|faculty member, tba
|T. McDonald, History (returns Jun.30/11
|D. Pridham, History graduate
|R. Henry , Linguistics grad
|N. Shenker , Library Post Doc
| C. Rothwell, undergrad
Link to the Course
to Individual Student Form
to Guidelines for Course Based Projects Involving Human Subjects
These procedures were approved at meetings of department representatives
from the faculty of Humanities in 2003. They were then approved
by the McMaster Research Ethics Board. They become effective
and apply to all departments in Humanities courses as of 2003.
The terms of reference is modelled after the terms of refernce of the
Anthropology/Religious Studies SREC since the Humanities department
was once part of that committee, from Fall 2000 to Winter 2003.
These procedures were adapted from those developed by the Psychology
Ethics Committee for Undergraduate Research and are constructed to conform
with the Tri-Council Policy Statement on Ethical Conduct for Research
Involving Humans (1998), or TCPS. All quotations and references are
from that document. The
Tri-Council Policy is available on the web.
and modification: These procedures, and any subsequent changes
to them, must be approved by a majority of the faculty members in the
Humanities faculty, and by the McMaster Research Ethics Board (MREB).
All research involving humans as research participants must be reviewed
by either the MREB or Department or Faculty/Student Research Ethics
(TCPS, Article 2.1). Research is defined as “a systematic
investigation to establish facts, principles or generalizable knowledge”
Article 2.1). This includes research conducted for a McMaster
course that is supervised by an individual who is not affiliated with
the University. Research requiring review includes not only experimental
protocols, but also research involving ethnographic methods, questionnaires,
interviews, or secondary use of data that are not in the public domain.
It also extends to research involving human remains, tissues, biological
fluids, or foetuses (TCPS,
Article 2.1, 2.2, 2.3).
The HSREC shall
review research conducted by undergraduate students when (1) it is conducted
as part of an undergraduate course offered by the Departments within
the Humanities, and (2) it is not part of a faculty member’s research
programme already subject to review by any other Ethics Board (TCPS,
Article 6.1). Undergraduate research for Humanities courses that
are supervised by individuals outside the departments within the Humanities,
shall be reviewed by the HSREC unless it is subject to review by the
MREBor by another Ethics Board in compliance with the Tri-Council Policy.
Research conducted by graduate students and faculty members in the departments
within Humanities must be reviewed by the University Research Ethics
Board (and, when relevant, the Ethics Board of the institution where
the research will be conducted).
of committee: The HSREC is comprised of 3 faculty members and 2
undergraduate students. Graduate students may also sit on the committee,
though undergraduates are recommended. The
Committee is encouraged to consult relevant experts on methodological
issues within and outside the departments within the Humanities, as
of members: Members (and any necessary replacements) shall be appointed
by the Chairs of the Departments. Faculty members shall serve for
staggered 3-year terms; undergraduates or graduates, for 1-year terms.
Terms are renewable. The Chair of the Committee shall be selected by
the Committee. Membership shall be reported to the University Research
for the composition of the Committee:
We believe that
the selection of 5 individuals should provide sufficient range of experience
and expertise so as to be able to assess the various methodological
and ethical issues arising from applications in the departments. Arts
and Science applications will be reviewed by this committee only when
the student's supervisor is in the Humanities faculty. In decisions
requiring a vote (for example, to request revisions to an application,
or to refer it to the University Ethics Committee - MREB) a decision
will be made based on a majority vote involving not less than 3 members.
to be supplied: Applications may be made for an individual undergraduate
project, for a generic project to be conducted by several members of
a class, or by an entire class. For independent studies and seminar
courses we encourage the undergraduate researcher to be involved in
constructing the application, but the supervisor or course instructor
must sign the final application. For large class projects we anticipate
that the instructor will prepare the application, and that students
will receive information and instruction concerning the ethical issues
involved in research. The research may not begin until the HSREC or
University Research Ethics Board (if the application has been
referred there) has given its approval.
We suggest that
early in each term (Week Two or Three) instructors discuss
basic issues associated with the ethics of research, including, for
example: Confidentiality of the data, consent, and the harms and benefits
of the research. A brief statement of this part of the curriculum would
constitute “steps taken to educate undergraduate students” as outlined
In each case,
the application must include:
- The purpose of
- How participants
will be recruited
- Method: What
will happen from the participant’s perspective, including a description
of any written instruments to be used
- The process for
obtaining the initial consent and monitoring for ongoing consent,
including a copy of any proposed consent form
- Possible benefits
- Possible harms
- How possible
harms and dangers will be minimized
- How the participants
will be informed about the results of the research or will have
access to research results.
of the data
- Steps taken to
educate the undergraduate student(s) about
- Ethical issues
The application form will
also contain a space to indicate whether the research is part of a supervisor’s
research project that is subject to review by the MREB.
The form is
to be Signed by the supervisor and should list the names of the student(s)
who will carry out the research.
Forms for each
academic year will be available from the departments within the Humanities.
They are also found on the web page of the Office of Research Services,
Ethics in Human Subject Research. Contact is the secretariat of
the SRECs, Michael J. Wilson
GH - 305/H, ext. 23142. Applications may be made by E-mail attachment
or by submitting 5 hard copies.
procedure: Applications should be sent to the Chair of the HSREC
as soon as possible at the start of each term and at least two weeks
prior to the date at which the research is to be started. In reaching
its decisions, the Committee will be guided by the principles outlined
in the Tri-Council Policy. Applications will be approved only for the
academic year in which they are made, unless they are course applications,
which can be approved for three years.
the committee shall make decisions in face-to-face meetings (TCPS,
Articles 6.9, 6.8). However, proposals that fit the Tri-Council’s
definition of minimal risk may be reviewed and approved by E-mail or
mail circulation. Approval requires at least three approving votes.
However, it is anticipated that the committee will normally reach a
consensus and, if necessary, will work with the applicant to improve
the initial proposal.
If the HSREC
is reviewing an application in which a committee member has a personal
interest, that member shall not be involved in the decision (TCPS,
to University Research Ethics Board: The Faculty Committee
may refer an application to the MREB. Examples of situations in which
referral would be appropriate are research that the HSREC thinks may
be of more than minimal risk, research involving ethical or legal issues
for which it does not have adequate expertise, and cases for which conflicts
of interest reduce its size to fewer than three members.
Every attempt shall be made to work with the applicant to reach
agreement through discussion, revision, and reconsideration. When
agreement cannot be reached, decisions of the HSREC may be appealed
to the MREB, whose decision shall be final.
The HSREC shall also consider any other ethical issues that arise which
concern Humanities undergraduates and research with human participants,
such as undergraduate education about ethics.
of these procedures: These procedures shall be reviewed not later
than ____ 2004.
Update December 14, 2010