Human Participant Guidelines

Before conducting any research or surveys involving Tompkins Cortland Community College students, faculty, or staff, contact the IR Department, for approval. 

All provisions in this policy are applicable to Tompkins Cortland Community College, and associated entities (e.g. FSA, TC3 Foundation, etc.).

The primary responsibility for protecting the rights and welfare of human participants rests with each individual who initiates, directs, or engages in research. Research shall be defined to include any surveying, questioning, testing or other involvement of another person to obtain information for use by a student, faculty or other staff member, or any external person.

All internal and external research proposing to recruit student participants must make clear the voluntary nature of their participation. Students may not be required, as a course requirement, to participate in any research project or in the pilot-testing of any research instruments.

All student researchers must have a Tompkins Cortland Community College faculty or staff supervisor who has accepted responsibility for monitoring the project. Supervisors are responsible for providing information to students regarding ethical principles involved in using human participants for research, including, but not limited to, privacy and confidentiality of response data.

A request made to any member of the College community by an external researcher for the use of College records or student or staff participants must be forwarded to the Office of Institutional Research for approval.

For any Tompkins Cortland Community College funded/sanctioned research where participants are to be drawn from an external population, written notice of the project must be given to the Office of Institutional Research prior to the collection of any data. In addition, if participants are minors or drawn from another institution or organization which has responsibility for the participants, appropriate consents must be secured in addition to the approval of the Office of Institutional Research.

Written notice of any research that will involve intervention with or manipulation of a human participant’s physical or mental state must be provided to the Office of Institutional Research at an early stage in planning (i.e., prior to the collection of any data) to allow determination of need for compliance with federal or state statutes or regulations related to non-exempt "human participant research."

Approved by the Board of Trustees on Dec. 3, 2020.