UBC Resident Scholar Project Ethics Application Process

All Projects involving humans (even you or your fellow residents!) must have Ethics Board approval BEFORE starting.  This includes interviews, photos, video and simple surveys.  Projects using clinical data from patient charts also need Ethics Board approval.  Please use the following QA/QI checklists to see if your project requires research ethics approval:

Behavioural Checklist

Clinical Checklist

If you are not sure, ask your Site Scholar Faculty.

Ethics Board Application Steps

1. Complete a Project Proposal.

2. Submit the project proposal to your Site Scholar Faculty

3. After you and your Site Scholar Faculty have finalized the proposal, and it has been determined that Ethics Approval is necessary, follow the directions below depending on which ethics board you are applying to.

4a. UBC Ethics Board

  • Ensure you have a UBC Campus-Wide Log-in username and password
  • Go to and follow the steps to create a new account.
  • Start a new ethics application
  • Your project title must start with “UBC Family Practice Resident Research Project:” then you put your title after the colon. This is to notify any REB (e.g., UBC, health authority) that this is a resident project.
  • Decide if your project is Behavoiural or Clinical
  • You can then begin to create an ethics application within the Researcher Information Services (RISe) online system. You can access Guidance Notes for Application for Behavioural Ethical Review, which explain every step of filling in the application form, and a template consent form.

If you still have questions regarding your UBC Ethics Application, please contact:

Maria Valente, Coordinator, BREB
Telephone: 604-827-5112

Live RISe Support Desk with a dedicated phone number 604-878-7473 (RISE) and email address

4b. Health Authority Ethics Board

Any project involving Health Authority patients, records, staff, or facilities, requires Health Authority Ethics Review.

UBC has entered into agreements with Fraser Health Authority (FHA), Interior Health Authority (IHA) and Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) wherein UBC will accept the health authority REBs review and approval (or written confirmation that HA REB approval is not required if the project is not considered research as defined under TCPS2) as the only ethical review and approval required for those studies. However, please note, the resident must email the UBC REB to demonstrate that applicable Health Authority ethics approval has been obtained, i.e., email a copy of your health authority ethics certificate as soon as you receive it.  The UBC Office of Research Ethics has created Guidance Notes for Family Practice Residents which details how and what must be emailed to the UBC REB. They also have sample REB forms and applications and consent form templates available.

*For more examples of previous REB submissions, please visit your site specific information page on ENTRADA under the folder Resident Resources.

Data Storage

All your data MUST be kept on an encrypted USB Flash Drive only. You MUST NOT keep any data on a laptop or home computer. The USB Flash Drive should be labeled with your name and stored with the paper consent forms in the locked filing cabinet in site office. Be sure to note on your data what date it can be destroyed.

UBC IT offers encryption services for free to UBC faculty and staff.

Please remember that this is applicable not only to research data but to confidential patient data as well. Thus, anytime you have patient data on your device (medicolegal reports, for instance), a minimum of AES 128 bit encryption or equivalent is the standard (AES-256 bit encryption is recommended). Click here for more information.

Resident please give to your Site Coordinator your USB at the end of your Scholar Project.

The ethical approval process may take several months. Ethics applications are not difficult, but they can be tedious!