Institutional Review Board (Human Subjects Research)


An Institutional Review Board (IRB) is a committee that has been formally designated to approve, monitor, and review scientific research involving human participants. The purpose of the IRB is to assure that all appropriate steps are taken to protect the rights and welfare of humans participating in research studies.

The primary goal of the IRB is to ensure that all human research follows the principles of the Belmont Report – “Respect for Persons” “Beneficence”, and “Justice”.  The NKU IRB is required to review and approve all human subject research before it is conducted by NKU faculty, staff and students. The NKU IRB consists of a diverse group of members from scientists to special population representatives. 


All subsequent pages on this site contain information to assist you in the process of obtaining IRB approval and managing your project post-IRB approval. Please familiarize yourself with this information before initiating the IRB process and be sure to visit the Frequently Asked Questions page. 

We look forward to working with you!





New Consent Templates

All new applications are required to use our newly created Informed Consent, Assent and Parental Permission templates. This will help ensure that all of the federally required sections are included and will assist in the review of informed consents. 

For more information about the templates or the informed consent process, click here

What Does the IRB Review? 

Common types of research reviewed by the IRB:

  • Faculty research involving human subjects, including but not limited to surveys, interviews, focus groups, and experimental research 
  • Classroom projects, undergraduate senior theses, and capstone projects that meet the federal definition of research
  • Doctoral dissertations and Master’s theses that meet the federal definition of research
  • Grant-funded research that includes requirements for IRB approval and involves human subjects