CIP Demographics

The CIP program was created in 1999 after many years of discussion and planning by organizational members and leaders. This certification initiative is for individuals whose primary job responsibilities include substantial participation in overseeing, administering or performing the daily activities of an institutional review board (IRB) as part of a human research protection program (HRPP)

In the fourteen years since the first exam was administered, over 2,500 individuals have become certified. The CIP program has showed steady growth since its inception.

Percent of Working Time Currently Spent in IRB Activities

At the time they sat for the exam, a vast majority of CIPs worked more than half-time with IRB activities. Only about 6% worked less than half-time on behalf of their IRBs.

Primary Role in IRB Activities

In order to sit for the exam, candidates must have IRB administrative duties. Most CIPs serve as IRB staff members, administrators, or managers, however, many candidates have served in other capacities.

Experience in IRB Activities

At the time they sat for the exam, CIPs generally had 2-4 years of experience.

Number of Full-time or Equivalent People in the Office Supporting IRB Activities

At the time of examination, most CIPs worked at institutions with more than ten full time equivalent staff members who support their IRB activities.

Primary Employer

At the time of examination, most CIPs worked in academia, primarily, at medical colleges/universities.

Scope of Review

At the time of examination, nearly three-quarters of CIPs worked on behalf of IRBs that review both biomedical and social/behavioral research.

Highest Academic Level

The most common degree obtained by CIPs is a Bachelor’s degree, followed by a Master’s degree.

Other Certifications Held

Nearly 80% of CIPs do not hold any other credential. The CIP program was conceived specifically for a group of professionals for whom no other credential was available. The CRA, CCRA, and CCRC show the percentage coming over from sites.

PRIM&R Membership Status

Over half of CIPs are PRIM&R members.

Reasons for Becoming Certified

Most CIPs pursued certification for career advancement purposes, and a significant number also did it for personal satisfaction.



Almost half of CIPs were between the ages of 30-49 at the time of testing.


Over half of CIPs are female.