It is important that investigators undertake training in ethical considerations for the conduct of human subject research to acquaint themselves with the expectations surrounding such research. 

CITI training in human subject research is required starting August 1, 2018 as part of the HSRRC-IRB review process, and before approval of a research project.

Occidental requires all principal investigators (faculty members, students, administrators & staff) engaged in human subject research to certify to the HSRRC-IRB that they have completed human subjects training before starting a research project.  It is also important for investigators who receive external funding (e.g., grants) to always check the awarding agency’s training requirements.

Occidental College has arranged to offer training to members of the campus community through a program called the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) Program.  This is a respected training program used by numerous colleges and universities.  The web-based modules are available at the CITI website  This is a self-paced, online program that can be completed in more than one sitting.  The Occidental “Social & Behavioral Research" course satisfies the training requirement for human subject researchers at Occidental College.

Principal investigators including student and faculty researchers, as well as faculty mentors/supervisors, should plan to complete the training well in advance of submitting a request for human subject research to Occidental’s HSRRC-IRB.  Documentation of training should be submitted as a PDF file when you submit a request to conduct research with human subjects to the HSRRC-IRB Office at

  • Go to
  • Click on Register
  • For Step 1, type in “Occidental College".  You will then need to check the box for “I Agree to the Terms of Service for Accessing CITI program materials" and that you are an affiliate of Occidental College. Check those boxes to move to the next step.
  • Complete the rest of the information as requested using your own name and email, etc. You will be asked to set a user name and password, and to answer a security question. There are 7 steps to registration. [Note that you should select No for the continuing education credits unless you wish to purchase those on your own - the HSRRC does not pay for CE credits.] Mentors: Even if you are not serving as the PI on the proposal (there is a student PI), please identify yourself as a PI for training purposes.
  • When you reach step 7, you will be asked to  select your curriculum by answering a series of questions.
  • On Question 1 under “Human Subject Research" please choose the first option, which reads:  Investigators/Mentors: Human Subjects Research involving Social and Behavioral Research: Choose this group to satisfy training requirements for Investigators (Students, Faculty, Administrators and Staff) primarily involved in Social and Behavioral research with Human Subjects.
  • For all other sections/questions, skip or select “not at this time."  Then hit the "Complete Registration" button.
  • You will see a "welcome notice" and a button that instructs you to "finalize registration." Click the "finalize registration" button.
  • A link for "Occidental College Courses" will appear. Please click on that link. 
  • You will see a section heading titled "Human Subjects Research for the Social/Behavioral Sciences." Click on that link.
  • Before you begin your assigned modules, you will be asked to complete an "Integrity Assurance Statement." Please do so.
  • A list of individual modules (4) for the course will now be displayed.  You must complete each module in order to pass the course.  A brief quiz must be completed at the end of each module. You will see a dashboard showing you the date each module is completed along with your score. You do not have to complete all modules in one sitting - you can log back in at any time.
  • When you have finished your course, you must save your “Completion Report" as a pdf file.  A pdf copy of the report should be submitted to for each human subject request submitted to the HSRRC-IRB office for review. 
  • You do not have to re-do the course every time you submit a proposal to the HSRRC. Training certificates are valid for four years and you will be able to use the same completion report for all proposals on which you are the researcher or mentor during that time period.  After four years, you will have to retake the same four modules as a refresher course.