Skip to main content
Skip to McMaster Navigation Skip to Site Navigation Skip to main content
McMaster logo

I want to use the SEAL Lab

Thank you for your interest in using the SEAL Lab. We hope that the following information will answer all your questions and make the process of using the lab simple.

Project Planning and Funding Application Phase

STEP 1: Complete a client information form

Please complete the Client Information Form online to submit your request.

SEAL Client Information Form

STEP 2: The SEAL Lab will contact you to verify your needs

  • We will make sure you have the metadata for the research ready dataset that interests you and we can answer any questions that you may have. We will also discuss with you any supplementary data that you may need e.g. census profile data etc.
  • We will confirm your software and computer configuration requirements you may have. We will also confirm if you need remote access to SEAL.
  • If you are bringing in data from a third party you may need a data sharing agreement if the provider does not have their own. We can assist you in drafting a data sharing agreement.  We have a number of sample data sharing agreements that you may find useful.
  • You may have timing constraints on spending imposed by your funding institution. We will arrange timing of expenditures to suit your requirements.
  • We can help you determine if ethics approval for your project is required.
  • If data is being provided by a third party, we will discuss with you the best way to get the data into the SEAL Lab.
  • We will discuss the opportunity for a fee waiver with you.

STEP 3: The SEAL Lab will provide a quotation and information useful for funding and ethics applications

We will provide you a quote for SEAL Lab services.  In addition, we will send you:

  • A copy of the Client Agreement and Confidentiality Agreements. You do not need to sign them until you are ready to use the SEAL Lab.
  • Information that will be useful for completing funding or ethics applications including:
    • An overview of the SEAL Lab
    • The security plan for the SEAL Lab

Project Execution Phase

STEP 4: Make a Fee Waiver Application if Your Funding Request was not successful

The SEAL Lab can assist you in applying for a fee waiver from McMaster University.  Qualified McMaster researchers may have their fees waived.  Qualified non-McMaster researchers may also be eligible for a full or partial fee waiver.

STEP 5: Ethics Application

Most confidential data will require ethics approval.  We will help you determine any ethics requirements for your dataset in STEP 2.  This will help you avoid delays in starting your project.

Ethics Statements:

I am using SEAL Research Ready Data:
All the research ready datasets contain sensitive information and require ethics approval.

If you are a researcher in Canada:
You must get ethics board approval from your university.  If your university states that no ethics approval is required then confirm that to us.  Your university’s approval must meet the Tri- Council Policy TCPS2-2018.  Our datasets are pre-approved by the McMaster University Ethics Board and so getting approval from your home university should be straight forward.  Let us know when you are applying and we will send you supporting information that you can use in your application.

If you are a researcher not located in Canada:
You must get ethics board approval from your university.  If your university states that no ethics approval is required then confirm that to us.  Let us know when you are applying and we will send you supporting information that you can use in your application.

I am bringing in my own data:You may require ethics approval prior to starting your research.  This will depend upon the nature of your data and your research.

If you are a researcher in Canada:You may need to get ethics board approval from your university.  If your university states that no ethics approval is required then confirm that to us.  Your university’s approval must meet the Tri- Council Policy TCPS2-2018.  Let us know when you are applying and we will send you supporting information that you can use in your application.

If you are a researcher not located in Canada:You may need to get ethics board approval from your university.  If your university states that no ethics approval is required then confirm that to us.  Let us know when you are applying and we will send you supporting information that you can use in your application.

If you have questions about your ethics application please do not hesitate to ask us.

 

STEP 6: The SEAL Lab will send you everything you need to start work

You are now ready to start work.  We will ask you to submit signed Client and Confidentiality Agreements and we will confirm ethics clearance.  If you have a data sharing agreement with a data supplier, we will ask you for a copy.

 

We will send you:

  • Userid and passwords to access the SEAL Lab. We do not communicate passwords by email, so we will send these to you by an alternate means.
  • Remote access devices.
  • An information package that will help guide you to using the lab.
  • We will transfer data that you are supplying into the lab.

It usually takes a day or two to setup your computing environment and send you passwords.

If you are using your own confidential data or confidential data provided by a third party:

We strongly advise against storing confidential information on USB sticks or your computer.  If you have confidential data to transfer to the SEAL Lab, it is best that we discuss directly with you or your data supplier the best way to move that data into the SEAL lab.  Please do not email us confidential data.

If your data supplier sends you a download link, send the link to us and we will download your data directly into the lab.

We also have the means to have third parties upload encrypted files direct to our lab.