Research ethics

  • Increased demands for greater public scrutiny and accountability mean that studies involving human participants should be formally reviewed by individuals who are independent of the research.

    Research ethics review is required for all research and consultancy undertaken by University staff and students wherever research and related activities involve human participants. Research studies should ensure that the dignity, rights, safety, inclusivity and well-being of all participants are given primary consideration. 

    Oxford Brookes University is committed to maintaining high ethical standards in the research undertaken by staff and research students. Please refer to our Code of Practice for Research Ethics for Research Involving Human Participants and to the University Research Ethics Committee (UREC) to promote good practice and to conduct formal ethics review of research.

    UREC has a multi-disciplinary membership that includes academic researchers (staff and students) from across the Faculties and non-research lay members from within and outside the University. It has specific responsibility for reviewing research undertaken by staff and research students (registered for an MPhil, MPhil/PhD, PhD EdD or DCaM) that involves human participants, data or material, including both approving proposed research studies prior to the commencement of data collection and monitoring the progress of research that it has approved, to ensure compliance with approved ethics procedures. Undergraduate and Masters student research ethics review is undertaken at Faculty level and should contact their Faculty Research Ethics Officer to confirm the procedure.

    UREC is also responsible for ensuring that Faculties have approved procedures in place for the ethics review of projects undertaken within their Faculty. Research Ethics Officers provide an annual report to UREC on ethics review in their Faculty and UREC in turn provides an annual report to the University Research and Knowledge Exchange Committee.

    Research ethics review procedures and further information

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