Research and Sponsored Programs

Research and COVID-19 Response

As TWU continues to closely monitor the outbreak of coronavirus disease and has put steps into place to minimize the impact of COVID-19, the Provost continues to work with the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs for the safety of our faculty, students, research subjects, and staff involved in the research enterprise at TWU. A general policy for re-opening research at TWU has been established and is being updated as needed based on the current COVID-19 situation. The overall goal is to allow researchers on/from the Denton, Dallas, and Houston campuses to carry on with their important work while keeping TWU faculty, staff, and students safe. This plan is dependent on current CDC, state and local guidelines and may be altered if the COVID-19 situation worsens or if guidelines change and any individual who is sick or experiencing symptoms should not come to campus. Between June 1 and August 17, TWU will be in Stage II, Part 2 of this plan.

Human Subjects Research

Investigators conducting human subjects research have been notified that all face-to-face human subjects research must be halted to ensure the safety of the study participants and researchers. During this time, face-to-face meetings and interventions must be stopped or replaced with alternatives such as phone or video conferencing using tools such as Skype/Google Hangout/Zoom or online survey software. The IRB, in partnership with IT Solutions, has developed a document to provide guidance with possible online / virtual alternatives. 

Per the general policy for re-opening research at TWU issued on May 29, some faculty human subjects studies couldresume face-to-face contact on June 15 with approval from the Vice Provost for Research and Innovation. Requests for resuming these faculty studies must be made to the Vice Provost for Research and Innovation using the Request Exception to Resume Face-to-Face Human Subjects Research form. This plan also stated on July 1 face-to-face human research studies in which Covid-19 risk can be mitigated to a minimal level may resume if a PI has modified the IRB protocol to add the risk of Covid-19 exposure to the procedures and consent form, included necessary safety measures, and re-consented new or continuing participants. A guidance for minimizing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in human subjects research can be found here. Studies where the Covid-19 risks cannot be mitigated, or are not modified to address risks associated with Covid-19, cannot resume face-to-face procedures at this time. Please note that the date for resuming these studies is currently set at August 3 unless the Except Request Form (see above) is submitted and approved but that this date is subject to change based on the current COVID-19 situation. 

These target dates will be highly dependent on ongoing updates to federal, state, local, and institutional policies related to physical distancing and allowed activities and based on continuous monitoring of the guidelines. Any changes to study procedures must be approved in advance by the IRB. By working remotely, the TWU IRBs plan to remain fully functional, and you may contact Ms. Sandy Owens (Denton and Dallas IRB Analyst) @ sowens6@twu.edu or Dr. Madhura Maiya (Houston IRB Analyst) @ mmaiya@twu.edu with questions.

Student Creative Arts and Research Symposium

All event organizers were asked to review the risk factors for events and activities on campus, and as a result, the 2020 Student Creative Arts and Research Symposium committee plans to reschedule the 2020 Student Symposium to the summer. The planning committee will begin making recommendations for rescheduling, and we will communicate with faculty and students individually regarding the presentations as soon more definite plans are established. In addition, the Chancellor’s Student Research Scholars have been selected and the notifications will be made soon. Those selected as a Chancellor’s Student Research Scholar will still receive their stipends before the end of the semester.

ORSP Staff

The staff in Research and Sponsored Programs are committed to assisting our researchers. We are communicating with each other as well as faculty, staff, and students. All of us are set up with remote access so that proposal submissions, grant management, and compliance-related tasks can continue. Please contact us via email and let us know how we can help during this time.

Thank you all for your cooperation and patience as we work through this together.

Page last updated 9:47 AM, July 20, 2020