In the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences there is a great need to have people participate as subjects in research. The department has a reputation for excellence in research and scholarship, as well as in teaching. Student participation in studies conducted by members of the department helps create this reputation for excellence. In fact, much of the research taught in psychology courses is based on participation of undergraduate students. Typically students participate in research as part of their courses. Most faculty in our department believe that it is justified to link research participation to enrollment in psychology courses. We hope you'll get involved in some of the SONA Human Subjects Research being conducted in the department.
While students provide a valuable service by donating their time to research, they too elicit benefits to participation. Students experience first hand what it is like to be a subject and to some extent, learn the context in which psychological data are typically gathered. Researchers provide educational information to subjects explaining their studies. Students can learn the hypothesis and designs of the studies in which they have participated. Further, many undergraduates continue on to advance work in which they conduct their own studies in laboratory or special problems courses. Having prior experience as subjects helps them design their own studies. If you are a student looking for studies to participate in, please see our Human Subjects Research page.
All faculty and students who desire to do research with human subjects must have this research approved by the university IRB and must comply with department procedures concerning human subject research. If you are interested in submitting a proposal for research on human subjects for SONA you may request the SONA/Compliance Administrator Sandy Kalmus, review it for departmental compliance prior to submitting to the IRB. Sandy can be reached by email or phone at (413) 545-4879.
All personnel involved with human subject research must complete CITI training. Uncergradute research assistants will also need to take the in person Ethics Training, once. Once the lab is in compliance, a letter will be issued and should be submitted along with the protocol to the HRPO through Kuali.
PBS researchers can list IRB approved studies on the website by completing our Human Subjects Study Google Form.
For more information, please visit the UMass Research and Engagement page.