You’re Never Too Old For an “Atta Girl!”

Sunny moments on a rainy day brought to this Mugwump by the following emails:

1. 4:09pm- 

The IRB: Human Subjects Committee determined that the referenced study is

exempt from review under federal guidelines 45 CFR Part 46.101(b) category


Study Number: 1003E79754

Principal Investigator: Kathryn Muehe


Evaluation of Public Health Emergency Training and Simulation


This e-mail confirmation is your official University of Minnesota RSPP

notification of exemption from full committee review. 

This is a snippet of the email sent to anxious grad students to tell them that their request to do a study involving human subjects has been approved.  APPROVED!!  Even though I am not using any identifying data in my research, because it does involve the responses from human participants, it much meet Institutional Review Board standards for ethical use of data, beneficence, and confidentiality.  My process was actually really easy because it is a secondary data set, meaning the data was already collected (or would be collected whether or not I was doing the research) and there is no way I can discern the identities of participants given the data I will have access to.  Still, the IRB is sort of this mythical ‘NO’-machine that makes everyone a little nervous.  It is hard to know exactly what they are looking for, whether you have sufficiently done your paperwork, etc.  If you do not appropriately sacrifice to the ‘NO’-machine, they can seriously clog/halt/reverse/destroy project progress. 

2. 4:28 pm (In regards to the previous email)- 

YES!!! Start your engines!

—–Original Message—–

From: []

Sent: Tuesday, April 06, 2010 4:09 PM

To: [Advisor E-mail Redacted]

Subject: 1003E79754 – PI Muehe – IRB – Exempt Study Notification

 From my advisor who I, admittedly, was painfully intimidated by at one point in my career.  But she has turned out to be the right balance of support and pressure to get things done.  

All I can say, after getting these emails today is: VROOOOOM! VROOOOOM! 


One thought on “You’re Never Too Old For an “Atta Girl!””

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s