Human Subjects Research Training Course

All researchers doing non-exempt research using human subjects are required to pass the online research training course offered by CITI. This includes not only the principal investigator but also all co-investigators, research technicians, research assistants, or student assistant who have contact with the research subjects.

Researchers doing exempt research are also strongly encouraged to complete the training.

Within a week after submission of your research protocol, the IRB will categorize your protocol as exempt or non-exempt and notify you.  If non-exempt, you must then complete the training before approval may be granted.

The CITI course takes 2-3 hours to complete and offers tracks in social/ behavioral/educational or biomedical research.  You should complete the track which is most appropriate for your field of research.  You may also complete elective modules in other areas if you wish.  The CITI course is online and available 24/7.


  • Go to the CITI website at
  • Log on (if already registered) or click on “Register here” next to “New Users”. 
  • In Section 1, choose “California State University East Bay” from the “Participating Institutions” menu. 
  • In Section 2, choose a username and password. 
  • In Section 3, enter your name. 
  • In Section 4, enter your email address. 
  • Click on “Submit”. 
  • Fill out the required fields in the course registration 
  • Under “What course do you plan to take?”, choose “Basic Human Subjects” either “Social and Behavioral Focus” or “Biomedical”.  Then click on “Submit”. 
  • Now select your curriculum.  In Section 2, Human Subjects Research, choose one of: 
    • Biomedical Research Investigators
    • Social and Behavioral Research Investigators
    • IRB Members 

  • If you have already completed the training course in the past, choose “I have completed the Basic Course”. 
  • Click on “Submit." 
  • Choose “No” when asked if you wish to affiliate with another institution. 
  • Click on the red “Enter” button under My Courses in order to begin the course modules. 
  • Click on the first course module, read the material, take the mini-test at the end and repeat until all course modules have been completed. 
  • From the Main Menu, under My Courses, click on “Print” under Completion Report in order to print out your completion report. 
  • You may then log out of the CITI site. 

Note that you need not complete the entire course in one sitting.  The CITI site will remember which modules you have completed and you may pick up where you left off.

Your initial training is valid for 3 years. Before the 3 years expire, you must complete the refresher course. For researchers completing the refresher course, choose “I have completed the Basic Course” in Section 2, and then the appropriate choice in Section 3.

You must achieve an 80% success rate in the module tests to complete the courses.  You may retake tests until you have achieved the necessary success rate.  A course completion report will be issued upon completion of either course. The report must be printed out and submitted with the protocol materials. The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs will maintain a database listing investigators who have completed the training.  The reports are valid for 3 years from the date of issue.  Every 3 years, a refresher course, also offered through CITI, must be completed. 

Note that you may choose additional study modules if desired as well as the optional courses in Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR).

If you have completed a human subjects training course elsewhere, such as the NIH course, mail or bring the completion certificate to the ORSP, and it will be accepted.

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