Both the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) and Waterloo Catholic District School Board (WCDSB) support and encourage research that contributes to knowledge in the field of education, and have facilitated Waterloo research projects since 1971.

The school board must review and approve all research projects to be conducted with students, teachers and/or families in schools under their jurisdiction.

The review and approval process is intended to assess:

  • the impact of each research project on the school system and its resources;
  • to identify the relevance and benefits of the studies to the educational objectives of the respective board; and
  • to determine the degree of involvement of, and potential burden on, students and teachers.

Both Waterloo Region school boards have a Research Committee who review and approve studies.

Effective October 2014, Waterloo researchers will submit their research applications directly to the school boards for review and approval.

** NEW ** Effective January 2019, Waterloo researchers must have ethics clearance from the University of Waterloo prior to submitting a research application to the Waterloo Region District School Board.

If you are looking to simply recruit for a study by distributing a flyer or letter to students, parents, or teachers this must also be approved by the school board.

Obligations of researchers making a research request

Tips and other things to remember when making a research request

Waterloo Region District School Board

WRDSB research request form

WRDSB requirements

**NEW**: Effective January 2022, external research with WRDSB students, families and staff that occurs during the school/work day will continue to be paused until the end of the current school year. Please note however that the WRDSB will continue to accept applications from researchers who wish to advertise their research studies that take place outside of WRDSB schools and outside of the school/work day (e.g. online/virtual studies, on-campus studies).

Waterloo Catholic District School Board

WCDSB research request form (PDF)

WCDSB requirements

Completion of the WRDSB or WCDSB research request form is recommended as an appendix with your research ethics application.

Waterloo Researchers seeking guidance for the application process, or who have questions, should contact Joanna Eidse in Research Ethics.

Waterloo ethics process
pre submission and training
q and a
application process
review committess
report problems
close a study
need help?