Special Qualifications and Equipment
In undertaking your research, as well as your aspirations to complete a dissertation or thesis, this may also be the first opportunity for you to achieve a much-coveted publication. No matter what research you are performing, most journals will require you to specify that you have acted within the proper regulatory framework relevant to your project. If the work is human, you must have appropriate ethical approval and consent in order to proceed. Many journals will turn you down flat without this in place, and you would not be the first candidate to have failed a doctorate at the viva stage because of a failure to demonstrate ethical approval. Similarly, to experiment on animals without a license or outside the license granted will result in prosecution and potential imprisonment – neither of which will look good on your CV! You will also need to maintain an up-to-date GCP (Good Clinical Practice) certificate – courses are available on line. Many universities and hospitals will also run courses on research governance and data protection.
Suggested Further Reading
- 1.Wolfensohn S, Lloyd M. Handbook of laboratory animal management and welfare. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 1998.Google Scholar
- 2.Statistics of scientific procedures on living animals. London: The Home Office Stationary Office; 2001. Command manuscript 5244 (published annually).Google Scholar
- 3.Directory of animal research training courses 2001/2002. Tamworth: Compiled and edited by the Laboratory Animal Science Association: 2001.Google Scholar
- www.ich.org The official website of the International Conference on Harmonisation explains all things GCP. Also see http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsPolicyAndGuidance/DH_4082934 for Department of Health’s UK guidance.
- http://scienceandresearch.homeoffice.gov.uk/ The Home Office website and has useful information on the Animal (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 and downloadable license application form.
- www.lasa.co.uk is the website of the Laboratory Animal Science Association and lists good practice guidelines for PIL holders.
- http://www.understandinganimalresearch.org.uk/ The official website of Understanding Animal Research, an organization founded at the end of 2008 by bringing together two UK organizations, Research Defence Society (“understanding animal research in medicine”) and Coalition for Medical Progress. Details similar information as the Home Office website but in a more digestible fashion.