The following instructions will enhance the readability of the consent and decrease the required revisions. Please use the below instructions to develop standard consent form wording.

All consent forms must be formatted using the standard UMBC form

The UMBC Office for Research Protections and Compliance will assign an IRB protocol number; this will appear on each page of the UMBC consent form. Obtaining and documenting informed consent is required for all participants in a research project. During the course of the consent process, investigators must:

  1. Provide a copy of the consent form to the participant and/or legal representative;
  2. Keep a copy of the consent form for the approved protocol file
  3. Seek consent only if the potential participant has the mental and legal capacity to give consent; if not, consent must be obtained by a legal representative;
  4. Obtain parental permission for minor participants;
  5. Provide sufficient opportunity to the potential participant or legal representative to consider whether or not to participate;
  6. Ensure that the possibility of coercion or undue influence is absent;
  7. Enhance each participant’s comprehension of the information; and
  8. Utilize a consent form appropriate to the age level.

Helpful Hints
Consent Document Section explanations
Readability Statistics

Exempt Research

Although a study is granted an exemption from IRB review, investigators are ethically bound to follow the principles listed in the Belmont Report, particularly the first principle, respect for persons, which emphasizes the importance of ensuring that subjects are fully informed about the nature of a research project in order to make an informed decision to participate. The use of a signed consent document, for example in cases of anonymous data collection, would not be required, but those participants must be informed about the purpose of the study. An investigator will provide a participant an IRB approved information sheet or use an oral consent script explaining the purpose of the study, how the data will used, how the data will be kept anonymous, etc.

Other consent formats

Several formats and templates are available on the IRB web site that may be used for specific situations (web based surveys, oral consent and/or telephone consent. Please go to the IRB Forms Page to download the appropriate sample.

last updated 03/02/2012

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