Institutional Review Board (IRB) Overview

When any RCTC staff, faculty, or student conducts research that involves human subjects, the research activity must be reviewed by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB has the authority to approve, require modification in, or not approve the research activity, in accordance with federal regulations.

Purpose of the IRB

To be compliant with the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 45, Part 46, Protection of Human Subjects, all research proposals involving human subjects must be reviewed and approved by the IRB prior to beginning the research. This is consistent with RCTC’s mission and values of safeguarding the rights and welfare of human participants.


A human subject means a living individual about whom an investigator (whether faculty, staff, or student) conducting research obtains data or private information (45 CFR 46.102).

Research means a systematic investigation, including research development, testing and evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge (45 CFR 46.102).

Procedures for IRB Submission

Completion of an online IRB training is required of principal investigators (PI) prior to submitting proposals for review.  After submitting the training certificate to the IRB Chairperson, the PI will then submit the IRB submission form.  Depending on the type of review (full, expedited, or exempt), approval for the research may be obtained in 10-30 days.

IRB Training and Submission Form

Online IRB training:

IRB Submission Forms: Institutional Effectiveness & Planning – IRB Forms – All Documents (