Using College Students as Research Subjects


     For faculty members and/or students who propose research projects which involve students at WSU, please take time and give thought to how you give extra credit for participation in the project.  Students have the legal right of refusal without fear of repercussion in any form.  In other words, you must provide other opportunities for nonparticipating students to acquire the same extra credit as those who participate.  Students also have the right to discontinue participation as research subjects without losing an extra credit opportunity.  The IRB at WSU will not approve an application which does not explicitly state the options students will be given to earn extra credit.  Moreover, the options for earning extra credit should be of equal difficulty in comparison with participation in the project.  Inequitable extra credit options are considered unethical.  We strongly recommend the instructor provide detailed information regarding extra credit in the syllabus at the beginning of the semester and submit a copy of the syllabus with the application.  If the project is proposed later on during the semester, detailed information regarding options for extra credit must be supplied to the students in the form of a signed consent or information letter.  A copy of the Informed Consent Statement or an Information Letter for Students (if a consent form is not required) should always accompany the IRB application.


Page Updated 23 Aug. 2005

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