UBC Dentistry at The University of British Columbia Jump to UBC Dentistry's Home Page Jump to The University of British Columbia's Website Jump to FCRC's Home Page


UBC Research Ethics Board (REB) Guidelines

What kind of research requires REB review and approval?

The following research requires REB review:

1. Research involving living human participants.

2. Research involving human biological materials as well as human embryos, fetuses, fetal tissue, reproductive materials, fluids, cadaveric remains and stem cells. This applies to materials derived from living and deceased individuals.

3. Research involving access to human participants through the use of records maintained by UBC or any of its affiliated hospitals.

Some examples of activities for research including human participants which would require REB approval include:

  • Administering a drug, taking a blood sample, doing a test or performing a procedure clinical or therapeutic upon a person for research rather than treatment.
  • Asking people information by telephone, letters, email, surveys, questionnaire, and interviews.
  • Use of non-public records that contain identifying information previously gathered about anyone, directly or indirectly.
  • Observing anyone's responses or behavior, directly or indirectly.

What kind of research is exempt from REB review and approval?

The following research does not require REB review:

1. Research that relies on publicly available information that is:
a. Legally accessible to the public and appropriately protected by law
b. Publicly accessible and there is no reasonable expectation of privacy.

2. Research involving observation of people in public places where:
a. There is no intervention staged by the researcher or direct interaction with the individuals or groups.
b. Individuals or groups targeted for observation have no reasonable expectation of privacy.
c. Publishing or revealing research results will not result in identification of individuals.

3. Research that relies on secondary use of anonymous information or anonymous human biological materials so long as the process of data linkage or recording or publishing of results does not generate identifiable information.

All guidelines excerpted from Research Ethics Board Standard Operating Procedures 102: Activities requiring REB review


a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

Frontier Clinical Research Centre
2199 Wesbrook Mall  |  Vancouver, BC  |  Canada
Tel. 604.822.3414

Emergency Procedures | Accessibility | Contact UBC | © Copyright The University of British Columbia