Approved procedures

***All CUREC documents are subject to ongoing review. Please always refer to the website (rather than locally stored versions) for the current versions of approved procedures and associated documents.***

The Medical Sciences IDREC (MS IDREC) and Social Sciences and Humanities IDREC (SSH IDREC) use a number of ‘CUREC approved procedures’, which are essentially documents approved by CUREC for how to approach and conduct certain types of research or intervention. Their main function is to reduce the need for researchers to apply for ethical review using a full CUREC 2 application form. By agreeing to conduct research within the scope of a CUREC approved procedure, researchers may apply for ethical review and approval using the process for lower-risk research (ie by completing a CUREC 1 or CUREC 1A checklist). Each approved procedure is reviewed at least every five years to ensure that it remains fit for purpose.

Approved procedures operate by:

  • assessing risk in a given specialised research area and permitting projects to proceed 'under CUREC approved procedures' if they can demonstrate minimised risk
  • setting standards of good research conduct in these specialised areas

In general, in order to be eligible to apply for ethical review and approval using the process for lower-risk research, researchers may cite only one CUREC approved procedure.

For some studies within the Medical Sciences Division, it may be possible to conduct the research under the auspices of two separate approved procedures without the need to complete a CUREC 2 application. Please contact the MS IDREC Secretariat to enquire about your specific study.

Please choose a suitable procedure, reading it carefully to ensure that it pertains to your project. Make sure you reference the correct procedure ID in your application. If you know, without starting a CUREC 1A application, that you need to complete a CUREC 2 (this will only apply to SSH IDREC applicants), please still check the approved procedures above to see if any parts of your project can be covered by a CUREC procedure(s). In general, you should use CUREC procedures alongside, and in harmony with, your individual study design or study-specific procedure. They should not replace your project or hinder your project's aims.

In order to stay within the CUREC 1 or CUREC 1A frame, it is usually not possible to fully apply more than one approved procedure to the research. There may be some exceptions, depending on the exact procedures and whether they are to be applied simultaneously, or in tandem. If researchers intend to follow two or more approved procedures, they will need to consult the relevant IDREC Secretariat to determine whether or not a CUREC 2 form needs to be completed.

Even where procedures do not fully cover a project, they can be used as part of a CUREC 2 application to mitigate issues as far as they pertain to the procedure(s) in question.

Where there is not a specific template information sheet or consent form associated with an approved procedure, the generic participant information sheet template is recommended:

Current approved procedures

In some circumstances variations to these procedures can be accepted, but please contact us to discuss this.
For studies involving children or adults at risk, please also refer to the University's Code of Practice on Safeguarding.

Participants at risk


For studies using a negative mood induction procedure with both healthy individuals and individuals with a history of depression. 


Procedure 4 and its associated document above are for studies involving the administration of clinical interviews incorporating questions concerning current and past psychiatric symptoms, experience of traumatic events including childhood sexual and physical abuse, and questions concerning illegal drug use. 


Procedure 9 and its associated document above are for the recruitment and testing of participants selected to score highly on measures indicating slightly higher than average vulnerability to psychological disorders. 


Procedure 26 is for research on adult prisoners using non-invasive methods in certain UK prisons. Procedure 26 may be cited in applications to both the Social Sciences and Humanities, and Medical Sciences IDRECs. 

Scans, recordings or other non-invasive tests (adults)


Procedure 3 and its associated participant information sheet above are for studies involving electrophysiological recordings (EEG) from the scalp in adult volunteers.


Procedure 10 and its associated documents above are for studies involving functional transcranial Doppler ultrasonography to measure cerebral lateralisation in adult volunteers.


Procedure 14 and its associated documents above are for studies involving the recording of electrodermal responses (skin conductance) from the hand.


Procedure 18 is for studies using psychophysiological methods with adults. 

Children (including in schools), teachers


Procedure 25 and its associated documents above are for research on children using non-invasive methods in institutional or non-institutional settings. It may be used in conjunction with an opt-out form for research fulfilling certain conditions, as detailed in the procedure. Procedure 25 may be cited in applications to both the Social Sciences and Humanities, and Medical Sciences IDRECs. 

Scans, recordings or other non-invasive tests (children)

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