Responsible Conduct of Research Policy

Responsible Conduct of Research

This page summarizes the Integrative Biology Department's policy on training in Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR). Validation and monitoring of RCR training will be conducted using the Research Training Tracking System, which is available through the Integrative Biology RCR Tracking page.

The policy was developed in December 2009 to comply with federal and university requirements, and it reflects the Department's commitment to the highest standards of integrity in all aspects of our mission, including teaching, research, and service.

Scope of the Policy

The RCR policy (i) defines the role of the departmental faculty and administrators in the training of individuals involved in research within the Integrative Biology Department, (ii) outlines the minimal components of the training, and (iii) suggests resources that faculty can use to aid their training activities.

Personnel Covered by the Policy

In keeping with university policy, RCR training is required for all individuals who play any sustained role in research in faculty labs. This includes post-doctoral researchers (as commonly defined), graduate students, technicians, and undergraduate research students, whether or not these individuals are supported with grants. It does not include individuals whose role in the lab consists of routine maintenance such as washing glassware.

In addition, the policy holds faculty members responsible for ensuring that people in their lab receive the training specified by the policy. Each faculty member will be asked to certify that the training has been received by each person covered.

Required Elements of the Training

Topics to be Covered 

The following are from a list provided by the Federal Office of Research Integrity, and from the NIH guidelines for training in RCR.

  1. Data Acquisition, Management, Sharing and Ownership
  2. Conflict of Interest and Commitment
  3. Human Subjects
  4. Animal Welfare
  5. Research Misconduct
  6. Publication Practices and Responsible Authorship
  7. Mentor/Trainee Responsibilities
  8. Peer Review
  9. Collaborative Science
  10. Scientist as a responsible member of society
  11. Contemporary ethical issues in biomedical research
  12. Environmental and societal impacts of scientific research

Note: training topics needed depends upon the particular focus of research in the lab.

Intensity, Duration, and Timing of Training 

For undergraduates, the level of detail covered can be tailored to the degree of their participation in the research. For example, if an undergraduate student is unlikely to participate at the level where authorship would be warranted, then he would not need to be trained in issues related to publication or peer review.

Personnel can be hired on projects before training has been completed. However, faculty members are expected to begin training as soon as possible and to encourage personnel to make use of seminars, websites, or printed material as they become available. No individual can be reappointed to a project if the training has not been completed.

Responsible Conduct of Research Training for Integrative Biology Graduate Students (Implemented Fall 2016)

 

Plan B Master’s#

Plan A Master’s#

Doctoral#

Year 1

4 CITI online modules (http://ora.msu.edu/CITI-RCR-registration). The 4 required modules are:

1. Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research

2. Authorship

3. Plagiarism

4. Research Misconduct

 

4 CITI online modules (http://ora.msu.edu/CITI-RCR-registration). The 4 required modules are:

1. Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research

2. Authorship

3. Plagiarism

4. Research Misconduct

 

4 CITI online modules (http://ora.msu.edu/CITI-RCR-registration). The 4 required modules are:

1. Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research

2. Authorship

3. Plagiarism

4. Research Misconduct

 

Year 2

 

3 additional online training modules, to be selected from the list below*

3 additional online training modules, to be selected from the list below*

Year 3

 

 

3 hours annual refresher training**

Year 4

 

 

3 hours annual refresher training

Year 5

 

 

3 hours annual refresher training

Year 6

 

 

3 hours annual refresher training

 

All graduate students must complete a minimum of 6 hours of discussion-based training prior to receiving their degrees. These hours can be completed at any point in the graduate program, including during the first 2 years (e.g. as part of a course), or as part of the ongoing training requirement in later years (for doctoral students). IBIO students will generally fulfill this requirement by taking our required course, IBIO 801, Professional Development, in their first year. IBIO 801 covers the topic of ethical conduct in research in a number of the class meetings.

*Collaborative Research (CITI), Conflicts of Interest (CITI), Data Management (CITI), Financial Responsibility (CITI), Mentoring (CITI), Peer Review (CITI), IACUC Tutorial for Animal Care Training (http://train.ora.msu.edu), Human Research Protection/IRB Certification (http://train.ora.msu.edu), Rigor and Reproducibility Course (in production).

**The annual refresher training will include a mix of previously covered and new topics and will generally be taken care of through scheduled lab meetings and/or discussions with advisors.

Tracking of Training: Completion of CITI module completion will be tracked in SABA (students register with the SABA system when they do the modules). Advisors will be required to sign a statement on students’ annual reports that the students have completed the Initial or Annual training. The IBIO graduate secretary will then enter this info into GradInfo. Completion of the Discussion-Based Training will be recorded in GradInfo as Initial training. Completion of annual refresher trainings will be recorded in GradInfo as Annual training.

 

MSU and Federal RCR Policies Resources:

Graduate School Resources: 

These sites include PowerPoint presentations, links to other websites, and other readings. They can be used as the basis for training programs within the department or in individual labs:

Other Readings from ZOL/IBIO 801 website are available on request.