Responsible Conduct of Research

Responsible Conduct of Research:
Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) is defined as “the practice of scientific investigation with integrity” and is designed to promote awareness and application of professional standards and ethical principles in all activities related to research and scholarly activity. The College RCR program is a tiered program that encompasses four major areas: Planning Research, Conducting Research, Reporting and Reviewing Research, and Research Misconduct.  The College believes that RCR for both faculty and students is critical for excellence in research, essential for training future scientists, and an inherent responsibility of researchers to promote public trust, in science.

The RCR program will employ a combination of electronic (CITI Program) and face-to-face training to help College faculty and medical students develop a meaningful understanding for the ethical practice of research.  Faculty and medical students who participate in the Distinction in Research or Summer Research Experience, or engage in a College sponsored project must complete the RCR training.

NIH recognizes that instruction in RCR occurs formally and informally in educational settings and through informal instruction during the research training experience; therefore, the goals of the RCR training is to educate researchers and trainees in critical areas of responsible and ethical research, and to encourage the use of responsible research practices.  The RCR training is designed to discuss RCR with an emphasis on ethics of conducting research, data analysis and conformance to federal guidelines in research.  While there are no specific guidelines for the instruction in RCR, the following topics have been incorporated as part of the College educational RCR training:

  1. Planning Research
    • Protection of Human Subjects
    • Biosafety, Biohazardous Agents, and Recombinant DNA
    • Conflicts of Interest
  1. Conducting Research
    • Data Management Practices
    • Mentor and Trainee Responsibilities
    • Collaborative Research
  1. Reporting and Reviewing Research
    • Authorship and Publication
    • Peer Review
  1. Research Misconduct
    • Fabrication
    • Falsification
    • Plagiarism

Additional Information:
Students or faculty interested in learning more about RCR please visit the Office of Research Integrity (ORI). An excellent learning tool for real life scenarios and research misconduct is available through the ORI’s “The Lab: Avoiding Research Misconduct”, an interactive movie where users make decisions about various research practices within the areas of research integrity and misconduct, mentorship, and authorship.