Guidelines for Classroom Activities involving Research Methods

Research and education at Prairie View A&M University must meet the highest professional and ethical standards. As the interpretations of research and normal classroom activities do vary, questions arise on what falls within the federal guidelines of research. Activities designed to educate/train students in research methods, under the normal classroom setting, usually do not fall within the federal definition of research as described in 45 CFR 46.102(d).

  • Undergraduate and graduate student research activities, which reach outside of the classroom, may fall under the federal definition of research depending upon the type of interaction with the research participant(s).
  • Graduate theses and dissertations are clearly understood as research, and fall within the IRB preview when human participants are involved.

However, any research conducted with the intent to contribute to generalizable knowledge through publication or presentation within an academic discipline, even that originating from classroom activity, may fall within the jurisdiction of the IRB.
When teaching a research methods course or other related courses, the classroom research project form may be used. The student completes the form and provides to the instructor all pertinent information necessary to determine if the project needs IRB review and/or approval. For these activities, faculty shall provide ethical supervision, followed by faculty advisors, committee chairs, department heads, and deans. Areas in question such as:

  • self-reported behavior,
  • special populations, or
  • sensitive topic areas

will need further review and may be resolved on a case-by-case basis through consultation with the IRB. The Prairie View A&M IRB would appreciate the classroom instructors providing their students information about IRB procedures.
Additionally, the Prairie View A&M IRB would like to see a listing of the research topics at the end of each semester for a continuing review of these types of activities.

For questions regarding the use of the form or classroom activities, the IRB may be contacted through Office of Research Regulatory Compliance, at 936.261.1553.

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