Department of Psychology

Research Committee

The Committee's Charge

To oversee and facilitate departmental research procedures and student involvement in research activities. As such, there are three primary components for the committee to address each year.


I. Using the Human Subject Pool (HSP) The purpose of the oversight is to:

  1. Monitor the amount of research conducted in the department each year to better assess the supply and demand of researchers and participants. This will be done by recording the studies posted each semester and maintaining a record of the total number of participation hours completed by students.
  2. Provide new students and faculty researchers with the current procedures for conducting research in the department and accessing the HSP. Department research documents are available on the department web page to download. A brown bag lunch during the third week of classes may also help to orient researchers to departmental and university procedures governing research with human participants. Topics would include the following.Periodically review and make recommendations for changes in department research procedures. Such recommendations will be open for discussion by all interested faculty.
    1. Student Participation: students will be assessed by recording the amount of participation each student completes. Student participants will be required to create an account on SONA (the department’s research participant management system). Through SONA, students can sign up for research opportunities to earn credit.  Within SONA, students can keep track of what research options they have participated in and look for opportunities to earn SONA credit. An electronic copy of student participation will be distributed to each professor who has students who participate in research for course credit. A graduate assistant will be assigned to manage SONA systems participant use and to assist with any questions.
    2. Experimenter Use: experimenters will also be required to create an account for SONA in order to manage their research with HSP participants.  Experimenters may post research opportunities for HSP participants to see in SONA.  Additionally, experimenters will need to monitor and credit HSP participants through SONA.  A graduate assistant will be assigned to manage SONA systems experimenter use and to assist with any questions.
    1. Research under Exempt Status
    2. Research in need of Institutional Review Board (IRB) approvalAcquiring an IRB approval number for posting signups and recruiting participants.
      1. Expedited Review
      2. Full Review

II. Prioritizing the use of the HSP by student researchers. Based upon previous use and need, the research committee shall determine the priority of student-research needs. Graduate and Honors Theses should have automatic use of the HSP. Other student researchers (including class projects) may petition the research committee for permission to recruit from the HSP. Permission may be granted if the supply of participants exceeds current demands from faculty and thesis projects. Other requests will be considered in order of the following prioritized list with graduate work considered first and undergraduate work considered second. Student research is further prioritized in the following.

  1. a. Graduate
  2. b. Undergraduate
    1. Graduate Thesis
    2. Independent Research (PSY 560)
    3. Advanced Research Methods (PSY 500)
    1. Honors Thesis
    2. Independent Research (PSY 460)
    3. Research Methods (PSY 323)

III. Publicizing and facilitating research-related service activities via e-mail messages, department web-site, etc. Basically, the committee is to assist the department in publicizing research endeavors like the semester poster sessions for PSY 323.

  1. Department Poster Session for Student Researchers (i.e., PSY 323 projects)
  2. University Research Day
  4. Midwestern Psychological Association Psi Chi Presentations


Committee Members and ACTIVITIES


I. Committee appointments are made at the beginning of every fall semester.

The committee shall meet within the first 2 weeks of appointment to elect a chair. Subsequent meetings will occur as needed.


II. Committee members.

The committee shall consist of 3 faculty members, 2 students (ideally, 1 graduate and 1 undergraduate) and the graduate student assigned to the Psychology Undergraduate Research Experience who will assist in compiling reports regarding the use of the HSP. Of the three faculty memberships, the member in charge of the human subjects’ management system will be automatic appointment.


III. Meetings and activities.

The committee shall meet as necessary to monitor and review the use of the HSP and facilitate research-related activities. Minutes from each meeting will be distributed to the faculty and filed with the Department secretary. In addition, a report shall be submitted to the department regarding research activities from the school year. This is a compilation of research activity and the number of participant credit hours needed and used through the fall and spring semesters that was recorded by the graduate assistant. The chair of the research committee shall submit the HSP report by the end of May each year.


               Committee Members