Conflict of Interest and Compensated Outside Services Policy (HR 1)


Nevada State College encourages research, creative and scholarly endeavors, entrepreneurial activity, and interactions with external entities. However, some external interests and relationships can lead to real or perceived Conflicts of Interest. Conflicts of Interest (COI) arise when financial or other personal considerations have the potential to adversely affect, or have the appearance of adversely affecting, an Employee’s professional judgment or ability to fulfill obligations to the College.

This policy establishes the requirements for disclosing, reviewing, managing, and eliminating Conflict of Interest situations at Nevada State.


College Responsibilities: An employee’s professional responsibilities on behalf of Nevada State, and as defined by the College, including but not limited to: research, research consultation, teaching, professional practice, institutional committee memberships, and service on panels such as the Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Compensated Outside Services: Outside compensated work or compensated scholarly services performed by a Nevada State Employee; does not include income derived solely from passive investments. Compensated Outside Services are recognized as a legitimate activity unless specifically prohibited by an Employee’s contract of employment. Compensated Outside Service is not considered appropriate when it interferes with the regular work of the Nevada State Employee; involves unauthorized use of College facilities, personnel, or other resources; subjects other individuals or companies engaged in private practice to unfair competition; violates the general requirements of NRS 281A.400 -281A.480; or involves a Conflict of Interest specified by NSHE or Nevada State policy.

Conflict of Interest or COI: Outside activity or interest that may, or may appear to, adversely affect, compromise, or be incompatible with the obligations of an Employee at Nevada State. Encompasses any situation in which an Employee of Nevada State uses, or is in a position to use, influence and authority within the College to advance their own personal or Financial Interests, or the personal or Financial Interests of individuals in the Employee’s household; persons to whom the Employee is related by blood, adoption, or marriage within the third degree of consanguinity; or persons with whom the Employee has substantial and continuing outside business relationships. The bias of such conflicts could conceivably inappropriately affect the goals of research or instructional or administrative programs. The education of students, methods of analysis and interpretation of research data, hiring of staff, procurement of materials, and other administrative tasks at Nevada State must be free of undue influence by outside interests. For the purposes of reporting COIs to federal funding agencies, the federal definition(s) supersedes this policy and will be used to determine which COIs must be reported.

Designated Official: Institutional officials who have been given authority to review and manage disclosures of Significant Financial Interests. Includes determining whether any Significant Financial Interests relate to federal funding; determining whether a Financial Conflict of Interest exists; and, if so, developing and implementing a Management Plan that specifies actions that have been, and will be, taken to manage the Conflict of Interest. The Associate Vice President of Human Resources is the Designated Official at Nevada State.

Employee: For the purposes of this policy, any person employed full-time as academic or administrative faculty at Nevada State. Individuals or Investigators (defined by federal awards as volunteers on funded projects, without paid compensation) are considered Employees under this policy.

Equity Interest: Any stock, stock option, or other ownership interest, as determined through reference to public prices or other reasonable measures of fair market value.

Excessive Compensated Outside Services: Compensated Outside Service that exceeds limits set in NSHE’s policy on Compensated Outside Professional Service (Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 9). Outside service must not occupy more than one (1) day’s equivalent time per work week (20%). Employees on twelve-month contracts must take annual leave if providing Outside Compensated Service during the standard work week.

Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI): A Significant Financial Interest that could directly and significantly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of funded research or affect the performance of duties for or by any Nevada State Employee.

Financial Interest: Anything of monetary value, including but not limited to: salary; other payments for services (e.g., consulting fees or honoraria); Equity Interests (e.g., stocks, stock options, other ownership interests); and intellectual property rights (e.g., patents, copyrights, and royalties from such rights).

Investigator: The Principal Investigator (PI), project director (PD), and/or any other person at Nevada State who is responsible for the design, conduct, or reporting of a Sponsored Project which may include collaborators or consultants. The guidelines that apply to Investigators also apply to individuals in the Investigator’s household; persons to whom the Investigator is related by blood, adoption, or marriage within the third degree of consanguinity as defined by NSHE Board of Regents Handbook Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 7 (Nepotism); or persons with whom the Investigator has substantial and continuing outside business relationships. Hence, for the purposes of this policy’s disclosure requirement, the term “Investigator” refers to the above individuals related to or working with the Investigator.

Management Plan: Mutually acceptable course of action to manage, mitigate, or alleviate the Conflict of Interest due to Compensated Outside Services.

Remuneration: Includes salary and any payment for services not otherwise identified as salary (e.g., consulting fees, honoraria, paid authorship).

Senior/Key Personnel: A project director (PD), Principal Investigator (PI), and any other person identified as Senior/Key Personnel (i.e., any individual who contributes in a substantive, meaningful way to the scientific or programmatic development, implementation, and reporting of a Sponsored Project) in a grant application, progress report, or any other report submitted to the funding agency.

Significant Financial Interest: Any arrangement that falls into one or more of the following categories:

(1) A Financial Interest consisting of one or more of the following interests of the employee (and those of the employee’s spouse and dependent children) that reasonably appears to be related to the College Responsibilities:

(i) With regard to any publicly-traded entity, a Significant Financial Interest exists if the value of any Remuneration received from the entity in the twelve (12) months preceding the disclosure and the value of any Equity Interest in the entity as of the date of disclosure, when aggregated, exceeds $5,000;

(ii) With regard to any non-publicly traded entity, a Significant Financial Interest exists if the value of any Remuneration received from the entity in the twelve (12) months preceding the disclosure, when aggregated, exceeds $5,000, or when the Investigator (or the Investigator’s spouse or dependent children) holds any Equity Interest;

(iii) Intellectual property rights and interests (e.g., patents, copyrights), upon receipt of income related to such rights and interests.

