Research Ethics

Research Ethics Overview


At Rhodes University, the ethical conduct of research is a high priority. Ethical research is promoted as part of research training and supervision, in Higher Degrees review processes, short courses for staff and students, and engagements with national experts. 

In addition, Rhodes has adopted the Department of Health’s research Principals, Processes and Structures (DoH, 2015) accredited by the National Health Research Ethics Council (NHREC).

There are three committees at Rhodes to provide ethical clearance for research by students and staff:

  • the Animal Research Ethics Committee;
  • the Education Faculty’s Research Ethics Committee for studies conducted in the Education Faculty,
  • the Human Research Ethics Committee for all other studies involving human participants.

Each of the RECs has an online application system on ERAS and applicants should make sure they apply through the right form. 

For overall deliberations on and support for research ethics, the Rhodes University Research Ethics Forum (RUREF) meets four times a year.

All these committees are under the auspices of the Research Office. Within the Research Office, an Ethics Coordinator is available to manage the system and support applicants. RUREF in turn supports the coordinator and RECs on strategic matters.

RUREF is currently revising the Rhodes Research Ethics Policy for Research involving Humans. The revised version will be available here as soon as it has been adopted. For queries please contact the RUREF Chair, Prof. Eureta Rosenberg or the Research Ethics Coordinator Dr Janet Hayward.



ERAS - Accessing the online system

Ethical Review Application System (ERAS)

ERAS is the online system through which Rhodes students and staff apply for and receive research ethics approval.

Click here to access ERAS

The ERAS system ONLY uses Rhodes University email.  Check your email regularly for notices from ERAS

For queries contact the Research Ethics Coordinator 

Dr Janet Hayward

046 603 8232

For step-by-step instructions on how to use ERAS, please download the manuals or watch the videos below:

ERAS videos:
Accessing ERAS Page and logging in
Creating a project in ERAS
Addressing comments in ERAS


Applying from Outside Rhodes

Researchers outside Rhodes University wanting to conduct research involving human participants should obtain research ethics clearance at their home institutions, and provide proof of such clearance when approaching Rhodes to conduct research at the institution.

External Research Application form for Ethics Approval

Researchers wanting to engage Rhodes students or staff as research participants should contact:

For Rhodes Staff members - the Human Resource Director:
Ms Susan Robertson and copy in
Ms Zimkhita Dyibishe

For Rhodes students
Registrar and copy in
Ms Melanie Appollis

If the research involves the Counselling Centre, also contact the Director of Student Affairs
Ms Nomangwane Mrwetyana

The Gatekeepers Permission letter/s must be emailed to
Dr Janet Hayward

Final approval may only be granted once all Gatekeeper Permission letters have been received.


News, Training, Policies & Resources




 Research Ethics Training with Henriette van den Bergh:

28-30 September 2022

Contact Dr Janet Hayward for information and to attend.


Research Ethics Policy: Research Involving Human Participants
Structure of ethics committees at Rhodes
Ethics clearance application workflow at Rhodes
The Belmont Report



Examples of Consent and Permission requests to download and adapt according to your research.

Research Involving Animal Subjects

The Rhodes University Animal Research Ethics Committee (RU-AREC) reviews applications for ethical clearance for research and teaching activities involving animal subjects. RU-AREC is registered with the National Health Research Ethics Council (NHREC). Before you undertake any research/teaching that involves animals, be sure to read the Rhodes University Research Policy on Animal Ethics and navigate to the Research Involving Animal Subjects page. Applications for clearance can be done on the ERAS system using the Animal Ethics form.

Research Policy on Animal Ethics

Animal Ethics REC:
Prof Roman Tandlich
Deputy Chairperson –
Prof Ben Smit


Upcoming Animal Research Ethics Committee Meetings 

07 July 2022

04 August 2022

01 September 2022

Applications to be reviewed at a meeting need to be submitted at least TWO WEEKS before the meeting is to be held.

Animal Research Ethics Committee meetings 2022


Research Involving Human Participants

Students or staff planning to undertake studies involving human participants or affecting humans must apply for research ethics clearance through one of two committees, each of which has its own forms on ERAS.

Please use the correct form for the application. 

For all research in the Education Faculty, apply through the Education Faculty’s REC and form on ERAS.

For research involving humans but NOT in the Education Faculty, apply through the Human Ethics REC and form on ERAS.

For queries and support NOT involving the Education Faculty you may contact the following:
Human Ethics REC:
Chairperson and Ethics Coordinator – 
Dr Janet Hayward
046 603 8232


Upcoming Human Research Ethics Committee Meetings 

15 July 2022

12 August 2022

09 September 2022

Applications to be reviewed at a meeting need to be submitted at least TWO WEEKS before the meeting is to be held.


Human Research Ethics Committee meetings 2022

Research in Education

For all research registered in or associated with the Education Faculty, apply through the Education Faculty’s REC.

Click HERE to access the form

For queries and support you may contact the following:
Faculty of Education REC:
Chairperson -
Prof. Eureta Rosenberg
Deputy Chairperson -
Dr Pamela Vale
Faculty Officer of Education:
Ms Shehnaaz Asmal-Motara

In Education, researchers gain approval through two Faculty committees: The Education Faculty Higher Degrees Committee reviews the proposal and the REC reviews the ethics application.  Approval for both takes place via ERAS.

For technical information on how to apply:
ERAS Education Faculty Applicant Manual
For technical information on how to resubmit a revised application:
ERAS Education Faculty Manual for Modifications
For technical information on how to do an online review:
ERAS Education Faculty Reviewer Manual
For technical information on applying for ethics renewal:
ERAS Education Faculty Step Guide for Ethics Renewal
For guidelines on how to approach research ethics:
Ethics Procedures and Practices: an Orientation and
Education Research Ethics Committee Handbook
For a PDF document of the ERAS application form:
ERAS application form

If you are conducting research in the Eastern Cape Department of Education, you will need to fill out and submit the following form:
Application form to conduct Research in the ECDoE

Meeting Dates and Deadlines 2022

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