Institutional Review Board

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I determine if my proposal needs to go through Full IRB Review, Expedited IRB Review, Exempt IRB Review or no Review at All?

Please use the flowchartPDF and the policies and guidelines. After reviewing the flowchart, if you are still unsure as to how to proceed, please contact the chair of the IRB Committee to ask for clarification.

2. What is the difference between a Full IRB Review and an Expedited IRB Review?

In the Full Review, all members of the IRB read, review, and discuss the proposal at the next scheduled IRB Committee meeting. Approval is granted by a majority vote. In an Expedited Review, one member of the IRB Committee is assigned to read, review, and approve the proposal and reports such to the IRB Committee at the next scheduled IRB Committee meeting. In the event of a conflict of interest, an alternate IRB member is designated by the chair of the IRB Committee.

3. Why is there a difference in submission dates between the Full Review and the Expedited Review?

For a Full Review, each member of the IRB will be given a copy of the proposal and asked to read it before coming to the scheduled meeting so as to be fully prepared for discussion. For an Expedited Review, the proposal will be given to one of the IRB members during the scheduled meeting. The committee member will review the proposal sometime after the meeting.

4. How quickly can I expect a response from the IRB?

For a Full Review, you can generally expect a response within 2 to 3 weeks following the regularly scheduled meeting. For an Expedited Review, you can generally expect a response within 1 to 2 weeks following the regularly scheduled meeting. If there is a delay, you will be notified as soon as possible.

5. What happens if I need to submit a proposal and obtain a response in a different time frame than that listed above?

Although we expect all submissions to follow the timeline outlined above, we do understand that occasionally unforeseen circumstances arise. In such a case, please contact the Chair of the IRB directly. The Chair will contact the other members of the IRB to determine availability, and every effort will be made to accommodate your needs, although no guarantees are given.

6. Does Spacing or Font matter?

Generally speaking, single spaced, 12 pt Times New Roman font is preferred. However, please consult with the primary investigator regarding his/her specific preference.

7. How do I contact the IRB Chair or other committee members?

  • IRB Chair: Dr. Kim Tolley;; 650-508-3464
  • IRB Administrative Associate Jan Howard, School of Education and Leadership;; 650-508-3430
  • College of Arts and Sciences Representatives: Isabelle Haithcox, Ph.D.; Amy K. Backos, Ph.D.
  • School of Education Representative: Kim Tolley, Ed.D.
  • School of Business Representative: James Kelley, JD, Therese Martin, MA
  • Institutional Representative: John Hofmann, Ph.D.
  • Community Member Representative: Rebekka Jez, Ed.D.