Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Link to IRB Application


The El Camino Community College District (ECCCD) Institutional Review Board (IRB) is charged with protecting the rights and welfare of human subjects involved in research studies collecting data from ECCCD students and/or employees.

Guided by the principles of "The Belmont Report"(opens in new window) (or "Ethical Principles and Guidelines for the Protection of Human Subjects of Research"), the ECCCD IRB reviews all proposed research involving human subjects in accordance with federal regulations, state laws, and local and District policies and ensures:

  • That the rights and welfare of human subjects are protected;
  • That risks of participating in the research have been considered and minimized;
  • That the potential for benefits of participating in the research has been identified and maximized; and,
  • All human subjects are volunteers who choose to participate in research only after being provided with legally effective informed consents.

The IRB does not evaluate the soundness or quality of the proposed research nor does IRB approval of a study indicate ECCCD's endorsement or sponsorship of the study.

Types of IRB Review

All ECC human subjects research must undergo IRB approval and review prior to the start of research activities. There are four types of reviews (more information here): 

Acceptance Review: For proposals with current IRB approval or exemption from another organization. Reviews are conducted by one or two committee members of the IRB. Takes approximately 2 weeks from submission date.

Exemption from Further Review: To qualify for exemption from further review, proposals must fall under one of the exemption categories for human subject research activities as outlined by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), Office of Human Research Protections(opens in new window). Exemption reviews are conducted by both co-chairs of the IRB. Takes approximately 2 - 3 weeks from submission date.

Expedited: To quality for an expedited review, the proposed research activities most pose minimal risk to human subjects. Expedited reviews are conducted by both co-chairs plus a third member of the IRB. Takes approximately 2 - 4 weeks from submission date.

Full Review: Research that does not fit into either the expedited or exemption categories are required to be reviewed by the full IRB. Currently, the full IRB meets on an ad hoc basis. Because this level of review requires coordination of all five members of the IRB, the timeline varies from proposal to proposal.

Members of the ECC IRB 

The IRB is composed of five members from diverse backgrounds to ensure comprehensive and adequate review of research activities. Currently, the ECCCD IRB is comprised of two faculty members from the sciences and the humanities, two college administrator with research expertise, and and one administrator with a non-research background. All members of the IRB have received extensive training on the policies and procedures involving ethical human subjects research. 

  • Dr. Lillian Islas (Director of Grants)
  • Erica Brenes (Faculty, English)
  • Vacant (Faculty, Science)
  • Robin Dreizler (Dean, Enrollment Services)
  • Dr. Crystle Martin (Dean, Library and Learning Resources)