Responsible Conduct of Research Education

NSF Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Education Requirement

The America COMPETES Act signed into law in 2007 mandates training in the Responsible Conduct of Research (Section 7009).

Effective January 4, 2010, the Authorized Organizational Representative (Research Administrator) of institutions that apply for financial assistance from NSF for science and engineering research or education must certify that the institution has a plan to provide appropriate training and oversight in the responsible and ethical conduct of research to undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers who will be supported by NSF to conduct research.

Section 7009 applies to the University at Albany and will be implemented on January 4th, 2010.

As of January 4, 2010, all undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral researchers supported by NSF to conduct research must complete Responsible Conduct of Research education prior to hire or within 60 days of a new award start date.

In addition, starting with applications submitted to NSF on January 4, 2010 or later, each PI will have to certify in Coeus that all undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral researchers to be supported by an NSF award will complete the UAlbany program of education in RCR prior to hire or within 60 days of a new NSF award.

Responsible Conduct of Research Education

The Responsible Conduct of Research curriculum includes the following topics:

  • Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research
  • Research Misconduct
  • Data Acquisition and Management
  • Responsible Authorship
  • Peer Review
  • Mentoring
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Collaborative Research

UAlbany provides education in the responsible conduct of research (RCR) in two ways: a web-based course and also via two graduate courses that are offered.

Web-based RCR training:

The Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) at www.citiprogram.org provides an on-line course that provides a comprehensive basic course in the responsible conduct of research for faculty, staff and students. Completion of the CITI RCR course will satisfy the America Competes requirement.

To access the RCR course, follow this link go to the CITI home page, register or log in and choose SUNY - University at Albany as your affiliation, find and click the link to "add a course or update your learner group." CITI offers four discipline-specific RCR courses for you to choose from: Biomedical Research, Social and Behavioral Research, Physical Science, and Humanities.

Follow the directions and check the courses you wish to complete. You do not have to complete all of the modules at one sitting. You can log out, return, and complete them at own pace.

A certificate is available to print/save upon completion. If you have any questions about the CITI website, or need assistance, please contact the Office of Regulatory Research Compliance (ORRC) at 518-437-3850.

UAlbany Graduate Courses that satisfy the RCR requirement:

The RCR educational requirement may also be fulfilled by proof of satisfactory completion of one of the equivalent UAlbany courses below:

BIO 515a - Responsible Conduct of and Skills in Research
BMS 670/EHS 675 -Responsible conduct of Scientific Research

Alternative Means to Meet the UAlbany RCR Requirement:

Presentation of a certificate of completion to ORRC by a graduate student or post-doctoral fellow from an approved RCR course taken at another institution will also meet the UAlbany requirement for RCR training.

If you have any questions about the RCR educational requirement, or need additional information, please contact The Office of Regulatory & Research Compliance at 518-437-3850 or orrc@albany.edu.