About NAIT  

Research Ethics

NAIT is committed to the highest standards of research excellence

At NAIT, research is one of the many ways our polytechnic delivers value to our students, staff and industry partners. Whether it's through supporting research that addresses real-world challenges or contributing to  world-class research with our colleagues in higher education and industry, we understand the need to deliver high quality, rigorous and usable results.

NAIT’s Research Ethics Board (REB) is integral to delivering on this promise. The Board is  governed by Canada's Panel on Research Ethics and the Tri-Council Policy Statement (TCPS 2).  The REB supports researchers and research participants by ensuring that research at NAIT upholds the following key standards:

  • privacy and confidentiality
  • high quality research outcomes and data integrity
  • data collection, storage and management
  • fair compensation for research participation

Jump to application form

When do you need ethics approval?

Ethics approval is required for any research involving human participants. The REB provides research review and approval for NAIT students, NAIT instructors and researchers, non-NAIT post-secondary researchers and faculty as well as industry partners and research organizations. Research that meet any or all of the criteria below will  require ethics approval.

Research involving human subjects conducted at NAIT

This includes research by academic staff, persons with adjunct appointments, visiting instructors, visiting professional associates, research associates, administrative and support staff and students.

Research carried out using NAIT resources

This includes research conducted on NAIT premises, using its facilities, equipment, financial or material resources and research involving any members of the NAIT community.

External research  that may include NAIT employees or students 

This applies to researchers from industry or other higher education institutions who may involve NAIT staff or students  as participants in any or all the research activities.

Please note, activities that fall into the category of quality assurance or quality improvement don’t require REB review. Quality assurance and quality improvement activities are described as “program evaluation activities and performance reviews,” as well as projects that are used “exclusively for assessment, management or improvement purposes” (Article 2.5). 

Applying for research ethics review

 All researchers must have completed the Course on Research Ethics (CORE) Tutorial before submitting their research ethics review application. If you have questions about CORE or have issues completing the tutorial, please contact your instructor, research supervisor or a NAIT Research Ethics Board member for support.

Preparing your application package

Researchers are required to submit an application package that includes your completed application proposal and data-gathering methods.

A research ethics application usually includes information about the key elements of a study, including the study name, objective and design, risks and benefits, participant and recruitment information, data-collection methods and privacy protocols. Researchers will also be asked to submit supporting documentation, listed in the table below.

For more details and to preview the form before starting your application, please review the following downloadable version of the application form: Research Ethics Application PDF (435 KB) 

Supporting documents 

In addition to information about the study, the application must contain copies of relevant documentation. See table below for details.

Documents required for all applications Optional documents
Submit any/all that are part of your study
  • survey or questionnaire questions 
  • interview questions 
  • recruitment and/or advertisement materials  (posters, flyers, email script, etc.)
  • information letter
  • Research Ethics Board approval from other participating institution(s), if conducting multi-jurisdictional research

Complete the online form

The application is submitted online through a secure form and should be accompanied by any relevant documentation. 

You will not be able to save your progress once you have started the submission process, so be prepared with all your supporting documents beforehand. Please note, only complete applications will be reviewed. 

Apply for ethics review 

Feedback and next steps

Once the form has been submitted, researchers will receive a confirmation email. Next steps will be communicated to the same email address once the Research Ethics Board has reviewed the application. In some cases, further information may be required.

Each research ethics application is reviewed carefully by members of the Research Ethics Board at NAIT. Review turnaround times depend largely on volume of applications, so we advise that researchers allow for at least 2-3 weeks before the start of their research.

Expedited review

Research ethics review may be expedited in certain circumstances, such as in the case of multi-jurisdictional research where an application may have already received approval from one or more institutions. Researchers will have to provide proof of previous REB approval in addition to their application package.

Policies and procedures

The following NAIT policies and procedures apply to research.

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