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Institutional Review Board

Research Involving Humans

A campus ethics committee exists for the purpose of supervising research involving human subjects. This committee must approve any proposal before the research can be conducted. The statements published by the American Psychological Association serve as guidelines concerning ethical principles in psychological research. All students in the Department of Psychology should be familiar with these guidelines.

Research Involving Animals

A campus committee exists to review the care and use of animals at Hamilton College, and the College vivarium is routinely inspected by the Department of Health of the State of New York. The guidelines developed by the American Psychological Association are strictly observed in any research and teaching involving animals sponsored by the Department of Psychology. Students intending to undertake supervised research involving animals are required to submit a proposal to the Animal Care Committee for review by the end of the first week of the term in which the work is to be conducted.

Institutional Biosafety Committee

The purpose of the Biosafety Program is to protect all employees, students, the public, as well as the environment from exposure to biological agents or materials being used at the Hamilton College that may cause disease or be harmful to humans. This manual provides a comprehensive overview of proper work practices, regulations, and requirements for proper use, containment and disposal of biological hazards.

Scientific Misconduct

As in other academic work, honesty in research is governed by the Hamilton College Honor Code, regardless of whether the work is conducted for a course, as part of an independent study or senior project, or as a departmental research assistant. Fraud in such work includes the misrepresentation of work conducted, the fabrication of data, or plagiarism.

A Note to Professors about Class Projects

Research Projects in Regular Courses

If you routinely teach a course or courses in which you require students to gather data from human participants, you may draft a blanket application describing the general nature of the projects students are likely to conduct as well as the procedures for ensuring confidentiality, informed consent, and so forth. As long as the faculty member ensures that the projects conducted will satisfy the conditions stated, individual student projects will not require separate review.

Members of the Review Board

  • Jeffrey Ritchie, Director of Sponsored Program Grants (Chair, 2020-21)
  • Vikranth Bejjanki, Psychology
  • Steve Ellingson, Sociology
  • Doran Larson, Literature and Creative Writing
  • Colin Quinn, Anthropology
  • Julie Starr, Anthropology
  • Rabbi Henry Bamberger
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