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Research Policy

Research Policies at Washington College

Students and faculty undertaking research involving human and animal subjects follow standards that assure confidentiality and ethical treatment.

Research on our campus involving human and non-human participants is overseen by one of two review boards. 

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Research involving human participants is reviewed by our Institutional Review Board or IRB.
What is an Institutional Review Board (IRB)?
An Institutional Review Board (IRB) is a federally mandated panel that is charged with overseeing the protection of human participants in research. 

The IRB’s Mission 

The goal of the IRB is to protect human research participants by ensuring that

  • participants’ rights and welfare are adequately protected,
  • research is guided by the ethical principles of respect for persons, beneficence, and justice as set forth in the Belmont Report
  • research is conducted with the highest level of expertise and integrity, and
  • research complies with all applicable laws, policies and regulations.
Students and faculty at Washington College may review the policies of the Institutional Review Board (IRB)for Research with Human Subjects and download IRB forms.

Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC)

The board is composed of faculty, staff and students as well as a consulting veterinarian and a representative of the local community. The IACUC is charged with reviewing all proposals to insure that the use of animals by faculty, staff members or students in teaching and research will comply with the following public laws, policies, and guidelines:

U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research and Education” as established by the Interagency Research Animal Committee (IRAC).

Public Health Service “Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals” published by the Office for Protection from Research

Risks (OPRR) and enforced through the Health Research Extension Act, Pub. L.99-158, November 20, 1985.

“Animal Welfare Act” of August 24, 1966 (Pub. L. 89-544) as amended December 24, 1970 (Pub. L. 91-579); April 22, 1976 (Pub. L. 94-279); December 17, 1985 (Pub. L. 99-198); November 28, 1990 (pub. L. 101-624); January 23, 2002 (Pub. L. 107-171); May 3, 2007 (Pub. L. 110-22); and June 18, 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246)

“Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals,” NIH Publication No. 85-23 (hereinafter referred to as the Guide).

It is strongly suggested that investigators familiarize themselves with these documents and consult with the IACUC during the process of designing the experiment.


Professor George Spilich
E-mail: gspilich2@washcoll.edu