(2) Employees must disclose the occurrence of any reimbursed or sponsored travel (i.e., travel paid on behalf of the Employee) related to their institutional responsibilities. This disclosure will include, at minimum, the purpose of the trip, identity of the sponsor or organizer, destination, and duration. Nevada State official(s) will determine if further information is needed, including disclosure of monetary value, in order to ascertain whether the travel constitutes a FCOI;

(3) Significant Financial Interest does not include the following: salary, royalties, or other Remuneration paid by Nevada State to the employee, if the employee is currently employed or otherwise appointed by the College, including intellectual property rights assigned to the College and agreements to share in royalties related to such rights; income from investment vehicles, such as mutual funds and retirement accounts, as long as the Employee does not directly control the investment decisions made in these vehicles. All Significant Financial Interests must be evaluated by the College to determine whether or not they pose a Financial Conflict of Interest.

Sponsored Project: A research, training, service, or other type of project with identifiable objectives and/or deliverables for which external funding either is being requested or has been received.


I.              Requirement to Disclose

Nevada State College Employees are considered public Employees and must comply with the Code of Ethical Standards of the State of Nevada as codified in Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) 281A.400-281A.660.

All full-time academic and administrative faculty and professional staff shall disclose annually whether or not they plan to engage in any outside activity or professional involvement that may constitute a Conflict of Interest, and/or for which they will receive compensation.

In addition to the annual disclosure, Federally-funded Investigators must disclose the amount of compensation so the Designated Official may determine whether a Financial Conflict of Interest exists. All Employees affiliated with the College must disclose potential Conflicts of Interest prior to accepting a Sponsored Projects or other outside conflicts that may impact their position with the College. All potential Conflicts of Interest and/or Compensated Outside Services must be approved before the activity is undertaken.

College Employees shall also disclose benefits that may accrue to individuals in the Employee’s household; persons to whom the Employee is related by blood, adoption, or marriage within the third degree of consanguinity; or persons with whom the Employee has substantial and continuing outside business relationships.

Relationships within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity are defined as:

A. The employee’s spouse, child, parent, sibling, half-sibling, or step-relatives in the same relationship;

B. The spouse of the employee’s child, parent, sibling, half-sibling, or step relative; or

C. The employee’s in-laws, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, grandparent, grandchild, or first cousin.

For Sponsored Projects, subcontractors and other external collaborators must provide adequate assurances to the College that they are in compliance with federal regulations and must provide reports of Conflicts of Interest in a timely manner to allow for reporting to funding agencies.

A disclosure in and of itself is not suggestive of any impropriety; it is customary and usual, and benefits both the individual and the College, as described in NSHE’s Compensated Outside Professional Services Policy (Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 9).

II.            Disclosure Process

It is the responsibility of each Nevada State Employee to disclose potential Conflicts of Interest or Compensated Outside Services. It is the responsibility of the College and the appropriate Designated Official to review disclosures and determine if the disclosed interests could directly and significantly affect the Employee’s performance of College Responsibilities and, if so, to require the management, reduction, or elimination of the Conflict of Interest.

Disclosures must be sent to the Employee’s supervisor and to Human Resources. Disclosures must occur when any of the following apply or occur: 1) on an annual basis by September 15th of each year, 2) upon application for a Sponsored Project, or 3) prior to initiation of any such outside services. Disclosures must be made using the Conflict of Interest/Compensated Outside Services Disclosure form.

A. Situations that may create a Conflict of Interest and must be disclosed, regardless of the amount of compensation, include:

  1. External Financial Interests;
  2. Management positions with fiduciary responsibilities such as a board member, director, partner, or trustee with an outside entity that has a business relationship with NS;
  3. Industry affiliations with pharmaceutical, medical device, or medical equipment companies;
  4. Consulting and other compensated professional/commercial activities;
  5. Use of students or support staff on external, non-NSC activities;
  6. Use of College resources;
  7. Clinical trials;
  8. Contractual relationships between Nevada State and other entities with which NS Employees have an outside relationship;
  9. Any other relationship with an external entity that has the potential to result in a Conflict of Interest.

B. Employees do not need to disclose the following:

  1. Salary, royalties, or other Remuneration paid by Nevada State to the Investigator, if the Investigator is currently employed or otherwise appointed by the College, including intellectual property rights assigned to the College and agreements to share in royalties related to such rights;
  2. Equity Interests or income from investment vehicles, such as mutual funds and retirement accounts, as long as the employee does not directly control the investment decisions made in these vehicles;
  3. Income from seminars, lectures, or teaching engagements sponsored by a federal, state, or local government agency; a U.S. institution of higher education (as defined by 20 U.S.C. 1001(a)); an academic teaching hospital, medical center, or research institute that is affiliated with a U.S. institution of higher education;
  4. Income from service on advisory committees or review panels for a federal, state, or local government agency; a U.S. institution of higher education; or an academic teaching hospital, medical center, or research institute that is affiliated with a U.S. institution of higher education.

C. To protect students’ rights as researchers and scholars, employees must comply with the following requirements:

    1. Employees must disclose restrictions on publication or communication rights on Sponsored Projects when students are involved in the project and their involvement is the basis for evaluating the student or fulfilling a degree requirement;
    2. Faculty members must disclose their intent to hire a Nevada State College student as an Employee or as a contractor for an outside entity in which they have a Significant Financial Interest if any of the following apply:
      1. The student is enrolled in a class that the faculty member teaches;
      2. The student is under the faculty member’s supervision on a research project; and/or
      3. The faculty member is the chair of the student’s graduate committee.

