Section 1

SECTION I: POLICIES RELATED TO ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYMENT AND OBLIGATIONS




ACADEMIC FREEDOM

The policies governing academic and professional personnel of the State University of New York (all units) are set forth in The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees and the most recent Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc. Each SUNY campus must conform to these policies, establish policies of its own in all those areas left to its discretion, and devise proper means of implementing both categories of policy. "Procedure" in this section of the handbook refers to such local implementation.

References below are to the 2001 edition of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees unless otherwise indicated.

"It is the policy of the University to maintain and encourage full freedom, within the law, of inquiry, teaching and research. In the exercise of this freedom the faculty member may, without limitation, discuss their own subject in the classroom; they may not, however, claim as their right the privilege of discussing in their classroom controversial matter which has no relation to their subject. The principle of academic freedom shall be accompanied by a corresponding principle of responsibility. In their role as citizens, employees have the same freedoms as other citizens. However, in their extramural utterances employees have an obligation to indicate that they are not institutional spokespersons." (The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees, Article XI, Title I)


POLICIES RELATED TO EMPLOYMENT

APPOINTMENT OF EMPLOYEES

All policies and procedures for the appointment of employees are governed by Article XI of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees, 2001 and the Office of Human Resource Management [OHRM]. Listed below are references to the relevant sections of Article XI and OHRM.

Procedure for Appointment (Article XI: Title A) (OHRM, Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Employment Procedures, Appointment Request)

Oath of Office

Pursuant to Article 61, Section 3002 of the New York State Education Law, faculty who are United States citizens must sign the following oath:

""I do hereby pledge and declare that I will support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of the State of New York and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the position of _________________ according to the best of my ability."

Temporary Appointment (Article XI: Title F) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Temporary Appointments)

Term Appointment (Article XI: Title D) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Term Appointments)

Appointment Year (Article XI: Title H)

Probationary Appointment (Article XI: Title E) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Probationary Appointments)

Distinguished and University Professors AND Distinguished Librarians (Article XI: Title G)


EVALUATION AND PROMOTION OF ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES

All policies and procedures for the evaluation and promotion of academic and professional employees are governed by Article XII of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees. Listed below are references to the relevant sections of Article XII, OHRM, and the Office of Academic Affairs.

Academic Employees (Article XII: Title A and B) (Administrative Procedures for the Preparation of Recommendations for Promotions and Continuing Appointment; Guidelines for Consideration of New Faculty for Continuing Appointment)

Professional Employees (Article XII: Article C) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Performance Evaluations and OHRM Policies and Procedures, HR Memorandum 88-4: Promotion of Professional Employees)


TERM REVIEW AND RENEWAL FOR ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES

Academic Employees (Article XI: Title D) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Term Appointments, Renewal)

At the University at Albany the term recommendation for Academic Employees should be sent to the Office of Academic Affairs from the Department Chair (or, where applicable, the Dean). The statement must indicate the method by which the Chair or Dean Consulted with the faculty in the candidate’s academic unit. The statement should also comment at length about the candidate’s achievements since his/her initial appointment (or the last term review) in each aspect of the traditional academic obligation, i.e., scholarship, teaching, and service. Areas of professional performance that need to be strengthened should be clearly described, together with some indication of how progress will be measured in the future. Each term recommendation must be accompanied by a current curriculum vita for the candidate.

The Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc. requires that “written evaluations and/or recommendations…which pertain to reappointment shall be sent to the employee at the time they are prepared” (see Article 31). Accordingly, any other written recommendations that may be added to the file after it leaves the candidate’s academic unit.

Professional Employees (Article XI: Title D) (OHRM, Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Term Appointments)


PROMOTION AND CONTINUING APPOINTMENT (TENURE)

Promotion of Academic Employees (Article XII: B (Administrative Procedures for the Preparation of Recommendations for Promotions and Continuing Appointment; Guidelines for Consideration of New Faculty for Continuing Appointment)

Continuing Appointments ("Tenure") (Article XI: Title B (Administrative Procedures for the Preparation of Recommendations for Promotions and Continuing Appointment; Guidelines for Consideration of New Faculty for Continuing Appointment)

Promotion of Professional Employees (Article XII: Title C) (OHRM, Policies and Procedures, HR Memorandum 88-4: Promotion of Professional Employees)

Permanent Appointment of Professional Employees (Article XI: Title C) (OHRM Policies and Procedures, Professional Procedures, Employment, Professional Reappointment Procedures, Permanent Appointments)


FACULTY GRIEVANCES

Under the Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc., almost all faculty grievances are handled under the contractual grievance procedures. For information on this procedure and its jurisdiction, see the Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc. It is important to realize that the procedure also covers grievances based on The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees. When an individual thinks he/she may have a grievance, he/she should contact a member of the local grievance committee. Grievances must be filed within 45 days of the date on which the grievance occurred.

