NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL OFFICE OF INVESTIGATIONS CLOSEOUT MEMORANDUM 11 11 I Case Number: A05090062 Page 1 of 1 This case was generated out of a proactive review effort to assess compliance with NSF's requirements for conducting research involving human subjects. In the award selected,' it appears that work is being conducting that falls within the definition of research involving human subjects. In particular, there is a student evaluation process that appears to go beyond simple internal course evaluations. Based on statements in the proposal and the first annual report, the awardee2 appears to be tracking students beyond the summer research experience and plans to present its generalized knowledge to the research community. The awardee failed to complete the NSF cover page section requesting information about research involving human subjects, and as a result the NSF Action Processing Form does not code the research as involving human subjects. In response to our inquiry, the awardee stated that the research did indeed involve human subjects and it had not obtained the Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval before initiated the funded work. It agreed to halt the research until it obtained a satisfactory review. We notified both the NSF Program officer3 and NSF's Human Subjects coordinator4 who both concurred that the research must be halted until the IRE3 review was completed. Approximately one month later, the awardee informed OIG that the IRE3 review had completed an expedited review and approved the research for one year. At our request the awardee conducted a proactive review of all its other NSF awards and determined that they are in compliance with IRB requirements. Additionally, the awardee under took training for its pre- and post award staff as well as faculty and published reminders in its internal electronic newsletter regarding human subjects reviews and training dates. At our request NSF's databases were updated to contain both the IRB approval letter and the Action Processing Form was recoded to indicate this was a nonexempt human subjects project. This case is closed. NSF OIG Form2 (1 1/02)
Human Subject Reg. Violations
Published by the National Science Foundation, Office of Inspector General on 2006-04-21.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)