Research Involving Children

What are the consent requirements for working with children?

  • Generally, prior to consenting/assenting anyone under the age of 18 into a research project, investigators must seek the permission of the child’s parents/guardians through the use of a parental consent form. Assent is required of children age 12 years and younger in additional to parental permission. Assent is a child’s affirmative agreement to participate in research. Informed consent is required for children aged 13 to 18 and is required in additional to parental permissions.

Are there any other University policies I need to be aware when working with minors?

What special protections for Children as Research Subjects are required?

Do I need a letter of support to recruit children from schools?

  • Yes. If you plan to recruit children form a school (inclusive of high school, middle school, elementary and pre-k schools) your submission must be accompanied by an acceptance letter from the school’s principal or superintendent. If it is not practical to obtain an acceptance letter prior to approval please notify the reviewer/Office of Research Compliance.

Does the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendments (PPRA) affect my research? 

Do any of the exemption categories apply to research on children?

  • Yes. All elements of Category 1, 4, and 5. Category 2 research (educational tests, surveys, interviews, public behavior observation) applies only when procedures are limited to the observation of public behavior in which the investigators do not interact with the children or educational testing. Research involving surveys or interviews with children, or observation of public behavior when investigators interact with children, does not qualify for exempt status under this category

Does the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) apply to research?