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Frequently Asked Questions

Pre-Implemenation Questions
I can't attend one of the SPARCS information session. Will it be recorded?

Yes! The information sessions will be recorded and posted on the SPARCS website. 

Who should attend the SPARCS information session? 

Anyone who is intrested in research in the W&M or VIMS community. 

Animal Oversight FAQs
I see my protocols that were active in the old system in SPARCS. Why do I not see the details of the protocols in the various content areas of SPARCS?

Much of the data in the old compliance system was free text entry and the data tables for the new system were too different to allow us to migrate the data over from the old system.  Therefore, migrating the active protocols into the new system in their entirety would have been a largely manual process that would have either required PI’s to re-enter all of their active protocols at once, or to allow someone else to re-enter them and introducing the danger of accidentally changing the protocol during the transfer.

I received an email from the SPARCS system indicating that I have a protocol annual review due. Where do I start?

After logging into SPARCS (, select Animal Oversight from the product drop down and ensure that your role is listed as Researcher Staff Member. On the Alerts/Inbox on the left hand, click on Continuing Reviews. There you should find the protocol due for renewal. Click on the protocol number hyperlink to start your review process.

Do I need to list undergraduates performing similar research functions as individual Personnel records on my protocol?

You do not need to add individual students as separate personnel. You can attach a document in the Personnel section with the list of names and their function.


What should I do if an individual I want to add to a protocol is not listed as an option?

All graduate and undergraduate students, faculty, and staff were loaded at the time of system launch. Updates to the People data are being sent to SPARCS weekly. If an individual you need to add to a protocol is not listed as an option, please, contact to have the individual added.

I would like other researchers working with me to be able to enter protocols as well as feedback to IACUC reviewer comments on my behalf. How can this be accomplished?

Please email with the name of any researcher who should be assigned to your “PI team”. These individuals will have the ability to enter protocols and comments on your behalf, but they will not be able to submit under your name. The protocol PI is the only one who can complete the submission.