CITI Training for Researchers and Collaborators

Final approval for most research grant submissions involve some form of standard required training for all research partners listed on the application. This includes both clinical and community-based research projects that involve human subjects. This required training is a way to protect both researchers and study participants. For those accustomed to conducting research, the process to go through this training is relatively streamlined but for those unfamiliar with academic research, it can be a somewhat daunting experience. For this reason the Community Engagement and Outreach core has provided resources here to help community collaborators navigate through the training requirements.


The Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) Program is “dedicated to promoting the public’s trust in the research enterprise by providing high quality, peer-reviewed, web-based educational courses in research, ethics, regulatory oversight, responsible conduct of research, research administration, and other topics pertinent to the interests of member organizations and individual learners.” This program, initiated in 2000, was created to provide a standard of training for the conducting of ethical research. Since then the program has expanded its curriculum to include a variety of topics, namely Human Subjects Research (HSR) and Social and Behavioral Research (SBR). This training is important for ethical reasons but is also required for Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval for any research application.


To begin the CITI training process, register on the CITI Program website.


You will be asked to indicate the organization you’re affiliated with. For instance, if you are planning on conducting research through the University of Nebraska Medical Center, you would choose the “UNMC/UNO” option.


Navigation through the registration process is relatively simple. You can click on THIS LINK to follow an easy step-by-step process, courtesy of UNMC IRB.


If you are planning on engaging in community-based research that is not a medical-based study (e.g. a clinical trial testing a new drug or device, collecting blood samples, accessing medical records, or testing certain interventions methods), it will be considered Social and Behavioral Research. It is important to know which curriculum will be required of you as this will dictate which course is most appropriate. For any questions on this topic, you can contact the Human Subject Research Administrator at your home institution.


The course will be presented as several modules with a brief quiz at the end of each module to assess understanding of the material. A cumulative passing score of 75% is required for successful completion and is valid for a period of 3 years at which time a refresher course must be taken. It takes approximately 2-3 hours to complete the Basic course. However, the training does not have to be completed in one sitting but can be spread out over time if needed.


For further information, you can refer to UNMC’s CITI Training guide or to the CITI Program website itself which also offers a support center and contact information.