Institutional Review Board (IRB) for Education Research

Though not the sexiest component of research, the Institutional Review Board (IRB), is essential to protect the rights of research subjects and the researcher and institution. At a Hackathon event this month, Debra Murphy from ASU’s Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development, or OKED, presented on the IRB process and spoke about relevant scenarios and recommendations for conducting education specific research. Following her presentation, two of our faculty members, Bill DeLeeuw and Pam Harris, along with Sarah Polasky from the Office of Research Advancement, spoke about their own experiences working with and building relationships with school partners. They passed along their suggestions for others interested in conducting research in school. Their recommendations include:

  • connect with someone in MLFTC first to learn about existing school partnerships, as they may know of specific schools or districts in need of your research expertise
  • the importance of taking time to build the relationship before addressing your research interests
  • co-creating research plans with the district to understand their needs and work to blend in your research interests
  • not overpromising what you will be able to provide; it is better to under-promise and deliver more benefit to the schools than not being able to fulfil their expectations
  • be open to travelling across the valley and state; there are many wonderful schools interested and deserving of academic resources that may be provided via your research