IRB Board Structure

The IRB has a two tiered structure comprised of (A) Department Representatives and (B) the Executive Committee.


Department representatives are responsible for the initial review of all research proposals submitted to the IRB by SJC faculty, administration, staff, or students. Each academic department in which research with human participants is deemed likely must provide at least two faculty members, with at least one from each campus, to serve as representatives to the IRB. Departments anticipating a high volume of reviewable research may elect to provide more than two representatives.

1) Each department can establish its own procedures for determining who will serve as its representatives.

2) Departmental Registration - By May 1 of each academic year, department chairs must provide the IRB chair with the names and academic credentials for any new or renewed representatives for their departments by submitting an Assigned Department Representative Form for each. Terms of service for new and renewed representatives will begin September 1 of the next academic year.

3) Term of Service - Representatives serve three year renewable terms ending on August 31 of their final service year.

4) Resignation and Replacement of Representatives - Department representatives may resign without penalty before the end of a term two weeks after submitting letters of resignation to their respective chair and the IRB chair. If their resignation reduces department representation below the minimum of two members, the department chair must submit a replacement to the IRB chair as soon as possible. The replacement will complete the term of the resigning representative. Beyond this special circumstance, replacement with a new representative is at the discretion of the department chair.

5) Representative Training - Prior to reviewing any submitted research proposals, department representatives must satisfy each of the following requirements:

(a) Read the regulations and procedures of the SJC IRB;

(b) Read the Belmont Report [HEW] and Code of Federal Regulations (Title 45, Part 46) [HHS] provided through links at the Training Site for IRB Members and Faculty.

(c) Submit to the IRB chair a signed Training Declaration indicating they have read and understood these materials.

(d) Complete the NIH administered online training program for Protecting Human Research Participants (Office of Extramural Research) provided through the link at the Training Site for IRB Members and Faculty and submit its certificate of completion to the IRB chair.

6) Conflicts of Interest - Department representatives must recuse themselves from the review process of any research proposals in which they have interest as investigators, consultants, or faculty supervisors; or of any research proposals for which they cannot provide unbiased and impersonal reviews. In such cases, review applications must be transferred to non-conflicted representatives.


The Executive Committee is responsible for -

(1) reviewing research proposals from SJC faculty, administrators, staff or students which have been submitted for Full Review by the principal investigator or forwarded for Full Review by a department representative;

(2) reviewing any research proposal from a non-affiliated investigator that employs SJC students as subjects or uses SJC facilities;

(3) reviewing investigator appeals of adverse IRB dispositions:

(4) keeping abreast of changes in ethical standards for human subjects research;

(5) informing and educating the college community about ethical standards;

(6) reporting serious violations of IRB regulations to the college administration for possible disciplinary action;

(7) supervising the effectiveness of the department representatives; and

(8) maintaining written and/or electronic records of all IRB activities, including membership documents, meeting  minutes, submitted proposals, review decisions, investigator appeals, and adverse incident reports.

The Executive Committee includes the following seven members;

(1) College Provost (ex officio)

(2) Two community based representatives unaffiliated with the college, one in Brooklyn and one in Long Island, who are solicited by the administration for three year renewable terms. Participation of each community representative in Full Reviews of research proposals is limited to projects originating at or being conducted at their respective home community campuses. Both representatives participate in Full Reviews of proposals for research spanning both campuses.

(See Notes 1 and 2 below).

(3) Four faculty from the pool of department representatives; one from Brooklyn Liberal Arts, one from Long Island Liberal Arts, one from Professional & Graduate Studies, and one at-large. Each faculty member is elected for a one year term by vote of the department representatives taken in late May and conducted by the Faculty Interest Council. In each of the three defined constituencies, the representative attaining the highest number of votes advances to the Executive Committee. Of those remaining, the representative attaining the highest number of votes advances in the at-large category. A tied vote is resolved through a run-off election between the tied members. (See Note 2 below).

The IRB Chair is drawn from the Executive Committee through mutual consensus of the elected members of the Committee, assuming the position no later than September 10 of each academic year. The Chair is responsible for calling all meetings of the Executive Committee, setting their agenda, and insuring compliance with all IRB regulations and procedures.

Note 1 - The community representatives must complete the same training program as the faculty representatives (see section A, part 5) and submit appropriate documentation (Training Declarations and Certificates of Completion) prior to reviewing any submitted research proposals.

Note 2 - All members of the Executive Committee are subject to the same regulations for managing conflicts of interest specified for department representatives (see section A, part 6).

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