When research that involves human subjects (people) is conducted, there are always potential ethical risks of different sorts. These risks could be physical, emotional, financial, or academic. Researchers have the obligation to make sure that involved human subjects (as both participants and researchers) will not be inadvertently or potentially hurt by their research, and that their privacy, confidentiality, and freedom of expression are fully protected.

To comply with the ethically responsive conduct of research, in Canada, as in many other parts of the world, any serious research project involving human subjects requires institutional ethics approval. This means that before the project starts, the principal investigators are responsible for having their project reviewed in terms of its ethical standards. Only when the results of the ethical review indicate that the potential ethical risks are under control, the research can start.

In Ontario, all community colleges have a Research Ethics Board (REB). REBs are committees that include independent expert individuals of different backgrounds, from within and outside the organization, who have been trained on how to properly examine a study proposal from an ethical point of view.

The Sault College REB has the mandate to review research and data gathering projects to ensure that they will be conducted in an ethical manner.

The committee meets once a month between September and June to review and discuss received research applications. Final decisions are always voted after a democratic process of deliberation in which all committee members express and discuss their points of view.

At    Sault College’s REB, we are always open to recruit new qualified members to serve on this committee. If you have previous experience conducting research and you want to share your expertise with the committee, reach out please! Send an email to the REB Chair at   florencia.carlino@saultcollege.ca    or the REB academic assistant at   dina.guido@saultcollege.ca. We’ll be happy to chat and tell you more about the committee so that you can consider if it is a good fit for you.

More specific information about the REB can be retrieved here.