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Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR)

Impacts ISU Researchers

Research Integrity & Compliance (RIC) provides guidance, answers questions, and determines solutions to issues arising in these areas.

Why RCR? 

  • Ensuring anyone involved in research has an understanding of the areas of RCR is part of how ISU demonstrates that its faculty, staff, and students are qualified to receive funding.  
  • Many funders/sponsors of grants and private partners require us to inform researchers and staff about working with these areas.
  • Contact Dave Harris at daveharris@isu.edu or by phone at (208) 282-2592 for more information on RCR requirements and information at ISU. Please use "RCR" in your subject line.
  • CITI Tip Sheet for RCR Training 
  • The Office of Research Integrity

RCR Areas

Working with Animals in Research.

Working with animals in research demands humane care and treatment. ISU operates the animal care facilities closely following all rules and regulations covering animal research. The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, created by USDA and PHS rules, oversees all animal work at ISU. Animals are cared for in the animal facility by a manager and technicians with the oversight of a veterinarian. The animal program at ISU is AAALAC accredited. 

ISU procedures and facility information can be found on ISU's Animals in Research page.

Which ISU Policy applies?

More information and training resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Animal Resources page.

Working/collaborating with even one other person on your research takes time and effort to manage your project.

Before you start a project, you should discuss roles and responsibilities with each person. If your team is at different labs and universities, this is even more important. Discuss who is responsible for reports, who handles financial issues, how will compliance responsibilities be met, who will communicate with the funding agency and others, how will data be stored, how will intellectual property issues be handled; these are some items, among many, that should be discussed and decided upon before work begins. 

More information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Collaborative Science page.

Conflicts of interest (COI) occur when researchers are faced with competing responsibilities in externally funded research.

A conflict of interest does not mean the project cannot take place. The conflict must be managed and is done so through a management plan. Which is a documented process for addressing financial, training, compliance, etc. issues that may arise. 

The following areas require full disclosure and monitoring to be managed properly during the course of research:

  • Financial Gain
  • Work Commitments
  • Intellectual and Personal Matters

Which Policy applies? 

Conflict of Interest in Sponsored Projects ISUPP 7070 lists specific requirements.

Additional information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Conflict of Interest and Commitment page.

What is Data Management?

Involves appropriate handling of data in accordance with related funding agency requirements.  Many funding agencies now require a data management plan as a part of the proposal you submit requesting funding. Before you collect data, it is important to create a data management plan. In the plan, you will document data collection methods, decide what data will be collected along with metadata, how will you preserve the data, and how will you share the data with collaborators and external data users, who is responsible for implementing the data management plan. 

Check out this page for more detail about data management and the data management plan.

For additional information and resources check out The Office of Research Integrity's Data Management page.

Working with Human Subjects in Research.

All research using human subjects at ISU is governed by the procedures mandated by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This includes research that involves a simple survey of clinical trials.

Additional information on the use of Human Subjects in Research at ISU can be found on ISU's  page.

Which ISU policy applies?

The general policy for Use of Human Research Subjects ISU Policy 7050

More information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Human Subject Research page.

What is Mentorship in Research?

Mentorship in the research world leads to the preparation of the trainee to become an independent researcher. A mentor/mentee relationship can be an important part of a student’s education and beneficial to the mentor also.

It is important to develop a clear understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the mentor and the trainee. Some of these issues to address include: the exact duties of the trainee, time commitment on both sides, and expected final project among others.

Follow this link for a mentoring manual PDF produced by The Institute for Broadening Participation. 

Additional information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Mentorship page.


What is Peer Review in Research?

Peer review is an evaluation by colleagues with similar knowledge and experience. Peer review is often used in the review of grant proposals and manuscripts. One’s peers know the standard of excellence in a discipline, the methods of research, and the literature that is cited and can offer a constructive, knowledgeable review. Peer review is the “self-regulation” of the discipline.

Additional information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Peer Review page.


What does Publication/Authorship mean in Research?

Publication is a key way to share the advancement of society’s knowledge. Research isn’t complete until it is shared and made available for peer review. Different disciplines and different cultures can have differing views on publication and authorship. Know the publication policies of your lab, department, university, and discipline before you publish.

Additional information and resources can be found on The Office of Research Integrity's Publications/Authorship page.


What is Research Misconduct?

This is defined as the "fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research". See The National Archives and Records Administration's Code of Federal Regulations 42 CFR Subpart A, Section 103 for a full definition. 

It also includes knowingly failing to report any instances of these actions during research.

Visit ISU's Misconduct in Research and Scholarship page for details.