Research Ethics Office

When is ACUC Review Required?

Animal Use Requiring ACUC Review

The University is responsible for all research, teaching and testing involving living non-human vertebrates or invertebrates of Class Cephalopoda or higher conducted by its staff and students, whether the research is conducted at the University of elsewhere.  The University is also responsible for all research, teaching and testing using animals that takes place within its facilities or using its resources.


University staff and students participate in research collaborations and partnerships all over the world AND the University receives visiting students and scholars from a host of countries and institutions.

Despite many nuances that arise in this type of collaboration, in almost all cases a review must be done by one of the Animal Care and Use Committees at the University of Alberta.  This document outlines some potential scenarios that can arise in collaborative research, and how the ACUC will handle the review and approval.

Exceptions to the Requirement for ACUC Review

Research or teaching protocols that are Category A of invasiveness studies do not require ACUC review. However these activities must be filed with REO using the Exceptions to ACUC Review form.

Animal use that is Category of Invasiveness B or higher MUST be reviewed and approved by an ACUC.

Other activities that involve interacting with animals (i.e., activities that are not research, teaching or testing) also do not require ethics review, but may involve other issues that need to be addressed. For example, the use of animals in a campus parade, or the use of a therapy dog during exam time, would not require ACUC review, but should be filed with REO and other relevant offices as applicable (Risk Management Services, Campus Protection Services, etc.)

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