Responsible Conduct of Research

Responsible Conduct of Research

Research at Northern Illinois University has traditionally and routinely been performed at a high level of quality and scholarly integrity. To continue this tradition, it is necessary faculty, staff and students to participate in continuous Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training and compliance with NIU's RCR Policy.

RCR is composed of the following topics:

  • Research Misconduct
  • Data Acquisition and Management
  • Responsible Authorship and Publication
  • Peer Review
  • Mentoring
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Collaborative Research
  • Animal Care and Use
  • Laboratory Safety
  • Human Subjects Research

The research community has recognized personal and professional rewards from training in the Responsible Conduct of Research. All National Science Foundation,  National Institute of Health Training and United States Department of Agriculture grants require RCR training. Even researchers who do not have the requirements will benefit from the training, which strengthens and broadens the ethical awareness surrounding research. While online training is always available, NIU also offers in-person training from the RCR Forum Series to better serve the community and meet the increased demand for training.

Principal investigators receiving a new NSF award on or after July 1, 2023, will need to ensure that all undergraduate students, graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, faculty and other senior personnel supported by the proposed research project receive RCR training. Principal investigators and key personnel have three months from the start date of their award to complete the training. Personnel in all other positions must complete the training within a year.


Responsible authorship is necessary to academic integrity. NIU faculty, staff, and students are asked to follow the guidelines in our Authorship Policy when writing articles or publications.

Authorship disputes can arise. See Guidelines for Avoiding and Resolving Authorship Disputes.

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