Research Data Access
Overview of application process
A research group leader or Principal Investigator should apply for data access using the Data Access Application Form found on the IRIS website. Review of an application is typically completed within two weeks once all materials are received. If approved, all research group members will be asked to:
- Sign the IRIS Data Use Agreement
- Pay the administrative seat fee (applicable only for researchers not affiliated with an IRIS member university)
- Complete brief online training
- Sign the IRIS Virtual Data Enclave Acceptable Use Policy
Required documents and training
Data Access Application form
The Data Access Application form is an online document available through the IRIS website. (A fillable PDF version of the online form is also available here.) To prepare this form the primary applicant/principal investigator should first collect the following information:
- Contact information for:
- Primary applicant
- University administrative contact (for Data Use Agreement)
- Faculty sponsor, if applicable (student applicants only)
- Research collaborators, if applicable (i.e., any additional team members who will also need data access)
- Research proposal information, including:
- Research title
- Research location
- Funding sources
- Anticipated start and end dates
- Research objectives
- Expected results
- Research benefits
- Data import requests, if applicable (any data to be brought into the secure data enclave)
- IRB determination status (approved/exempt/not regulated/pending) and copy of the IRB determination letter
IRB determination letter
IRIS Data Use Agreement (DUA)
The Data Use Agreement is an agreement between the researcher’s institution and the University of Michigan Board of Regents. This document requires a signature from the Institutional Official for the researcher’s home institution as well as a separate DUA for any additional institutions represented by the research group. Research team members will all sign as “Authorized Researchers” for their home institution.
IRIS VDE Acceptable Use Policy (AUP)
IRIS VDE training
The annual membership fee that IRIS member institutions pay includes access to de-identified IRIS data for their affiliated researchers. IRIS data are available (through the application process) to researchers from non-member institutions as well. Effective August 1, 2018, these non-affiliated researchers will be charged a non-refundable seat fee of $1250 per person annually ($625 for students) to access the IRIS data. Seat fees will be charged for any non-affiliated researchers even if they are part of a research application with IRIS members.
Upon acceptance as an applicant to use IRIS data, IRIS will invoice the researcher for the seat fee, which will be prorated depending upon the application acceptance date. This seat fee covers the administrative expenses of creating the data files and documentation, research support services and disclosure review, access and use of the IRIS virtual data enclave, technology updates, and the costs of administering the contract.
Account renewal process
As described in the terms of the Data Use Agreement, researchers are given access to the IRIS data through the virtual data enclave (VDE) through the duration of their research project as approved by IRIS, contingent upon completion of the annual account renewal procedures. Account renewal happens annually in August regardless of the original application acceptance date. To maintain access to the IRIS data, each year the researcher must:
- Pay annual invoice to IRIS by August 31st if applicable
- Submit updated IRB determination letter if applicable
- Submit a brief progress report
- Submit a list of any applicable publications using IRIS data
- Review and sign the IRIS VDE Acceptable Use Policy
- Complete a brief online IRIS VDE training
Data Application FAQ
Can a graduate student apply for data access?
If a graduate student wishes to apply for IRIS data access, he or she must be sponsored by a faculty member who supervises the student’s work. If the graduate student is the primary applicant they must also include this faculty sponsor’s information on the IRIS Data Access Application Form.
How should researchers complete the Data Use Agreement?
Before submitting the DUA to the Institutional Official, a researcher should complete both Appendix A and B. Appendix A should include the IRIS data files requested by the researcher (the text of “Current UMETRICS dataset” is suggested). Appendix B should include the research proposal abstract and the projected end date for the proposed project.
Once the DUA is signed by the researcher, research team members, and researcher’s Institutional Official, it should be returned to IRIS. IRIS will submit the signed DUA to the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects at the University of Michigan.
Who should sign the Data Use Agreement?
The “Authorized Researchers” signature(s) should include all research team members who will be given a login for IRIS data access.
What if my research group spans multiple institutions?
What if my research group includes graduate students?
What if my Institutional Official wants to make changes to the Data Use Agreement?
To request a modification, download this Word Document version of the IRIS Data Use Agreement and use the “Track changes” feature (found under the Review tab) to indicate all requested changes. Fill out the appropriate institutional name (“Institution”), the name(s) and signature(s) of researcher(s) requesting access (“Authorized Researchers”) and select an appropriate effective date. Forward a copy of the redlined DUA to IRIS, who will bring the suggested modification to our Contracts Office for review. If the modification is accepted, the DUA will be returned to your institutional official for their signature.
Can I make changes to my research proposal after my application is approved?
Can I make changes to my research group after my application is approved?
Is access to the IRIS UMETRICS research data release available for non-research purposes such as program evaluation?
Yes. To apply for access to the IRIS UMETRICS data for purposes other than research, please submit the following materials to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- A statement of the purpose for which access to data is required, including plans to post findings on websites or social media and publication (generally no more than 1 page)
- Signature on the IRIS Data Use Agreement by user and an institutional official
- An IRB determination letter from the IRIS member institution’s Institutional Review Board
- Completion of the IRIS VDE Acceptable Use Policy
- Completion of IRIS VDE training
When the application for access to IRIS data for non-research purposes has been approved you will be notified and provided with more details.