The Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) abides by guidelines in order to protect the welfare and rights of participants in research. It is useful for applicants to consult the guidelines when preparing ethics applications – especially if a project involves risk to participants:
ECU Policy for the Conduct of Ethical Human Research
National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research
Student researchers are advised to discuss their ethics applications with their supervisors when preparing an ethics application.
Most researchers will need to prepare an Information Letter to Participants and Consent Form. Resources are available to assist in developing these documents.
Applicants should make sure that all necessary documents are included with their ethics applications. An application for ethics approval will usually include:
- Ethics Application Form
- Research Proposal
- Information letter to participants
- Consent form
- Data collection tools e.g. questionnaires, tests, interview/focus group questions
Other documents that may assist the ethics committee include:
- Ethics approval from any other HREC
- Letters of approval from other institutions or organisations involved in the research
Ethics applications are completed and submitted online via STREAM – the System for Tracking Research Ethics Applications and Monitoring.
Other documents can also be attached to the online application.
Applications can be submitted at any time – the Ethics Committee reviews applications between meeting dates.
A preliminary review of applications is conducted by the ResearchEthics Officer. This ensures that all information is included. Applicants may be asked for additional information or changes to the application. Make any necessary changes via STREAM and return the application.
Your ethics application (including related documents) is then forwarded to the HREC for review. You will be advised of the outcomes of the review and may need to include additional information, clarification or changes. Make any necessary changes via STREAM and return your application.
The review process usually takes approximately four weeks. You can track the progress of your application through the review process via STREAM.
You will be notified once your application has been approved. Notification of ethics approval will also be sent to other areas of the University if necessary, e.g. Graduate Research School or the Office of Research and Innovation.
Once your application has been approved, the Research Ethics Officer will then request that you provide one hard copy of the signed application form together with all the other documentation listed above to the Research Ethics Office.
Recruitment of participants and/or data collection may not commence until notification of ethics approval has been received.
G&PS Ethics - Edith Cowan University
All approved research projects are approved subject to compliance with monitoring procedures. You will be notified when a report is due.