Application for Ethical Clearance

Students conducting research as part of their studies in the School are required to seek ethical clearance from the School’s Ethical Review Committee.

A four week turn-around processing time can be expected for applications that are straightforward, well-written and easily reviewed.

Amendments to approved applications are not encouraged. The committee prefers Higher Degree by Research candidates to complete their confirmation milestone before submitting their ethics application, as students should have a very clear research plan in place before submitting an application. Of course, there are times in a research project where the direction changes and amendments to ethical procedures need to be made to account for these changes.

The function of School evaluation is not the review of protocols involving a higher risk. On reviewing the proposal, the School may accept the proposal as it is, or recommend some changes before passing it, or require the protocol to be amended in order to reduce the risk to within the threshold level. Alternatively, if the School considers the risk to be above the prescribed level, or considers it prudent in the circumstances for an institutional ethics committee to review the protocol (eg. because the research is of a particularly sensitive nature or the study population is a particularly vulnerable group), then the application may be referred to the appropriate institutional committee, such as the Behavioural and Social Sciences Ethical Review Committee.

Students should submit the completed application to the Administrative Officer - Higher Degree by Research. Students should ensure that any participant consent forms, participant information sheets and survey instruments are submitted with the application. Participant information should appear on School letterhead or bear the UQ logo. Letterhead or branding for this requirement can be supplied upon request. Students will be advised of the outcome by the School Administrative Officer - Higher Degree by Research.