About the Institutional Review Board (IRB)

aahrpp.pngPenn State has established two Institutional Review Boards to review human subject research (that meet the requirement for FULL review). Each board has the expertise available to review both social science and biomedical research.

The IRBs consist of faculty, staff, and community members appointed by the Associate Vice President for Research. Each IRB must have at least one member serving on the board who is not employed or affiliated with the University or has an immediate family member employed or affiliated with the University. All IRB activities are coordinated through the Office for Research Protections (ORP) located at The 330 Building, Suite 205.

The IRBs are responsible for reviewing and approving, requiring modifications, or withholding approval of research (for studies requiring full review) involving human subjects. Approval is granted for one year or less; therefore, the IRBs are also responsible for reviewing ongoing activities on a continuing basis.  (Note that studies meeting requirements for exemption determination or expedited review are NOT reviewed by the Full IRBs.)

The Penn State Human Protections Program in the Office for Research Protections has been re-accredited by ‪‎AAHRPP‬, with no requests for changes or improvements.  For more information please go to the  Penn State News story.

For Investigators and Participants



Click here to access CATS IRB


Click here to access the Investigator Manual


Frequently Asked Questions for Investigators