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Departmental Assessment Process

The Ethics Application should be sent by email to Jan Harrison (Ethics Officer) in the Research Office, Academic Enhancement Department, who will log and check the application and upload the documentation onto the portal with a reference number for assessment by the Department via the Departmental Ethics Representative.

The Department should consider the application against the University's Ethics Guidelines and then complete the Ethics Approval Form to:

  1. approve the application
  2. approve the application subject to conditions
  3. ask the applicant to make substantial revisions and resubmit the application
  4. refer the application to the Ethics Committee if there are particular reasons why the Department cannot reach a conclusion.

The responsibility for consideration of ethical issues is devolved to the Department. The Department must record the process by which ethical issues are considered on a case-by-case basis. The Head of Department should sign the Ethics Approval Form to confirm that the application has been assessed at Departmental level. The Ethics Approval Form asks the Head of Department to confirm that the department:

  • approves the Ethics Application
  • approves the Participant Consent Form and any other information for participants
  • confirms that a risk assessment form has been fully completed
  • confirms that the project has insurance cover
  • confirms that appropriate facilities are available within the Department for the applicant to complete the project

Once the Ethics Application has been assessed by the Department the Ethics Approval Form should be sent to the Ethics Officer.


Outcome to the applicant

The Ethics Officer will inform the applicant of the outcome via email. If the applicant has been asked for further information, a response within two weeks will be requested.  The Ethics Response Sheet should be used when sending revised documents in response to any conditions set.

Responses from the applicant to the conditions will be processed by the Ethics Officer. If the conditions require only simple changes to the documentation the Ethics Officer will confirm that these have been made. If the conditions require significant changes, then the Ethics Officer will ask the Departmental Ethics Representative to confirm that the conditions have been met. Final email confirmation will then be sent to the applicant by the Ethics Officer confirming the date of final approval.  

The Ethics Committee meets three times a year and is responsible for establishing and monitoring Departmental procedures, including undertaking audits in order to ensure that staff and/or students are aware of the ethical issues involved in the work and that the University's Ethical Guidelines are observed. The Ethics Committee will also advise on problematic cases.

Flowchart detailing the assessment process


Assessment Process for Transfer Staff/ Students, Collaborative Research & NHS Applications

Assessment Process for Students & Staff Transferring from another Institution

If the student or member of staff has not already received ethical approval for any part of their research at their previous institution they will need to follow the University's standard ethics procedure as set out above.

If a student or member of staff has already received ethical approval at their previous institution then they should send copies of their previous ethics application form and confirmation of ethical approval to the Ethics Officer. If the research will be published or conducted whilst at Roehampton University the Department will be asked to consider whether the approval documents from the previous university are sufficient. If the Department is satisfied with the ethics approval which has already been given they will inform the Ethics Officer who will record this centrally. A research student or member of staff will not normally be asked to complete the Roehampton University Ethics Application Form if they already have ethical approval from another university, unless the Department deems this to be necessary.

Assessment Process for Collaborative Research

If a student or member of staff has received ethical approval at the host institution then it is not usually necessary for a Roehampton University Ethics Application Form to be completed. A copy of the external ethics application form and confirmation of ethical approval should be sent to the Ethics Officer. The Department will be asked to consider whether the approval documents from the host institution are sufficient. If the Department is satisfied with the ethics approval which has been given they will inform the Ethics Officer who will record this centrally. Please note that the applicant may be asked for additional information if the information provided is not considered to be sufficient. The Roehampton University logo should be used on public facing documentation where possible, providing these documents have been approved by the University through the above process. Please see 4.3 Ethical Approval from Collaborating Organisations for further information.

Assessment Process for applicants submitting NHS Ethics Applications

Please note that NHS applications will be accepted in place of the standard Roehampton University Ethics Form. The NHS application form and accompanying documents should be sent to the Ethics Officer and will be processed in the same way as a standard university ethics application. NHS applications for Postgraduate Taught Students should also be sent to the Ethics Officer . Please see 4.3 Ethical Approval from Collaborating Organisations for further information.