University research ethics committee

  • The University Research Ethics Committee (UREC) has a multi-disciplinary membership that includes academic researchers (staff and students) from across the Faculties and non-research staff members as well as external from within and outside the University. It has specific responsibility for reviewing research undertaken by staff (both in Faculties and Directorates) and research students (registered for an MPhil, MPhil/PhD, PhD EdD or DCaM) that involves human participants, data or material.  

    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 and the Board of Governors.

    Research ethics review for Undergraduate and taught postgraduate students is undertaken at Faculty level. Please contact your Department/Faculty Research Ethics Officer to confirm the process.

    Details of the review process including which forms should be completed are available on the research ethics review site, see the four sections at the bottom of the page which will determine which process to follow.

    Meeting dates

    The University Research Ethics Committee meets five times a semester in weeks 0, 3, 6, 9 and 12 plus two extra dates during June and July.

    Maximum number of applications to be reviewed

    In order for the committee to review research studies requiring ethics approval effectively, a maximum of 12 applications will be considered at each meeting. The maximum number of applications cannot be increased due to timescale and pressure on committee members.

    Applications will be accepted on a first come first served basis. The documentation must be complete and signed off by the Faculty/Department or Directorate Research Ethics Officer, three weeks before the meeting date. One hard copy should then be sent to Louise Wood, Research Policy Support Officer, Research and Business Development Office, Room BCK1.03, Buckley Building, Headington Campus two weeks before the meeting date. A digital copy will be accepted provided the signatures are in place and the application is in one document, multiple documents cannot be accepted.  

    Once the limit has been reached, any further applications will be carried forward to the next meeting.

    Dates for 2018/2019

    Semester One
    Date of Meeting Deadline for applications
    to the Research Ethics Officer
    Deadline for applications
    to the UREC Administrator
    26 September 2018 (Week 1) 5 September 2018 12 September 2018
    10 October 2018  19 September 2018 26 September 2018
    30 October 2018  10 October 2018 17 October 2018
    21 November 2018  31 October 2018 7 November 2018
    11 December 2018  20 November 2018 27 November 2018
    Semester Two / June & July
    Date of Meeting Deadline for applications
    to the Research Ethics Officer
    Deadline for applications
    to the UREC Administrator
    23 January 2019  2 January 2019 9 January 2019 
    14 February 2019  24 January 2019 31 January 2019 
    6 March 2019  13 February 2019 20 February 2019
    28 March 2019  7 March 2019 14 March 2019
    1 May 2019  10 April 2019 17 April 2019
    5 June 2019  15 May 2019 22 May 2019
    10 July 2019  19 June 2019 26 June 2019

    Please note: Due to leave and other commitments UREC is not able to review applications during August. Applications should be received in good time for the July meeting or they will be held back until the first meeting in September. Exceptions will be made for consultancy projects where there is a very short funding timescale.