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Research Resources

Submitted by darmstro on Fri, 09/29/2017 - 1:32pm

Need a signature on a grant application?

Please note that all external applications require a faculty-level review and the signature of the Associate Dean Research. Unless otherwise stated, all applications need to be submitted at least 10 days in advance of the Research Services deadline. In order to receive approval and signature, please submit your application together with the Research Funding Application Approvals Form:

  1. In person: to the Dean’s Office reception in Social Sciences 13th floor
  2. Electronically: to Erin Lowden             

Please note that large competitions such as SSHRC Insight Grants & Insight Development Grants, Partnership Development and Partnership Grants, as well as NSERC Discovery Grants and Research Tools and Instruments, CIHR Project and Foundation Grants have separate timelines and submission processes.

Questions? Please contact Faculty of Arts Research Facilitator, Kinga Olszewska.

Research Grants and Awards Information — D2L

Are you looking for information about upcoming competitions or resources to develop applications? Do you want to learn more about course-based ethics approvals in the Faculty of Arts? Are you unsure about who can help with post-award processes? This D2L site is a comprehensive resource for all researchers in the Faculty of Arts on funding, ethics, graduate student hires, and more. To access the shell, login to your D2L »

Note: resources on D2L are available to Faculty of Arts researchers only.

Ethics approvals

Submitted by darmstro on Fri, 09/29/2017 - 1:45pm

The Faculty of Arts strictly adheres to the Tri-Council ethics policy for research involving human participants. This applies to all faculty research, regardless of funding source. The Tri-Council consists of Canada's three main research funding agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

For more information, please see:

When do I require ethics approval?

If you plan to conduct research that involves human subjects, you are required to seek and receive ethics approval from the appropriate research ethics board/committee before proceeding with your study. More »

Faculty and graduate research ethics applications

All applications for faculty and graduate research should be submitted to the Conjoint Faculties Research Ethics Board (CFREB) in Research Services. Please note that as of March 2013, faculty and graduate applications must be submitted electronically through the Institutional Research Information Support System (IRISS). For more information, please contact

Course-based Ethics Approvals for Instructors

If any student performs research with human participants as part of an assignment or class participation (i.e. surveys, interviews, observation), he/she must receive research ethics approval before beginning to recruit participants. Without course-based ethics approval, each student project must be approved through a full student application to the Faculty Research Ethics Committee.

Course-based ethics approval is a way to expedite review when a significant number of student projects in a course involve human participants. The Faculty of Arts Research Ethics Committee can temporarily delegate limited ethics committee authority to an instructor of a specific undergraduate or graduate course. In order to delegate this authority, the ethics committee must ensure the instructor knows enough about the relevant ethical guidelines that apply to his/her students’ research.

Application Procedure

As an instructor, you must submit a separate application for each course. If you are teaching multiple sessions of the same course in a given year, then you may submit a single application. Please fill out the application, attach relevant appendices, and submit an electronic copy of all documentation by email to Kinga Olszewska, PhD, Research Grants and Awards Facilitator. Apply before the course begins, or at the very least, well in advance of the research activity. Clarification or revisions to your application may be requested by the committee prior to approval.

In cases where projects involve more than minimal risk, the approval process is different. The protocol has to be sent to the Faculty Committee, which will pass it on to the CFREB. The CFREB may review the protocol in a face-to-face meeting with the applicant(s) and then make a decision.

Do my students have to complete individual ethics applications, if I already received ethics clearance for the course?

This depends largely on the nature of the assignment and of potential risk to participants and students.

  1. In order to avoid the need for individual student ethics clearances, please ensure that your assignment guidelines contain a) either information about supervised recruitment of study subjects (i.e. you as an instructor have recruited subjects) OR b) explicit description of steps for recruitment, including suggested groups of subjects (e.g. family member, peers) where interactions carry only a minimal risk (Q #3 in ethics application). The participants of the research assignment should not include vulnerable populations. Informed consent forms should also be included in the application. 
  2. Research activities, including questionnaires, should only include topics that contain minimal risk, as well as ensure complete confidentiality and privacy. If these cannot be ensured, please address this explicitly both in the application (Q# 7) and with the students (in the assignment guidelines). When applying for ethics certificate for your course, please ensure that you address the questions of safe data access and storage (Q #8 in ethics application).
  3. Individual student projects may be reviewed if the course matter and learning outcomes dictate a more independent research experience for students. In these cases, in addition to the course-based ethics approval the instructor receives, students may be asked to send in the descriptions of the their projects, including questions they intend to ask the study‘s participants, and the informed consent form.

Retention of data

The University of Calgary policy for retention of documents both confidential and non-confidential, including data, is 5 years.

Retention of data in case of participant withdrawal

TCPS Article 3.2 (d) directs that informed consent includes “information on the participant’s right to request the withdrawal of data or human biological materials, including any limitations on the feasibility of that withdrawal.”  Thus, when consent is requested without information about that right to request data withdrawal, a rationale must be provided in the application and in the consent form.  Note that the burden is on the researcher to make sure that the participant is both advised of their right to have data withdrawn and given an opportunity to do so to the extent possible.

Course-based Renewal

If you are renewing within three years of initial approval and there have been minor changes, please send an email to Kinga Olszewska, describing the specific changes, and attach any relevant documents.

What happens after three years?

After three years, a full application is required once again. This is to enable a completely new set of committee members to review the application, since they are responsible for the review authority delegated to instructors. In addition, over time, ethics policies and procedures at the national level, university level, or faculty level, are occasionally updated to account for changing public and academic concerns regarding research ethics.

Can I get ethics approval that is valid beyond one semester or year?

Course-based projects may qualify as a standard protocol, and hence be granted approval that is valid for a period of three years if:

  • they are repeated across semesters
  • all students will pursue similar questions and employ similar methodologies

Note: If you are submitting a yearly renewal to an ethics certificate within three years of initial approval and there are no changes, please send an email to Kinga Olszewska requesting renewal, and state that there are no changes.

Course-based Ethics Approvals for Undergraduate Students

As of September 2013, all undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts must complete the TCPS 2 Tutorial Course on Research Ethics (CORE), prior to the submission of their ethics application. Please go to this link to complete the tutorial. The completed electronic certificate, which the student receives upon completion of the tutorial, must be submitted along with the ethics application form, as described below.

Course-Based Research Projects

If any student in an undergraduate course performs research with human participants as part of an assignment or class participation (i.e. surveys, interviews, observation), he/she must receive research ethics approval before beginning to recruit participants.

Download the undergraduate student ethics application form. The application should be submitted by email to Kinga Olszewska, PhD, Research Grants and Awards Facilitator, with the student's supervisor cc'd on the email.

Note: Undergraduate students in the Department of Psychology must apply to the department for ethics approval. Psychology students should contact Daniel McGrath, Chair of the Department of Psychology Research Ethics Board.