Ethics Review

This page contains information on the ethics review procedure at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit (VU) Amsterdam.

  1. Self-check. Complete the ethics review self check when you plan a new research project. Click here to go to the check list. The elements of the self check are displayed in a flow chart. The self check tells you whether your research requires full ethical review by the Ethics Review Board. If not, you can start your research. If so, proceed with the following step.
  2. Application. Fill out the ethics review application form. Save the result of your form for your reference.
  3. Full or expedited review. If your application raises minor or no ethical issues, an expedited review will follow by the secretary and one committee member. If your application raises more serious issues, the committee will discuss it at its next meeting. The board meets once a month during the academic season (September – June), on the last Monday of the month.
  4. Advice. The board will respond to your application with an advice.

The board may ask you for clarification or further information regarding your application.

Here are the regulations of the Ethics Review Committee (Dutch version only; English translation in preparation). Further details (in Dutch) are on this page.


Time line

Plan enough time for the ethics review process. Complete the self-check 3 months before you start collecting data. In case your research requires full ethics review by the committee, reviewers need 10 days to read your application and give a recommendation to the committee.  Then the committee discusses your proposal at its next meeting (once a month). In case questions remain, you may have to resubmit your application. In case your research qualifies for expedited review, the advice will generally follow within one month after submission of the application.



Bezoek de website van de Ethische Commissie (currently in Dutch only – English to follow in September 2017). If you have questions, send an email to the secretary Rob Kloppenburg (at or ask them over the phone: 020 598 6850.



The following flow chart displays how ethics review is organized. Click here to download the chart in pdf.