Human Subjects Training

Ethics Training Overview

All investigators (faculty, staff and students) are required to complete the CITI Program training in human subjects protection prior to conducting research using human subjects. The CITI Program is an online requirement which applies to all academic levels and regardless of whether such research receives external funding. The IRB requires researchers who have active IRB protocols to complete human subjects training every four years. Four years after completing the Basic course, the CITI Refresher course will be required. The Basic and Refresher courses will alternate every four years thereafter. The CITI Program website will prompt researchers to take the appropriate required course at the time of training expiration.

Contact or 703-993-4121 with any questions about online training.

Basic Course Instructions

Prior to conducting any research at Mason using human subjects, you must complete the Basic Human Subjects Research Course, which consists of several user modules.  You must take the modules in the order they are shown and complete a short quiz following each one. You will not be allowed to move to the next module until you have completed each one. You do not have to complete all modules at one time. You may return to the program as many times as you need to complete the course.

In addition to the required modules, there are Optional modules. If the information in any of the optional modules relates to your research, you are required to complete the appropriate optional module. For example, if your research involves minors, you must complete the module on research with children.

When you have completed the basic course, and any applicable optional modules, you will receive a Completion Report. ORIA staff will also receive notification that you have completed the course. Please print a copy of the completion report for your records, and submit a copy of it with your Human Subjects Application.

  • Go to
  • The first time you access the site, click “Register Here” to create an account
  • Select “George Mason University” from the Participating Institutions drop down menu
  • Complete all enrollment information
  • Click the Submit button
Curriculum Selection:
  • Select “I am interested in Human Subjects Research Courses” – click next
  • Select “I need to enroll in a Basic course” or "I need to enroll in a Refresher course" - click next
  • Select the appropriate human subjects course (Group 1 or Group 2) that is relevant to your discipline and research area – click next
  • If enrolling in the Basic course, select “I have not previously completed an approved Basic course”
  • Affiliate with another institution if applicable, if not, select "No"
  • Click the submit button

Additional In Person Training (Classroom Presentations)

Please contact Bess Dieffenbach, IRB Manager, at or 703-993-5593 if you would like to arrange in person training.