For information on grievances or complaints that do not come under the jurisdiction of the union contract, it is suggested that faculty consult with the appropriate body in their school or college or with the Council on Academic Freedom and Ethics.


LEAVES

All policies and procedures for Leaves are governed by Article XIII of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees. Listed below are references to the relevant sections of Article XIII) (OHRM Time and Attendance, Leave.)

Vacation - Calendar and College Year Employees (Article XIII: Title A) (OHRM Time and Attendance, Leave.)

Vacation - Academic Year Employees (Article XIII: Title B) (OHRM Time and Attendance, Leave.)

Sick (Article XIII: Title C) (OHRM Time and Attendance, Leave.)

Holiday (Article XIII: Title D) (OHRM Time and Attendance, Leave.)

Sabbatical (Article XIII: Title E) (Policy Statement on Sabbatical Leave)

Disability (Article XIII: Title G)

Other Leaves (Article XIII: Title F)

University at Albany Procedures for Leaves

Application forms for all types of leave are obtained from the Office of Human Resources Management. One standard form covers all types of leave. Requests for leave are submitted through administrative channels as far in advance as possible. In general, requests for leave for the academic year, or portions thereof, are submitted by January of the previous academic year, or at least six months prior to the beginning of the leave so that appropriate operational arrangements can be completed.

Faculty will, of course, recognize that no matter what the salary arrangements may be, and no matter how long foreseen or how much of an emergency any type of leave may be, coverage of their workload must be arranged through the departmental chair. It follows that the earliest possible word of impending crises or long-range projects should be conveyed to the chair in addition to the filing of the official form.

A person on leave without pay, sabbatical leave, or on leave at reduced pay from a regular University academic position does not accrue service credit toward tenure. Vacation and/or sick leave credits are not accrued during a sabbatical leave or any other leave at less than full-time salary.

Effect of Leaves of Absence on Fringe Benefits

Most fringe benefits are based on the salary paid to the individual. Thus, a person on leave without pay will not receive payments to his/her retirement account nor will he/she receive the benefit of the University paying a portion of his/her health insurance premiums. If, however, the individual receives a partial salary, then the University may pay the usual portion of the health insurance premium. Contact the Office of Human Resources to confirm eligibility for continued health insurance premium payment by the University. If he/she is on leave at full or reduced pay, retirement contributions are made on the basis of the actual amount paid to the individual. If an individual who is covered by the disability insurance program goes on leave, whether it be leave without pay or leave at reduced pay, his/her disability insurance coverage will be continued for a period not to exceed two years from the date the leave begins.

NEGOTIATING ORGANIZATION FOR FACULTY — UNITED UNIVERSITY PROFESSIONS, INC.

Membership in UUP automatically includes membership in the following:

American Federation of Teachers (AFT)
New York State United Teachers (NYSUT)
AFL/CIO

PERSONNEL FILES (PROFESSIONAL STAFF POLICIES AND PROCEDURES)

Article 31 (Personnel Files) of the Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc., provides for the maintenance of official personnel files for each employee. It further provides that the file shall contain copies of personnel transactions, official correspondence with employees, and appropriate formal written evaluative reports, and states that all file materials shall be available to the employee for review and response. Prohibitions against the file containing unsolicited and unsigned statements are also included in the Agreement Between the State of New York and the United University Professions, Inc..

The Office of Human Resources Management has issued a memorandum to all deans, directors, and departmental chairs (PER-84.5, dated May 15, 1984, Subject: Official Personnel Files - Professional Staff Policies and Procedures) describing in detail University procedures for compliance with this negotiated article. These procedures are on file in the offices of all deans, directors, and departmental chairs. The memorandum is also available in the Office of Human Resources Management.

RETIREMENT

All policies and procedures governing retirement are described in Article XV of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees. Listed below are the relevant sections of Article XV and OHRM Benefits, Pre-Retirement.

