Research Restart

At this time, PIs need to ensure their projects are audit-proof and verify that all effort on the project is for funded research/projects and not staff/student retention. In some cases, COVID-19 mitigation allowances (consistent with our institution policy) were made for Spring.

* If you have concerns about the ability of your funded project/research to move forward, please contact the appropriate Research Support and Shared Services Team member.

* If you are thinking of using funds in a manner not originally budgeted in your initial scope of work, please contact the appropriate Research Support and Shared Services Team member.

* If you are needing support in re-imagining your research work in the absence of in-person field opportunities, please contact the appropriate Research Support and Shared Services Team member

* We are here to help! Contact:

** ADR Sara Chavarria to discuss options for updates to project design

** Margo Sallet for financial concerns, scope of work changes, expense allowability, compliance.

** Anna Bounds for IRB/Human Subjects concerns or amendments

Please Note: We are carefully following the US Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance, which currently requires that employee effort only be allocated for activities in the accepted scope of work and want to make sure you are prepared for any scenarios per your awarding agency.

The Research Support Team are currently developing the plans and support necessary to safely restart our research program. These will follow the University of Arizona Guiding Principles, Research, Innovation & Impact’s (RII) research restart processes, and will form a key strand of the excellent work being led by Carl Liaupsin and the College of Education Re-entry Committee. The process will continue to evolve with COVID-19 trends.

This site provides guidance on the College of Education’s(COE) Implementation of RII's Research Restart Plan, which facilitates phased restarting or commencing of research that has been paused in light of the COVID19 pandemic.  To minimize mass emails, this site will be the primary means of communicating research restart guidance and policies within COE.  Please check frequently for updates (last updated June 30, 2020).

COE implementation is led by COE Assistant Dean for Research (ADR) Sara Chavarria.

Of immediate note:

1-No approval is needed for research conducted in a 100% remote environment (off-campus, no face-to-face interaction, no travel, etc.).

2-Researchers with labs can submit research re-entry checklists if you follow the safety guidelines but must submit a COE Research Restart Plan and agreements.

3-Researchers conducting work in the field, who do not intend to restart research until after August 15 are advised to defer application for approval until after mid-July. 

Note: Both university and external conditions related to the pandemic are changing rapidly. Many UA policies and guidance relevant to research restart are currently in draft form, and are always subject to change (e.g. PPE and hygiene training, protocols, and provisioning; travel restrictions and authorizations; campus research facility reopening schedules such as labs, libraries, and museums). 

COE researchers seeking approval to restart, modify, or commence research that has been paused or deferred in light of COVID19 must do the following:

  1. Check with your Department Head or Director on whether there are any unit-level requirements or guidance for restarting research (in addition to those provided by COE and RII).
  2. Develop written documents/plans for COVID19-related research safety protocols (the RII checklist in step 2 will ask for verification that these have been created). Follow the RII field research guidelines (link) and the COE guidelines  for re-entering research in our college.
    1. COE plan template.
    2. Address other forms you might need to have signed and filed in your office/computer.
    3. FYI: COE guidelines address fieldwork, lab prep, IRB, grad student research, Safety and PPE protocols, etc.
  3. Once all of your safety protocols are in place, you have shared and submitted your research plan, and you have secured any additional forms you deemed necessary you may submit an RII Research Restart Checklist request (administered via a Qualtrics survey--see guidance below before initiating).
  4. Submit the COE Research Plan Form via email.
    1. COE plan template.
  5. Have all project personnel complete and sign the Research Restart Agreement Form. This should be kept by the PI for records and does not need to be submitted to the College.
  6. Complete any additional compliance processes required for your research (e.g. IRB approval, travel authorization, staff compliance agreements, student internship or risk/release forms). 
    1. IRB compliance information

 

  • For general guidance on safely restarting workplace activities, see the College of Public Health's Workplace Reopening Guide. Further resources, including guidance adapted for a variety of field settings, are in development and will be forthcoming on the RII Research Restart website. 
  • For assistance with determining appropriate materials for face coverings and other PPE needs in your research, contact Research Laboratory & Safety Services, RLL-help@arizona.edu
  • For assistance with placing orders for needed PPE or sanitation supplies, contact the COE Building/Space Manager, Michelle Tellez.  
  • For guidance on COVID-19 related human subjects research (HSR) considerations, see the Checklist & Guidance Documents Section of the RII Research Restart Website.
  • For other research-related considerations, please review the guidance and FAQs on the RII Research Restart website and on this website (the COE Research Restart website). If your question is still not answered and you need further assistance, contact COE ADR Sara Chavarria.
  • For non-research related questions about COVID19 and campus reopening, consult with your Department Head or Director.

