Oklahoma State University has an obligation to ensure that all students, faculty and
staff conducting research do so by applying the highest ethical standards. Education
and training in the ethical and responsible conduct of research is an essential element
of training for individuals who are pursuing degrees or engaging in research in any
field. Over the past few years funders have become more likely to require that everyone
conducting research receive training in the responsible conduct of research in core
areas that are seen as significant in conducting research (including proper citation
of other work, plagiarism, research misconduct, intellectual property and copyright,
falsification and unwarranted editing of data, conflict of interest, authorship on
manuscripts, and mentor-mentee relationships).
OSU implemented a policy in 2009 requiring degree-seeking graduate students, postdoctoral
fellows/associates and undergraduate students engaged in research to receive appropriate,
institutionally-endorsed education and training in responsible conduct of research.
Graduate students are required to complete RCR training during their first semester
at OSU, but the Graduate College recommends refresher training every three years or
when a student begins a new degree program.
The training materials encourage investigators and students to think critically and
to engage in discussions about what it means to be an ethical researcher. Conducting
research ethically requires an understanding and appreciation of the ethical imperatives
behind the rules.
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