Office of Sponsored Programs and Research

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Certificates of Confidentiality

With the National Institutes of Health

When a researcher’s project involves biomedical, behavioral, clinical or other sensitive health-related research with human participants where there may be a concern about compulsory legal demands for the identifying information or characteristics of a participant, they can apply for a Certificate of Confidentiality (COC) with the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  This COC may help protect against compelled “involuntary disclosure” (e.g., subpoenas, court orders) of such identifying information or characteristics.

Any Clark University Principal Investigator (PI) conducting health-related research in which sensitive information is being gathered from human participants may, subject to NIH eligibility requirements, apply.  Applications should be completed by the PI and then sent to the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research for review prior to the Dean of Research’s review and signature as Clark’s Authorized Institutional Official.

To learn more about the COC, eligibility requirements, a researcher’s responsibilities under the COC, and how to apply please visit https://humansubjects.nih.gov/coc/index.

For Clark PI’s whose work is currently covered by a COC, if a legal action is brought to release identifying information or characteristics protected under the COC please contact the Dean of Research as soon as possible.

Clark has revised its Intellectual Property Policy

Clark's revised Intellectual Property Policy is effective as of September 1, 2015. More information including the full text of the new policy may be found here.

Update to Human Subjects Anonymous Survey Web Tool

In December 2013, Qualtrics survey software replaced Checkbox for use with anonymous surveys. Please visit the Qualtrics Service page to learn more about the software.

Please see the Human Subjects/IRB Anonymous Survey Application page for submission information.

Policy on Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) in Sponsored Programs and Research

On August 24, 2012, Clark implemented a revised Policy on Financial Conflict of Interest in Sponsored Programs and Research.

All faculty members and other individuals (staff, researchers, students, postdoctoral fellows and visiting researchers) who are responsible for the design, conduct or reporting of research or other educational programs/ activities which are funded or proposed for funding by external funding agencies/institutions, are required to disclose whether they, their spouse/domestic partner, or any of their dependent children have any Significant Financial Interests related to their institutional responsibilities.

A Financial Conflict of Interest in Sponsored Programs and Research Disclosure Form must be completed by each Investigator (persons responsible for design, conduct or reporting) involved in the research project or educational program/activity with each application for funding.

It is the responsibility of the Investigator to update this information with the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research at any time that it changes. It is the responsibility of the Principal Investigator to ensure that each Investigator working on his/her project submits this disclosure form and any necessary updates. All Investigators must update this form at least annually. For more information see Clark’s Policy on Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) in Sponsored Programs and Research or contact the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research.

Important Requirements for NSF Grant Recipients

1. Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Training

As of January 4, 2010, all grant applications to NSF must certify that the institution has a plan,"to provide appropriate training and oversight in the responsible and ethical conduct of research to undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers who will be supported by NSF to conduct research.” See Grantee Standards

With the approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research and the Research Board, OSPR established a subscription with an online resource, Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI), to provide access to training in RCR core areas.

Principal Investigators (PIs) are responsible for not only overseeing and mentoring their students and researchers in the responsible and ethical conduct of research, but also for ensuring that all undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers supported by their NSF awards are successfully completing the designated modules of the online course.

Please review Clark’s National Science Foundation (NSF) Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Training Requirement Policy and Procedures [DOC] statement for information on how to access the CITI program, as well as guidelines for PIs on their role in Clark’s compliance with this new requirement.

2. Project Outcomes Report for the General Public

This is a requirement of PIs that, “Within 90 days following expiration of the grant, a project outcomes report for the general public must be submitted electronically via Research.gov. This report serves as a brief summary, prepared specifically for the public, of the nature and outcomes of the project.” More information on the format and content of this report