Retirement System Membership (Article XV: Title A)

Voluntary Retirement (Article XV: Title B)

Privileges After Retirement (Article XV: Title D)

Physical or Mental Incapacity (Article XV: Title C)

For additional information regarding retirement, please contact the Office of Human Resources Management Benefits, Pre-Retirement.

TERMINATION OF SERVICE

All policies and procedures governing termination of service are described in Article XIV of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees. Listed below are the relevant sections of Article XIV.

Automatic Termination (Article XIV: Title B)

Termination at Will (Article XIV: Title A)

Termination for Age or for Physical or Mental Incapacity (Article XIV: Title C)


AFFIRMATIVE ACTION AND EQUAL OPPORTUNITY

Affirmative Action Policy

The University at Albany does not discriminate on the basis of age, color, creed, disability, marital status, national origin, race, sex, or sexual orientation. Inquiries concerning this policy should be referred to the Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action.

The Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action functions in accordance with federal and state laws and regulations governing affirmative action, equal opportunity, and higher education. This University's commitment to affirmative action and equal opportunity is fully articulated in the University at Albany, State University of New York, Affirmative Action Plan.

The Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action works closely with the Office of Human Resources Management in reviewing personnel policies and procedures, integrating affirmative action into the personnel process, and monitoring appointments. In accordance with federal guidelines and requirements, the Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action and the University administration have established goals and timetables for hiring minority persons and women in those job groups where members of these protected classes are underrepresented.

Faculty and staff with specific questions or problems should communicate directly with the Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action.

Equal Access Policy

Beyond the legal requirements of Affirmative Action, the University at Albany provides equal access to all those qualified and prohibits denial of access on the basis of any personal characteristic that is not related to a person's ability to perform in a position, to be successful academically, or to observe the standards and regulations governing the use of services and programs. University regulations also prohibit harassment and physical abuse. The University contains a variety of structures and procedures for resolving complaints about denial of access or opportunity in academic matters, in co-curricular activities, or in employment. Students seeking assistance under this policy, or policies prohibiting harassment, should direct their inquiries to the Office of the Division of Student Affairs, and employees should seek the advice of the Office of Human Resources Management.

Policy On Sexual Harassment

Policy Statement
The University at Albany (UAlbany) is committed to creating and maintaining a community in which all persons who participate in University programs and activities can come together to learn and work in an atmosphere free from all forms of harassment, exploitation, and discrimination or intimidation, including sexual. It is the responsibility of the University to prevent sexual harassment if possible, to correct it when it occurs, and to take appropriate disciplinary action, as necessary, against behavior that is a violation of the policy. Every member of the University community should be aware that the University strongly opposes sexual harassment and that such behavior is prohibited by law and University policy.

Scope
The scope of this policy applies to all employees, applicants for employment in all positions, students involved in academic or recreational programs, as well as applicants in the admission process and recipients of UAlbany's programs and services. This includes students, staff, and faculty in UAlbany's international programs located in Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Norway, Puerto Rico, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom.

Definitions
In accordance with applicable federal and state laws and regulations and University policy, UAlbany defines sexual harassment as "unwelcome" sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of instruction, employment, or participation in any other university activity (quid pro quo), or
  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for evaluation in making academic or personnel decisions affecting an individual (quid pro quo), or
  • Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with a person's performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or academic environment.

Central to the definition are two elements: the behavior is unwelcome, and it is sexual in nature as perceived by the recipient.

In the University environment, conduct that may be considered sexually harassing for the same or opposite sex whether physical, verbal, visual, or written, include but are not limited to:

  • lingering or intimate touches
  • sexual jokes or innuendoes
  • flirtations, e.g., repeated requests for dates
  • sexual advances or propositions
  • graphic comments about a person's physique
  • sexually suggestive objects or pictures displayed in areas of common viewing

For additional information contact the Office of Diversity and Affirmative Action: http://albany.edu/affirmative_action/sexual_harassment.html#policy_statement.


POLICIES RELATED TO FACULTY OBLIGATION

Faculty and Staff Obligation --- Students' Right To Privacy

The privacy rights of individuals enrolled at the University are to be protected as a matter of common courtesy and of law. Specifically, the privacy rights of students are defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) sets forth requirements designed to protect the privacy of student educational records. The law governs access to records maintained by educational institutions and the release of information from those records. FERPA affords parents and students over 18 years of age ("eligible students") certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access. Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The University official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the University official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading. Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception that permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the University discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.

