Explore Student Affairs Assessment

Institutional Review Board Applications

Institutional Review Board applications are required for research studies and are strongly encouraged for non-research projects that cover sensitive topics. Before filing an application, faculty and staff must be current with their CITI certification. The application typically includes the following:

  • Answering questions about the study
  • Providing a copy of the survey, consent form and marketing messages
  • Obtaining a letter of cooperation from external organizations
  • Submitting a data request to the Registrar’s Office
  • Working with Legal Counsel ensure a data use agreement is in place (if the organization will be contacting students)

The process can take quite a while to complete, so start working on these items as early as possible. Examples of applications are available on Student Affairs SharePoint Assessment site and Amanda Thomas is available to guide you through the processes.

Consent forms are the first part the survey and interview process. This form helps the coordinator ensure that participants understand the project before participating. It provides critical information to help the participants understand their rights as participants, how their information will be protected, benefits and risks of the assessment, who they can contact with questions and much more. Creating a consent form can be challenging, especially on the first try. In order to help make the process easier, WCU's Institutional Review Board has created the Consent Form Builder. Click here to get started.

Focus Groups

Sharing Results

Here are some tools to help with summarizing assessment results:

External Evaluations

You might consider hiring external individuals or organizations for the following reasons:

  • The funding agency requires an external evaluator as part of a grant proposal.
  • Participants would be more comfortable with a study that is conducted externally.
  • A fresh perspective may help move the organization or project forward.
  • The expertise, tools, time, or support is not available internally.

The American Evaluation Association maintains a list of external evaluators by state.

When selecting an evaluator, take the following criteria into consideration:

  • Company history
  • Experience working on similar projects
  • Number of staff
  • Staff qualifications
  • Quality of work samples
  • Workload and ability to complete the project on time
  • Technology
  • Data security practices and confidentiality agreements
  • Evaluator’s references
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