Fanshawe's Research Ethics Board (REB) is accountable for ensuring any and all research involving human subjects conforms to the ethical standards outlined in College Policy A201 - Research and Innovation. The REB helps ensure ethical principles are used in research projects involving human subjects. When research involves humans or human biological material, there are several guiding ethical principles:


  • Respect for human dignity;
  • Respect for free and informed consent;
  • Respect for vulnerable persons;
  • Respect for privacy and confidentiality;
  • Respect for justice and inclusiveness;
  • Balancing harms and benefits - minimizing harm, maximizing benefit.  


The REB serves the Fanshawe College research community as a consultative body and thus contributes to education in research ethics. It also has responsibility for independent, multidisciplinary review of the ethics of research to determine if research projects should start or continue.

Informed Consent

Informed consent is the ethical practice of obtaining voluntary agreement from research participants after providing clear information about the research purpose, procedures, risks, and benefits.


Learn More about Informed Consent

Expert Panel/Multi-Site

Researchers can submit the Ontario Community College Multi-Site application along with the Researcher Agreement to the Expert Panel. 


Learn More about the Expert Panel and Multi-Site Applications

Application Procedure

The application procedure is for ethical approval for your research involving human participants. View the supporting documents below. One copy of the signed application and any supporting documentation should be emailed to REB Coordinator Wanda Anderson ( on or before the scheduled submission deadline. Faxed applications are not accepted. Any application that is received after a submission deadline will be considered at the next available REB meeting. Incomplete applications will be returned for completion.

Supporting Documents

Form Purpose
Research Ethics Review Guidelines for Applicants (MS Word) Policies and submission instructions regarding the use and approval of human participants within your project.
Application for Research Ethics Board (REB) Review (MS Word) Fill out and submit this application form if your project involves human participants.
REB Annual Review/Status Update Form (MS Word) Fill out this form to provide an update on your project.
REB Amendment/Extension Form (MS Word) Fill out this form if your research project has been previously approved and now requires changes.


Submission Requirements

  • Completed and signed application including the submission checklist - Application for Research Ethics Board (REB) Review (MS Word).
  • A copy of all final research instruments (e.g. interview questions, telephone scripts, survey questions, etc.)
  • A copy of all final documentation/correspondence (e.g. consent forms, information letters, recruitment posters, recruitment correspondence such as letters, emails, texts, etc.)


Submission Deadlines and Meeting Dates

Important Dates

Submission deadlines for above minimal risk applications

Meeting date

Monday, October 2, 2023

Thursday, October 12, 2023

Monday, October 30, 2023

Thursday, November 9, 2023

Monday, December 4, 2023

Thursday, December 14, 2023

Monday, January 1, 2024

Thursday, January 11, 2024

Monday, January 29, 2024

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Monday, March 4, 2024

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Monday, April 1, 2024

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Monday, April 29, 2024

Thursday, May 9, 2024

Monday, June 3, 2024

Thursday, June 13, 2024


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why and when does my research project need an REB review?

Generally, all research that involves humans or human biological material requires review and approval by an REB. If you are uncertain whether REB review is required you must obtain the written opinion of the Chair of the REB as to whether the research should be subjected to prior ethics review and approval.

The Chair of the REB will decide whether a given project:

  • Requires full REB review;
  • Is eligible for expedited review;
  • Is eligible for review at the Faculty or Departmental level;
  • Is exempt from REB review.

Research proposals, initiated through the Centre for Research and Innovation at Fanshawe College must receive ethics approval from the REB before research can begin or funding can be received.

2. Does student research have to be reviewed?

If you are a student doing research for one of your courses, please see your professor. Do not apply directly to the REB. Your academic department is responsible for ensuring that your research meets the College's ethical standards, and already may have the authority to approve projects, which meet the "minimal risk" criterion.

"Minimal risk" means that the risks of harm anticipated in the proposed research are not greater or more likely, considering probability and magnitude, than those ordinarily encountered in life that relate to the research, including those encountered during the performance of routine physical or psychological examinations or tests.

If you are a student doing research that is NOT part of your course work, or if your project involves more than minimal risk, then you must submit your research proposal directly to the REB.

If you are a student doing research as part of a faculty member's research program, it is the faculty member's responsibility to obtain REB approval for the project.