III.           Review of Potential Conflicts of Interest and/or Excessive Outside Compensated Services

Determining whether a Conflict of Interest or Excessive Compensated Outside Services exists in a particular instance will often be a matter of judgment. The activities of employees must be governed by thoughtful and shared consideration of individual circumstances in applying the appropriate rules. Application of administrative discretion is an integral part of Nevada State’s Conflict of Interest and Compensated Outside Services review and remediation systems.

The Associate Vice President of Human Resources serves as Designated Official and reviews all disclosures from faculty. The Designated Official shall determine whether a Conflict of Interest and/or Excessive Compensated Outside Services are present. This determination and a response to the Employee must occur within thirty (30) calendar days of receipt of the disclosure; a lack of response after 30 days shall constitute approval by the Designated Official.

IV.           Managing Conflicts of Interest

If a Conflict of Interest and/or Excessive Compensated Outside Services appear to exist as identified in section II(A) of this policy, the supervisor, director, and/or dean will attempt to develop and document a Management Plan. The Management Plan must be forwarded to the appropriate Designated Official for review and approval, disapproval, or further development of management strategies.

The Management Plan will, at a minimum, describe the role and principal duties of the Investigator in the research project; conditions of the Management Plan; how the Management Plan is designed to safeguard objectivity in the research project; confirmation of the Investigator’s agreement to the Management Plan through signature; how the Management Plan will be monitored to ensure Investigator compliance; and other information as needed.

If a mutually acceptable Management Plan cannot be negotiated at the unit level, the Designated Official will review the Conflict of Interest and work with the faculty member’s supervisor to determine the best available actions (see Section V below). If an agreement is not reached, the Designated Official will render a final decision, including any required actions.

V.            Available Actions

A. Actions if Conflict of Interest Exists: If a real or potential Conflict of Interest exists, one of the following actions will be taken:

  1. Accept the Sponsored Project and allow the research to proceed, with conditions:
    1. Monitoring of research by independent reviewers;
    2. Public disclosure of Significant Financial Interest;
    3. Modification of research plan;
    4. Disqualification from participation in all or part of the Sponsored Project;
    5. Divestiture of Significant Financial Interest;
    6. Severance of relationships that create actual or potential conflicts;
  1. Do not accept the Sponsored Project or Compensated Outside Service;
  2. Require the Nevada State Employee to cease participation in the project involving the Conflict of Interest while remaining an Employee;
  3. Require the Employee to cease participation in College activities related to the Conflict of Interest.
  4. Accept the Sponsored Project and allow the research to proceed, with conditions:
    1. Monitoring of research by independent reviewers;
    2. Public disclosure of Significant Financial Interest;
    3. Modification of research plan;
    4. Disqualification from participation in all or part of the Sponsored Project;
    5. Divestiture of Significant Financial Interest;
    6. Severance of relationships that create actual or potential conflicts.

 B. Actions if Excessive Compensated Outside Services Exist: In cases where Excessive Compensated Outside Services exist, one or more of the following actions will be taken:

  1. Require that the Employee reduce the activity to a level that is allowable under Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 9 of the NSHE Code;
  2. Require that the Employee cease performance of existing outside obligations while the Employee remains an Employee;
  3. Disciplinary sanctions as set forth in Title 2, Chapter 6 of the NSHE Code.

If the Conflict of Interest or Compensated Outside Services involves a vice president or the provost, the president will review the disclosure and render a final decision. If the Conflict of Interest or Compensated Outside Services involves the president, the chancellor will review the disclosure and render a final decision.

VI.           Additional Requirements for Projects Funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Public Health Service (PHS)

A. Training: Investigators on Public Health Service-funded projects must complete training on Conflicts of Interest prior to engaging in research related to any PHS-funded grant. Training must be taken at least every four (4) years, and immediately when any of the following circumstances apply:

    1. The College revises its Financial Conflict of Interest policies or procedures in any manner that affects the requirements of Investigators;
    2. An Investigator is new to the College;
    3. The College finds that an Investigator is not in compliance with the institution’s Financial Conflict of Interest policy or Management Plan.

B. Retrospective Reviews: In addition to the mechanism set forth in section IX: Noncompliance (below), the Designated Official will conduct retrospective reviews of PHS-funded projects as needed. Retrospective reviews occur when:

    1. The College identifies a Significant Financial Interest that was not disclosed in a timely manner by an Investigator;
    2. A Significant Financial Interest was not previously reviewed or managed by Nevada State during an ongoing PHS-funded research project (e.g., was not reviewed in a timely fashion or reported by a subawardee).

The Designated Official shall, within thirty (30) calendar days, review the Significant Financial Interest; determine whether it is related to PHS-funded research; and determine whether a Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) exists. If so:

    1. The Designated Official will implement, on at least an interim basis, a Management Plan that will specify the actions that have been, and will be, taken to manage the FCOI going forward;
    2. If the Investigator fails to comply with a FCOI Management Plan, within 120 days of the determination of noncompliance Nevada State will complete a retrospective review of the Investigator’s activities and the PHS-funded research project to determine whether any PHS-funded research, or portion thereof, conducted during the time period of the noncompliance was biased in the design, conduct, or reporting of such research.


