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Introduction to the CPHS

The CPHS serves as the IRB (Institutional Review Board) for Dartmouth College.

Definition of "Research"

The CPHS determines if a study meets the federal definition of research: "a systematic investigation including research development, testing and evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge."

Researcher Responsibilities

  1. To conduct research according to ethical principles, federal regulations, and internal procedures.
  2. To ensure participants are informed prior to enrollment and that communication continues throughout the study.
  3. To protect the rights and welfare of human research participants.
  4. To keep Co-investigators and all research staff informed about the nature and goals of the project.
  5. To obtain CPHS approval for revisions prior to initiation.
  6. To report progress in a continuing review of approved research to the CPHS Office at least once a year.
  7. To report to the CPHS any serious injuries or other unanticipated problems involving risks to participants or others.


The consent process must provide potential participants with sufficient information to make informed choices about either beginning or continuing participation in research. The process involves a dynamic and continuing exchange of information between the research team and the participant throughout the research experience. The consent form is a tool to assist the researcher.

Education Requirement

All investigators and research personnel must complete training in human subjects protection prior to initiating research activities. Go to: Education Requirements