SARI Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Why do I have to learn about conducting research now?

Answer: It’s important for you to understand the research process for a couple of reasons:

  • First, as you move through the program, you will be reading many research studies. Understanding how research should be conducted will help you be a more perceptive reader and evaluator of the research studies you read.
  • Second, at the end of your program you will develop a master’s project. This project will take one of several forms. Most people write a critical review of literature on a topic of personal/professional interest. Knowing how to select, evaluate, and synthesize the literature on the topic necessitates an understanding of what constitutes good research, including how research should be conducted and communicated. Some people choose to conduct an actual research study for their master’s project. These students will need specific knowledge about the issues and processes involved in conducting professional research.


Question: When should I begin?

Answer: It is recommended that you start the study as soon as possible.  You may log in and out as often as you like to complete the courses. During week 8 of the ADTED 550 course, the reading assignments have been shortened to allow you some time to work on your CITI modules.

Question:  May I retake the quizzes?

Answer: You may retake the quizzes as many times as you like until you reach a passing score of 80%.

Question: Can I look back at the chapter while taking the quiz?

Answer: Students are encouraged to take notes on the chapter because you will be unable to consult the chapter while taking the quiz.  If an attempt is made to look back at the chapter, the quiz will reset.

Question: How long do I have to finish?

Answer: The two modules must be completed by the end of your second semester of enrollment.

Question: What happens when I am finished with the modules?

Answer: When you have completed a course (with 80% or higher scores on the quizzes), you will receive a completion report. You then must deliver a copy of that report to the staff assistant for record keeping.

Question:  I began my work at PSU prior to implementation of the SARI Program.  Do I still need to complete online research training?

Answer: Yes, you will need to complete an online training module.  Penn State has implemented a "Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative" (CITI) Course" in the Protection of Human Research Subjects as the basic training requirement for individuals involved in the conduct of human participant research.  The advantages of the CITI training are its modular content and tracking mechanism, which allows completion of the training requirement entirely online in multiple login sessions, if needed. Additional information and instructions on accessing the  CITI training.

NOTE: Penn State is now requiring continuing education in human participant research, every three (3) years. The continuing educational requirements must be met for individuals involved in the conduct or oversight of human participant research.

  • Individuals who previously completed the Penn State training “Basic Training on the Protection of Human Participants” longer than three (3) years ago will need to access the CITI program online and complete one of the courses.


Submissions for IRB studies (i.e., new application, modification, continuing review) will not be approved until all individuals have completed training on the protection of human participants within the last three (3) years.

For further information please visit the SARI website