Researchers who work with human subjects required to train through online program

May 13, 2011 | UToday
By Ashley Traynum

The University of Toledo has initiated a web-based training program for researchers who involve human subjects in their work.

The Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative, or CITI, training has been available through the UT Department of Human Research Protections website since July 2010, and investigators will need to complete the initial course by September.

The online program addresses the specific training needs of social, behavioral and educational researchers as well as biomedical researchers.

“The CITI Program is used by more than 1,000 institutions around the world. All current UT investigators will now be required to complete the basic CITI course first and then a refresher course every three years. The rapidly changing research environment and our commitment to continuing research education has prompted this new initiative,” said Carolyn Pinkston, director of operations for the Department for Human Research Protections.

A primary responsibility of the UT Department for Human Research Protections is to ensure all research faculty, staff and students engaged in human subject research receive the necessary training prior to their participation on an investigative team.

To allow enough time for current investigators to accomplish the initial CITI course, a completion deadline of Sept. 1 has been set for all UT researchers working with human subjects. The training can take between three and five hours, but the modules can be addressed incrementally until the process is finished and the completion certificate is issued.

The training is required for those who work with live human beings, human samples or with data derived from human beings.

“One standard that hasn’t changed is the requirement for training before an individual can participate as a member of the research team. Another important issue to remember is that if the research involves access to protected health information, the privacy office must be contacted regarding the institution’s HIPAA training requirements,” Pinkston said.

For instructions on how to complete the training, visit the UT CITI training page here. Once the appropriate research training is complete, the final report will be archived on the UT-CITI training website and also can be printed as documentation for other institutions, funding agencies or personal records.

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