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A proportionate approach to research ethics review shall be adopted such that, as a preliminary step, the level of review is determined by the level of risk presented by the research: the lower the level of risk, the lower the level of scrutiny (delegated review); the higher the level of risk, the higher the level of scrutiny (full board review). A proportionate approach to assessing the ethical acceptability of the research, at either level of review, involves consideration of the foreseeable risks, the potential benefits, and the ethical implications of the research. This applies to both initial research ethics review and continuing review.

All research involving human participants and research involving the collection or use of human biological materials (primary or secondary use), or the analysis of secondary data (data collected for purposes other than the current research purpose) that is conducted by any Faculty, Employee, Student, Post-Doctoral, or Adjunct Faculty at Simon Fraser University must receive research ethics review and approval prior to recruiting participants or accessing secondary data or biological materials.