What Principal Investigators and Supervisors Need to Know

Principal Investigators (PI’s) and supervisors are responsible for promoting safety and ensuring regulatory compliance in their research areas.

Your Responsibilities

PI's and supervisors have these responsibilities:

  • Keep laboratory, experimental, or other workspaces assigned to you safe.
  • Provide and document appropriate safety and health training for students and employees under your direction or supervision.
  • Provide appropriate personal protective equipment to students and employees under your direction or supervision.
  • Be sure that people and activities under your direction comply with all applicable federal, state and campus regulations.


The State of Illinois, University policy, or federal regulations dictate the following requirements for principal investigators and supervisors:

  1. If you conduct laboratory research, you must take the online Laboratory Safety training. Depending on your research activities, additional training may be required.
  2. If chemicals are used in your laboratory, you must have a Laboratory Safety Plan
  3. If you use human tissues, transgenic animals or plants, recombinant DNA, or other biological materials, you must register with the Institutional Biosafety Committee.
  4. If you have or use radioactive materials, lasers (Class 3b or 4), or x-ray machines, you must register these with DRS.
  5. If you receive or initiate shipping of hazardous materials, you must have Hazardous Materials Awareness training (DOT). Some shipments will require additional training.
  6. If you actively conduct research in your laboratory, comply with the requirements for laboratory workers.

DRS Services and Guidance

Other Services and Guidance

Last Update: 6/19/2018