The University of Iowa

Research Integrity and Misconduct

  1. Introduction
  2. University of Iowa Policies
  3. University of Iowa Training 
  4. Additional, Outside Resources

a. Introduction

The University of Iowa is committed to the utmost integrity in research and condemns all forms of misconduct and fraud. The UI is required to certify that it has established and will comply with policies and procedures for investigating allegations of scientific misconduct; will comply with federal regulations, as set forth by the Public Health Service, for addressing and reporting possible misconduct in science; and will provide a copy of its policies and procedures to the PHS upon request. For additional information, please see the UI's  Assurance of Compliance with Department of Public Health Service Policy Regarding Procedures for Dealing with and Reporting Possible Misconduct in Science.

Research integrity encompasses not only general principles, but specific expectations in regard to data acquisition, management, sharing, and ownership; the mentor/trainee relationship and responsibilities; and responsible authorship and publication practices. The University encourages its investigators to draw upon the following resources.

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b. Uni​versity of Iowa Policies

The University of Iowa Operations Manual, Part II, Chapter 27: Research addresses the many principles, processes, policies and procedures relating to the conduct of research, including the following sections in relation to research integrity:

27.1 Principles for Determining the Suitability of Research Done in the University

27.2 Principles Governing Access to Research Information

27.3 Process for Access to Research Information

27.4 General Policy and Procedures for Review of Research Projects Involving Use of Human Subjects

27.5 Administrative Surveys and Questionnaires

27.6. Ethics in Research

27.7 Corporate- and Industry-Sponsored Projects

27.8 Anti-Retaliation Policy for Reporting of Misconduct in Research

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c. Universit​y of Iowa Training

In response to requirements set forth by the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, and in support of the institution's own commitment to the highest scientific integrity, The University of Iowa developed a  Responsible Conduct of Research plan under the joint sponsorship and responsibility of the Graduate College and the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development. The Plan delineates a training program that responds to the specific requirements set forth by the NSF and NIH and meets wide-ranging needs for RCR training, accommodating all disciplines engaged in research and other scholarly creativity.

The program includes various types of training, targeting position-specific groups of “trainees.” Trainees must complete the RCR program that aligns with their current positions and obtain additional RCR training as position levels change. The program serves four distinct groups of trainees:

  1. Undergraduate and professional degree students receiving NSF or NIH support will meet the RCR requirement online, by completing the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI), a web-based training course comprising 10 topic-specific modules; trainees are expected to complete the CITI course before or within the first month of research participation/compensation.
  2. Predoctoral Students receiving NSF or NIH support must enroll in UI course 650:270, Principles of Scholarly Integrity, which comprises a four-hour orientation and a series of 90-minute, topic-specific workshops. Master’s degree students must complete the orientation and four topic-specific workshops, for a total of 10 contact hours; doctoral-degree students must complete the orientation and eight topic-specific workshops, for a total of 16 contact hours. All students, master’s and doctoral, are expected to complete the orientation within the first year and the workshops at the rate of two per semester, finishing within a one- or two-year period, respectively.
  3. Postdoctoral Research Scholars (FP01) and Fellows (FP02) receiving NSF or NIH support must complete UI course 650:604, Principles of Scholarly Integrity, including a four-hour orientation and four 90-minute, topic-specific workshops, for a total of 10 contact hours. Trainees are expected to complete the workshops at the rate of two per semester, finishing the orientation and workshops within a one-year period.
  4. Early-Career Faculty – currently limited to those holding NIH K Awards – must complete UI course 650:614, Principles of Scholarly Integrity. The course includes a four-hour orientation and four 90-minute, topic-specific workshops, for a total of 10 contact hours. Trainees are expected to complete the workshops at the rate of two per semester, finishing the orientation and workshops within a one-year period. Early-career trainees will also be expected to assume a role in the other RCR courses, as described in the following paragraph.

RCR training workshops will require faculty facilitators at the rate of approximately one faculty member per 10 trainees. Departments and programs with participating trainees must provide faculty facilitators in order for their predoctoral students and postdoctoral scholars/fellows to participate in course 650:270 or 650:604, respectively. Early-career faculty enrolled in course 650:614 will automatically be expected to serve as faculty facilitators.

The latest RCR program information is available through an umbrella website located on the OVPR website. At this stage the UI RCR program is naturally evolving and subject to revision, so please revisit this site periodically.

Questions on RCR training opportunities and requirements may be directed as follows:

  • Questions and comments on the overall RCR Plan or the CITI online training may be directed to Richard Hichwa at 335-2106.
  • Questions on the course requirements under 650:270, 650:604, and 650:614 may be directed to Minnetta Gardinier at 335-2147.
  • Questions on sponsor-specific requirements for RCR training are best directed to Jennifer Lassner, Interim Director, Division of Sponsored Programs at 335-2123.

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d. Additional, Outside Resources

Research Integrity in General
National Academy of Sciences
On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research

Data Acquisition, Management, Sharing, and Ownership
Council on Governmental Relations
Access to and Retention of Data

National Institutes of Health

Mentor/Trainee Responsibilities
National Institutes of Health
A Guide to Training and Mentoring in the Intramural Research Program at NIH

National Academy of Sciences
Advisor, Teacher, Role Model, Friend: On Being a Mentor to Students in Science and Engineering

Responsible Authorship and Publication Practices
Society for Neuroscience
Guidelines: Responsible Conduct Regarding Scientific Communication

Council of Science Editors
Authorship Task Force

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