Office of Research

Office of Research Compliance

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

What We Do

The University of Texas-Pan American's Institutional Review Board (IRB) reviews all research that meets the definition of “human subjects research”. The board is made up of UTPA faculty, staff, and members of the community. The board evaluates research proposals to make sure the planned research follows the ethical principles of human subjects protection and that it adheres to university policies and federal regulations.

Drop-In Opportunity

Achieving ethical clearance for university research

Achieving ethical clearance for humans subjects research can be a daunting task. To assist in the process, the UTPA Institutional Review Board is opening the doors for an Open House Hours every second Monday of each month at REIN 1.106 from 2-4PM. Whether you have a concern, a question, a suggestion, or idea regarding the IRB or your human subjects research protocol, we are here to assist! No appointment needed. Come and chat with those responsible for research ethics at UTPA. We are happy to help YOU achieve your research goals in a timely way!

See you there, every second Monday of each month at REIN 1.106 from 2-4PM

All IRB applications should be submitted to Please include all supporting documents for your research (see list above).

All applications must be signed. If your application is not signed, it will be considered incomplete and you will need to resubmit.

Online Survey Research Instructions

Modification Request

Any changes to the previously approved protocol must be approved by the IRB prior to implementing the changes. 

Continuing Review Request




REPORTS - Effective Fall 2013

Expedited and/or Full Review protocols:

For all completed studies or studies that will be completed by their respective expiration date, the IRB will require submission of a final report (see template below). This report should be submitted with a continuing review form, for official closure of the study. You may submit these items via electronic submission on the IRB website: or by email to the IRB ( If emailing directly, please include the IRB number, the continuing review form and final report.

Submission of a final report will also be required for any studies that have expired, either by failure of the researcher to send a continuing review request form or the decision to let the study expire.

Exempt protocols:

Although these types of protocols do not expire, the IRB will require yearly submission of a status report (see template below) to assess the study’s progress, or a final report when study is completed.

For student researchers, either report (status or final) may be submitted by the student researcher. However, upon students’ graduation or failure of the student to submit the report, it will be the faculty advisor’s responsibility to submit the report to the IRB.

Status Report Template (Exempt Protocols) submitted on a yearly basis.

Final Report Template (Exempt/Expedited/Full Review Protocols) submitted once study has been completed.



Contact Us

Institutional Review Board
Research & Innovation Building (REIN) 1.106
The University of Texas-Pan American
1201 West University Drive
Edinburg, Texas 78539

Phone: (956) 665-2889

IRB Members

  • Dr. Stephanie Brickman, IRB Chair
  • Dr. Sharon Schembri, IRB Vice Chair
  • Dr. Amy Weimer
  • Mr. Felipe Salinas
  • Candi Constantine, Unaffiliated Community Member


Upcoming Events


    Upcoming training information for Fall 2015 will be posted soon.

IRB Meeting Schedule and Protocol Submission Deadlines:

Human subjects research proposals are reviewed via one of three processes: “exempt”, “expedited”, or “full”. “Exempt” and “Expedited” review is possible with certain categories of research (as specified in the federal regulations) and may be reviewed outside of the full IRB committee by one or more experienced IRB members (generally the IRB Chair). Protocols that do not qualify for exempt or expedited review must be reviewed by the full IRB committee at a convened meeting.

  • For full review, the deadline for protocol submission is the first Tuesday of each month. The IRB will only review complete protocols (no missing items) submitted by the deadline. In most cases, protocols are not complete and are sent a list a missing items. It is best to submit the protocol well before the deadline to ensure you have enough time to submit all missing items by the deadline. IRB committee meetings are scheduled approximately 2 weeks following the monthly submission dates. The exact meeting dates are based on committee member schedules and are therefore variable from semester to semester. The IRB Committee does not generally meet during the Summer months. If you anticipate conducting research during the Summer, you must submit your protocols by the May deadline.
  • Expedited and Exempt protocols are reviewed in the order received; there are no deadlines for these protocols. Please note that "expedited" refers to the fact that it is not subject to review by the full committee, but does not guarantee a fast approval process. Please turn in your IRB applications as early as possible before the anticipated start date.

All IRB submissions should be submitted to with all appropriate documents (see IRB Application Requirements).


If your research is dependent on being funded by an internal or external grant:

To reduce the workload of Institutional Review Boards, many granting agencies do not need IRB approval at the time of proposal submission, but are likely to require it prior to release of award monies. Check with your granting agency about when IRB approval must be submitted. If your proposed research is contingent on grant funding, we ask that you submit an IRB application after having been granted your award.