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Fall 2021

Note: The submission deadline is only relevant for ethics applications that require full board review at a monthly MREB meeting. The vast majority of projects submitted to MREB (>95%) are considered minimal risk and qualify for delegated review, can be submitted at any time, and do not have to wait for a meeting to receive MREB approval. The time between the submission deadline and the meeting allows at least a week for MREB members to review the application prior to the meeting, and time for the research ethics officer to conduct the administrative check and work with the researcher to address completeness issues in the application prior to review, if necessary. Please contact the MREB Secretariat if you think your project is greater than minimal risk and want to confirm if you will need to submit by the deadline. See the TCPS2 for a discussion of what constitutes minimal risk research.

Meeting Date Application Submission Deadline
August 2021 No Meeting
September 28, 2021 September 10, 2021
October 27, 2021 October 8, 2021
November 23, 2021 November 5, 2021
December 16, 2021 November 26, 2021


MREB and SREC Review Times

The review times below are approximate and can fluctuate based on the current volume of applications and the review workload of the MREB (or SREC) Chairs. If an incomplete application is submitted, this will add to the times below as the Research Ethics Officer will request revisions before the application can be sent for ethics review.

Standard Applications and Course-Based Applications: MREB/SREC provides review feedback about 4 weeks after a complete application is submitted.

Applications with External REB Clearance: MREB provides review feedback about 1-2 weeks after a complete application is submitted.

Amendments to Existing Applications: MREB/SREC provides review feedback about 1-2 weeks after a complete amendment form is submitted.

Review of Revised Applications and Amendments: Reviewing Chairs aim to review and respond to revised submissions in about 1 week.

Conditional Release of Funds Requests: These applications are processed by the Research Ethics Officer and are usually approved within 1-2 days.


The following is a list of Members of the MREB. Please note that members are listed with their department or affiliation.

  • Violetta Igneski (Chair), Philosophy
  • Sue Becker (Vice-Chair), Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
  • Baraa Al-Khazraji, Kinesiology
  • Jewel Amoah, Community Member
  • Paul Andrews, Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
  • Kathy Ball, Office of the University Librarian
  • Mike Campbell, Community Member
  • Mirna Carranza, School of Social Work
  • Jo Cenaiko, Philosophy
  • Amr El-Kebbi, DeGroote School of Business
  • Sarah Glen, Bachelor of Health Sciences Program
  • Amy Gullage, MacPherson Institute
  • Stine Hansen, MacPherson Institute
  • Hanna Haponenko, Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
  • Sadhna Jayatunge, Community Member
  • Kim Jones, Chemical Engineering
  • Lydia Kapiriri, Health, Aging & Society
  • Allison Leanage, Sociology
  • Zahra Motamed, Mechanical Engineering
  • Wayde Nie, UTS/RHPCS
  • Valerie O’Brien, MIRI
  • David Ogborn, Communication Studies and Multimedia
  • Michelle Ogrodnik, Kinesiology
  • Naomi Overend, Community Member
  • Erin Reid, DeGroote School of Business
  • Karen Richmond, McMaster Association of Part-Time Students
  • Aaron Roberts, Philosophy
  • Ranil Sonnadara, Research and High-Performance Computing Support
  • Hongjin Sun, Psychology, Neuroscience & Behavior
  • Mary Vaccaro, School of Social Work
  • Allison Van, SPARK, Social Sciences
  • Rachel VanEvery, Public Health and Indigenous Representative
  • Rob Wilton, School of Earth, Environment & Society
  • Kaitlin Wynia Baluk, Health, Aging & Society

Administrative Support (non-members)

For general inquiries, please email or call 905-525-9140 x23142


MREB Terms of Reference


The mission of the McMaster Research Ethics Board (MREB) is to ensure research involving human participants carried out under the auspices of McMaster University is of the highest quality, is conducted to protect the interests of human participants and of society and is in compliance with the Tri Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. The REB shall function as an autonomous entity.

Terms of Reference


The MREB shall consist of at least 10 members and shall have a sufficient number of members to allow for a reasonable review workload for all members. The MREB membership shall comply with the TCPS membership requirements in Article 6.4 and shall include adequate expertise in the relevant research disciplines. MREB members shall be without conflict of interest in the review process and shall disclose actual, perceived or potential conflicts of interest at the outset of a review.

The MREB members shall be appointed by the President, on the recommendation of the Vice-President, Research, following consultation with the current MREB Chair, and including consultation with Faculty Deans and program and department Chairs as applicable. MREB members shall serve, normally, for staggered three year terms, once renewable. The Chair and Vice-Chair(s) shall be appointed by the President and shall serve, normally, for a term of three years, once renewable. The recruitment of the Chair or Vice-Chair(s) shall be the responsibility of the Vice-President, Research, and may be in consultation with the current Chair and Vice-Chair(s) as well as the ethics office staff.  It is preferable, but not mandatory, that the new Chair or Vice-Chair(s) be appointed from among the current, appointed MREB members.


For full board ethics review of proposed research, quorum shall be constituted by meeting the TCPS quorum requirements (Article 6.9) and having at least 40% of the membership present for the discussion and vote.

For conducting general business (e.g. approving agenda/minutes/guidelines), quorum shall be constituted by meeting the TCPS quorum requirements (Article 6.9).

The MREB will also meet any additional quorum requirements resulting from specific funding sources or local regulations on a case by case basis. For instance, for full board review of proposed research with United States government funding, MREB will meet the 50% plus one quorum threshold required by US regulations (in addition to the TCPS requirements).


  1. To keep current on ethical issues related to research involving human participants, to educate the University community on these issues and to formulate policies and guidelines on these matters.
  2. To review (using a proportionate approach), approve, reject, propose modifications to, or terminate any proposed or ongoing research involving human participants conducted under the auspices of McMaster University. This includes research by anyone affiliated with McMaster and/or research making use of McMaster resources. Research conducted through the Faculty of Health Sciences is reviewed by the Hamilton Integrated Research Ethics Board (with an allowance for MREB to review FHS research, and HiREB to review non-FHS research, if appropriate based on the study details).
  3. To assess and limit the risks to participants in research involving humans. Where there is more than minimal risk identified, the REB shall satisfy itself that the design of a research project is capable of addressing the questions being asked in the research.
  4. To monitor ongoing projects, and to establish procedures for the review of ongoing research projects and requests for changes to previously approved research.
  5. To develop policies and procedures for assessing and approving undergraduate student research.
  6. To serve as a resource to the research community, communicating and advising researchers on guidelines, procedures and other matters relating to the conduct of research involving human participants.
  7. To meet regularly to discharge their responsibilities, and to keep and maintain minutes of such meetings; with the documentation being accessible to researchers, as it pertains to their application, and to “authorized” representatives of the institution and funding agencies, and in accordance with relevant legislation including, but not limited to, the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA)
  8. To liaise with REBs of affiliated institutions to optimize efficiencies, co-ordinate activities and to ensure consistency of decisions
  9. To keep the Vice-President, Research informed of substantive issues in terms of policy, process and compliance, and to submit a written report annually on the activities of the MREB to the Vice President, Research.
  10. To implement and monitor the final decision of the Appeal Panel on behalf of the Research Ethics Standing Appeal Board.