Exemption Categories

  1. Educational Practices
  2. Educational tests, Surveys, Interviews, or Observation of Public Behavior
  3. Educational tests, Surveys, Interviews, or Observation of Public Behavior not exempt under Category 2
  4. Existing Data
  5. Research and Demonstration Projects Conducted by or Subject to the Approval of Department or Agency heads
  6. Taste and Food Quality Evaluation and Consumer Acceptance Studies
  7. Minimal risk exempt research activities that will not induce distress beyond that of daily life may include (but are not limited to) non-physically invasive interventions or performance of tasks such as: Reading/writing/drawing tasks; Physical activities such as walking, sitting, or manipulating an object; Computer tasks and/or Internet searches; Talking and/or listening to words, then making selections, or “think-aloud” exercises; Viewing media; Role-playing; Completing a specific physical or mental action (“imagining”); Passive monitoring of space (environment) with sensors; Playing a game; Height/weight measurements.
  1. Federally funded research, or funding from non-Public Health Service (PHS) agencies that adhere to federal regulations in their award contracts (click here for a current list of these agencies.)
  2. Prisoners as subjects.
  3. Children/minors as subjects.
  4. Federal personnel or the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  5. Procedures, devices, or drugs subject to FDA oversight.
  6. Biomedical procedures.
  7. Clinical interventions.
  8. Sponsor or other contractual restrictions.
  9. An NIH-issued Certificate of Confidentiality to protect identifiable research data.
  10. Deception or incomplete disclosure to subjects.
  11. Identifiable, private existing data.
  12. The information obtained is recorded in such a manner that subjects can be identified, directly or through identifiers linked to the subjects, and any disclosure of the subject’s responses outside of the research could reasonably place the subject at risk of criminal or civil liability, be damaging to the subject’s financial standing, employability, insurability, or reputation, or be stigmatizing in any other way.
Changes to exempt projects

Investigators should consult with ORCA whenever questions arise about whether planned changes to an exempt study might make that study non-exempt.

Please email completed Exemption Request Forms to orca@ucsc.edu. For more information, see these NIH FAQs.