subjects: The research involves actively recruiting people to participate or procuring animal subjects.
  • Collect Data Directly from Human Participants or Animal Subjects: The research involves direct interaction between the researcher and participants, at least once during the project, for the purpose of procuring data, even if the data remains anonymous.
  • Intent to Use Research for Publication, Presentation or Public Record: Any or all of the researchers intend to publish or present findings based on the data or to use data for policy recommendations or procedural changes.
  • Research Project Review FormOpens in new window

Projects are approved for a period of no more than 12 months. Researchers who need to continue their projects beyond the 12 months need to complete the Application Renewal FormOpens in new window

Educational Protocol Review

Instructors who plan to have students design and/or do primary research projects as part of class during the course of the semester need to submit the Educational Protocol FormOpens in new window for review by the IRB. Instructors should file 1 form for the semester.

Projects that meet the following criteria require review:

  • Use of Human Participants to Collect Data: The research involves collecting any information from human participants, even if the information is anonymous.
  • Sustained Inquiry: The research takes place over the course of several weeks, includes several steps, and/or includes instrument testing and revision
  • Educational Intent: The purpose of the research project is to teach students how to design, conduct, and/or report research with human participants.

All classroom-based research should be anonymous and data should be destroyed at the end of the semester.

IRBNet Submission Procedures

All proposals need to be submitted through the IRBNet portal.

  • All users (researchers and advisors) must have an IRBnet Account to submit and sign projects.
  • All projects should be signed electronically in the IRBnet system.

All IRB forms for applications and reporting are available in the IRBNet Library. Login to access these forms.

IRBNet Resources

For help with IRBNet, visit the IRBNet Resources page.

User Name: trine
Password: training1

Review Schedule

The IRB meets on the 15th of each month. Proposals must be submitted by the 1st of the month to be considered for review in that month. Proposals received after the first of the month will be scheduled for review the following month.


  • Informed Consent ChecklistOpens in new window: The IRB follows federal government regulations when approving consent documents. This document can help you understand and meet those requirements.
  • Consent Document OutlineOpens in new window: This document can serve as a template or outline for a comprehensive consent document.

For additional information or questions:

Institutional Review Board