Research Summary and Supporting Materials

The Research Summary and Supporting Materials. The Research Summary should be a typed document written specifically for the review of the IRB. Grant applications and M.A. or Ph.D. proposals are not an appropriate substitute, because typically they are longer than suits the committee’s purposes, are not written entirely in language accessible to the lay person, and may not address the issues of risk and benefit. The Research Summary should include the following information:

  1. 1. The title of the research and the name of the principal investigator;
  2. 2. The research question or questions under investigation;
  3. 3. The nature of the population to be studied and, in addition,
    1. a. how the participants will be recruited (a copy of the recruitment
      tool, if applicable, must be included),
    2. b. whether or not participants will be personally identified,
    3. c. what they will be told regarding the research and the character of  their participation,
    4. d. whether or not the project requires any deception;
  4. 4. How consent will be obtained (please attach a copy of the consent form).
  5. 5. The degree of sensitivity of the information to be gathered and, if participants are to be personally identified, the steps that will be taken to ensure confidentiality;
  6. 6. The methods to be used, including a copy of any questionnaires or surveys that are to be administered;
  7. 7. An assessment of the benefits of the project, including its contribution to scientific knowledge and any direct benefits it may offer to the participants;
  8. 8. An assessment of the risks to participants and how they will be handled;
  9. 9. Relevant supporting materials, including surveys, questionnaires, consent forms, and any other documents or materials to which the participants will be exposed in the process of giving consent.

The Research Summary should be addressed to the Chair of the IRB. Along with the Application for Review, it should be submitted by email to The IRB Chair’s name and contact information may be included on the consent form, if the investigator so chooses, in the event that participants have questions about any issue regarding the research. If the principal investigator is a student, the Application for Review must be signed by a faculty sponsor, and the name and contact information for the faculty sponsor should be included on the consent form (instead of the name and contact information of the IRB Chair).

The research investigator should also review the following documents on the web and also available from the Dean of Faculty’s office: Guidelines for Constructing Research Consent Forms, Title 45, Part 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations (, The Belmont Report (; also refer to appropriate sections of the Pitzer College Faculty Handbook.