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University of Malaya

Research Ethics and Vulnerability: Ethical Research in Adults with Impaired Decision-Making Capacity

University of Malaya via FutureLearn


Effectively protect research participants with impaired decision-making capacity

It is your responsibility to protect research participants. Those who have impaired decision-making capacity are incapable of giving informed consent. They may not be able to protect their own interests and merit special consideration by researchers and research ethics committees.

In this course, you will learn the principles of informed consent, decision-making capacity, and ethical conduct of research on adults with impaired decision-making capacity. The researcher and research ethics committee need to protect this vulnerable group.

Informed consent means that potential research participants are given information about the key facts of a project before deciding whether or not to take part. This course will empower you with effective processes for gaining informed consent. This course will also give you a framework to understand at what points consent should be renewed, and how to manage those situations.

Safeguarding your participants

Discover the best practice approaches and oversight to safeguard research participants. People with impaired decision-making capacity should be protected and supported in appropriate ways. We will walk you through effective safeguarding measures and how to implement these through your Institutional Review Board and/or Medical Research Ethics Committee.

This course is for researchers and members of the Institution Review Board / Research Ethics committee who wish to broaden their knowledge and understanding of ethical research on people with impaired decision-making capacity.


  • Introduction to impaired decision making capacity (DMC)
    • Getting started
    • Informed consent in research
    • Decision-making capacity in research
    • Weekly wrap
  • Ethical considerations in research involving population with impaired decision making
    • Is the research necessary?
    • Informed consents for participants with impaired DMC
    • Safeguarding research participants with impaired DMC
    • What could you learn next?

Taught by

Norasyida Omar


4.7 rating at FutureLearn based on 7 ratings

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