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IRB Home > Required Tutorial on Human Subject Research Protection

  Required Tutorial on Human Subject Research Protection

Stanford provides access to the required training through an interactive online tutorial, the CITI (Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative) Course in The Protection of Human Research Subjects. 


Who should take CITI training?

Completion of human subject training should be done by all staff working on a research project (all investigators and other study personnel, including all persons who are responsible for designing and/or conducting research, performing data analysis or reporting activities). It is suggested you take the CITI training before submitting your IRB protocol for approval.

Third party (subcontract) research personnel or consultants must comply with this education requirement as well. They may satisfy this requirement at their home institutions, provided that the IRB is assured of completion of the necessary training. A letter, certificate, or email notification by a representative from the home institution will satisfy this requirement.

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Getting Started and Registration

Go to the CITI website to register; there are two links:

one for Already Registered users (who have previously taken CITI training)
and one for New Users (who have not previously registered)

You must use your SUNet ID if one has been issued to you. If you have not been issued a SUNet ID, you can still take the training, and you will be asked to choose a CITI username and password.

Researchers: If you have a Stanford email, give this when prompted for your email address in order to ensure a link between your eProtocol application and the status of your training.

For the drop-down menu “Participating Institutions”

select "Stanford University" if you are doing research at Stanford (University or Hospital & Clinics) or Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital
select "Palo Alto VA" from the “Veterans Affairs” menu if you are VA personnel

To complete the training you must pass all required modules for your Learner Group by gaining at least an 80% average on the module quizzes.

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Transferring Training from Another Institution

  • Transfer CITI training completed at another institution:
    • Click on the link 'Associate With Another Institution' and choose Stanford
    • Your completed modules will be recorded in Stanford's database.  

  • Transfer non-CITI training completed at another institution:
    • Contact IRB Education at (650) 724-7141 to see if your past training can be transferred. Generally, Stanford University will accept comparable Humans Subjects training from other institutions. You will need to provide the IRB with your most recent training completion report.
    • When your training expires, please register at CITI with Stanford University as your affiliate institution to take the Refresher course.

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Obtaining a Copy of the Completion Certificate

You can view and print a copy of your completion certificate by logging into the CITI home page.  At the "Learner's Menu" screen:

If under the Status heading it says "Passed", then click on the PRINT link under Completion Reports.  This will display a table. Click “Print Completion Report” to print the certificate. 

If under the Status heading it says "Not Started - Enter" or "Incomplete - Re-enter", click on Previous Coursework Completed link, then click on See Coursework Completed.  When the table is displayed, click on the “Print Completion Report” link.

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General Information about Taking the Coursework

Selecting a Learner Group

There are eight Learner Groups to choose from, with each group reflecting a different research area of focus. Group descriptions are provided when you register for CITI. Choose a Learner Group that best reflects the your area of research and responsibilities.

Most investigators and staff fall into Group 1 or Group 2, depending on whether medical or nonmedical research is involved:

  • Group 1 - for Medical Research Investigators and Staff, covers those conducting research at Stanford Hospital and Clinics or LPCH.
  • Group 7 - if GCP is desired in addition to the medical research modules. 
  • Group 2 - for Non-medical Research Investigators and Staff (research conducted in the areas of Education, Psychology, Engineering, Law, Business, Sociology, etc). 

Other groups are for IRB members (medical/non-medical), Institutional Officials and Research Compliance Office staff.

Can I complete this training in several sessions?

Yes, you can leave and come back to the site using your CITI username and password as often as necessary. All completed work is stored.

If you are an investigator and an IRB member:

Choose an IRB member group (not an investigator/staff group):
        •  Group 3 - if you are a member of a medical IRB.
        •  Group 4 - if you are a member of a non-medical IRB.

How often do I have to take this course to keep my training current?

Training is required every three years (two years for VA). You will need to access the CITI tutorial again to take the Refresher course, so make sure you record your username and password for future use. After the first training, you will be prompted 3 months before it expires to do the Refresher Course for that group.

What if I take my Refresher course 'early'?

When you take the Refresher course, your expiration date is three* years from date of completion.

Example:  Your current expiration date is in June; CITI sends you an automated reminder three months before, in March.

If you take your Refresher course immediately (in March) your next expiration date will be three* years from March (not from June).

*two years for VA

What do I do if I have forgotten my username or password?

CITI has an automated username and password retrieval system available.  If you encounter problems retrieving this information, contact CITI Support at (305) 243-7970.

Other questions regarding CITI training?

Email IRB Education.

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