FAQ: What are the main difference between the review types?

Full Board

  • Reviewed and receive approval from the convened IRB

  • Require renewal at least annually (typically)

  • All changes must be reviewed and approved before implemented


  • Reviewed by one or more experienced reviewers

  • Can be approved outside of a convened IRB meeting

  • Same requirements apply to expedited as those that apply to full board projects (e.g. require renewal, all changes must be reviewed and approved before implemented)

  • There are expedited categories and must be minimal risk


  • Reviewed by the IRB staff and/or the IRB chair

  • Projects determined exempt are exempt from the federal regulations

  • Do not need to be renewed

  • Most changes can be made without IRB approval (unless they alter the exempt level or category)

  • There are exempt categories