What is RCR?

The Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) is a critical component of research and scholarly efforts at academic institutions. Most broadly, it serves to uphold public trust in research endeavors by helping ensure the impartiality and ethical conduct of investigators. This is demonstrated through the adherence to both public laws and institutional policies, commitment to best practices and high personal convictions, and observation of professional codes. Additionally, funding agencies, including NSF and NIH, have expectations about RCR training for students involved in mentored research.

What are the RCR requirements for trainees in the Department of Biology at UAB?

  • Undergraduates
  • M.S. students (Plan I and Plan II)
  • Ph.D. students
  • Postdocs

RCR Online Training Program

Undergraduates (that perform research for volunteer, course credit or pay) are required to complete an online training program covering six topic areas of RCR:

  • research, ethics, and society
  • research misconduct
  • data management
  • plagiarism
  • authorship
  • collaborative research

Instructions to access RCR training

  • Visit the training section of the Undergraduate Research website.
  • Select the RCR Policty and Procedures tab.
  • Follow the steps outlined in the How to Access Online Training section.

M.S. students are required to complete the six topic areas of the RCR online training program and two hours of in-person discussions.

RCR Online Training Program

RCR topic areas:

  • research, ethics, and society
  • research misconduct
  • data management
  • plagiarism
  • authorship
  • collaborative research

Instructions to access RCR training

  • Visit the training section of the Undergraduate Research website.
  • Select the RCR Policty and Procedures tab.
  • Follow the steps outlined in the How to Access Online Training section.

In-Person Discussions

Additionally, M.S. students must participate in the equivalent of two hours of in-person discussion on RCR-related issues. These in-person training sessions will be offered once a semester.

Register for In-Person Discussions

Ph.D. students must complete the GRD 717 course (or its equivalent). GRD 717 (or its equivalent) must be completed prior to advancement to candidacy.

Postdoctoral trainees must complete the GRD 717 course (or its equivalent) within the last four years. RCR training must be completed or documented within the first year of training. Details for postdocs to register for GRD717 (without charge) can be found on the Office of Postdoctoral Education website.

Documentation of RCR training

For undergraduates: A certificate of completion, generated by the Office of Service Learning and Undergraduate Research, must be picked up from the office in the Smolian International House. This will be issued after a short survey is given. This stamped certificate should be provided to the student’s faculty mentor in order to begin the research process. Faculty mentors are expected to retain RCR documentation for all their current undergraduates.

For M.S. Students: A digital or printed copy of the CITI transcript webpage showing successful completion of the online CITI Program RCR modules must be submitted to the CAS-Biology RCR Coordinator. Completion of the 2-hour in-person RCR training.

For Ph.D. Students: A record of the completion of GRD717 on your UAB transcripts.

For Postdocs: A record of the completion of GRD717 on your UAB transcripts. If an equivalent course is used to fulfill the RCR requirement, approval is required through the Office of Postdoctoral Training.

CAS-Biology RCR Coordinator

Dr. Melissa Harris
harrisml@uab.edu

Additional UAB RCR resources