In many fields (traditionally, Medicine but also increasingly the social sciences), applying for IRB approval is an integral part of being an academic. Are such questions on topic, and if so under what parameters (e.g. focusing on standard procedures vs. slippery ethical questions)?

The IRB has been the subject of an answer to a question, but not yet a question.


Questions related to performing one's job as an academic professional is normally on-topic. However, the question would still need to satisfy the general requirement of being useful to a broader audience than the poster. Therefore, overly detailed questions may not be approved, but a broader question (related, for instance, to ethics or general questions about applications, and so on) might very well be on-topic.

It might be easier for you to post a sample question so we can see if it would be appropriate or not.

  • I think my question will qualify then. I'm new to here (but not to SE) so wanted a better sense before I posted. Thanks. – Ari B. Friedman Jun 27 '13 at 21:23
  • And just as I said, "I'm new to here," I was granted to Yearling badge :-). But my q's were migrated mostly. – Ari B. Friedman Jun 27 '13 at 21:24

As a former researcher who dealt extensively with the IRB, these types of questions would definitely be on-topic here, as they relate directly to:

  • Inner workings of research departments
  • Requirements and expectations of academicians

as listed in the Section Formerly Known As FAQ.

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