The Research Ethics Boards (REBs) in the province of Saskatchewan have a policy of full reciprocity. This means that if your application has been approved by one of the following SK REBs; the University of Saskatchewan, the University of Regina, or the Saskatchewan Health Authority, approval will be accepted by the other institution(s) without the need for additional REB review, provided the protocol is identical in its content and activities.
Please note: There are criteria for determining which REB is the one that you must seek approval from (it is not necessarily your home institution). Before you begin preparing your REB application, please check in with the staff at your local Research Ethics Office for guidance.
Other Canadian Institutions
For all other Canadian institutions, the USask REBs may provide a Letter of Acknowledgement of the primary institution’s approval, rather than perform a second review. The acknowledgement serves to confirm that the project meets the REB’s requirements for the ethical conduct of research and can proceed at the University of Saskatchewan. A certificate of Approval is not issued, and the ethical oversight remains at the primary institution. This process is considered when a project meets the following criteria:
- The project is minimal risk, as defined by the TCPS2 (2022).
- The project has been approved by a TCPS2 compliant REB.
- The project does not require release of personal health information from any trustee, designated archive, or health information custodian and the collection of information is prospective and supported through consent.
The USask Behavioural and Biomedical REBs have additional criteria that must be met when determining whether an external application can be acknowledged. To request a review of an external application, please send an email the research ethics office (email@example.com), copying the lead Principal Investigator and attaching the following documents (as applicable):
- Evidence of external REB approval (e.g., a Certificate of Approval)
- The approved REB application
- The approved consent form(s)
- The approved data collection tools (e.g., surveys, questionnaires etc.).
- The approved recruitment material(s) that will be used to advertise the study at USask.
When the request is received, the Research Ethics Office will arrange for the documents to be reviewed by a Chair or Vice-Chair of the appropriate REB to ensure that the external approval meets the USask REB’s requirements. This review typically takes 2 to 3 weeks. If the reviewer is satisfied, a Letter of Acknowledgement will be issued. Where the reviewer has questions, especially as it relates to provincial HIPA legislation, the REB may request revisions, or that an application be submitted for approval as opposed to acknowledgement.