Non-research Activities

  • Quality assurance activities or evaluation projects designed for self-improvement or program evaluation, not meant to contribute to "generalizable" knowledge.
  • Interviews of individuals where questions focus on things not on people (eg. questions about policies, general facts about an organization or business).
  • Searches of existing literature or analysis of aggregate or public data that cannot be linked to a living individual (e.g. data sets available on the web that do not require any sort of privacy/confidentially agreement or special request procedure, newspaper accounts, census data held in public libraries, published school test scores). However, if access to the data is limited to researchers, and not publicly available, then IRB review is needed.
  • Single case studies in which all data already exists. However, if this includes medical record review, there may be obligations under HIPAA privacy law.