IRB Topaz Online Protocol Submissions

The IRB submission process is being facilitated through the online TOPAZ Electronic Protocol Application System. This new system provides an efficient way to electronically prepare, submit, approve, and track protocols through the IRB review process.

Researchers should review all of the information on this page to ensure they are following the appropriate instructions for accessing and submitting protocols through the TOPAZ system. To jump to a specific section of this page, select one of the links below.

IRB Protocol Submission Instructions
IRB Application Forms
System Requirements
Accessing the System
Useful Tips
Frequently Asked Questions
Contact Us

IRB Protocol Submission Instructions

Investigators should first review the Obtaining IRB Approval page for an overview of the IRB submission steps before submitting a protocol through the TOPAZ system. Once you have reviewed over the steps, you should then proceed with reviewing the TOPAZ user guides, which provide instructions on submitting protocol applications through the online TOPAZ system. The “Full Guide” provides a very detailed overview of the TOPAZ system (including screenshots), while the “Quick Reference Guide” serves as a good refresher for those researchers that are already familiar with using the system.

Creating Topaz IRB Protocol Applications (Full Guide)
Creating Topaz IRB Protocol Applications (Quick Reference Guide)

IRB Application Forms

The following IRB application forms are available for online electronic submission within the TOPAZ system:

  • IRB Approval Form – For Expedited / Full Board Review Submissions
  • IRB Exemption Form – For Exempt Review Submissions
  • IRB HSR Determination Form – For Human Subject Research Determinations (Determining if IRB approval is applicable)
  • IRB Reliance Request Form – For Requesting to have FIU Rely Upon an External IRB
  • IRB Amendment Form – For Expedited / Full Board Review Amendments
  • IRB Exempt Amendment Form – For Exempt Review Amendments
  • IRB Reliance Amendment Form – For Reliance Request Amendments
  • IRB Renewal Form – For Expedited / Full Board Review Renewals
  • IRB Reliance Renewal Form – For Reliance Request Renewals
  • IRB Event Report Form – For Expedited / Full Board Review Adverse Event or Deviation Reports
  • IRB Exempt Event Report Form – For Exempt Review Adverse Event or Deviation Reports
  • IRB Reliance Event Report Form – For Reliance Request Adverse Events or Deviation Reports
  • IRB Exempt Project Completion Form – For Exempt Review Completions
  • IRB Project Completion Form – For Expedited / Full Board Review Completions

System Requirements

  • Microsoft Silverlight:
    • The current version of TOPAZ system runs on Microsoft Silverlight. If you do not have Microsoft Silverlight installed, please contact your system administrator or email us at topaz-help@fiu.edu.
  • Private Browsing:
    • The TOPAZ system will not work if you have your browser set to “Private Browsing.”  The browser must be set in regular mode in order to work (otherwise you will receive an error).
  • Windows Computers (Internet Explorer 11):
    • Please use Internet Explorer 11, which fully supports TOPAZ.
    • Tip: Hold down the “shift key” and the “refresh button” in the address bar if you need to reload TOPAZ.
    • Note: The default Windows 10 Edge browser does not support TOPAZ.
  • Windows Computers (SeaMonkey):
  • Mac Computers (Firefox):
    • The latest version of Firefox no longer supports Silverlight
    • To use Firefox you will need to download and install the older Firefox ESR version 52.9
    • After installation, immediately open the app and follow these steps to disable the auto-update feature:
      • Select the “Menu” button in the upper-right corner, then choose “Preferences“.
      • Select “Advanced” on the bottom left pane and select the “Update” tab.
      • Check “Never check for updates”
      • Uncheck “Automatically update: Search Engines”
  • Mac Computers (Catalina MacOS):
    • If you are using a Mac that is running the Catalina MacOS, then you will not be able to access TOPAZ, since Silverlight is not supported with that operating system. If this is the case, there are two options:
      1. Follow the instructions to access TOPAZ from your Mac (through a virtual environment) here:
        Catalina MacOS instructions for virtual environment
      2. Use a different computer to access TOPAZ (i.e., use Internet Explorer on a Windows Computer).

Silverlight-Free Version of TOPAZ Coming Soon:

  • FIU is in the process of upgrading to a Silverlight-free version of TOPAZ.  The new version will allow for the TOPAZ system to run on all web browsers without the need for plugins.

Accessing the System

  • Topaz System Website:
    https://topaz.fiu.edu/
  • TOPAZ System Login:
    The TOPAZ system requires authentication credentials through LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol).  Please login with your MyAccounts login information (i.e., Panther ID and password). If you are unable to access the system, then you will need to follow the System Access Request instructions below, so we can create a TOPAZ account for you.
  • TOPAZ System Access Request for FIU Personnel:
    If you are FIU Personnel (i.e., FIU Faculty, Staff, and Students with existing Panther IDs) and unable to login, please fill out and submit the following form to have a TOPAZ account created: Personnel Access Request Form. You should expect to receive an email confirming that your account has been created within 1-2 business days of submitting the request.
  • TOPAZ System Access Request for Non FIU Personnel:
    If you are Non FIU Personnel (i.e., individuals without existing Panther IDs) and are unable to login to Topaz, please have the Principal Investigator fill out the Person of Interest form referenced on the Division of Human Resources website here.
    Per the HR website: “A POI form can be completed either by the Manager or the Person of Interest. The POI form can be found under the Recruitment forms in the Manager Self Service or Employee Self Service within PantherSoft Human Resources. Once completed, print form and both the supervisor and the person of interest must sign.
    If you have any questions regarding this form, please contact HR directly at: (305) 348-2181.
    After you have submitted this form and received a Panther ID, please proceed to filling out the Personnel Access Request Form to have a TOPAZ account created. You should expect to receive an email confirming that your account has been created within 1-2 business days of submitting the request.
  • TOPAZ System Help: If you have any questions about accessing the TOPAZ system, please email us at topaz-help@fiu.edu.

Useful Tips

  • Click the “Save Button” frequently when completing an application form. The system will not automatically save your work as you complete an application form.
  • When attaching a document to a protocol, make sure that you have closed the document file prior to uploading it as an attachment in Topaz.
  • The maximum size limit for uploading an attachment is 5 MB.
  • Use “Ctrl X” to cut sections from the form; “Ctrl C” to copy sections of the form; and “Ctrl V” to paste into sections of the form.
  • Press F11 to view full screen and to avoid pressing the back button which logs you out of the system.
  • Please add topaz-noreply@fiu.edu to your spam settings since the Electronic Protocol Application System uses this email address.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Frequently asked questions on using the TOPAZ system are available on our main IRB FAQs web page.

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