Plan your responses before submitting and fill out your COE Research Restart Form. Researchers are advised to plan responses to the RII checklist prior to opening the Qualtrics survey. Once the survey is started, it cannot be restarted from the same IP address before completion and submission, and it is not possible to back up to previous pages to revise responses. The RII website contains links to pdf and docx versions of the checklist (they may be slightly out of date as the Qualtrics survey continues to be edited). You can send your ‘practice checklist (pdf or docx versions) to the ADR to review.

For student-led research: Consult with your advisor before submitting. Please follow the COE Research Restart guidance. COE ADR will also confirm that your advisor is aware and supportive of your application prior to approval.

Be judicious in selecting "No" vs. "N/A" for items on the checklist. 

  • Select N/A only if the question is not applicable to your research context. For example, the question block on "holding a research team meeting to discuss safely commencing work" is irrelevant for projects with only one researcher.
  • If a question is possibly relevant, but you cannot confidently answer yes at the time of submission, answer "No."  For example, on the question block on "establishing cleaning and disinfection routines for all unique resources and environments," answer "No" if you have not yet been able to acquire necessary supplies, signage, etc. The ADR will follow up with you to understand the rationale for the No response, and approval could be granted conditional on addressing those items prior to commencing). 
  • COE Research Restart Plan: This form gathers an outline of your safety protocols per your research/program work and will help in expediting ADR review.  The PI must keep this on file but submit the plan to the ADR via emailThis plan can be updated as IRB or other factors influence and redirect the work being conducted.
  • COE Research Restart Agreement: This form is for all members of your lab or field team to individually fill out. The agreement asks them to confirm that they are aware of your safety protocols (as outlined in your plan) and that they have filed all necessary forms as necessary. The PI is responsible for filing these.
  • UArizona Internship Risk and Release form: This form should be filed by any student conducting research in field settings (schools, organizations, interviewing). This form is tied to course. For graduate students conducting dissertation/master research, please list your independent study, dissertation hours, or research hours course. If you are not getting course credit per a grant or research work, please use the UArizona Assumption of Risk and Release Form.
  • UArizona Assumption of Risk and Release form: This form should be used in cases where staff are engaging in field experiences and must be made aware of risks tied to COVID-19. The form can be designed to be specific to the project. To request this form, please contact ADR Sara Chavarria. For guidance on how to use this form, please go to: Assumption of Risk and Release Agreements
  • UArizona Travel form: For field work related travel that will take you out of state or require extended overnight stays, you will need to file this form to gain permission to conduct the travel. It will go through your dept head, dean, and provost.
  • Partner Agency Cooperative Agreements: Some sort of communication must be filed pertaining to an agreement to conduct field work at your host organization. This can be in the form of an email (submit a screen shot or email attachment to your plan) or in the form of an agency agreement your host organization asked you to sign.
  • Template for Cooperative Agreement with Native/Sovereign Nations Addendums: Some sort of communication must be filed pertaining to an agreement to conduct field work on Indian lands. A UArizona form is being provided but if your host nation has had you sign a form already, that one can be submitted instead.

A Note about School and youth based research challenges

A key challenge the College of Education is facing is the significant proportion of our research which is school based, youth based, or working with vulnerable members of our community.   In March, responses to the COE research mitigation surveys completed at the beginning of the pandemic highlighted that for a number of our faculty and students, restarting research was contingent on schools re-opening and being able to conduct face-to-face research. With schools across the country continuing to wrestle with how they will operate this academic year, we are asking that over the next few weeks you continue to take a moment to revisit your research plans for Fall 2020 and to consider how these ever-fluid changes to school operations might impact your research, and how we can help you mitigate the impact.

Some helpful questions to think about include:

  • Can I adapt my research methodology to reduce or eliminate the need for school-based face to face interaction and still obtain the data I need?  Including electronic data collection or the use of video conferencing software.
  • Am I able to pause the research for a further semester, while schools navigate these changes and settle into a new routine?
  • Will I need to adapt any instruments, or conduct new recruitment and consenting process if previously consented participants have opted for online or hybrid learning rather than face-to-face?

We will be providing more detail and resources to support you through this process in coming weeks, but in the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact us about any questions you may have, and to access support on processes such as restarting human subject research or making amendments to existing IRB protocols.