Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) Online Training

All key research personnel must complete required Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI Program) courses. Key research personnel include principal investigators, sub-investigators, research coordinators, and any other research team members that have contact with research participants and their research data or private information.

CITI Course FAQs

What should I expect if I have never used the CITI site before?

In order to access the CITI training modules, you will first be required to register as a user with the CITI site. Please note, the CITI site is not administered by ECU therefore is not linked to ePIRATE in any way. ECU users may use their PirateID to log into the CITI site. Non-ECU users will need to create their own username and password (please keep this information handy as you will need it again when you take the refresher course in three years).  There are multiple options for creating a registration on the site, which can be tricky to navigate.  A tutorial on how to register for an account on the CITI website can be found by clicking the link below:


Which CITI modules should I complete?

The modules are grouped by categories of research. For UMCIRB purposes, you only need to complete one of the two groups of modules listed below. You should select the group that best fits the type of research you normally conduct. If in doubt, contact the UMCIRB office for guidance.

  • Group 1 – All Biomedical Investigators and Key Personnel: Medical, physiological or pharmacological studies that typically involve direct contact with participants. Includes, but is not limited to, research with drugs, devices or other interventions.
  • Group 2 – Social and Behavioral Research Investigators and Key Personnel: Studies on sociological, psychological, anthropological or educational phenomena that typically involve direct contact with participants. Does not include drug or device studies.

Why am I required to take this training?

Education is vital to conducting ethical research studies. The UMCIRB recognizes that education is an ongoing process, not a one-time effort. Completing the CITI modules, reading the Belmont Report, 45 CFR 46, and other pertinent regulations provides a solid foundation for which continuing education can be accomplished. ECU requires this education based on Health and Human Services (HHS) recommendations.

When do I need to complete this training?

The required training modules must be completed by all research team members prior to the UMCIRB granting approval for any research study, regardless of the level of risk or category of review. The training is good for three years. After three years, the modules must be updated utilizing the refresher course available through CITI. The CITI site will send a notification approximately 90 days prior to the expiration of your training period. The notification will be sent to the email address you provide when you register for the training.

How long will it take to complete the modules?

This will depend on your experience with human research issues. Most modules will take about 10-20 minutes to complete. Researchers familiar with these topics may require three hours or less to complete all the required modules. You do not have to complete all the modules at once. CITI is designed for you to work at your own pace and allows you to exit and return at a later date to where you left off.

What is considered a passing score?

The required passing score is 70%. The score is based on the overall score of the quizzes at the end of each of the required modules. You may check your grade by selecting the grade book link on the welcome page or at the end of the course. If you do not pass, you can return to the modules and re-take the quizzes.

What if I have completed CITI training at another institution?

If you are a new faculty, staff or student at ECU and have completed the same CITI training modules at another institution, you may long into the CITI site with the CITI username and password you created when you registered to use CITI and you may choose to “affiliate with another institution.” When you do this, select “East Carolina University.”

What if I have completed human research ethics training through a different site such as the NIH?

Currently, UMCIRB recognizes only the CITI training described above. You will need to log into the CITI site, register as a new user and complete the training modules required by ECU.

How do I verify my training to the UMCIRB?

To verify successful completion of the required CITI training, you must log the completion date (PDF) in your ePIRATE profile. Once your CITI training data is logged into your ePIRATE profile, it will be automatically populated next to your name in any new study submission received by the IRB. Do not forget to update your ePIRATE profile when you complete the required refresher course every three years. Remember, ePIRATE is not connected to CITI in any way and you are required to log the date of successful completion of CITI training in your ePIRATE profile yourself.

Why am I having trouble viewing the CITI site?

To make full use of the features of the CITI site, and to do so securely, use a current browser version when accessing the CITI Program. The vast majority of browsers made available within the last three years will support all CITI Program features. Older versions may not, as they are often less secure and provide less functionality.

Is there a fee?

Individual users who are taking the training required by the UMCIRB to conduct human research are not assessed a fee for the CITI training.

What if I have questions?

You may contact UMCIRB at 252-744-2914 or contact us via email at for questions about CITI training.