Institutional Review Board

Statement of Purpose

HCC’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) advocates for the rights and welfare of human research participants and promotes quality research by fostering an institutional culture embodying the highest ethical standards of research.

The IRB administers the institutional program to protect individuals who participate in research and assists faculty and staff in protecting the participants of research. All research projects involving human subjects must be submitted to the IRB for consideration according to HCC Board policy EDA (LOCAL).

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The role of the Institutional Review Board

According to HCC's Board Policy EDA (LOCAL), the IRB at HCC has the responsibility of overseeing procedures for carrying out HCC's commitment to protecting human subjects in research, including the following:

  • The welfare and rights of human subjects are adequately protected and informed consent is given, if necessary
  • Human subjects are not placed at unreasonable physical, mental, or emotional risk as a result of the research
  • The necessity and importance of the research outweigh the risks to the subjects; and
  • The researcher(s) is/are qualified to conduct research involving human subjects

  HCC faculty, staff, and administrators may serve as members of the HCC IRB.

Houston Community College's IRB:

  • Reviews proposed research projects that involve the use of human subjects including HCC students and employees;
  • Ensures that those involved in research projects are treated ethically;
  • Ensures that all human subjects are provided with substantial information about the research and consent to be a subject in the study;
  • Ensures that all personal information will be handled confidentially



The HCC IRB can review, approve, and require modifications in, or disapprove research activities conducted by or through HCC using human subjects. The IRB does not assume the role of evaluating the merits of the research design or the legal implications of access to HCC data and information. Rather, the IRB is charged with evaluating each proposed project’s compliance with standards in regard to issues such as informed consent, confidentiality, and any risk to participants.  The Board may provide guidance related to access to HCC data, the involvement of HCC employees and facilities, and other aspects of the research process.

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Institutional Review Board