ETHOS Upgrade 2023

Upgrade Complete

A significant planned upgrade to ETHOS was completed on October 16, 2023. The upgraded environment is now live. 

The Human Research Protection Program (HRPP) understands that the downtime associated with the upgrade required significant preparation and accommodation on the part of the research community. We appreciate the patience and assistance of the research community throughout the process.

What has Changed?

Most of the changes are to the “look and feel” of ETHOS, and we do not anticipate significant training needs for the vast majority of users. However, for studies that are reviewed by external IRBs, substantial changes to functionality and organization have been made. 

A summary of key changes can be found in the September 2023 IRB Newsletter.

What if I Experience Technical Issues with the Upgraded Environment? 

If you get an error message or if the server times out when you are trying to access the upgraded ETHOS environment for the first time: Please try clearing your cache and cookies. If you need assistance with this, please contact the UMN Help Desk at or 612-301-4357.

If you identify a potential bug in the system: Please contact During the two weeks post-launch, additional staff time will be dedicated to monitoring this inbox during business hours. Communications related to potential bugs will be forwarded to the Office of Research Information Systems and/or the Office of Information Technology for investigation and resolution.

What if I Have Questions about Navigating the Upgraded Environment?

Please contact Questions will be answered by the Operations team or escalated to senior HRPP staff, as needed.

You are also encouraged to attend one of the upcoming education and training sessions:

Lunch and Learn with the IRB

October 18 at 12:00 p.m.: ETHOS Upgrade - Navigating the upgraded reliance environment

October 25 at 12:00 p.m.: ETHOS Upgrade - Navigating the upgraded environment for all studies

Sign up to receive calendar invitations for the series. 

ETHOS Learning Lab

October 19 at 12:00 p.m: ETHOS Learning Lab focused on the ETHOS upgrade 

No registration is required; joining information can be found on  ETHOS login page and the IRB homepage.

In addition, new job aids have been created for externally reviewed studies, for initial submissions and communicating changes. These are available on the Single IRB (sIRB) & External IRB Requests & Process page of the IRB website.

Are there changes to the IRB Toolkit Related to this Upgrade?

Toolkit documents related to reliance on an external IRB have been updated. Release notes for these changes can be found on the Toolkit Changes page of the IRB website.

Impact on Processing and Turnaround Time

The downtime associated with the ETHOS upgrade will impact processing and turnaround times for the months of October - December 2023. The HRPP is doing all we can to mitigate this impact. We have scheduled additional IRB meetings to help manage the anticipated increased submission volumes. We have also limited discretionary time off for IRB staff members during this time.