Institutional Review Board

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research is the first point of contact regarding human subjects research at (or involving) Towson University faculty, staff or students.

The Common Rule

Final revisions to the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects (aka, the Common Rule) were published on January 19, 2017. Towson University’s IRB intends to implement these rules beginning January 19, 2018. We have been working diligently to develop procedures and guidelines that will comply with the new regulations by this deadline, including a new deadline system. Please read more on our Process Overview page for our current processes and procedures. 

What Is the Institutional Review Board?

The use of human subjects in Towson University faculty, staff or student research requires approval by the appropriate university review committee, the Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB is appointed by the president, and is comprised of volunteers from TU’s faculty and staff, and at least one member of the community. The IRB is responsible for reviewing research involving human subjects to ensure compliance with all governmental regulations with the use of human subjects. Approval of the IRB must be obtained prior to the involvement of human subjects in research, and for any modifications to the project after IRB approval which would impact the human participants.

Applicable federal regulations are detailed in Title 45 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 46.

Towson University Institutional Review Board Members

Have questions that may be related to your academic major or discipline? Contact your IRB college representative.

IRB Administration

  • Compliance Specialist: Ashley Dawson, OSPR Staff
  • Chairperson: Elizabeth Katz, Ph.D., Department of Psychology
  • Vice Chairperson: Bethany Willis Hepp, Ph.D., Department of Family Studies and Community Development

Representatives from the College of Liberal Arts

  • Harjant Gill, Ph.D., Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice
  • Bruce Mortenson, Ph.D.,  Department of Psychology


  • Melissa Groves, Ph.D., Department of Economics


  • Deborah Gartland, Ph.D., Department of Special Education
  • Scot McNary, Ph.D., Department of Educational Technology and Literacy
  • Lijun Jin, Ed.D., Department of Elementary Education

REPRESENTATIVES FROM THE College of Health Professions

  • Devon Dobrosielski, Ph.D., Department of Kinesiology
  • Peter Lisman, Ph.D., Department of Kinesiology
  • Peggy Korczak, Ph.D., Department of Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies
  • Saradha Ananthakrishnan, Ph.D., Department of Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies

REPRESENTATIVES FROM THE Jess and Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics

  • Todd Moyer, Ed.D., Department of Mathematics


  • No representatives at this time.

Community Member

  • Greg Dildine, Community and Civic Volunteer

Towson University Information

  • Federal-Wide Assurance Number — FWA00003648, expires 9/2021
  • IORG Number — IORG0002307
  • IRB Number IRB00002844