RCR training for Duke faculty and staff engaged in research

Responsible conduct of research (RCR) broadly refers to a code of ethical conduct that researchers should abide by on a daily basis. RCR education strives to promote ongoing discussion and examination of research operating procedures (including experimental design, data analysis, data management), academic and collegial relationships and collaborations, the ethical considerations accompanying studies, and the research culture itself.  Making ethical and practical decisions requires practice, periodic reflection, and discussion to learn and experiment with different approaches.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) initiated the first RCR education requirement in 1989 and this educational initiative has evolved and strengthened over time. Similarly, the National Science Foundation (NSF) initiated an RCR education requirement for all trainees in 2009. The Office of Research Integrity, within the US Department of Health and Human Services, has developed a variety of resources and programs to support responsible conduct of research education. Duke University has implemented our own RCR training requirement for all faculty and staff researchers, overseen by the Advancing Scientific Integrity, Services, and Training (ASIST) team in the Duke Office of Scientific Integrity (DOSI). This requirement covers all faculty and staff researchers, not simply those engaged in human or animal research.

All Duke faculty and staff engaged in research must complete one online self-directed 100-level RCR course and one collaborative 200-level RCR course every three years. Faculty and staff members newly identified as engaging in research must complete either a 100-level or a 200-level course within 90 days of joining the Duke research community. Completion of this initial course starts the three-year renewal clock for both 100-level and 200-level requirements. Faculty and staff engaged in research will receive automated emails reminders when their RCR course due-dates approach, and may check their RCR education progress at any time through the RCR training tracker app or through the "myPortfolio" or "myTraining" widgets in myRESEARCHhome.

100-level RCR training

Self directed online course

These courses are designed to ensure that all faculty and staff engaged in research have a sound understanding of the principle components of research integrity and that we are all using a common language. Covered topics include research reproducibility, research misconduct, data management, conflicts of interest, and unconscious bias.

Several 100-level courses are offered. Individuals are encouraged to complete the option which seems most relevant to them and their research. These courses can be accessed online and completed over multiple sessions at the researcher’s convenience.

Click here for more details on the 100-level RCR course options

200-level RCR training

Collaborative discussion, offered both virtually and in-person

These courses are designed to engage researchers in open, in-person or virtual discussion about RCR topics. ASIST, along with other offices at Duke, strives to host events covering a variety of topics at a variety of times. We also welcome groups to participate in a dedicated discussion about the RCR topics with your research unit on the RCR topics most relevant to your group. Details for how to lead an RCR workshop or discussion with your research unit can be found on the page linked below.

Click here for more details on the 200-level RCR course options