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Approval Process for Partnered Research at BYU-Idaho

Note: The information below does not apply to students seeking approval for class projects. Students who need approval for a class project should visit the Institutional Review Board (IRB) site.

This page describes the approval process for partnering with BYU-Idaho in conducting research using BYU-Idaho students, employees, or existing institutional data.

The process outlined below should be followed if any of the following apply:

  • An administrative employee or an individual not affiliated with the university would like to conduct research with BYU-Idaho subjects or data, such as when doing research for a master's or doctoral degree.
  • A member of the BYU-Idaho faculty would like to do research with subjects or data outside their teaching area or with subjects other than their students.

This process aims to ensure projects are appropriately coordinated among stakeholders, ensure projects are adequately resourced, and provide clarity for potential researchers about when their research is formally approved and supported by the university.

For questions or help with this process, email the university research coordinator.

Approval Criteria

BYU-Idaho partners with individuals on research projects under the following circumstances:

  1. The research supports the mission of the university and its priorities.
  2. The proposed research methods are sound.
  3. The amount of effort required by BYU-Idaho researchers, analysts, or other employees to support the research is justified by the value of the results.
  4. The value of the results justifies any disruption to the regular operation of the university.
  5. The potential findings are ones the university would be willing to make broadly available.

Research Approval Steps

The following steps must be completed before starting your research. The university research coordinator will keep a copy of the applicable documents for your project on file and keep you updated on the process.

Step 1: Share your research idea with the office of Executive Strategy and Planning (ES&P)
Your first step is to briefly describe your project so leaders within ES&P can determine if the research idea is something the university may be willing to partner with you on. This initial step is designed to avoid a situation where you invest time and energy into a formal research plan (see next step below) for a project that does not meet the criteria noted above.

Email your research idea to Include a brief (2-3 paragraphs) description of your study. Please also address the following questions in your email:

  • How does the study support the mission of the university and its priorities?
  • What methods are you proposing? (Note: at this point, a high-level overview is sufficient).
  • What data would need to be collected or accessed?
  • What support would you need from BYU-Idaho researchers, data analysts, or other employees?
  • What changes would the study make, if any, to the normal routine of students, instructors, staff, programs, offices, or courses at BYU-Idaho?

Leaders within ES&P will consider your idea using the approval criteria noted above. The research coordinator will normally provide initial feedback on your idea within three weeks.

Step 2: Submit a formal project plan.
The research coordinator will provide a project plan template and help you provide the appropriate level of detail for your project. Once you have completed the full project plan, the research coordinator will share it with any BYU-Idaho offices that the research may impact. If those offices are supportive, the research coordinator will present the project plan to ES&P leadership for a formal review and any stipulations or limitations (E.g., regarding distribution, publishing, and what resources the university can dedicate to your project).

The research coordinator will normally inform you of a decision within two weeks of submitting your project plan. If ES&P supports the project, the research coordinator will notify the BYU-Idaho IRB office.

Step 3: If applicable, obtain IRB approval from your degree-granting institution.
If you are doing the research as part of a graduate degree, your research must be approved by your institution’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). Submit a copy of the signed IRB approval to the BYU-I research coordinator and the BYU-Idaho IRB office. Oftentimes, having IRB approval from the degree-granting institution will speed up the process for BYU-Idaho IRB approval.

Step 4: Obtain BYU-Idaho IRB approval and research clearance
The Institutional Review Board website contains information and links to resources for completing the BYU-Idaho IRB process. Once approved, forward the BYU-Idaho IRB approval email to the university research coordinator.

You are cleared to begin the research, as outlined in the project plan, once BYU-Idaho IRB approval has been granted.

Distribution of Results

BYU-Idaho invests in external research to produce findings that can help further the mission of the university. Sharing the data and project findings with BYU-Idaho is essential to the research partnership. The university research coordinator will work with you to best share research data and findings with the BYU-Idaho community.

Role of the University Researcher Coordinator

The university research coordinator has the following responsibilities:

  • Help you complete the approval processes as outlined.
  • Suggest effective ways for collecting data or assist with data collection where appropriate.
  • Coordinate updates and communication between you and the various BYU-Idaho office that your research may impact.
  • Assist with sharing findings with BYU-Idaho.