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Logo The content below is information specific to this academic department's fields of interest.

Animal Care and Human Subjects Committee

Per Federal guidelines every institution must have an Institutional Review Board (IRB) for maintaining safey and integrity in its research practices. The Animal Care and Human Subjects (ACHS) committee serves the role of an IRB for the university.

The APAP describes the functions and responsibilities of committees at the university. 

The primary purpose of the ACHS is to ensure you understand what risks exist for the subjects of your research, and that you have minimized those risks. To protect your subjects, we may request changes to your procedures or forms.

With regards to the use of animals in classrooms, all animal experimentation requires review and approval by the ACHS committee. While we support the educational use of live animals in the classroom, ultimately decisions to incorporate live animals in the classroom should balance the ethical and responsible care of animals with their educational value.

Faculty considering the use of live animals in their classroom should also consider alternatives to the use of live animals. The Altweb site may be useful.

Research Advisor Checklist

Research advisors, please download the Research Advisor Checklist and do not submit proposals that fail any of the checklist items. Your cooperation ensures that when you do submit proposals, they can be approved in a timely manner.


The current committee consists of:

  • Richard Arnold, Chair
  • Mark Stambush
  • Lisa Marshall
  • Aliyah Byron
  • Heidi Wolfe
  • Steve McGuire
  • Debbie Phillips
  • Joe Shaeffer
  • Rachel Elliot, DVM
  • Rev. Karen Graham

Turnaround Times

In general, you can expect to receive feedback within two weeks of the committee receiving the proposal from the advisor. However, there are certain peak times, toward the end of the semester, when volume is high and the committee might need more time. So please submit as early in the semester as possible, especially if you need a quick turnaround on your proposal. If there is a complication or serious issue that requires the committee to take more time, you will receive word about the issue as soon as the committee becomes aware of it.

Semester Deadline: Proposals for research in the fall semester are reviewed September 1 through November 6. Proposals for research in the spring semester are reviewed January 11 through April 1. Any research that you wish to begin during the semester in question must be submitted by the deadline in order to give the committee time to consider your proposal within that semester. You may submit proposals after the deadline if you do not need approval by the end of the semester in question.


First time submitters may wish to view this list of frequently asked questions. This will help to reduce the numbers of resubmissions you may need to make.

Proposal Submissions

Click on the Human Subjects Form link below to download the proposal form. Please combine all documents into one file if possible. Only faculty members should send proposals to ACHS! If you are a student, your proposal must go through your faculty advisor.

Human Subjects Form Revised Fall 2013

See the link along the left, "How To Submit Proposals", for details. An informed consent form template and a further explanations page are provided for your recommended use. (Please remember to delete all prompts and extra pages when submitting your protocol for the committee to review.) To modify a study that has been previouslyapproved, use this form.

We have new exempt forms! Be sure to select the one that fits your exempt category. For more information about which category to use (and whether your research qualifies as exempt), click HERE:

Exempt Form for Category 1 Educational Strategies Curricula or Classroom Management Methods

Exempt Form for Category 2 Tests Surveys Interviews Observations

Exempt Form for Category 3 Existing Data Documents or Records

Exempt Form for Category 3a Retrospective Medical Record Review

Exempt Form for Category 4 Research with Biological Specimens

Contact the ACHS

Questions or comments can be directed to the ACHS by emailing

This page last updated 9/14/2015.