SoTL and the Institutional Review Board: Considerations before navigating the application process for classroom research in higher education

Kathryn E. Linder, E. Deborah Elek, Lucia Calderon


One of the more challenging areas of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) research can be navigating the components of human subjects research protections implemented by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). The authors of this article, a faculty developer and a current and former research compliance coordinator, discuss the history of IRB in relation to SoTL research and explicate some of the foundational components of IRB protocols for SoTL projects. In particular, the authors explore what constitutes “research” for SoTL projects, explain the different IRB types of review, and offer some sample SoTL projects with respect to their IRB implications.


Institutional Review Board; IRB; human subjects

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ISSN 1527-9316