Guidance & Tutorials

If you have questions please contact:

For RAIS related questions

RAIShelp@uvic.ca

For Human Research Ethics questions:
Human Research Ethics Office

Phone: 250-472-4545 or 250-472-4321

Email: or

Accessing RAIS

How do I login?

You need to have a Netlink ID to access Research Administration Information System (RAIS). Login the same way as you would for any other UVic system (Netlink ID and password). 

All UVic faculty, students and staff should have Netlink IDs. 

External team members must be sponsored by a UVic faculty member to obtain affiliate acces and a Netlink ID. For more information go to https://www.uvic.ca/systems/support/loginspasswords/affiliates/overview.php

How can my colleagues at other institutions login?

External team members must be sponsored by a UVic faculty member to obtain affiliate acces and a Netlink ID. For more information go to https://www.uvic.ca/systems/support/loginspasswords/affiliates/overview.php

What if the PI needs to change?

The Principal Investigator (PI) can only be changed by the Human Research Ethics RAIS administrators.

Here are the two options for requesting change of PI (faculty, faculty supervisor):

PI is still at UVic and available to submit the request:

  1. PI will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and submit it with the amendment request form through RAIS. 
  2. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Current PI is no longer at UVic and unable to submit the request: 

  1. New PI will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and email it to HRE office  at ethics@uvic.ca.
  2. Once reviewed, the HRE office will change the PI and request that the new PI submits an amendment request form through RAIS.
  3. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Once the amendment is approved the Human Research Ethics Board will issue a new Certificate of Approval to the new PI (faculty, faculty supervisor).

NOTE: For studies that have not yet been approved, the Notification of change of PI form will need to be submitted to HRE office, via email at ethics@uvic.ca. In that case, please disregard any reference to the amendment request form. 

Compatible browsers for RAIS

RAIS is compatible with Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Edge.

What if I have approval through the paper based system?

For any active ethics approvals for studies approved under the paper-based system, please continue to submit annual renewals, modifications, project completions and unanticipated event reports using paper forms from the research ethics website, until further notice.

Can a research team member edit the application?

The principal investigator, the principal applicant, and all research team members with "View and edit" access can edit the application. Make sure to coordinate who is working when on the application as the application will not be locked if in use by of the the above noted team members.

Principal Investigator/Principal Applicant Designations

Student researchers and Post-doctoral Fellows will no longer be able to hold the title "Principal Investigator" (PI) when applying for human research ethics approval on the RAIS system.

Only faculty will be able to hold the "Principal Investigator" designation.

Student researchers and Post-doctoral Fellows conducting their own project, thesis, or dissertation will hold the title "Principal Applicant" (PA). In such cases the faculty supervisor with be the PI.

The designations are for administrative purposes and do not change anyone's role in the research. 

Why this change and why now

As mandated by the Tri-Agenices and in compliance with national human research ethics guidelines, only faculty are permitted to hold research accounts at the university.

The change to the PI designation brings faculty member's roles in line with their responsibilities as account holders and supervisors of student researchers. The designation is also consistent with practices already in place at other BC and Canadian universities.

The development and launch of the Research Administration Information System (UVic-RAIS) provided an opportunity for the Associate Vice-President Research Operations and the Human Research Ethics Board to make this key change.

Will the "PI" and "PA" designations impact students' and supervisors' roles in research?

The designations are for administrative purposes only. They do not change anyone’s role in the research. Student and post-doctoral fellow authorships, for example, will not be impacted by the designations.

Students will continue to be recognized by the University and by the Human Research Ethics Board as the lead in their project, thesis, or dissertation. 

Supervisors will continue to be recognized by the University and by the Human Research Ethics Board as being responsible for the conduct of students’ research and for providing guidance.

Why this change if there is no funding in a study?

Even in the absence of research funding for a specific study, the PI designation can apply only to faculty. Faculty are eligible to hold research accounts. Students are not eligible to hold research accounts.

How will the new system impact applying for research ethics approval?

