Protection of Human Subjects:
Human Subjects Research Narrative

Selections from SF 424 Supplement: items dealing with human subjects research.

II. Instructions for Exempt and Nonexempt Human Subjects Research Narratives

If the applicant marked "Yes" for Item 3 of Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, the applicant must provide a human subjects "exempt research" or "nonexempt research" narrative. Insert the narrative(s) in the space provided. If you have multiple projects and need to provide more than one narrative, be sure to label each set of responses as to the project they address.

A. Exempt Research Narrative. If you marked "Yes" for item 3 a. and designated exemption numbers(s), provide the "exempt research" narrative. The narrative must contain sufficient information about the involvement of human subjects in the proposed research to allow a determination by ED that the designated exemption(s) are appropriate. The narrative must be succinct.

B. Nonexempt Research Narrative. If you marked "No" for item 3 a. you must provide the "nonexempt research" narrative. The narrative must address the following seven points. Although no specific page limitation applies to this section of the application, be succinct.

(1) Human Subjects Involvement and Characteristics: Provide a detailed description of the proposed involvement of human subjects. Describe the characteristics of the subject population, including their anticipated number, age range, and health status. Identify the criteria for inclusion or exclusion of any subpopulation. Explain the rationale for the involvement of special classes of subjects, such as children, children with disabilities, adults with disabilities, persons with mental disabilities, pregnant women, prisoners, institutionalized individuals, or others who are likely to be vulnerable

(2) Sources of Materials: Identify the sources of research material obtained from individually identifiable living human subjects in the form of specimens, records, or data. Indicate whether the material or data will be obtained specifically for research purposes or whether use will be made of existing specimens, records, or data.

(3) Recruitment and Informed Consent: Describe plans for the recruitment of subjects and the consent procedures to be followed. Include the circumstances under which consent will be sought and obtained, who will seek it, the nature of the information to be provided to prospective subjects, and the method of documenting consent. State if the Institutional Review Board (IRB) has authorized a modification or waiver of the elements of consent or the requirement for documentation of consent.

(4) Potential Risks: Describe potential risks (physical, psychological, social, legal, or other) and assess their likelihood and seriousness. Where appropriate, describe alternative treatments and procedures that might be advantageous to the subjects.

(5) Protection Against Risk: Describe the procedures for protecting against or minimizing potential risks, including risks to confidentiality, and assess their likely effectiveness. Where appropriate, discuss provisions for ensuring necessary medical or professional intervention in the event of adverse effects to the subjects. Also, where appropriate, describe the provisions for monitoring the data collected to ensure the safety of the subjects.

(6) Importance of the Knowledge to be Gained: Discuss the importance of the knowledge gained or to be gained as a result of the proposed research. Discuss why the risks to subjects are reasonable in relation to the anticipated benefits to subjects and in relation to the importance of the knowledge that may reasonably be expected to result.

(7) Collaborating Site(s): If research involving human subjects will take place at collaborating site(s) or other performance site(s), name the sites and briefly describe their involvement or role in the research.

Copies of the Department of Education's Regulations for the Protection of Human Subjects, 34 CFR Part 97 and other pertinent materials on the protection of human subjects in research are available from the U.S. Department of Education, Protection of Human Subjects Coordinator, Office of the Chief Financial Officer, LBJ Building, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20202-4250, telephone: (202) 260-3353, and on the U.S. Department of Education's Protection of Human Subjects in Research Web Site.

NOTE: The State Applicant Identifier the SF 424 is for State Use only. Please complete it on the OMB Standard 424 in the upper right corner of the form (if applicable).

Last Modified: 03/01/2010