Human Subjects Research

University regulations and federal rules require advance review and approval of most human subject research. Any living person from or about whom information is collected for a scholarly study is deemed a “research subject”—the term is not limited only to those subjects involved in clinical or laboratory studies. Faculty and students contemplating a research project involving humans as subjects, whether or not the work is externally funded and regardless of the area of academic discipline, should ascertain whether the project requires review.

Committee on the Use of Human Subjects

Committee Staff:

Betsy Draper, Protocol Coordinator, 50 Church St., Room 541, 617-496-CUHS,
Jane Calhoun, 50 Church Street, Room 533, 617-495-5459,
Elizabeth Bowie, 50 Church St., Room 542, 617-496-6087,
Ken Carson, 50 Church Street, Room 534, 617-495-9829,
Rachel Krebs, 50 Church Street, Room 542, 617-496-1185,
Emiko Saito, 50 Church Street, 5th Floor, 617-496-2618,

The Standing Committee on the Use of Human Subjects in Research, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences’ federally mandated Institutional Review Board, is responsible for reviewing proposed studies. Applications should be submitted two weeks prior to Committee meetings, which are held monthly throughout the academic year. Judging from the information provided on the application, the Committee determines whether the proposed procedures will adequately safeguard the rights and welfare of the subjects. The Committee also aims to insure the appropriate recruiting practices, permissions, and student time commitments. Some projects may not require full Committee review; others may be exempt from review altogether. Students planning research projects should contact a Committee staff member to determine whether review is required. Forms, meeting schedule, and reference material are available at