Human Research Ethics Committee

Role of the University of Notre Dame Australia Human Research Ethics Committee

The Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) is responsible for ensuring that all University of Notre Dame Australia research involving human participants complies with State and Federal Government standards and is conducted with the highest possible ethical integrity.

An important guiding principle for the HREC is to enhance and maintain University of Notre Dame Australia’s reputation for research excellence.

Research Quality

Under the "National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Research involving Humans" the HREC is responsible for ensuring that planned research is of high quality and integrity.

Protection

The HREC works to protect research participants and the community at large. The Committee also protects the reputation of University of Notre Dame Australia and Notre Dame researchers.

Advice

The HREC provides a resource for researchers by commenting on a project from a variety of perspectives. The HREC often suggests ways in which projects may be modified to improve the research and to prevent possible difficulties.

Complaints Resolution

In rare cases there may be a complaint about a research project:

  1. Participants of research projects or members of the public with a complaint or concern about UNDA researchers or the conduct of UNDA HREC approved research projects.
  2. Staff members or students with a complaint or concern about UNDA researchers or the conduct of UNDA HREC approved research projects.
  3. Researchers with a complaint or concern about the conduct of the HREC in consideration of their research proposal.

If you have a complaint about a research project or about the HREC, you are encouraged to contact the Research Office. You can chat confidentially with the Research Office Director or the Ethics Officer, enabling you to decide how best to proceed.

All complaints are taken seriously and investigated thoroughly. You will be notified of the outcome of any investigations.

Composition of the HREC

The HREC consists of a minimum of 8 members comprising:

  1. a chairperson, with suitable experience.
  2. at least two lay people, one man and one woman, who have no affiliation with University of Notre Dame Australia, and do not currently engage in medical, scientific, legal or academic work.
  3. at least one person with knowledge of, and current experience in, the professional care, counseling or treatment of people
  4. at least one person who performs a pastoral care role in a community (e.g. Minster of Religion or Aboriginal Elder ).
  5. at least one lawyer.
  6. at least two people with current research experience that is relevant to research proposals to be considered at the meetings.