Protocol Development Materials

Protocol Development Materials

Below you will find information on ‘best practices’ for writing your protocol or significant change documents. Following these tips can result in a speedier review turnaround. We have also provided guides on how to calculate the number animals needed for your research and to minimize the number of animals used.

If you are a new Principal Investigator, please look at our New PI Information/FAQs page

The OAW also offers drop in hours for protocol assistance on Mondays from 1-3pm and Wednesdays from 10am–12pm.

Protocol Writing FAQ

How do I write an effective Project Review form?

This document provides tips on information you should include in your PRF. Including this information in your first submission reduces the number of questions and clarifications a reviewer will have and this decreases the overall review turnaround time. Download

How do I write an effective Significant Change form?

This document specifies the necessary information you need to include in your significant change document to reduce the number of questions and clarifications a reviewer will have and this decreases the overall review turnaround time. Download

How do I determine animal numbers?

This document provides tips for justifying the number of animals to be included in your protocol. You will find free resources for conducting power analyses and an explanation of why this is important. Download

How can I minimize the number of animals?

The Variable-Criteria Sequential Stopping Rule

This article reviews and provides detailed examples for using the variable-criteria sequential stopping rule to minimize the number of animals required for statistical significance and repeatability in planned animal experiments. Download

Additional Guidelines

Ethics and Animal Numbers

Informal Analyses, Uncertain Sample Sizes, Inefficient Replications & Type I Errors

This article reviews both good and bad methods for reducing the number of animals used in research projects. Download

Improved Stopping Rules for the Design of Small Sample Experiments

This article proposes a simple and efficient sequential stopping rule (SSR) that should augment the usual null hypothesis significance test in many experiments in the biomedical and biobehavioral sciences. SSR methods should be of interest to ethics bodies governing research when it is desirable to limit the number of subjects tested, such as in studies of pain, experimental disease, or surgery with animal or human subjects. Download

Variable Criteria Sequential Stopping Rules

Generality To Unequal Sample Sizes, Unequal Variances, or Large ANOVA

This article demonstrates that the variable-criteria SSR works well in many situations encountered in real research when sample sizes or variances may not always be equal. Download