3. Can a project be exempt from REB review?

Yes. Some projects are exempt from REB review. They include:

  • Quality assurance studies, performance reviews or testing within normal academic requirements or according to the terms and conditions of employment or training are not subject to REB review.
  • Surveys to assess the performance of the college or its employees as part of its normal operations normally do not require REB approval. For example, a first year student survey, early-leaver survey, course evaluations, student evaluations, key productivity indicator studies, or other similar activities do not require REB approval. This includes research whose primary purpose is to:
    1. diagnose problems;
    2. identify appropriate solutions;
    3. provide advice for operation management;
    4. assess performance; or
    5. to collect data primarily designed to affect the operations of the College through affirming satisfaction with the status quo or leading to quality improvements.

Prior ethics review and approval from the REB will not normally be required when the research meets some of the criteria outlined below.

  • A limited type of research most often found within the humanities, fine arts, and in some historical research that typically includes:
    1. a public database where aggregated data that cannot be associated with any individual are obtained; and/or
    2. information already in the public domain (e.g., autobiographies, biographies or public archives).
    Nevertheless, it is the responsibility of the researcher to ascertain that any information used from these sources is presented in an accurate fashion.
  • Archival analysis of records by College departments normally engaged in the collection, maintenance, and analysis of such records does not require an REB review. Nevertheless, it is incumbent on such units to ensure that the anonymity of individuals and confidentiality of their records are maintained.
  • Naturalistic observation of participants in, for example, political rallies, demonstrations or public meetings, where it can be expected that participants are seeking public visibility.
  • Class research projects, which involve human subjects and are conducted by students on other members of the class as exercises to learn how to conduct research.
  • Evaluations of courses or training programs that are designed to provide feedback.
  • Preliminary, informal interviews or casual conversations that are carried out to help clarify the design of a research project.

Note: in some cases, other college approvals may still be required before the work can begin. For example, student surveys are also subject to Fanshawe College Policy C307, Surveys and Questionnaires.

4. How can I get expedited review of my project?

You may request either delegated or full review of your REB application. A delegated review is conducted by two REB members rather than the full REB. The REB Chair may decline a request for delegated review and require full review of the project.

Delegated review may be requested only if:

  • You are confident your research involves no more than minimal risk, and can explain your reasoning on your application;
  • You are affirming that conditions previously set by the REB as conditions of approval have been met;
  • You are renewing the ethical approval for an existing project which has:
    1. already received approval by the Fanshawe College REB, complied fully with any requirements
    2. an up-to-date file, and
    3. no significant changes to the ongoing research process.
5. What if I already have approval from another institution's REB?

Even if your project has already been reviewed and approved by a bona fide REB at another institution, you still must have the written approval of the Chair of Fanshawe's REB before you may commence the proposed research activities at Fanshawe College. Submit a Fanshawe College REB application requesting expedited review, and be sure to attach a copy of the other institution's REB approval.

6. An outside agency wants to conduct research at Fanshawe. Do they need an ethics review?


7. An outside agency wants to conduct research using Fanshawe students but have already been reviewed by another Research Ethics Board. Do they need to be reviewed by Fanshawe's REB?


8. I am doing research with human subjects but do not plan to publish my results, just use them in a graduate course I am taking. Do I need a review?

Yes, using Fanshawe students, staff, or facilities in your study requires a review.

9. I am taking a graduate course and have to conduct research. I am not using Fanshawe students as subjects. Do I need to submit my research for review?

Yes, if your research involves human participants anywhere. 
If you are not using human participants, then likely no. Check with the REB Chair.

10. My students are conducting marketing research in the College cafeteria as part of their course of study. Do they have to submit their research for review?

Yes. The research must be reviewed; however, the academic department is responsible for ensuring that student research, that is part of a program of study, meets the College's ethical standards.

11. I am a student at Fanshawe and I am doing research with human participants here but it is not part of any course that I am taking here. Do I need a review?

Yes. Since you are not doing research as part of your required learning, you will have to submit your research to the REB for review.

12. I am doing research on starting a new program. Do I need to submit this research for review?

No. Studies used to facilitate the normal management of the College do not need to be reviewed.

13. I am experimenting with a new type of online course. I want to do some research as to its effectiveness. Does this need to be reviewed?

Yes. Since the risk to students is minimal, it is likely to be an expedited review.

14. How do I submit my research proposal for review?

Forward the REB application, signed/dated, along with supporting documentation to REB Coordinator Wanda Anderson (  See ‘Submission Requirements’. 
If your research is above minimal risk, see the ‘Submission Deadlines and Meeting Dates’ for submission deadlines.

15. Where can I find other information on ethics, ethics review and College policies?

Contact Us

The Research Ethics Board should be advised of and consulted on any proposed project involving human subjects.


Steve Crema, REB Chair


Room T3010, 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd.

London, ON  N5Y 5R6



Wanda Anderson, REB Coordinator

1001 Fanshawe College Blvd.

London, ON N5Y 5R6