Faculty supervisors log into the UVic-RAIS system with their UVic Netlink IDs and initiate a new application under their own name as PI, and add their student’s name as PA. Adding the student’s name grants access to the student.

When access is granted, the student completes the identified ethics application.

When the application is complete, the supervisor electronically forwards the application to the chair/director/dean for departmental sign-off.

When sign-off is complete, the application is directly submitted to the Human Research Ethics Office.

How much extra time will be involved for me as a supervisor?

In the UVic-RAIS system, the estimated time for a supervisor to initiate a new application and grant access to a specific student should take no more than 3-4 minutes.

The estimated time for a supervisor to forward the student’s completed ethics application to their chair/director/dean should take no more than 2 minutes.

What if I don’t know what to do or my supervisor does not know what to do?

There will be quick guides and tutorials available online, regular training sessions, and drop-in sessions.

How will I know if the PA made all the changes that I suggested?

The system will not track changes that are made between two team members (including PI and PA). You will need to communicate outside UVic-RAIS to coordinate working on the application and making changes as needed. You can also use the MS Word template, for collaboration between you and research team members before completing the online form.

What if my supervisor needs to change?

The Principal Investigator (PI) can only be changed by the Human Research Ethics RAIS administrators.

Here are the two options for requesting change of PI (faculty, faculty supervisor) for approved studies:

Current PI (supervisor) is still at UVic and available to submit the request:

  1. Current PI will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and submit it with the amendment request form through RAIS. 
  2. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Current PI (supervisor) is no longer at UVic and unable to submit the request: 

  1. New PI (supervisor)will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and email it to HRE office  at ethics@uvic.ca.
  2. Once reviewed, the HRE office will change the PI and request that the new PI submits an amendment request form through RAIS.
  3. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Once the amendment is approved the Human Research Ethics Board will issue a new Certificate of Approval to the new PI (faculty, faculty supervisor).

NOTE: For studies that have not yet been approved, the Notification of change of PI form will need to be submitted to HRE office, via email at ethics@uvic.ca. In that case, please disregard any reference to the amendment request form. 

RAIS Research Ethics Designations/Permissions

Quick Guides

Post-approval (amendments, renewals, completions)

As of December 19, post-approval forms (amendments, renewals, completions, unanticipated events reports) will be available online for all studies approved through the RAIS system.  

For any active ethics approvals for studies approved under the paper-based system, please continue to submit annual renewal, modifications, project completions and unanticipated event reports using paper forms from the research ethics website. 

How to submit a request for amendment?

You can access the amendment form from the project page of the application you are planning to renew. On the left side of the actions menu, selec the "Amendments" and start completing it. 

Amendments applications go through departmental sign-off. Make sure you select the right person before submitting your amendment for sign-off.  

For more information on how to start an amendment see the "Start amendment" quick guide.

How to submit a request for annual renewal?

You can access the annual renewal form from the project page of the application you are planning to renew. On the left side of the actions menu, selec the "Renewal form" and start completing it. 

Annual renewal applications don't go through departmental sign-off and will be submitted to HRE office directly.

More information coming soon!

Can I have two post-approval applications in process at the same time?

No - you can only work on one post-approval application at a time. The execption to this rule is the "Unanticiated event report" form that can be submitted at any time, after the original approval. 

If your study is close to the expiry, but you also need to submit a request for amendments, you can submit the joint form "Renewals with amendments" that allow you to submit you request for amendment, and also provide you annual renewal reporting on your study progress. 

How do I sign-off on amendment?

The sign-off option and all other actions related to the amendment and annual renewal with amendment will be under the "Post-Approval (PAA)" tab of the project/application page. You can click on the tab and complete the action for the particulat post-approval application listed. 

What if I need to submit a renewal and make changes to the protocol?

If your study is close to the expiry, but you also need to submit a request for amendments, you can submit the joint form "Renewals with amendments" that allow you to submit you request for amendment, and also provide you annual renewal reporting on your study progress.

Who can start post-approval applications (PAAs)

Only, the principal investigator can start any of the post-approval applications (amendments, renewal with amendments, completions, unanticipated event report).

