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On this page:

  1. Tips for Preparing an Application
  2. Consent and Assent Form Templates
  3. Study Document File Naming Best Practices
  4. Data Storage and Retention
  5. Zoom Infographic
  6. FIPPA and Research


Tips for Preparing an Application (pdf)

Top tips for creating and submitting your research ethics application. This guidance contains the most common action items that we issue.


Consent and Assent Form Templates

ORE has created a suite of consent form and assent form templates that should be used for research projects. 

These are word documents that can be tailored to meet the needs of your project.


Study document file naming best practices

For documents submitted as part of your research ethics application, please use the following instructions to name the file that you are uploading. This is different to naming the actual document itself. These are the instructions for naming the file that you will upload as part of your application submission.

Use the document function as the document title. For example, Consent Form, Survey Questions, Interview Questions, Recruitment Materials, followed by a version number. For example:

  • Consent Form V1
  • Survey Questions V1
  • Interview Questions V1

For those studies with multiple iterations of the same document, so multiple consent forms for the different participating groups, please include a further descriptor of the document type. For example:

  • Consent Form (Teachers) V1
  • Consent Form (Managers) V1
  • Recruitment Script (Facebook) V1
  • Recruitment Script (Twitter) V1


Data storage and retention

Data Storage

SFU Vault is in the process of being decommissioned and will be replaced in early 2023. For this reason, researchers should no longer state that they will be using SFU Vault for data storage in any new ethics application. SFU IT has a range of secure data storage options, please visit their website for further information:

For all new ethics applications, we ask that researchers include the following statement in their ethics application form: "Study data will be stored in an SFU supported secure storage facility." This will allow new ethics applications to be submitted before the final storage destination is determined by the researcher.


Data Retention

For those research studies where researchers are planning to retain their data for future use, new research ethics applications need to specify the storage arrangements for both the online version of the data and the local copy of the study dataset.  

The online version will be the de-identified or anonymized version of the dataset that the researcher will make available online via an open access framework for other researchers, including researchers external to SFU, to use for future research projects. Indefinite storage is permitted for data uploaded to an open access framework.

The local dataset is the copy of the raw data that the researcher will retain. The SFU Research Ethics Board does not support indefinite storage of the local dataset, so the researcher will need to specify a finite storage period (i.e. 5 years) in the ethics application form.

The ethics application form also allows researchers to specify if their study data will be destroyed upon completion of the study project.

Information regarding the data storage plans must be included in the study Consent Form, so that participants are aware of the researcher's plans.  Participants will need to provide consent for future use and the data being uploaded to an online access framework, and for the retention period for the local dataset.


Zoom Infographic (pdf)

Guidance on using Zoom for your research activities, including text to include in the consent form.


FIPPA and Research (pdf)

Guidance for researchers on FIPPA and the use of pre-existing records for research.