The Institutional Review Board (IRB) & ISC, Inc.

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What is the IRB?

  • A committee charged with protecting the rights and welfare of people involved in research.
  • UNC Charlotte has their own IRB committee, made up of faculty, staff and community members to review research coming out of the university.

What does the IRB do?

  • Reviews plans for research involving human subjects.
  • Assure that “when appropriate, there are adequate provisions to protect the privacy of subjects and to maintain the confidentiality of data” (46.111(a)(7)).
    • The type of security needed depends on type of research and level of risk to the human subject.

What types of review are there?

  • Non-exempt: Any study considered research that involves human subjects and may cause harm.
  • Expedited: Study that poses minimal risk, or no more harm than ordinarily encountered in daily life.
  • Exempt: Studies using administrative data (with the exception of current medical records); research involving use of education tests, survey or interview procedures, or observation of public behavior; and studies that do not constitute “research”, which includes evaluations because they cannot be generalized to larger populations.

What IRB means for ISC, Inc.

  • UNC Charlotte requires an IRB application for any study using the ISC Community Database since it is administrative data on vulnerable populations.
  • This includes studies that will be exempt or expedited, though they won’t go to full committee, which only meets once a month.

What you need for a study using ISC data

  • Before a data license request can be submitted, the study must have IRB approval.
  • Any study using ISC data needs to submit a data license request to the ISC Data and Research Oversight Committee (DAROC), which provides another layer of security.
  • DAROC members will review the data license request and approved IRB application. They may deny the request, or request modifications or clarifications prior to approval.