Seneca's Research Ethics Board

Seneca’s Research Ethics Board (REB) ensures research involving human participants conducted under the auspices or on the premises of Seneca meets high scientific and ethical standards that respect and protect participants. The REB reviews applications to ensure adherence with the federal research agencies’ Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. All research involving humans must receive clearance before recruitment and/or data collection may commence.

Announcement: update requirement for Human Research Ethics Training (TCPS2-CORE-2022)

REB Application Submission Process

Prior to developing any submission to the REB, please ensure you download the most current version of the applicable form(s). Submissions received on forms that are not the current versions will not be accepted and/or reviewed. If you have any questions about the forms, please email

Seneca’s REB only accepts electronic copies of documents. Once you have completed the appropriate form for your research study, please submit the full application along with the relevant appendices in electronic format to

Document Naming Protocol

Document file names must include the applicant’s last name or their MySeneca username ID followed by a space, the document type, a space and the date in YYYY-MM-DD format. Please see the examples below.

  • If the document is a consent form completed by Jane Smith ( on Jan. 1, 2021, the format must be:
  • Smith Consent 2021-Jan-01 or jsmith Consent 2021-Jan-01
  • If the document is the application completed by Jane Smith ( on March 7, 2021, the format must be:
  • Smith Application 2021-Mar-07 or jsmith Application 2021-Mar-07

Important: Incomplete or inaccurate applications or attachments that do not use the REB standard document naming protocol will not be processed.

You will receive an email to acknowledge that your submission has been received within two business days. This email will either confirm that your application is complete and has been assigned for review or if modifications to your submission are required.

Review Process

Minimal risk applications are reviewed by Seneca’s REB on a rolling basis.

Minimal risk research is defined as a study in which participants face no greater risk than they would in their everyday life, according to the Canadian Institute of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

Minimal risk applications will be reviewed by one to two REB members. The REB co-ordinator will typically communicate rejections, approvals and/or requests for revision within approximately 10 business days.

Applications for studies with potentially greater than minimal risk, undergo a full review at Seneca REB’s monthly meetings. These applications take longer to process.


Seneca’s REB meets monthly during the fall and winter terms. Ad hoc meetings may also be convened to review applications in need of a full board review.

The board does not meet during in July or August. Applications requiring a full board review must be submitted by the end of the second week of April to be considered for review prior to the summer. Applications received after this date may not be reviewed until September.

Minimal risk applications will continue to be reviewed during the summer. Note that processing time may be longer than usual; please plan your research timeline accordingly.

Applications for a full board review must be emailed to two weeks prior to the scheduled REB meeting.

Winter Schedule

Board meetings Application deadlines
Jan. 11, 2024 Dec. 28, 2023
Feb. 8, 2024 Jan. 25, 2024
March 14, 2024 Feb. 29, 2024
April 11, 2024 March 28, 2024

Human Research Ethics Training

To ensure an understanding of the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans, all researchers are required to complete the TCPS2 tutorial prior to undertaking any research involving human participants. Given the updates to the TCPS2 tutorial, effective Wednesday, May 1, 2024, Seneca’s REB will require the submission of the TCPS2-CORE-2022 certificate(s) along with the application package and will no longer accept certification for an earlier version of the CORE tutorial.

REB Resources

Most REB applications will include the application form; TCPS 2 certificate(s); a recruitment document; an information letter; a consent form and study materials such as questionnaires, interview questions or intervention materials.

Application Checklist for Researchers (DOCX)

Guide on filling out Form 1 Application — Student Capstone Projects

Privacy and Security Considerations for Student Research Projects(PDF)

REB templates

REB Forms   


For assistance, research ethics advice and/or questions related to the REB application process, please contact:

General Inquiries
REB Chair, Malini Persaud

Virtual Assistance

Drop by the REB Co-ordinator’s virtual office hours every Tuesday from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.


Administrative Approval

Please note that ethics approval does not automatically constitute administrative permission to conduct research at Seneca; other administrative approvals may be required. Please review Administrative Approval information or email for more information.


REB Members

Seneca’s Research Ethics Board has members from across all faculties at Seneca, as well as external representatives.

If you are interested in becoming a member of the REB, please contact:

General Inquiries

Seneca Research Policies

Contact Us

Research Ethics Board
Seneca Innovation