3650P Use of Human Participants in Instructional Activities (Procedures)

Original Date: 2/28/2006 * Last Revision Effective: 4/7/2015
Policy Contact: Vice President, Instruction


The following procedures are established to meet the requirements for implementing policy #3650 – Use of Human Participants In Instructional Activities.


  • Instructors whose curriculum indicates the use of human participants in the classroom or lab in an activity that creates a risk must establish a written protocol with their department chair and division dean which protects the safety of all participants from the risk of harm or injury.
  • The instructor’s protocol will include guidelines for student safety, consider universal precautions when appropriate, reflect WISHA and OSHA requirements, and delineate the criteria and procedures for reporting an incident. Guidelines should assume that risks involved will be minimal and reasonable, document informed consent, assure appropriate safety monitoring and adequately protect individual privacy. The department chair and department instructors will meet to develop these guidelines.
    • Should any instructional activity involve risk as defined below, final approval shall be by the vice president of instruction.
  • Activities that use human participants and require a written protocol shall be conducted only under the direct supervision of the instructor(s) who has (have) been assigned to teach the course that has received the appropriate prior approval. Direct supervision means that the instructor is on the premises.
  • Before involvement as a human participant in an activity that requires a written protocol, a student must give written informed consent. If under the age of 18, written informed consent must be obtained from the parent or legal guardian unless the participant is determined to be an emancipated minor. The consent is to be freely given, obtained from the subject, parent or legal guardian without undue inducement or any element of constraint or coercion. The following elements of information necessary for such consent shall be included in the syllabi materials of courses involving the use of human participants.
    • A timely notification of the procedures to be followed, including a description of the attendant risks and/or discomforts.
    • A description of the benefits to be expected or the knowledge to be gained.
    • A disclosure of appropriate alternative procedures, if available.
    • An offer to answer any questions the participant has concerning an activity.
    • The student who wishes to may withdraw from the course within a reasonable time after being notified of required participation in an activity s/he finds objectionable.
    • The student who does not consent to be a human participant may be given alternative learning experiences at the discretion of the instructor.
    • The student who chooses neither to act as a human participant nor to accept alternative activities will be informed that he or she may not be able to complete some courses or programs successfully.
    • An assurance that the participant’s identity will remain confidential where possible.
  • Review and approval process
    • No activity which requires a written protocol shall be initiated until it has been reviewed and approved by the department coordinator, division dean, the vice president of instruction and the Bellevue College risk management committee.
    • Before beginning an activity that requires written student consent, it shall be the responsibility of the instructor and division dean to submit to the vice president of instruction a description of the proposed activity and an informed consent form for participants for review and approval.
    • Once approved by the vice president of instruction, the above information will be sent to the Bellevue College risk management committee for final approval.
  • Appeal Procedures
    • Students must inform instructors at the time of obtaining written consent of their refusal to participate and reasons for refusal.
    • If the instructor deems the student’s refusal and reason to be valid, the instructor will excuse the student and provide an acceptable alternative activity if such an activity is necessary to the student’s success in the course.
    • If the instructor does not deem the student’s refusal and reason to be valid and does not waive the student’s participation, the student may appeal to the division dean.
    • The instructor shall advise the division dean of any individuals who are unwilling to participate in an approved activity.
    • The division dean, in consultation with the instructor, shall review the student’s objections by consulting the class and department requirements, and make appropriate adjustments if possible.
  • If a satisfactory resolution is not reached, the matter is referred to the vice president of instruction for a final decision.



  • means that as a consequence of participating in an activity, an individual may reasonably be expected to be exposed to the possibility of injury (physical and/or psychological), beyond the ordinary risks of daily life.

Revision History

Original 2/28/2006
Revisions 5/21/2009; 9/11/2012; 4/7/2015

Approved By

President’s Cabinet

Last Updated April 7, 2015