How long does IRB approval take?

The approval process can take several weeks, depending on whether you meet the submission deadline, the complexity of your project, the subjects you intend to work with, the completeness of your application materials, and other factors. Plan to submit your application at least three weeks before you want to start your research.


The Chair of the IRB reviews submitted research applications throughout the academic year, about once every two weeks. The full IRB reviews applications once a month during the academic year. The IRB does not meet during the summer.

Many submitted protocols, because they involve relatively little risk, can be evaluated by the Chair or a subcommittee of the full committee. In these cases, you'll normally hear back from the IRB Chair within two weeks of submission.

Research that involves higher risk factors or so-called "vulnerable populations" (e.g., children) requires the approval of the full IRB, which meets once a month during the academic year. Research funded by federal grants must also be reviewed by the entire IRB. For an application to be considered by the full IRB, the complete and final application must be submitted at least one week before the committee meets. Incomplete, draft, or partial applications received by this date will not be considered to have met the deadline.



Meeting, December 12 - Deadline, December 5


Meeting, January 16 - Deadline, midnight January 9

Meeting, February 20 - Deadline, midnight February 13

Meeting, March 20 -  Deadline, midnight March 13

Meeting, April 24 - Deadline, midnight April 17

Meeting, May 15 - Deadline, midnight May 8