Research Ethics Board

Research Ethics Review Forms

Researchers who submit their proposal for research ethics review:

Keep in mind that members of the REB review your Form 1 application.  Please make sure your application is complete and that you explain your proposed research in detail and in non-technical language.  The process is much like a peer –review process for grant applications and manuscripts, etc.  If your application is incomplete or lacks sufficient detail, the ethics review process for your file will be delayed until materials and information are received.

You will receive an initial response from the REB Officer, followed by a note from the REB Chair 4-6 weeks after submission, sometimes within a shorter time-frame.  Usually the REB Chair will have questions for you.  A prompt and thorough response from you to the REB Chair enables the review process to continue. 

Student research: If the proposed research involves a student research (e.g., thesis, directed study), the faculty supervisor must submit the application (and subsequent continuing review requests) to the REB.  The REB Chair will communicate directly with the faculty supervisor (students can be copied on all communication).  Subsequent communication must also arrive to the REB from the faculty supervisor.

The REB Office can walk you through this process and help you with your application. The REB Office can also review your draft application to identify potential difficulties that could be easily fixed before the application goes out for review (saving you time!). 

Please visit or contact the Research Ethics Officer to book a consultation at ethics@smu.ca, office hours are Tuesdays/Thursdays 10 am to 12 pm.

Initial Submission Request Forms:
(Electronic submission option to ethics@smu.ca, and manual submission option to either: the Office of Research Ethics, Atrium 202 or Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research Office, Atrium 210 or Psychology Department Office, McNally South, Room 323):

Continuing Review Request Forms:
(Electronic Submission to
ethics.continuingreview@smu.ca)  

*Electronic submission of the request must be received from the principal investigator of the research.  In case of student research, the request must be received directly from the faculty supervisor. 

Language for Informed Consent Forms/Scripts and Feedback letters for your preparation:‌‌‌


Review Process- Instruction, Tips and Common Mistakes

Initial Research Ethics Review (New application):

 

  1. Form 1 (holds no previous research ethics clearance):
    1 original package of:
    a) a fully completed (applicants are asked to please N/A when a question does not relate their research proposal) and signed Form 1;
    b) an Informed Consent Form/Script;
    c) all supporting documentation as relevant to the research.
  2. Form 1C (already holds research ethics clearance from another Canadian REB):
    a) 1 original package is required. Be sure to review what set of documents make up a submisison package and how it is considered to be complete for research ethics review. Details are provided on top of Form 1C.  It is a common mistake that applicants only submit the research ethics clearance letter/certificate from the other Canadian REB who has already granted a research ethics clearance.  Please note it is necessary that the application package also include all communication that has taken place between the Principal Investigator and the other Canadian institution's REB Chair and that omitting these documents would result in an incomplete application package causing unfortunate delay.  This communication or set of communication qualifies as evidence/material of the other Canadian REB's "review" that applicants are asking their home SMU REB to review at this time via the Form 1C process.   If you have any questions or need additional guidance, please don't hesitate to contact the Research Ethics Officer at ethics@smu.ca to book a time to go through your draft work. Office hours are Tuesdays/Thursdays 10 am to 12 pm.  Feel free to bring the details of your circumstance to our attention!
  3. Supporting Documents
    Supporting documents refer to all research material applicants are asking the REB for research ethics review and clearance.  Generally, supporting documents are items such as interview protocols, surveys, questionnaires, scales, scripts, draft interview questions, invitation letters, letters of support, feedback forms, debriefing forms, advertisements, other research tools as relevant to the research, letters of support, other REB or government clearances, safety reports involving devices or materials used in the research evidencing compliance to Canadian standards, etc.  Form 1 lists options for documents that must be included in the submission and provides a custom field to enter any other additional documents applicants wish to detail they are submitting.  As a tip, at the minimum; a Form 1, a consent form/script, recruitment material and questions to partipants in some form (full paper versions or copies of an online survey, a word document listing of open or close ended questions, a word document detailing the interview plan) are submitted.  Research proposal vary and each research will normally consist of different set of materials.  As a rule of thumb, applicants submit all documents that participants would be exposed to for review and clearance.  
  4. The REB request forms are routinely updated.  Be sure to download the most current version of the application form directly from this web page.

Continuing Research Ethics Review Requests

Adverse Event Reporting, Modifications to Previously Cleared Research (Form 2), Annual Renewal (Form 3) and Completion of Research (Form 5) requests:

  1. Submission via email (ethics.continuingreview@smu.ca) is accepted as well as the preferred method for both applicants and the Office of Research Ethics due to the time-sensitive nature of these requests.  Only one copy of the request form (Adverse Event, Form 2, 3, 5) is required to be attached.  Requests are accepted from the Principal Investigator of the protocol or, in case of student research, from the Faculty Supervisor, only.  Student researchers must ask their supervisors to forward the request.  Submission of manual forms is also accepted and routinely submitted.  Applicants are welcome to practice either option most convenient to them.

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Working with Request Forms - Technical Instructions and Tips

Forms are Adobe fillable, savable, PDF forms; work can be saved and returned to at a later time. When working with the forms: 1) Ensure your Adobe Reader is updated, 2) Open the forms using Adobe Reader (otherwise the recipient is unable to view the content of the form.)

The REB advises against opening the forms using Mac Preview.  The Software and Application Support Centre (SAS) advises that if Mac Preview is used, after the PDF form is completed in Preview, applicants are to choose Print from the File menu and then use the dialog box's PDF option to save it to PDF.

Additional blank space is available on Form 1 for additional information you many need to convey, and additional supporting documents are welcome along the forms when needed.

For technical assistance while working with the forms please contact the Software and Application Support Centre (SAS) at sas@smu.ca, (902) 496-8168. The SAS reports any technical issues to the Office of Research Ethics.