The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by State University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The Office’s address is: Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C. 20202–4605.

Teaching Responsibility Class Management – Rules of the Road

The current Academic Policies and the procedures implementation of these policies are explained in detail: http://www.albany.edu/undergraduate_studies/policy_reminders.html

Extramural Employment, Consultant Fees, Honoraria

As a research and graduate university, the University at Albany encompasses in its mission the discovery and creation as well as the preservation and transmission of knowledge. As a state-supported university, the University at Albany is also committed to advancing and disseminating knowledge for the enhancement of the economy and the improvement and enrichment of the people of the State of New York.

A number of University programs, services, and policies encourage faculty research and service and facilitate external sponsorship of such activity. The University seeks and accepts external support of research and scholarship, education, and service activities that are consonant with its mission. Important reciprocal benefits can accrue to the University and sponsor for the enhancement and transfer of faculty knowledge and skill.

In all respects, but especially in meeting its missions of teaching, research, and public service, the University at Albany must, at the same time, be fully accountable as a public agency of the State of New York. Employees of the University are similarly accountable and must carefully balance their responsibilities. University employees, including those hired by the State of New York and the Research Foundation of the State University of New York, must exercise the utmost care in ensuring that all conflicts of interest or other breaches of ethical and legal responsibility are avoided. It is the responsibility of staff, faculty, supervisors, department chairs, deans, vice presidents and the president to assure conformity with the applicable guidelines concerning conflicts of commitment and interest.

General Standards of Ethical Conduct

The standards of ethical conduct applicable to employees of State University are contained in the New York State Public Officers Law, Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees and Rules of the New York State Ethics Commission. Other guidance is found in the State Finance Law and Rules and Regulations of the State Comptroller relating to the handling of state funds and income. Similar standards applicable to employees of the SUNY Research Foundation are found in the Research Foundation Conflict of Interest statement. Copies of these regulations and policies are available to all employees and they are expected to be familiar with them.

These standards govern such subjects as:

  1. use of official position to secure personal benefit;
  2. interest in an activity in conflict with official duties;
  3. accepting outside employment which impairs independence;
  4. acceptance of gifts;
  5. sale of goods and services to the State;
  6. use of State resources and facilities for personal purposes;
  7. signing of contracts or agreements; and
  8. handling of University or Research Foundation-related income funds.

In addition, the Ethics in Government Act requires policy makers and/or employees earning over stipulated amounts, unless otherwise exempted, to file a financial disclosure statement with the Ethics commission each year. All employees are also restricted in honoraria or travel reimbursements they may accept from outside agencies.

What follows is a summary of pertinent regulations and policies under which University and Research Foundation employees must operate. The University at Albany, through the Office for Sponsored Programs, Division of Finance and Business, and the Research Foundation of State University of New York, stands ready to assist employees in addressing issues of compliance. Those with questions of interpretation and application of the rules to specific fact situations should, of course, refer to the actual texts of the policies and laws referenced here. Copies are available in the Office of Human Resources Management. It is recommended that any question be directed to the Office of Human Resources Management.

Consulting, Other Extramural Employment, and Private Ventures

Through consulting relationships with government, industry, public and other organizations, University employees can be an invaluable resource, assisting in the transfer of technical knowledge and skill. In addition to serving the public interest, consulting involvement of University professionals can benefit the University as a whole. Faculty development, teaching effectiveness, and research productivity can be enhanced by the broadened perspectives emanating from a faculty member's consulting activities, from experiences with others who possess competencies not represented among faculty colleagues, and from access to databases, equipment, or other facilities not available on campus.

The University thus encourages the lending of expert assistance where it does not interfere with an employee's performance of University duties and where no conflict of interest exists.

However, the conditions under which employees engage in work for other than the University at Albany are subject to a number of restrictions. In particular, both actual and apparent conflicts of commitment and conflicts of interest are to be avoided, and employees are expected to act in conformity with legal and ethical codes established by the State University, the Research Foundation, and the State of New York.

Conflicts of Commitment

Conflicts of commitment are situations in which a University employee's external activities, however valuable in themselves, nevertheless interfere with his or her obligations to the University. As provided in The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees of the State University of New York (Article XI, Title H, #4), "No employee may engage in other employment which interferes with the performance of the employee's professional obligation."

