Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Who should I contact for information regarding the rights and welfare of human subjects, privacy/confidentiality rights, or how to prepare and submit a research protocol?

A: The Institutional Review Board (IRB) is charged with the responsibility of protecting the rights and welfare of human subjects involved in research. In addition to answering any questions you may have, the IRB protects human subjects by reviewing all proposed protocols.

BUMC IRB: Institutional Review Board

Please also review the ADR IRB Policy flowchart that will demonstrate how our office can assist you in preparing and submitting a protocol: GSDM IRB Policy

Q: I have an idea for a product. What department should I contact?

A: The Office of Technology Development (OTD) encourages, educates, and enables the BU community to realize the commercial potential of their ideas, and to translate ideas into useful products and services. OTD should also be contacted for business development and intellectual protection and law.

OTD: The Office of Technology Development

Q: I am a researcher in the dental school and want to submit a grant application. Please tell me who to contact first.

A: Contact the Grant/Research Coordinator, who can assist you with organizing and preparing your application:
Once complete, your application will be submitted through the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP).

Q: I am submitting a grant proposal that includes subcontracts. What forms are required?

A: Maria Costa, Senior Research Administrator, Office of Sponsored Programs, can handle all questions regarding outgoing subcontracts:

Q: Do I contact the OSP office about Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) or Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA)?

A: Yes, specifically the Contracts and Agreements group in OSP. Anne Clark, Associate Director of Contracts & Agreements, is the head of this team:

Q: I’m concerned about conflicts of interest regarding my research. Is there a form I need to fill out?

A: Yes – a Financial Interest Disclosure (FIND) form will need to be submitted to the Office of Research Compliance (ORC). For further questions, contact Jodi Edelstein, Compliance Manager:
ORC (and FIND forms): Forms

Q: Where can I locate templates, such as the Proposal Summary Form required for a grant submission, budget excel sheets, COI forms, incoming subawards, or no-cost extensions?

A: Check out the Forms and Templates page on the OSP website: OSP, Forms

Q: Where can I access biostatistics expertise to support my research?

A: The Department of Biostatistics and Data Coordinating Center of the School of Public Health offers statistical support through the Biostatistics Consulting Group.

The Clinical and Translational Science Institute offers free help with study design and statistical analysis for clinical or translational research. More information on their “Open Study Design and Statistical Analysis Consultation” sessions is available at CTSI

Q: I have a number of research-related questions. Is there one person I can just contact for guidance?

A: Yes! Please contact our department’s Grant/Research Coordinator:

Pre-doctoral Research

Q: When can DMD students do research?

A: GSDM offers formal research training for credit during dental education. Students who maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher in their didactic and clinical courses are considered for research training.

Q: When does first-year research training takes place?

A: The first-year training takes place following the completion of DMD didactic courses during the Apex rotation from May to July. The research rotation is based on a five-day week as students contribute one additional day. Students dedicate two days for research training and three days for the Apex clinical assignment. Students are eligible to apply by January 2nd.

Q: Who can enroll in the Intensive Research Elective Course (IREC)?

A: First-year students in good academic standing (3.0 or higher) who participated in research during the second semester of their dental education on a voluntary basis or those with prior research experience are eligible to apply to the IREC1 by February 1st. Students dedicate three days for research training (30 hours per week) and two days for the Apex clinical assignment under IREC1. Second-year and third-year students can participate in research training under IREC2 and IREC3. Students have the opportunity to continue research training in the fourth year.

Q: Can students engage in research on a voluntary basis?

A: Students can do research on a voluntary basis and are expected to spend no less than 10 hours per week in research training.

Q: Can students do research in outside facilities?

A: Students can do research in any research facility approved by the Pre-doctoral Research Committee. Early application is necessary to complete the process of executing an affiliation agreement prior to start of research.

Q: How can one obtain information about student research?

A: Information can be obtained by visiting the websites at Pre-doctoral and Research. The research handbook is linked to Program Overview.

Q: How can I get information about surveys?

A: The Qualtrics Research Suite is a user-friendly, feature rich, web-based survey tool which allows users to build, distribute, and analyze online surveys, collaborate in real-time, and export data in multiple formats. It is available to all current Boston University faculty, staff, and students at: Qualtrics

Q: Who should I contact for more information?

A: Afaf Hourani, Assistant Director of Pre-doctoral Research. Visit, call, or email: 650 Albany St. X-344, 617-414-1048, or