In the context of the rapidly evolving circumstances regarding COVID-19 and to further the efforts of Davidson’s commitment to promote social distancing and protect members of our community, the Human Subjects Institutional Review Board (HSIRB) has issued the following guidance related to in-person human subject interactions. 

HSIRB COVID-19 Guidelines

  1. If your protocol does not involve face-to-face contact for recruitment or with enrolled participants (e.g., online surveys, questionnaires, remote interviews or focus groups, etc.), you do not need to submit any modifications and may continue to collect data in accordance with your approved protocol.
  2. If your protocol does involve face-to-face contact for recruitment or with enrolled participants and it is feasible to utilize an online platform (e.g., Zoom/Skype) or other communication method (e.g., by mail) for these interactions, you should consider doing so to maintain research momentum.  A Modification application may be required based on whether the protocol was approved as exempt or non-exempt.   
  3. Modifications for Non-Exempt Protocols 
    If you choose to revise your protocol to allow for remote recruiting, consent, or data collection, submit a Modification of Approved Protocol form.
  4. Modifications for Exempt Protocols 
    If your Notice of Action letter indicates that your study was approved as exempt, you may modify your methods to include remote interactions without submitting a modification.
  5. The IRB will not require a Modification application if you choose to temporarily suspend your research activities approved as Exempt or Non-Exempt. You must, however, communicate this decision via email to

Please use your Davidson login credentials to access online platforms and follow best practices for data protection to ensure the security of your participant interactions. 

For guidance and/or assistance, please contact the HSIRB team at