Outside activities, therefore, must not interfere with the employee's full responsibilities to the University, and faculty members and other employees must conduct them at times other than those required to meet their professional obligation to the University. Employees whose obligation includes presence during regular work hours must obtain prior approval for such activity from the appropriate Dean or Director and must charge the time to leave accruals if there is remuneration.

If a University employee undertakes outside work for an agency of the State of New York, policies relating to Extra Service Employment apply. Prior approval is required for any state employee to be on two state payrolls of the State of New York. Further information about the Extra Service Policy is available from the Office of Human Resources Management.

Conflicts of Interest

The New York State Public Officers Law prohibits any employee of the State of New York from using his or her "official position to secure unwarranted privileges;" and the Research Foundation Conflict of Interest Statement prohibits use of one's position "to secure privileges or exemptions for himself or herself or others." To safeguard against such conflicts of interest, University employees must abide by applicable laws of the federal government, the standards and Code of Ethics embodied in the New York State Public Officers Law, and the Research Foundation Conflict of Interest Statement.

In particular, faculty, staff, and administrators should avoid transactions in their official capacity with any person or organization from which they are likely to benefit financially or appear to benefit personally. If a transaction with such organizations or individuals will serve the purposes of the University, the employee should disclose his or her interest and ask that an administrative superior in the University review and handle the matter.

Use of University Resources

When a University employee participates in a consulting arrangement, extramural employment, or venture which has a substantial programmatic relationship to the University, use of University personnel, resources, or facilities is allowed only with prior approval by the appropriate Dean or Director of the University and the Vice President for Research, and through proper arrangements consistent with the University's fiduciary responsibilities to the State of New York and the Research Foundation of SUNY. This requirement applies particularly to the use of University facilities by the private sector. The conditions of such use are incorporated in the University's Guidelines for Faculty Involvement in Private Ventures Involving Proprietary Work Carried Out on Campus (University Senate Bill No. 8283-26), SUNY's Policy on Use of University Facilities, and SUNY's Policy and Guidelines for the Use of State University Facilities by Emerging Technology Enterprises.

With respect to use of University equipment by external concerns, such use is permitted under the conditions outlined in the Campus Guidelines for University-Private Sector Cooperative Use of University Research Equipment (University Senate Bill No. 8384-12) and the State University Board of Trustees Resolutions 82-159 and 56-88, as amended by Resolution 79-158. Specific questions should be addressed to the Office of Equipment Management, http://www.albany.edu/equipment

When a University employee participates in a consulting arrangement, extramural employment, or venture which has no officially approved relationship to the University, the use of University resources of any kind is not permitted. This ban includes space, equipment, computer resources, supplies, personnel services, and University stationery to ensure the absence of any implication of University sponsorship or approval of the activity.

Management of Extramural Funds

Any payment for use of University personnel, equipment, or facilities, as well as any income generated from any activity or program that is sponsored by or identified with the University must be managed in a way that ensures full accountability by the University both for fiscal integrity and program quality. Therefore, all revenue received through these or similar arrangements must be administered through the University's formal accounting systems and procedures — that is, through University-controlled accounts.

Research And Scholarship

Freedom of Research Activity

A commitment to academic freedom is essential to the accomplishment of the overall mission of the University. By pursuing truth and its free expression, scholars and researchers advance and disseminate knowledge. In exercising their right to seek and communicate knowledge freely and openly, members of the academic community also have the responsibility to act in accord with the highest standards of integrity and in conformity with applicable professional and legal codes and legislation, as well as with University codes and policies. Through its academic governance bodies and advisory committees, the University community ensures that research and scholarly projects meet applicable standards and incorporate appropriate safeguards.

In accord with the principles of academic freedom, policy of the State University of New York specifically asserts that research conducted by its personnel or conducted on State University controlled premises "shall be unrestricted as to the dissemination publicly of the conduct, progress and results of such research or research-related programs" (SUNY Policy 66-258). http://www.albany.edu/research.

Policy on Misconduct in Research

Integrity in the research enterprise is fundamental to promoting and maintaining scientific excellence. Integrity is central to both individual researchers and institutions. All individuals engaged in research at the University at Albany are responsible for encouraging and supporting an environment that embraces high levels of integrity and ethical standards.

Institutions that accept research funding from federal agencies are required by the federal Office of Research Integrity policy to have policies and procedures in place for the review and disposition of allegations of research misconduct.

