Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee

Your guide to the application process

This page will guide you through the Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee application process. Within this committee, we review and grant ethical approval for any research involving human participants conducted by fellow members of staff or any of our postgraduate students studying within the Life Sciences or Natural Sciences departments of the College of Life and Natural Sciences.

We also review applications if you are an external researcher conducting collaborative research with a member or members of our college Life Sciences staff and have secured ethical approval for your research at your host institution. However, if you intend to run any research project on University of Derby premises within the department of Life Sciences, you must get ethical approval from the Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee.

a slide being prepared in a science lab
a student using a microscope

When to apply for ethical approval

If you are a member of College of Life and Natural Sciences staff or a postgraduate student wishing to undertake any piece of research with human participants, then you will need to apply for ethical approval before you can collect your data. Likewise, if you are an external researcher and you wish to conduct some research using college staff, students or equipment, then you will need to apply through this committee to do so.

There are exceptions. These are:

Please be aware that you will need to have ethical approval from this Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee and be in receipt of your ethics approval form before you can begin to collect any data for your research study.

A student handling a model of a brain

How to apply for ethical approval

You will need to complete the Human Sciences Staff and Postgraduate Students Ethics Form‌ and return this by email to the Chair of the committee, also copying in the Deputy Chair. In addition to this form, you will need to supply supplementary information depending on the nature of your study. This could be copies of questionnaires you wish to use, information sheets, consent forms, interview questions or debrief information etc.

You will receive feedback and decision within one working week of the meeting. Outcomes are in the form of one of the following decisions from the committee:

  1. Ethical approval granted in full and you can commence data collection immediately
  2. Clarification on certain points or further documentation may be requested. Once you have responded to these points you will receive ethical approval via Chairs action (ie the revised application will not need to be reviewed at the next committee meeting)
  3. Substantial review of the ethics application is needed and it needs to be re-submitted to the next meeting of the ethics committee
  4. Ethics committee is not able to decide and refers the application to the College Research Committee
  5. Ethics application is denied outright

(NB It is extremely rare for the Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee to be unable to make a decision on an ethics application, refer it, or to deny ethical approval outright.)

Once a decision has been reached you will receive an ethical approval form. You will then be able to begin collecting data.

The committee meets once a month and there is a deadline prior to each meeting for submitting applications.

Application deadlineMeeting date
Monday 6 August 2018, 12:00 Tuesday 25 September 2018, 10:00-12:00
Monday 24 September 2018, 12:00 Tuesday 23 October 2018, 10:00-12:00
Monday 22 October 2018, 12:00 Tuesday 20 November 2018, 10:00-12:00
Monday 19 November 2018, 12:00 Tuesday 18 December 2018, 10:00-12:00
Monday 17 December 2018, 12:00 Tuesday 22 January 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 21 January 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 19 February 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 18 February 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 19 March 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 18 March 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 9 April 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 8 April 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 21 May 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 20 May 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 18 June 2019, 10:00-12:00
Monday 17 June 2019, 12:00 Tuesday 16 July 2019, 10:00-12:00

Where to send your application

Please submit ethics application forms and direct any enquiries to:

Edward Stupple
Chair of Human Sciences Research Ethics Committee
College of Life and Natural Sciences
University of Derby
DE22 1GB

Tel: +44 (0) 1332 593061

Please cc: Lee Rylands, Chris Barnes and Chris James into all email correspondence

Lee Rylands:
Chris Barnes:
Chris James: