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Research ethics requirements

All researchers undertaking a research project at ECU need to meet ethics requirements. This involves submitting either an ethics declaration or an application for ethics approval to the appropriate Ethics Committee.

Notification of approval must be received prior to the commencement of any recruitment of participants, data collection or use of animals for scientific purposes.

For more information visit the Understanding ethics requirements web page.

If your research project involves the use of:

  • human participants; or
  • previously collected confidential data; or
  • animals for scientific purposes

you will need to submit an application for ethics approval.

All research and research-related activity should be tested in the Proportional Review Checklist (even if you know ethics review is not required). By answering some brief questions about your planned activity, the Checklist will determine whether the activity requires review and the most appropriate review pathway. Alternatively, your project may qualify for an ‘Out of Scope’ or ‘Exempt from Review’ notification.

Enter the ECU Research Ethics Management System and complete the Proportional Review Checklist.

Ethics approval

A project account can’t be opened in ECU’s finance system, nor can funds be released until all research ethics requirements have been met.

Development phase approval

In some instances, approval may be granted to allow funds to be released for the development phase of a project, but not to undertake any work that would otherwise require ethics approval.


Contact the Research Ethics Team for all queries concerning research ethics and obtaining ethics approval, including development phase approval.

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