Bournemouth University Ethics

Bournemouth University Ethics

Research Ethics

Bournemouth University (BU) is committed to promoting and upholding the highest quality academic and ethical standards in all its activities. All research undertaken by BU staff and students must have ethical approval. Please ensure you consult the Research Ethics Code of Practice and gain ethical approval before commencing research.

BU recognises the importance of maintaining public confidence in the ethical quality of research conducted by staff and students of the University. The purpose of ethical approval within BU is threefold:

  • This reflects BU’s commitment to good ethical practice, as a principle in itself and as a means of maintaining public confidence in the work undertaken by staff and students of the University;
  • The provisions for ethical approval assists researchers and supervisors undertaking research to identify appropriate issues and address these in the development of research proposals;
  • The approval process itself acts as a safeguard to researchers and supervisors who can be confident of the ethical propriety of their project once it has been approved.

HOW DO I APPLY?

Login to the Online Ethics Checklist using your University credentials and click on ‘Create’ to begin the ethics checklist.

A document outlining the questions on the ethics checklist is available here.

WHAT IS THE ETHICAL REVIEW AND APPROVAL PROCESS?

The ethical review and approval process varies depending on the researchers status (taught student, PGR, staff) as well as the level of risk indicated. Click on your appropriate status link below for detail on the process.

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Taught
Research ethics applications for undergraduate and postgraduate (Taught) are initially reviewed and approved by the named supervisor (minimal risk applications) or approved by Faculty Ethics Programme Teams (above minimal risk applications).  If a Supervisor receives an ‘above minimal risk‘ application to review, they should forward onto the Ethics Programme Team for review and approval. If a decision cannot be made by the Programme Team, applications should be forwarded to the Research Ethics Panel via the Research Governance Adviser (Ethics Filter)    

  • Guidance for Supervisors on how to use Cohort for the review and approval of ug/pgt student checklists (low risk) can be found here.
  • Guidance for Ethics Programme Teams on how to use Cohort for the review and approval of ug/pgt students checklists (high risk) can be found here.

Postgraduate Research
Minimal Risk Applications: Research ethics applications for postgraduate researchers are reviewed by the named supervisor to ensure good quality of application (which also includes a review of the participant information sheet/participant agreement form if applicable).  Once the Supervisor is happy with the application, the Supervisor will forward onto an appropriate Faculty Ethics Champion for approval.  The Ethics Champion will undertake a final review and APPROVE the Research ethics application.

  • Guidance for Ethics Champions on how to use Cohort for the review and approval of pgr (low risk) checklists can be found here.
  • Guidance for Supervisors on how to use cohort for the review of prg checklists can be found here.

Above Minimal Risk Applications: Research Ethics applications are reviewed by the named supervisor to ensure good quality of application (which also includes a review of the participant information sheet/participant agreement form if applicable).  Once the Supervisor is happy with the application, the Supervisor will forward onto the Research Ethics Panel (via the EthicsFilter) for approval (see link below ‘above minimal risk‘ for more details).

  • For above minimal risk applications, the Postgraduate Research Student (PGR) will be invited to attend Panel and they must be accompanied by a member of the Supervisory Team.   If a member of the Supervisor Team cannot be present, then the application will be deferred until the next Research Ethics Panel.  This should be factored in when planning research activities.

Staff