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  • Qualtrics

    Qualtrics is a robust and easy to use survey creation tool that is available for all MSUM faculty, staff & students. Whether you're conducting research, or you are requesting an evaluation of an MSUM course or event on campus, you will like the tools that Qualtrics has to offer.

    At this time we are not restricting our users in any way, such as who can or can't create or even send out a survey.

    However, MSUM does need to recognize the IRB guidelines, which governs and provides regulation for surveys created on our campus. Go to the tab below labeled 'IRB' for more information.

    To get answers to your Qualtrics questions and one-on-one help, email and an MSUM brand administrator will contact you.

  • Logging into Qualtrics

    Go to and login with your StarID and StarID password.

    Below is a screen shot of the Qualtrics login page.

    Qualtrics login screen capture





    IRB best practice indicates that surveys that are done for the sole purpose of feedback on a product, or feedback on services provided, do not need any type of IRB approval if the results of that survey will not be published. If you have any doubts or questions as to whether your research ideas would need IRB approval, please contact the IRB Chair, Lisa Karch at directly.

    IRB Protocol for Survey Research: Key Questions for Consideration

    (Dr. Lee Garth Vigilant, Professor of Sociology, IRB Member)

    MSUM's Institutional Review Board (IRB) has a simple mandate: to carefully review all research involving human subjects. The IRB is concerned about ethical issues (not methodological ones). Ethical issues involve (1) the conduct of investigators (professors, administrators, students, etc.) in the course of scientific research and (2) the well-being of human subjects as voluntary participants in research studies.

    Ten Questions for Survey Researchers

    1. Which survey types are exempt?

    Research studies that are exempt are those (1) "where the subjects are at no more than minimal risks", (2) the subjects' confidentiality is maintained, and (3) the research meets at least one of six criteria for exemption." The IRB defines "minimal risks" as situations where the anticipated harm is no more than "those ordinarily encountered in daily life or during the performance of routine physical or psychological examinations or tests." (See list of exempted research here:

    2. Which survey types will be expedited?

    Research studies that "involves no more than minimal risk" to one's subjects are typically reviewed as expedited. Expedited applications are reviewed either by the IRB chairperson or an IRB member.

    3. Which survey types need full review?

    Research studies that carry "greater than minimal risk" to one's subjects require a full review by the IRB. Surveys involving extramural minors and vulnerable populations require full review (i.e., prisoners, pregnant women, mentally ill, disabled individuals who require special care to give consent such as the visual and hearing impaired, elderly and cognitively impaired, those incapable to giving consent, etc). Surveys that involve "psychologically sensitive" questions require a full review.

    4. What are examples of "psychologically sensitive" survey questions

    Psychologically sensitive questions include, but are not limited to, queries on the following subjects:

    • Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, and demeaning behaviors:
    • Drug use and abuse;
    • Sexual attitudes, practices, preferences;
    • Financial status, employability, and reputation
    • Medical record and health conditions (esp. where disclosure could lead to social stigmatization or discrimination);
    • Psychological well-being or mental health;
    • Political affiliations;
    • Critical appraisals of individuals with close family relationships;
    • Income, other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in a program or for receiving assistance under a program.
    5.  What is the time frame for a survey to receive exempt/expedited review and full review?

    An exempt/expedited review typically takes 10-12 days to complete. The time frame for a full review is typically one month from the submitted date, and the IRB committee usually meets monthly to review these applications.

    6. What does it mean to be a "principal investigator" (P.I.) in a survey study, and what special duties and responsibilities accrue to this titleholder? can a student-researcher be a P.I.?

    The P.I. is the person who is ultimately responsible for the research and its outcome. The P.I. must be a MSUM faculty member. The P.I must complete the required NIH on-line training prior to submitting an application for review. A link to the Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) on-line training can be found on the IRB homepage: Undergraduate and graduate students cannot be the P.I. for an IRB proposal.

    7. What added precautions must on-line survey researchers take?

    Researchers using on-line surveys must take extra precautions to protect the anonymity of research participants and must use a designated and secured MSUM account for research conducted on the internet and research that uses email (or other electronic means) as a method of communication.

    8. If I am collaborating with a colleague from another institution where the colleague is the P.I. and he/she has approval from his/her university's IRB, do I need to submit a proposal to MSUM's IRB?

     Yes. If the P.I. already has approval from his/her university, typically an expedited MSUM review should suffice.  

    9. What is informed consent, and what are the specific elements of an informed consent form?

     See for sample consent forms.

    10. When conducting on-line research that involves surveys with unknown subjects (or their avatars), such as research in on-line communities like Second Life or other massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG), what specific steps should be taken (by the researcher) to ensure that all research subjects are in fact adults who can give informed consent?

    This is a difficult question the IRB is still trying to resolve. At the very least, the consent form for these on-line surveys should specify that the study is restricted to adult participants (18 years old and over).