The Vice President for Research is the Institutional Official for the University’s research compliance program and for implementing and carrying out the procedures as provided in the University’s Policy and Procedures on Misconduct in Research and Scholarship. http://www.albany.edu/senate/Misconduct_draft_version_Sept_2004.htm.

Research Safety and Compliance

Since grants and contracts are made to institutions rather than individuals, it is the responsibility of the University at Albany to insure that all research conducted under its auspices is carried out in such a manner that the rights and welfare of subjects, society, the environment and researchers are protected and that research activities are in compliance with applicable State and Federal regulations.

The Research Compliance Officer, located in the Office for Research Compliance, is responsible for maintaining familiarity with all regulations and policies which apply to research activities. In this way, he/she can act as a resource person on research compliance for the University community and coordinate all of the compliance activities on campus. Investigators are expected to consult the Research Compliance Officer at the planning stages of research to determine if any regulations or safety policies apply to their research and what steps must be taken to comply with them. http://www.albany.edu/researchcompliance/contact.htm

The following kinds of research are covered by Federal and State Policy:

  1. Research Involving Human Subjects:

    The University at Albany is committed to the principle that the rights and welfare of human beings participating as subjects in University research, training, and other related projects must be protected. This institution complies with federal regulations (45 CFR 46) and New York State Law regarding the use of human subjects. Before any research that has been determined to involve human subjects can be conducted by faculty, staff, or students of the University, or by any person under the auspices of the University, it must be approved by the university's Institutional Review Board (IRB). Prior approval is required for all research, regardless of the source or amount of funding.

    The IRB has the responsibility for deciding if a given activity should be considered human subjects research. Many campus activities which should be included in this category are not viewed as such by the individuals involved. As a result, the IRB should be consulted prior to engaging in any activity where information is to be gathered from humans by any faculty member, student, or staff member of the University.

    The University has established the position of Human Subjects Research Officer to act as liaison between the University community and the IRB, as well as staff assistant to the IRB. This person is available to advise faculty, staff, and students, and can indicate whether the proposed activity would be considered human subjects research by the IRB. Aspects of a project that the IRB might question can be discussed and alternative procedures suggested. Investigators are encouraged to consult the Human Subjects Research Officer at the early planning stages of the research. At this point, the research can often be designed in such a way to facilitate IRB approval. http://www.albany.edu/researchcompliance/IRB/IRB.htm .

    Investigators who plan to conduct projects or activities involving humans as subjects shall submit to the IRB, through the Human Subjects Research Officer, a completed Human Subjects Review Form. Depending on the specific nature of the project, additional forms may be required. The necessary forms are available from the Office for Research and the Human Subjects Research Officer can assist investigators in completing them. Investigators should allow ample time for IRB review, and possible revisions, prior to the planned starting date for the project.

  2. Research Involving Animal Subjects:

    The care and use of animal subjects in research and educational activities is governed by federal and state regulations, professional standards of ethical conduct, and University policy.

    A copy of the full policy regarding use of animals in research, including explanation of the project supervisor's responsibilities, is available from the Office for Research Compliance. http://www.albany.edu/researchcompliance/IACUC/IACUC.htm.

  3. Research Involving Hazardous Materials:

    This includes three major areas of concern: toxic chemicals, chemical carcinogens and infectious agents. All research involving such substances must comply with federal and state regulations regarding use, storage, disposal, and personnel exposure. Contact the Office of Environmental Health and Safety for additional information and assistance. http://www.albany.edu/ehs/

  4. Research Involving Radioactive Materials:

    All research involving radioactive materials or machines and equipment that emit ionizing radiation must receive approval from the Radiation Safety Committee for the purchase, possession, use, transportation, and disposal of such material or equipment. http://www.albany.edu/researchcompliance/IBC/IBC.htm.

  5. Research Involving Recombinant DNA:

    Having received approval from the National Institute of Health and the New York State Department of Health to conduct research involving the use of Recombinant DNA, the campus has formed the Institutional Bio-safety Committee to review research proposals involving its use. All research involving the use of RDNA must be submitted to the committee and, where appropriate, reviewed and approved. Contact the Office for Research Compliance for more information. http://www.albany.edu/researchcompliance/contact.htm.

    Patent and Copyright

    Regulations regarding the patent or copyright or inventions made by persons working in University facilities are detailed in Article XI, Title J of The Policies of the SUNY Board of Trustees and http://www.albany.edu/research/TechDev/techtrans04.html.