Researching Medical Students

The University's Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) advises that if you are considering asking questions of students for the purpose of collecting educational information that will be used to improve education in the Faculty, and will be published in-house (i.e., in the Faculty) only, then this is considered quality assurance and does not need to go to the HREC. If there is any intention to undertake research which could be published publicly (e.g., in a paper presented at a conference or refereed journal article) then there must be an application made to the HREC.

It may be prudent for some "in-house" projects to be submitted to the HREC, e.g. those in which personal details are to be obtained (place of school, income level, family details), or in which correlation with marks is to be undertaken, or longitudinal studies in which the research aims or publication intentions may evolve. If in doubt ask the Ethics Office.

In addition, any research of medical students must be approved by Sydney Medical School’s Evaluation Unit. You must lodge an application form regarding your research with the Evaluation Unit. Please be aware that only two research projects per month will be accepted by the Evaluation Unit so as not to overburden the students. Therefore, it is prudent to get your application in well ahead of the time you wish to conduct research on students. Also, due to Sydney Medical School research conducted on students throughout the year, March and April are the best months in which to survey the students.

Download application form for: Approval to conduct research involving students in the Sydney Medical Program

If you have any questions, please contact , Assessment and Evaluation Officer in the Office of Medical Education.