Requirement for Ethics Approval

The University of Lethbridge adheres to the national standards outlined by the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. For projects funded by CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC, the University also complies with the conditions of the Tri-Council Agreement on the Administration of Agency Grants and Awards by Research Institutions Section 3.4: Research Involving Humans.

All research involving human participants requires review and approval by the Human Participant Research Committee (HPRC). This approval helps to provide a framework of respect and mutual understanding between the researcher and research participants, so that they can properly understand their respective roles, rights, and responsibilities. Research involving focus groups, interviews, surveys, questionnaires, participant observations, psychological, social or behavioural interventions, audio and/or video recordings, and clinical studies require human participant research approval.

Research involving human participants that is determined to fall in the minimum risk category is reviewed on a continuous intake and review process by delegated review on behalf of the HPRC. Higher than minimum risk studies will be reviewed at a full meeting of the HPRC on an ad hoc basis. Protocol approvals are valid for one year, and it is the responsibility of the researcher to maintain ethics certification for the protocol for the duration of the research. Researchers must request continuing certification of ongoing research prior to the expiry date of the protocol ethics approval by submitting the renewal report for review. Access to grant funds is contingent on valid ethics certification being in place for the funded research.

For guidelines on submitting a new application or an amendment to a current approved protocol, please see the following:

Guidelines for Submission of a New Application for Ethical Review of Human Research

Guidelines for Submission of an Amendment to an Approved Human Research Protocol

Health Studies Involving Access to Health Information

The University of Lethbridge HPRC is no longer designated under the Alberta Health Information Act to conduct the ethics reviews of research studies involving health information.

In accord with this ministerial directive, the University of Lethbridge has signed an agreement with the University of Alberta to designate the UofA Health Research Ethics Board (HREB) for the ethics review of research involving health information. If your research requires access to health information (defined as individually identifying diagnostic, treatment and care information) under the control of a custodian (generally defined as a health board or authority or health services provider), you are now required to submit an HREB ethics application via the REMO system directly to the UofA for ethics review. For assistance with submitting an ethics application via the REMO system, please contact Susan Entz at or 403-329-2747.

Please also contact Susan Entz if you are conducting multi-jurisdictional health research or if you require access to research sites under the jurisdiction of Alberta Health Services or Covenant Health.

For further information, contact:
Susan Entz
, Ethics Officer
Office of Research Ethics
B620, University Hall
University of Lethbridge
Lethbridge, AB T1K 3M4
Phone: (403) 329-2747
Fax: (403) 382-7185