  1. The College is required to document the retrospective review involving PHS-sponsored research; such documentation shall include, but is not necessarily limited to, all of the following key elements:
    1. Project number;
    2. Project title;
    3. PD/PI or contact PD/PI if a multiple PD/PI model is used;
    4. Name of the Investigator with the FCOI;
    5. Name of the entity with which the Investigator has a Financial Conflict of Interest;
    6. Reason(s) for the retrospective review;
    7. Detailed methodology used for the retrospective review;
    8. Findings of the review;
    9. Conclusions of the review.

Based on the results of the retrospective review, if appropriate, the College will update the previously submitted FCOI report, specifying the actions that will be taken to manage the Financial Conflict of Interest going forward. If bias relating to the Conflict of Interest is found, the College is required to notify the PHS Awarding Component promptly and submit a mitigation report.

  1. Mitigation Report: The mitigation report must include, at a minimum:
    1. The key elements documented in the retrospective review above;
    2. A description of the impact of the bias on the research project and Nevada State’s plan of action or actions taken to eliminate or mitigate the effect of the bias (e.g., impact on the research project; extent of harm done, including any qualitative and quantitative data to support any actual or future harm; analysis of whether the research project is salvageable).
    3. Depending on the nature of the FCOI, the College may determine that additional interim measures are necessary with regard to the Investigator’s participation in the PHS-funded research project between the date that the Financial Conflict of Interest or the Investigator’s noncompliance is determined and the completion of the Institution’s retrospective review.
  1. NIH Funding: If the National Institutes of Health determines that one of its funded clinical research projects whose purpose is to evaluate the safety or effectiveness of a drug, medical device, or treatment has been designed, conducted, or reported by an Investigator with an FCOI that was not managed or reported by Nevada State, the College will require the Investigator to disclose the FCOI in each public presentation of the results of the research and will request an addendum to previously published presentations.

 VII.         Disclosure to External Agencies

The College will comply with all requirements for external disclosure of Conflicts of Interest and Compensated Outside Services. This includes annual summary reports to the NSHE Board of Regents and specific reports/written disclosures to PHS and other funding agencies as stipulated in 2 CFR 200.112 and the acceptance of award documentation.

In accordance with federal regulations, information about Significant Financial Interests that were determined to be Financial Conflicts of interest for Senior/Key Personnel on PHS-Sponsored Projects will be made available on Nevada State’s publicly accessible website and must include the following:

A. Investigator’s name;

B. Investigator’s title and role with respect to the research project;

C. Name of the entity in which the Significant Financial Interest is held;

D. Nature of the Significant Financial Interest;

E. Approximate dollar value of the Significant Financial Interest.

All Employees shall inform those who engage them in outside professional work that they are not acting in the name of the College and that the College is neither a party to the contract nor liable for any actions of the Employee. Employees performing outside professional work or scholarly services are subject to Title 4, Chapter 1, Section 25 of NSHE’s policy on Personal Use of System Property or Resources.

VIII.        Appealing Conflict of Interest Determinations

Employees may appeal a Conflict of Interest decision by sending notification (via email) to the appropriate Designated Official. Employees appeal to the president concerning the decision of the Designated Official. Appeals must be in writing and must be submitted within five (5) business days from the date the Designated Official’s decision is received by the employee. The president’s decision on the appeal is final.

IX.           Noncompliance

Possible violations of this policy and the rules and procedures described in it, as well as alleged deliberate and/or dishonest undisclosed conflicts, will be investigated by the Associate Vice President of Human Resources, who will recommend appropriate action, if any, to the president.

The procedures set forth in Chapter 6 of the NSHE Code and NRS Chapter 281A.500-550 will govern the imposition of any disciplinary sanctions by the College for violations of policy, rules, and procedures. In addition, the College will comply with all review and reporting requirements for noncompliant Investigators on funded projects.

X.            Record Handling and Retention

The College considers all disclosures and related documentation to be personnel documents and will limit access to and disclosure of such records as provided for in the NSHE Regents Handbook and applicable College personnel and privacy policies. The College will meet Conflict of Interest requirements for information release specified in the award documentation of Sponsored Programs. The disclosure documentation will be stored by the Office of Human Resources as part of the faculty member’s personnel file. The Office of Grant Services will receive electronic copies of all disclosures related to Sponsored Projects and will provide all required reports to appropriate funding agencies.

All disclosures and documentation of resolutions must be maintained for a minimum of three (3) years following the completion of the award (for Sponsored Projects) or the termination of the outside activity (for Conflicts of Interest and Outside Compensated Service not related to a Sponsored Project). Copies in personnel files will be maintained in a format that allows for reporting of aggregate data as required by NSHE Title 4 Chapter 3 Section 8.14.


  • Conflict of Interest/Compensated Outside Services Disclosure Form


Office of the Provost
Sita Sales
Phone: 702-992-2600


  • Nevada Revised Statutes 400-281A.660
  • NSHE Rules and Disciplinary Measures for Faculty (NSHE Code Chapter 6)
  • NSHE’s policy on Personal Use of System Property or Resources (Handbook, Title 4, Chapter 1, Section 25 and Section 27)
  • NSHE policy on Nepotism (Handbook, Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 7)
  • NSHE’s Compensated Outside Professional Services Policy (Handbook, Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 9)
  • United States Code General Definition of Institution of Higher Education (20 U.S.C. 1001(a))
  • 2 CFR 200.112


Approved by Mr. Kevin Butler, Senior Vice President of Finance and Business, November 29, 2022.

Approved by Dr. DeRionne Pollard, President, November 30, 2022.

Scholarly Misconduct Policy (AA 19)


Nevada State College neither condones nor tolerates scholarly misconduct by its employees, including academic faculty. Scholars and researchers bear the primary responsibility for the monitoring and rigorous evaluation of procedures and results of research and other scholarly activities under their supervision. All members of the College community adhere to the College’s strict standards of integrity in academic scholarship and research and are ethically obligated to report any fraudulent acts when they are known or suspected to have occurred.


Fabrication: Making up data or results and recording or reporting them as authentic.

Falsification: Manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record.

Plagiarism: Appropriation of another person’s ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit.

Scholarly Misconduct: Dishonesty in proposing, performing, or reviewing research or in reporting results. Includes Fabrication, Falsification, Plagiarism, or other practices which seriously deviate from those that are commonly accepted within the academic community for proposing, conducting, or reporting research. Does not include honest error.


I. Ethical Standards for Research and Other Scholarly Activity

The NSHE Code (Chapter 6, Sections 6.2.1(y)) prohibits faculty from conducting “acts of academic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating, plagiarism, falsifying research data or results, or assisting others to do the same.” Faculty and staff at Nevada State College shall uphold the following ethical standards in the performance of their activities:

A. Project Directors (PDs) and Principal Investigators (PIs) must comply with all internal and external requirements for protecting human subjects, project personnel, and the public and for ensuring the welfare of laboratory animals.

B. Scholars and researchers must not fall below accepted professional standards in proposing their activities, carrying them out, and reporting their results. Primary data must be scrupulously collected and retained.

C. All participants in scholarly/research activity must avoid both intentional and negligent behavior which may result in violation of the law; dishonesty or fraud; Fabrication; Falsification; or Plagiarism.

D. Cooperative efforts require mutual attention to the integrity of the scholarly processes involved. Joint authorship entails joint responsibility; each author claiming shared credit must be aware of the risk of shared discredit.

E. Senior scholars and researchers must avoid exploitation of junior colleagues and students. Claims of credit, co-authorship, and intellectual property should reflect actual involvement, responsibility, and effort.

F. Project Directors and Principal Investigators performing sponsored scholarly/research activity (e.g., supported through a grant, contract, or gift) must be free to manage their sponsored funding to the maximum extent allowed by the funding agency and the rules of the College. They must be knowledgeable of and responsive to internal and external requirements of financial responsibility and accountability to avoid misallocation, misappropriation, or misuse of sponsor/donor funds.

G. Present or proposed activities or relationships which present a conflict of interest (e.g., affect the objectivity of research or scholarship, give the appearance of being motivated by private financial gain, and/or involve unacceptable commitments for a scholar/researcher) must be disclosed and approved by the employee’s supervisor and the Office of the Provost prior to committing to such activities or relationships.

II. Procedures for Dealing with Allegations of Research or Scholarly Misconduct

Allegations of misconduct shall be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of Title 2, Chapter 6 of the NSHE Handbook.

A. All allegations of misconduct should be reported in writing to the Executive Vice Provost (or, in the absence of this individual, to the Vice Provost for Academic Initiatives). Allegations must be signed by the submitter. Wherever possible, the allegation must specify details including the date, time, place, persons involved, witnesses, and circumstances of the alleged misconduct.

B. The Executive Vice Provost will conduct an inquiry in accordance with NSHE Code, Section 6.8.2 and, based on this inquiry, will make a determination regarding whether a valid allegation of misconduct exists. The Executive Vice Provost will make a recommendation to the President to dismiss the allegation, accept an informal resolution (as described in NSHE Code, Section 6.8.2(c)), or conduct a hearing (NSHE Code, Section 6.8.2(d)). If the President determines that a hearing is warranted, a hearing will be conducted in accordance with NSHE Code, Sections 6.8.2.(3) and 6.9. The President may instead dismiss the complaint, accept an informal resolution, or determine that a reprimand or warning is appropriate, as set forth in NSHE Code Chapter 6, Section 6.6.

C. The maintenance of confidentiality is the guiding principle for this process, to protect both those who make the allegations and those against whom the allegations are made. As few people as are necessary shall be involved in the process, and all records dealing with an allegation, its review, and its disposition shall be treated in accordance with NSHE Code Chapter 5, Section 5.6 and Chapter 6, Sections 6.14 and 6.15.

D. If an inquiry involves funds from the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the College is required to immediately report such inquiry to the Federal DHHS Office of Research Integrity (ORI). The Hearing Committee and any federal sponsors must submit a report to ORI within 120 days of the beginning of the hearing.

E. If an allegation of Scholarly Misconduct is made regarding a research project involving human subjects, the Executive Vice Provost may inform the Institutional Review Board (IRB), which may conduct an audit or other oversight activities according to IRB policy.


  • NSHE Handbook Title 2, Section 5.6, 6.1, 6.6, 6.8, and 6.9
  • NSC Institutional Review Board Policy (RE 1)


Approved by Dr. Serge Ballif, Faculty Senate Chair, September 7, 2019.
Approved by Dr. Vickie Shields, Provost, September 11, 2019.
Approved by Bart Patterson, President, September 24, 2019.

Institutional Review Board Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects (RE 1)


Federal regulations mandate that Research that involves gathering information about living human beings must be evaluated by an Institutional Review Board (IRB) to assure that appropriate measures are followed to protect the safety and well-being of Human Subjects. NSC must also provide a Federalwide Assurance that all Research conducted by faculty, staff, and students will be reviewed for compliance with federal regulations, whether the Research is funded by federal dollars or not.

In the event that issues related to the use of Human Subjects in Research at NSC are not covered by this policy, the IRB will rely on the 45 CFR 46 as revised.

This policy encodes language from the NSC IRB Handbook as official NSC policy; provides clear definitions of key terms; updates IRB membership requirements; and updates statements to allow for compliance with the Revised Common Rule, when applicable.


Adverse Event: Any untoward or unfavorable medical occurrence in a Human Subject, including any abnormal sign (for example, abnormal physical exam or laboratory finding), symptom, or disease, temporally associated with the Human Subject’s participation in the Research, whether or not considered related to participation in the Research.

Common Rule (45 CFR 46): Department of Health and Human Services regulations regarding Research with Human Subjects in the U.S.; all government-funded Research is held to this baseline standard.

Federalwide Assurance (FWA): An institution’s official agreement to comply with all federal regulations governing Human Subjects. Also known as Institutional Assurance.

Generalizable Knowledge: Exists when a study meets one or more of the following conditions:

  1. Data are geared for scholars, practitioners, and/or researchers within a specified field of study;
  2. Results are disseminated by presentation and/or publication in order to illuminate some topic or issue within a field of study;
  3. Results are applied to some population in addition to the sample;
  4. Results can be replicated by others;
  5. Provides input into some field of study.

Human Subject: Living human being about whom (not necessarily from whom) a researcher obtains information. Data may be obtained through interaction or intervention with the person, or may be existing information that can be linked specifically to an identifiable individual.

Institutional Official: Legally-obligated entity maintaining compliance with 45 CFR 46 and other relevant regulations and statues for Human Subjects Research.

Institutional Review Board (IRB): Campus committee established to review proposed Research protocols to ensure the protection of Human Subjects.

IRB Administrator: NSC employee appointed by the Provost to coordinate IRB activities, review applications, maintain IRB files, and assist the Provost in complying with federal and state laws regarding Human Subjects protection. Authorized to act on behalf of NSC for Exempt projects and Expedited review.

IRB Chair: Voting IRB member appointed by the Provost to preside at meetings and act on behalf of NSC for Exempt projects and Expedited review.

Principal Investigator (PI): Investigator responsible for ensuring that work on a project is conducted in full compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, guidelines, and policies.

Quorum: One more than one-half of the total official membership of the IRB in any given year.

Research: Systematic, intentional, formalized plan of investigation designed to develop or contribute to Generalizable Knowledge.

Working Day: Monday through Friday when College classes are scheduled and in session during fall and spring semesters.


I. Fundamental Principles

The NSC Institutional Review Board (IRB) adheres to the following principles:

A. Respect for persons: Individuals must be treated as autonomous agents who enter into research voluntarily and with adequate information about the purpose and procedures of the Individuals with diminished autonomy (children, prisoners, individuals who are in some way incapacitated) have a right to be protected.

B. Beneficence: Researchers are obliged to secure the well-being of their Possible benefits from participating in the research should be maximized for individual subjects; at the same time, possible harms from participating in the research should be minimized for the individual subjects.

C. Justice: Risks and benefits of research should be distributed equally across various human groups. The burden of serving as research subjects should not largely fall in certain groups such as the poor or imprisoned while other groups primarily benefit from the results of the research.

II. Projects Requiring IRB Review

Any proposed systematic plan of investigation involving Human Subjects that meets the definition of Generalizable Knowledge, the results of which will (or may) be disseminated to audiences outside NSC, must be submitted to the IRB for review. Activities that meet these conditions constitute Research even if they are supported or funded under a program that serves other purposes.

Interacting with a person does not necessarily make them a Human Subject. Humans providing factual information about organizations or other groups are not subjects. However, if they provide information about how they perceive or feel about an organization or group, they are Human Subjects. Online surveys generally constitute interaction or intervention with people.

The IRB Handbook provides detailed information on which types of investigations qualify as Research.

III. Human Subjects Protection and IRB Responsibilities

Nevada State College meets its responsibilities with respect to complying with applicable laws, regulations, guidelines, and policies. Among these responsibilities are:

A. Developing and maintaining a coordinated system of compliance that includes activity review and approval, monitoring, reporting, and enforcement;

B. Developing and maintaining a system of auditable files and information for the benefit of NSC and external oversight;

C. Providing administrative and consultation services for offices, departments, review bodies, and individuals to assist in establishing compliance;

D. Providing educational services to faculty, staff, and students so they can better meet compliance requirements;

E. Coordinating activities with other units within NSC so the institution can meet its obligations in the most uniform, effective, and efficient way possible;

F. Providing a communication link between agencies issuing compliance requirements and NSC personnel; and

G. Submitting assurances, reports, and/or other required communications to appropriate federal and state agencies.

The IRB is obligated to inform researchers of procedures related to compliance with federal regulations, including the following:

  • Conducting training programs and distributing materials for investigators, such as annual briefings to faculty and deans and preparation guidance published on the IRB website;
  • Including specific directions in approval letters to Principal Investigators (e.g., cautioning that significant changes in protocol must be reviewed by the IRB);
  • Random audits of research records.

IV. IRB Membership and Meeting Schedule

The IRB is a committee serving at the discretion of the Provost, not an independent unit of the Faculty Senate or any other body.

Federal regulations (see 21CFR56.107) require IRBs to contain no fewer than five (5) members of varying backgrounds. At least one member must have a scientific background, while at least one must have a non-scientific background. In addition, the IRB must contain one member from outside the institution.

At its discretion, the IRB may invite non-members with relevant expertise to assist in the review of individual proposals.

A. Membership: There is no fixed number of members for the NSC IRB. However, the membership will meet the following criteria:

1. No fewer than five (5) members;

i. One (1) of whom has a background in a scientific discipline;
ii. One (1) of whom has a background in a non-scientific area;
iii. And one (1) of whom is not employed at NSC.

2. The IRB Administrator is a non-voting member;
3. The Provost, or designee, shall serve as a non-voting member;
4. When possible, the IRB shall contain one (1) faculty member from each School and the Library;
5. Every effort will be made to ensure sufficient diversity to represent a wide array of perspectives and expertise on Human Subjects protection.

B. Selection of Members: The IRB Administrator will request annual faculty nominations from the Deans of each School and the Library Director.

C. Term Length: Members will be appointed by the Provost for one-, two-, or three-year The Provost has sole discretion not to re-appoint members to continue to serve any multiple-year appointment.

D. Meeting Frequency: The IRB will meet face-to-face (or via video-conference) as needed. IRB members serve without compensation and may be asked to attend meetings when they are off contract.

V. IRB Administration

NSC’s IRB includes three administrative positions:

A. IRB Chair: The Provost shall designate an IRB Chair to preside over meetings; the Chair may be one of the members of the IRB described in IV.A, or may be an additional member. The Chair serves a one-year term, with up to two (2) year-long extensions (for a maximum of three [3] consecutive years).

B. IRB Administrator: The IRB Administrator documents receipt of all IRB protocol submissions. The Administrator also archives all IRB correspondence, records notes at in-person meetings, and schedules

C. Institutional Official: The Provost serves this role and signs NSC’s Federalwide Assurance (FWA).

VI. Categories of Research

Three categories of Research are recognized by federal regulations. The NSC IRB determines which category applies to proposed Research; therefore, all proposed Human Subjects Research must be submitted for IRB approval. The three possible categories are:

A. Exempt (§45 CFR 101b; Revised Common Rule, 45 CFR 46.104). See the IRB Handbook for a complete description of eligibility for exemption.

      1. The IRB Administrator has the authority to determine Exempt If a proposal is determined to be Exempt, the PI will be notified within ten (10) Working Days of receiving the complete protocol.
      2. Once a project is determined to be Exempt, no additional interaction with the IRB is needed unless changes are made to the protocol.

B. Expedited Approval (§45 CFR 110a): For Research in which participants will experience no more than minimal risk. See the IRB Handbook for details on projects that qualify for Expedited review.

      1. The IRB Administrator, in consultation with the IRB Chair and one or more IRB members with relevant experience, may review and respond to Expedited proposals without full committee Allow twenty (20) Working Days after submission for a response from the NSC IRB.

C. Full Board Approval: For Research that presents greater than minimal risk to See the IRB Handbook for details.

      1. Proposals requiring Full Board action will be considered at a regularly-scheduled IRB meeting. The PI may be invited to discuss the proposal with the Allow up to thirty (30) Working Days after submission for approval.

Human Subjects may participate in an Expedited or Full Board review project only after they are covered by an approved process of informed consent. The PI must prepare and provide the IRB Chair with a legally-effective informed consent form on an annual basis.

VII. Application Procedures

At the point that a researcher formulates a systematic, intentional plan of investigation that meets the definition of Research and involves Human Subjects, the IRB must be involved. Projects that are not  Research and/or do not involve Human Subjects do not require a protocol application. Refer to the NSC IRB Handbook for detailed information on which projects require an IRB application. If you have questions at any point, contact the IRB Administrator ( for clarification.

Proposed Research involving Human Subjects must receive IRB approval before recruitment of subjects, data collection, or analysis may commence. Information gathered for other purposes may be used for Research purposes, but only after IRB review. If the proposed Research requires external funding, IRB review is not needed before a proposal for funding or Research is submitted to a target agency. However, it must be made clear in any proposal that the NSC IRB will review the project (if funded), and recommend changes if needed, before any Research involving Human Subjects may begin.

A. Required Materials: IRB proposals should be submitted online and must include the materials listed in the IRB Handbook. All forms are available on the IRB website.

B. Application Deadlines: New proposals are due by the last day of each month for potential review at the mid-month IRB

C. Application Review: The IRB Administrator will check regularly for new If the IRB Administrator is out of the office or otherwise unavailable, the IRB Chair will be notified and respond in a timely fashion to questions sent to

The IRB Administrator maintains and edits the IRB Handbook and required forms as needed. The Handbook and all forms are published on the NSC IRB website.

VIII. Protocol Approval

The IRB shall review and have authority to approve, require modifications in, or disapprove all Research activities covered by this policy. The IRB shall require that information given to subjects as part of informed consent is in accordance with CFR 46.116. The IRB may require that information in addition to that specifically mentioned in CFR.46.116 be given to subjects when, in the IRB’s judgment, the information would meaningfully add to the protection of the rights and welfare of subjects. The IRB may require documentation of informed consent or may waive documentation in accordance with CFR.46.117.

A. Full Board Review: In cases requiring Full IRB review, actions will be made by majority vote when at least a Quorum is present.

B. Notification: The IRB Administrator or Chair shall notify PIs in a letter, sent via NSC email, of the IRB decision to approve or disapprove the proposed Research activity or of modifications required to secure IRB

C. Disapproval: If the IRB disapproves a Research protocol, it shall include in its written notification the reasons for its decision and give the PI an opportunity to respond in person or in writing.

IX. Expiration, Renewal, and Modification of Approved Protocols

The IRB will determine the term of approval and notify the researcher of the date of expiration of approval. As a courtesy, the IRB Administrator will send a notice of expiration to the Principal Investigator approximately six (6) weeks before the expiration date. However, it is ultimately the responsibility of the Principal Investigator to submit a renewal application if Research will continue beyond the expiration date.
Research activity must cease at the expiration date if renewal has not been obtained.

