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Guidelines for External Researchers


Criteria for approval - External researchers recruiting at King's

External researchers wishing to recruit staff or students from King’s College London are required to go through the 'External Research Request' procedure. It should be noted that this process does not constitute ethical review of the study, rather it is a permission procedure to ensure that only ethically acceptable studies are carried out using King's College London staff/students and premises. Responses will not be submitted for additional ethical review.

To gain permission to undertake external research using King's College London staff or students, researchers should send their responses to the seven criteria below to the Research Ethics Office via  rec@kcl.ac.uk . Recruitment should not commence until approval/permission has been given.

  1. Please provide a justification for why King’s staff and students need to be recruited for the study.
  2. Provide a brief description of the study with particular focus on the involvement of human participants (e.g. who, when, where and why. This should also outline how they will be recruited).
  3. Provide study specific documents such as participant information sheets, consent forms, screening documents etc.
  4. Provide evidence that the study has ethical approval.
  5. Provide assurance that participant data will be given freely and details of the intended recruitment method.
  6. Provide assurance that suitable insurance arrangements are in place as King’s College London would not be liable for the research.
  7. Permission must be granted from the relevant Head of School/Department from which you are recruiting.

External researchers and researchers conducting non KCL are now permitted to advertise their research on the College's internal research recruitment webpage and have their study included in the fortnightly research recruitment circular which features all current adverts live on the internal recruitment webpage. This is disseminated to all KCL Staff and Student. Guidelines for submitting an advert for external researchers and non-KCL research can be found  here.

KCL staff undertaking non-KCL research projects

It is recognised that at times King’s College London staff will conduct research sponsored by another organisation (e.g. for a qualification) where they wish to recruit staff or students from King’s as participants. In such circumstances research must be carried out in accordance with generally accepted ethical standards and it is expected that the research sponsor will take responsibility for ensuring this is the case.

Only if a research project falls within the risk criteria to make it  high risk will the guidelines above need to be followed. To check this, refer to the  Risk Checklist  If you answer 'YES' to any part of the Risk Checklist in your project is high risk by our criteria, and the above guidelines for external researchers will need to be followed. If the answers are 'NO' to all of these questions, only proof of ethical approval will need to be submitted to the Research Ethics Office. 

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Research Ethics Office