Research Participants

Thousands of studies are conducted at UM and JMH, many of which have led to important results that help us lead healthier and better lives. We are responsible by federal law for ensuring the protection of the rights, welfare, and well-being of participants involved in these studies. One way this is accomplished is by having all research studies reviewed by an Institutional Review Board (IRB). This group of people often includes behavioral and social scientists, social workers, other professionals, and people from the local community, all working together to make sure that the study is well planned and ethical. Research studies cannot be started until the IRB has approved the study.

The Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) has a website that has videos, brochures and other tools for the public to learn about participating in research and making informed decisions. Click below to access this site.




National Institute of Health (NIH) Clinical Center - Kids in Research (for information about the importance of involving children in research)

As described tools, these are some questions that you should ask before you agree to participate in a research study:

Why is the research being done?
  • What will be done to me as part of the research?
  • How will I benefit from the research?
  • Could the research hurt me?
  • What will the researcher do with my information?
  • Will the research cost me anything?
  • Who pays if I'm unexpectedly injured in the study?
  • How long will the study last?
  • What happens if I decide to leave the study early?
  • Who should I call if I have a question about the research?