Required Human Subjects Training

UNL affirms its commitment to maintaining the highest ethical principles in the conduct of research with human participants. Consistent with this commitment and our own Federal-Wide Assurance, NIH policy, and the AAU Task Force on Research Accountability, UNL requires education of key project personnel, including investigators, students, and other project staff who are engaged in research with human participants, biospecimens, or data. Please review UNL HRPP Policy #3.009: Required Training in the Protection of Human Participants here.

The responsibility for ensuring the rights, safety, and well-being of research participants is shared by the investigator, the Institutional Review Board (IRB), the University, and all research personnel. Education of the research community in the principles and procedures for protecting human research participants is a necessary step toward meeting this joint responsibility.

Contents:

Who must complete human subjects training?

Research personnel who have direct contact with human participants (e.g., for subject recruitment, data collection) or who have access to information that links participants’ names with their data are considered to be engaged in the research process per policy #3.001. These individuals must be listed on the IRB application and must complete training associated with the conduct of human subjects research. Research personnel would include:

Exceptions:

What training must be completed?

Currently, there are two options for human subjects training: the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) owned by the Biomedical Research Alliance of New York (BRANY) or Community Involvement in Research Training (CIRT) designed by the Center for Clinical and Translational Science at the University of Illinois Chicago. Most individuals directly affiliated with UNL will be required to complete the CITI training.

CITI offers two human subjects research courses: Group 1 Biomedical or Group 2 Social Behavioral. CIRT offers one course.

CITI Training – https://about.citiprogram.org/ Community Involvement in Research Training (CIRT)https://training.ccts.uic.edu/course/CourseDetails.aspx?CourseID=3
Required for: individuals who are engaged in human subjects research and listed on the IRB application. This includes: principal investigator, secondary investigator, co-investigator, supervising investigators, and participating personnel. Community partners could also complete this training.Community partners could complete CIRT instead of CITI.
Frequency: Once every three years. Refresher course may be taken if basic course has been completed.Frequency: Once every three years.
Two Courses are offered: Group 1 Biomedical, Group 2 Social Behavioral. Individuals should complete the course most related to their research.One course is offered. Similar topics to those offered in CITI are included. However, the targeted audience of this training is individuals who are not researchers. The information is provided in a non-scientific manner. This is not an alternative to CITI for all personnel.

Additional Information about CITI

To begin and ensure ease of CITI training registration, first identify whether you are a new user or have already registered as a user through CITI. The process will vary based on this status.

Upon navigating to the CITI website, please be aware that UNL does not subscribe to the use of Single Sign On (SSO). Usernames and passwords are chosen by the user and are not tied to UNL credentials.

New User Instructions:

  1. Create your user account through the CITI website.
    • You will be requested to complete a series of questions or provide information specific to your UNL affiliation. Here are just a few tips to ensure a smooth account set-up:
      • UNL is listed by the full institution name under the “Participating Institutions” heading. Please select “University of Nebraska – Lincoln.”
      • This training does not require payment from the trainee/user if you are completing this training for UNL purposes only. In other words, we do not require CME/CEU credits or registration as an Independent Learner. If this is selected as an option, this is the responsibility of the user to pay for any fees assessed.
      • The email address you enter does not have to be your UNL email address but it should be one that is used frequently so that you do not miss important reminders to refresh your training. Most UNL users will enter the email associated with their Canvas and/or NUgrant account.
      • Within the registration form, you will be asked to provide your institutional email address. Please feel free to use the same email address as before. However, it should be noted that adding your university email address here can help RCS staff verify that your course completion record is added to the correct account within NUgrant.
      • It is helpful if you use the same name as which you are registered for class or a preferred name that appears in the UNL Directory. Nicknames or other identifiers that are not associated with official UNL records or NUgrant often delay entry of completion records into NUgrant due to the inability of staff to verify or match user completion records.
  2. Indicate that you conduct human subjects research at UNL.
    • Choose “Human Subjects Research – required by the IRB.”
    • More than one selection can be made when signing up through the new user registration process. If you have selected more than one course and it pertains to the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR), Conflict of Interest (COI), or Export Control, please refer to the respective RCR training instructions, COI training instructions, or Export Control training instructions pages for further guidance.
    • If you have not completed a Basic course for human subjects training before, you must select “No, I am a new investigator at UNL. I have not completed an approved Basic Course previously”.
    • You may choose to take either the:
      • Group 1 Basic Course Options for Biomedical Investigators and Key Personnel; or, you may choose the
      • Group 2 Basic Course for Social/Behavioral Research Investigators and Key Personnel depending on your area of research and what fits best. Research Compliance Services accepts either training course.
    • Based on these answers, the following screen will place you in either the Basic or Refresher course. Please verify that the correct course is selected. Remember, Refresher courses will not be accepted until a human subjects Basic course has been completed.