Who can submit post-approval applications (PAAs)?

Only the principal investigator can submit requests for amendments, and renewal with amendments. Principal applicant (and team members with "View and Edit" permissions), can submit annual renewals, that were initiated by the principal investigator.

Other Guidance Tips

How do I start an ethics application?

You need to login to RAIS and click on the "Start application" button. Only UVic faculty can start an ethics application and hold the "Principal Investigator" (PI) designation. 

For more information on how to start an ethics application please see the quick guide.

What if the Principal Investigator needs to change?

The Principal Investigator (PI) can only be changed by the Human Research Ethics RAIS administrators.

Here are the two options for requesting change of PI (faculty, faculty supervisor):

Current PI is still at UVic and available to submit the request:

  1. Current PI will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and submit it with the amendment request form through RAIS. 
  2. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Current PI is no longer at UVic and unable to submit the request: 

  1. New PI will need to complete the Notification of change of PI form, with signatures and email it to HRE office  at ethics@uvic.ca.
  2. Once reviewed, the HRE office will change the PI and request that the new PI submits an amendment request form through RAIS.
  3. Ensure that any study documents (e.g. recruitment documents, consent/assent forms) are revised to reflect the change. For instructions on how to submit an amendment please see the quick guide.

Once the amendment is approved the Human Research Ethics Board will issue a new Certificate of Approval to the new PI (faculty, faculty supervisor).

NOTE: For studies that have not yet been approved, the Notification of change of PI form will need to be submitted to HRE office, via email at ethics@uvic.ca. In that case, please disregard any reference to the amendment request form. 

Can I have multiple roles on RAIS?

You can have multiple roles on RAIS based on your position and responsibilities, however you can only have one role in a particular application.

Possible roles are: Researcher (Principal Investigator/Principal Applicant/team member), Signatory (department head/acting department head), Board member reviewer (if you are a member of HREB), REB Administrator (if you are HRE administrator).

Applications assigned to you will be organized in separate tabs based on your role in a particular application.

What is the difference between "Save as in progress" and "Save as complete"?

Both options will save the particular section of the application. You can use "Save as in progress" to indicate that you still have work to do on that section; once the work is finished, you can use "Save as complete".

You can still make changes to the section after you use any of the save options. 

Why can't I edit the application?

"Edit application" option is available to the principal investigator (PI), principal applicant (PA) and research team members with "View and Edit" access while the application is in pre-submission.

Submitted applications cannot be edited, unless returned back to PI/research team for changes/revisions. 

Please contact the Human Research Ethics office, if you you are not able to edit your application.

What do I do if the option I want to choose is not in the drop down menu?

The following drop down menus are flexible and allow researchers to add their options despite the option not being available in the drop down menu: 

1. Research team members -  If the person you are trying to add doesn't have a Netlink ID, they will not be on the drop down list, but you can still type their name and add them as research team member. However, you will not be able to assign them access to the application. For information on adding team members and the Netlink ID please see the quick guide. 

2. Funding - the drop down list may not include all the funding options. You can type the funding information on the table.

You may contact the Human Research Ethics office if you have any issues with completing the application form.

What is the difference between "delete" and "withdraw" application?

You can delete an application at any time before submitting it to Human Research Ethics office. Once deleted, you will no longer see the application.

You can withdraw a submitted application at any time before approval. The withdrawn application cannot be re-submitted. You can copy a withdrawn application and then submit it as a new application. Note: Copying an application will not copy the PA/research team member information, and will not copy any of the attachments. 

What date format should I use in the application?

Date fields are free form and you can use a format of your choosing, as long as the day, month and year information is clear.

What if I have a faculty appointment to more than one department?

You can only select one department on RAIS - the department that you are doing the research under. The signatory signing-off on the application must be from the same department.

What to do if I don't know how to answer questions in the ethics application?

You may read through the annotated guidelines for more information on specific questions/section. If you are still having difficulty completing the form, you may contact the human research ethics office.