December 2023 updates

New IRB Analyst

I’m pleased to announce that we have hired a new IRB Analyst, Aimee Hamilton. Aimee started just after Thanksgiving and has eagerly jumped into her role here at UWM. She joins us from Children’s Wisconsin, where she was a clinical research coordinator and worked closely with the IRBs at both Children’s and MCW. You can contact her at / 414-290-1361, or through the IRB office  ( / 414-662-3544).

Collaborative studies

Several reminders regarding collaborative studies:

  • You must consult with our office if you are working on a project with a collaborator at another institution, even if the study already has IRB approval elsewhere. Our IRB is responsible for oversight of research conducted by our faculty, staff, and students. We need to have either our own IRB review or a reliance (deferral) agreement in place with the other institution.
  • If another IRB is overseeing the study, you should still be providing the UWM IRB with several things:
    • Copies of approval letters (initial, amendments, continuing reviews) as they are issued.
    • Immediate notification if the study is suspended.
    • Reporting of noncompliance or unexpected problems involving risk, if they involve the UWM collaborators and/or UWM participants.

Deleting data in Qualtrics

If you have a participant who requests that their Qualtrics data be deleted, or if you need to delete your research data out of Qualtrics and retain only a de-identified copy, you can delete data associated with a particular participant’s email. To do so, you would follow the directions linked here ( under the section entitled “Deleting All Records Associated with an Email”. If you follow these steps, all participant records held by Qualtrics will be deleted, and the data cannot be recovered. You can scrub the responses for personal information and retain your own local, sanitized copy of the responses.

Warning about fraud and bots

Unfortunately we are continuing to hear frequent reports of fraudulent responses and bot attacks on online surveys. Strategies to avoid fraud and bots are rapidly evolving, so we recommend the following:

  • Review our  guidance for avoiding bots in online surveys
  • Consult with colleagues and literature for new practices
  • Avoid posting surveys offering payment in social media, on websites, etc. Instead request permission for use of listservs or to recruit in private groups.
  • If recruiting through Amazon MTurk, use the Master’s or Premium qualifications, which requires workers to meet certain thresholds of reliability. Prolific is a similar platform that vets all its participants.


Important: In your efforts to prevent fraud, you might miscategorize a legitimate response. You should always offer participants who are believed to be fraudulent the opportunity to discuss with you if they feel they were excluded in error.