Registered User Instructions:

  1. Login to your user account through the CITI website.
    • If you have forgotten your username/password, you can retrieve this through the CITI website.
      • IF YOU STARTED YOUR CITI ACCOUNT WITH UNL: If you no longer use any emails that are currently registered with your account AND you were originally affiliated with UNL, please contact Research Compliance Services. RCS staff have administrative access and will be able to add a new email address that allows you to maintain the current account with all past reports.
      • IF YOU STARTED YOUR CITI ACCOUNT AT A DIFFERENT INSTITUTION: CITI allows retrieval of account information via their website; however, if you no longer use any emails that are currently registered with your account AND you did not originally affiliate with UNL you should contact CITI to regain access to your previous account.
    • If you can access your previous account, you may receive credit at UNL for any previously completed human subjects training but will not receive previous credit for any COI or RCR training.
  2. If you are a registered user, it is likely that you have already completed a Basic training course. If your training is set to expire, you should have received a reminder through CITI and/or NUgrant if your training was logged. To select the correct human subjects training course please follow these steps:
    • Start by ensuring you have selected the “University of Nebraska – Lincoln Courses” on the Main Menu if you are affiliated with multiple institutions.
    • The Refresher course may already be an option for you to choose within your course list. Simply click on “Start Course.”
    • If the Refresher course is not already a choice on your main menu, Click “Add a Course”
    • Once on the next screen, please scroll down and select, “Human Subjects Research – required by the IRB.”
    • More than one selection can be made when signing up through the new user registration process. If you have selected more than one course and it pertains to Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) or Conflict of Interest (COI), please refer to the RCR training instructions or COI training instructions page for further guidance.
    • If you have completed a Basic course before, you can select that you have completed the CITI Basic course previously.
    • You may choose either to take the:
      • Group 1 Refresher Course Options for Biomedical Investigators and Key Personnel; OR, you may choose the
      • Group 2 Refresher Course for Social/Behavioral Research Investigators and Key Personnel depending on your area of research and what fits best. Research Compliance Services accepts either training course.
    • Based on these answers, the following screen will place you in either the Basic or Refresher course. Please verify that the correct course is selected. Remember, Refresher courses cannot be accepted until a Basic course has been completed.

The following CITI courses must be completed only if you are instructed to do so:

Additional Information about CIRT

As of January 10, 2022, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Institutional Review Board began providing access to a new training program for community-engaged research. CIRT, or Community Involvement in Research Training, is tailored to meet the unique training needs of community research partners.

In community-engaged research, sometimes referred to as community-based participatory research (CBPR), academic researchers collaborate with partners from non-academic settings including community agencies, health care delivery organizations, public health departments and schools.

IMPORTANT NOTE: CIRT is NOT an alternative to the CITI training courses required for faculty, students and most staff conducting human subjects research at UNL.

CIRT is focused on skills-building and is relevant to the roles and responsibilities community partners may have in research projects. It is important to note that while the audience of CIRT differs, it is no less robust than CITI training. The content considers community partners’ potentially limited experience with research, addresses research ethics and responsible conduct of research issues in plain language, and uses real-world examples.

CIRT Registration

Enroll for CIRT at: https://training.ccts.uic.edu/RegisterType.

Documentation of Training Completion

NUgrant, CITI, and CIRT are not electronically linked. Training completed by all users is manually recorded and maintained via NUgrant by Research Compliance Services staff and is updated at least every 48 hours during business days if not more based on individual deadlines. Your training will not appear in NUgrant immediately after completing a course. Please feel free to contact the Research Compliance Services staff at irb@unl.edu if after 48 hours your training still does not appear in NUgrant.

Note: Projects can still be submitted to the Research Compliance Services office to begin official IRB review even if training is not accurate within NUgrant. RCS staff will verify training or notify the research team if training must be completed for all new form approvals.

Documentation of CITI:

Remember:

Documentation of CIRT:

For community partners who will be a part of the research team, UNL IRB coordinators will be able to access the training information on the CIRT website to confirm course completion.

Within the NUgrant New Project Form or Change Request form, the process to add the community partners who will be participating in the research project and completing CIRT is as follows, as applicable: