48. Outreach to Research Participants and the Community

Updated July 1, 2019

The University and the Research Integrity (RI) provide multiple channels to

  • direct inquiries about human subjects research to individuals who possess sufficient knowledge and understanding to respond accordingly and without bias; and
  • provide information about human subjects research conducted by the University to past, present and future research participants and to local communities.

Mechanisms for Contacting Research Integrity

The Contact Us page of the RI website provides contact information for the Director and staff of the RI, for individuals interested in information specific to human subject research. Individuals preferring to remain anonymous, may complete and submit an online Contact Research Integrity, also available from Contact Us page of the RI website.

Researchers may report problems or complaints to the RI using the Problem Reporting Form (as specified in the online policy for reporting problems to the IRB).

Providing Information to Current, Former, and Prospective Research Participants

University and Affiliate researchers are required to provide information to current, former, and prospective research participants about whom to contact for concerns, questions, or complaints about a research project.

The templates for consent forms and information sheets contain sample language for providing contact information for

  • the RI, as an entity that is unaffiliated with a specific research study; and
  • at least one researcher who can respond to callers' problems, concerns, and questions about the research.

Through an Information for the Public link available from the home page of the RI website, the office provides general information about human subject research for the public. The information is also available in Spanish

RI maintains an RI Facebook page that is accessible to the public.  Science articles, regulatory updates, and information about the RI are posted as information becomes available.  Facebook offers an integrated matrix to evaluate usage. 

Institutional Outreach Goals

In the 2013 self-study document prepared for the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), the University identified three interconnected "core themes" that relate to its broad mission.  The third theme, "Engagement" relates directly to community outreach.

Theme 3 - Engagement

Strengthen the social, economic, and environmental well-being of Nevada citizens, communities, organizations, and governments through community outreach and reciprocal partnerships.

Theme 3 goals that are relevant to human research include

  • fostering public engagement of faculty in research;
  • developing partnerships between on-campus education programs and community-based Extension and outreach;
  • encouraging community focused university-county-city-state partnerships to enhance the value of university resources for Nevadans; and
  • improving mental and physical health and quality of life for Nevadans by formalizing partnerships with local hospitals, increasing the available clinical services, and expanding and enhancing the quality of post-graduate education in medicine, public health, and nursing.

Metrics used to track progress towards Theme 3 include

  • creating awards for community engagement;
  • implementing an annual engagement report;
  • tracking partnerships between on-campus education programs and community-based programs;
  • tracking collaborations with University alumni;
  • providing recognition for community engagement activities in the tenure and promotion    process;
  • establishing community-based programs in an "Innovation Center";
  • establishing formal partnerships with hospitals;
  • obtaining accreditation for a Master and PhD of Public Health;
  • increasing the number of students participating in Service Learning;
  • increasing the number of children participating in 4-H (through UNCE);
  • increasing the degree to which the University participates in statewide disaster preparedness programs; and
  • formalizing partnerships with regional businesses, nonprofit and government sectors.

Institutional Outreach Mechanisms

The Vice President for Research and Innovation (VPRI) exists to enhance research for University faculty by ensuring the necessary infrastructure for service and compliance is available, and by supporting collaboration and innovation. The VPRI offers an introductory pamphlet describing the infrastructure: Research Support and Services and Programs which is available from Sponsored Projects.

The University offers the following online resources for students, faculty, researchers, and members of the community to obtain information about research at Nevada (listed in alphabetical order):

Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE):  A comprehensive website describing the collaboration between the UUNR Med and the University of Nevada, Reno Biology department in supporting medical and basic research. Includes information about and links for

  • Research projects
  • Seminar series
  • COBRE publications, news articles, and announcements
  • COBRE faculty

COBRE Center for Integrative Neuroscience: Provides information about and links for the University's neuroscience center, including current and past faculty and graduate student research projects, publications, Special Populations Database, neuroimaging, and the NeuroLecture Speaker Series.

College of Business Research and Outreach: Provides information about and links for economics seminars and research, business-related research and information centers at the University, and faculty publications.

College of Engineering Research and Outreach: Provides information about research and K-12 outreach activities offered by engineering faculty and students.

College of Education, Child & Family Research Center (CFRC): Provides information about and links for CFRC programs and research activities including Nevada Infrastructure for Climate Change Science, Education and Outreach, Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities, research projects for students and teachers in science, math, and literacy.

Desert Research Institute (DRI): The DRI serves as the environmental research arm of the Nevada system of Higher Education, with main campuses in Reno, and Las Vegas. DRIs is an Affiliate site in that research involving human subjects is overseen by the RI and the University IRB.

Latino Research Center: Serves as a link between the University and the Latino community by providing information about research, student achievement, collaborative activities, and outreach.

Nevada Agricultural Experiment Station (NAES): Provides information about and links for research projects, publications and newsletters, and calendar of events featuring invited speakers; and through its Community Outreach and Services page provides information and links for research involving economic development, genomics, biomedical research, youth development programs, and water quality.

Nevada Center for Health Statistics and Informatics: : Through a Centralized Health Data Warehouse that uses knowledge acquisition, storage, retrieval, linkage, analyses, and representations of health, human and other related data, the Center provides provide technical capacity and collaborative opportunities for researchers and health professionals in Nevada; and data dissemination and presentation.

Raggio Research Center: Provides information about and links for the center's research activities and projects promoting Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education.

Research and Innovation (VPRI): This link, available from the Home page of the University, offers four primary foci:

  • Research Profiles: highlights University faculty engaged in research
  • Research Projects: provides an overview of University research activities, including projects involving human subjects
  • Infrastructure: references the 60+ research centers, facilities, and laboratories
  • Opportunities: identifies opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to engage in research through degree programs

Sanford Center for Aging: Provides information about and links for aging-related community outreach, events, resources and publications, and research (through the Aging Research Collaborative).

The School of Social Research and Justice Studies: Provides information about and links for faculty research and publications related to social-psychology, sociology, communication, and criminal justice.

Undergraduate Research: Provides information about and links for undergraduate research for students, faculty mentors, and opportunities for undergraduate students to engage in research.

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE):  In the spirit of a land-grant institution, this comprehensive website provides information about and links for UNCE research and community programs, events, publications, and resources including UNCE Community Development Programs.

University of Nevada School of Medicine (UNR Med) Research: Provides information about and links for

  • research training programs, resources, and compliance for students, faculty and scientists; and
  • current activities in medical research conducted by UNR Med faculty.

Evaluation of Institutional Outreach Mechanisms

RI staff periodically (e.g., every 3-4 years) complete a comprehensive search of University webpages to identify new sites, update information, and delete sites that may no longer fit the purpose of community outreach related to human research activities. An abbreviated evaluation may occur when the RI learns of new sites, closure of programs or sites, or important changes to the University organizational structure.

RI staff consider any complaints, concerns, suggestions, and other input from participants or others within the research community, and consider other departmental outreach efforts on University campus.  

RI staff make periodic assessments of outreach efforts and the outreach program at least annually, and more frequently, if needed, as determined by the Vice President for Research and Innovation.