A. Renewal of Protocols: Renewal of Full Board and some Expedited protocols is required

B. PI Changes: If the Principal Investigator ceases to be responsible for the study, approval automatically ceases. Should a new Principal Investigator desire to continue the study, renewal is

1. If the project is funded by a federal agency, most federal agencies require prior approval before replacing the designated Principal

C. Protocol Modifications: If during the course of any Research (including Exempt research), a change in plans is made so that Human Subjects are now to be used, the Research methods or techniques are significantly different, or new hazards are evident, a statement of such change in plans must be submitted to the IRB, and an approval of modifications must be In general, any change which alters the risk/benefit balance or which modifies informed consent in some way requires approval.

1. Minor modifications to a protocol that do not alter the risk to participants do not require IRB approval.

The NSC Handbook provides details on submitting a Renewal or Modification application.

X. Continuing Review and Audits

Federal policy requires that the IRB conduct at least an annual review of certain categories of non-Exempt approved Research activities (CFR 46.109.(e)). The IRB shall have authority to observe or have a third party observe the consent process and the Research.
Continuing review is not required for the following:

  • Projects with Expedited approval that present no more than minimal risk;
  • Projects in which data collection has ceased and only data analysis continues.

The researcher is responsible for initiating any and all needed renewals. Renewal applications should be submitted at least twenty (20) Working Days before the expiration of IRB approval, bearing in mind the time needed for review.

XI. Unanticipated Problems

The phrase “unanticipated problems involving risks to subjects or others” is found but not defined in the Common Rule at 45 CFR part 46. The Office of Human Research Protections considers Unanticipated Problems to include any incident, experience, or outcome that meets all of the following criteria:

A. Unexpected (in terms of nature, severity, or frequency) given the research procedures that are described in the protocol and the characteristics of the subject population;

B. Related or possibly related to participation in the Research;

C. Suggests that the Research places subjects or others at a greater risk of harm (physical, psychological, economic, or social) than was previously known or recognized.

The Principal Investigator is responsible for reporting any serious Unanticipated Problem or Adverse Event to the IRB Administrator and IRB Chair within five (5) Working Days of the occurrence. After seeking emergency assistance, any life-threatening Adverse Events must be reported to the IRB within twenty-four (24) hours. If applicable, the Principal Investigator may also be required to report any serious Unanticipated Problem to the sponsoring federal funding agency within the timeframe specified by the award document.

The IRB may respond in any of the following ways:

  • terminate the Research immediately;
  • require a temporary cessation of Research activity while an investigation is conducted;
  • allow the Research to continue while an investigation is conducted;
  • ask for a detailed written explanation at any time.

Within a reasonable timeframe, the Provost (as the Institutional Official) will consult with the IRB Chair and IRB Administrator and decide how, when, and whether to report to the Office of Human Research Protections (OHRP).

XII. IRB Internal Reporting Requirements

The IRB Administrator will provide a quarterly report to the IRB committee. The report will list all protocols submitted during that period and identified as Exempt, Expedited, or Full Board review. For those that go to Full Board review, the IRB Administrator will provide the minutes of the meeting(s) at which the proposal was discussed, the outcome of the vote, and a summary of the Research. This will be completed within ten (10) working days after Board approval.

XIII. Noncompliance

All acts and/or allegations of noncompliance with applicable rules, procedures, policies, and/or regulations are initially reviewed by the IRB. Following an investigative process, there may be an official notice of findings and/or an official determination of noncompliance. Corrective action(s) may be proposed and/or required at any time during a noncompliance resolution process.

In any instance where IRB requirements are not being followed, the IRB shall inform the Principal Investigator and the Provost, who will be asked to enforce the requirements. If the Principal Investigator does not comply, the Provost will terminate the research. Such action will be accompanied by a letter to the PI stating the reason for the action. In the case of noncompliance, the IRB can recommend to the Provost initiation of disciplinary action under Title 2 Chapter 6 of the NSHE Handbook.

If any research which is federally funded is found to be in violation of any of the federally-mandated portions of this policy, or of appropriate federal regulations regarding the protection of Human Subjects, the IRB shall report to the appropriate agency on behalf of the researcher, if the researcher fails to report.

XIV. Records Retention

Investigators are required to make and keep written records of IRB reviews and decisions and to obtain and keep documentary evidence of informed consent of subjects or their legally authorized representatives. Such forms must be retained on file by the responsible individual for a minimum of three (3) years after termination of the project.

The records of the IRB pertaining to individual Research activities are not accessible to persons other than IRB members and the individual Researcher, except for purposes of audit or inspection by federal agencies and appropriate College administrators to assure compliance with the Uniform Federal Policy. All records shall be accessible for inspection and copying by authorized representatives at reasonable times and in a reasonable manner.

The NSC IRB follows a “FY + 3 years” retention period as set forth in the NSHE Procedures and Guidelines Manual, Chapter 16; copies of protocol applications, decision letters, and other materials are kept for three (3) years after the termination of the project.


The following items are available on the NSC IRB website:

  • IRB Handbook
  • IRB Submission Checklist
  • Protocol Application
  • Modification Request Form
  • Continuing Review Form
  • Closure Form
  • Adverse Event Form
  • Required Elements of Informed Consent



NSC IRB Policy and Handbook revised July 2016


Approved by Faculty Senate Chair Dr. Abby Peters, November 20, 2018.
Approved by Provost Dr. Vickie Shields, November 30, 2018.
Approved by President Bart Patterson, December 20, 2018.