RAMS-IRB is open for External IRB (WIRB & NCI CIRB) Initial Submissions.

Go to RAMS-IRB: https://irb.research.vcu.edu.

Wireless and Off-Site Access to RAMS-IRB: If you are connecting to RAMS-IRB from a wireless network (including the VCU wireless network) or at an off-site location, you will need to log in via a VPN. For instructions on how to download, install and access the VPN, please click here.

RAMS-IRB Implementation

The IRB is converting to RAMS-IRB (Research Administration Management System-IRB), an electronic submission and review system, beginning August 1, 2013. RAMS-IRB provides a portal for housing all study information that has previously been submitted to the IRB in paper format. The system will make it simple for investigators to view, in a single location, all studies they have approved or under review. All communications from the IRB and all approved documents will be maintained with each study in RAMS-IRB. A quick login to a study will immediately show the status of a study and where it may be in the review process.

Implementation Timeline

June 15: Begin weekly hands-on training sessions; August 1: External IRB (WIRB/CIRB) initial submissions start; August 22: VCU IRB initial submissions start; October 1: Begin rolling conversion of existing studies

Conversion of Currently Approved Studies – Full Board and Expedited

Currently approved studies (full board and expedited) are required to convert to RAMS-IRB on an established timetable and prior to continuing review. Principal investigators will be notified via email when a study conversion is required. Conversion will not be possible until this email is received. Studies will be converted according to the scheduled below.

Full Board Review
(days prior to expiration)
Expedited Review
(days prior to expiration)
Conversion Email 210 180
Conversion Amendment Due 165 135
Conversion Reminders Every 14 days until submit Every 14 days until submit
Continuing Review Email 90, 75, 45 60, 50, 40
Continuing Review Due 70 35

When RAMS-IRB goes live, a shell for all currently approved studies will be created including IRB number, PI name, and study title. A conversion email request will be sent to the PI. After this email is received, the PI will be able to start an amendment to the study shell. Through this “conversion amendment”, the PI will use the previously approved research plan and study methodology to populate the questions in the RAMS-IRB smart form. The PI will have the ability at this time to identify “protocol editors” who also will be able to edit the smart form. Protocol editors might be research/regulatory coordinators or student investigators, among others and will have both the ability to edit the study and be copied on all communications regarding the study.

The conversion amendment should be submitted for IRB review by the deadline stated in the email request. This deadline is important for ensuring the conversion amendment is approved before a continuing review submission is needed. Ability to create a continuing review submission is contingent upon having the study converted to RAMS-IRB.

Conversion of Currently Approved Studies – Exempt

Exempt Studies Approved >12 Months Ago
Investigators of exempt studies approved more than 12 months ago will receive an email from ORSP prior to August 1 inquiring whether the study is still active. If the study is completed, the PI does not need to take any action. If the study is ongoing, the PI must respond to the email indicating that the study should remain under IRB oversight and transition to RAMS-IRB. A study shell will only be created in RAMS-IRB if a PI responds to the email that the study is ongoing. If a study is ongoing, a shell will be created, but there is no requirement that the research plan be entered into RAMS-IRB unless an amendment must be made to the study (per IRB requirements) prior to its completion.

Exempt Studies Approved <12 Months Ago
Exempt studies approved less than 12 months ago will have a study shell created in RAMS-IRB including the IRB number, investigator name, and study title. No research plan information will be entered into the smart form unless a modification requiring IRB review is planned for the study. If a modification is required, the investigator will need to enter study information into the RAMS-IRB smart form via an amendment.

RAMS-IRB Training

Use of RAMS-IRB is very intuitive. However, attending training and thorough review of online resources is highly recommended to ease the transition and help users become familiar with all of the functions of the system.

Training to use the system will be offered using a variety of methods including:

  • online resources such as videos and tip sheets
  • hand-on training in computer labs
  • group training scheduled on request.

Hands-on, group training sessions will be available beginning in mid-late June and be scheduled weekly for the first several months. Click here for a schedule of available sessions. Contact Shivi Stanley (sstanley3@vcu.edu) to schedule a training session for a group of 5 or more.