Responsible and Ethical Conduct of Research

MSU is committed to helping graduate and graduate-professional students conduct research, creative activity, and scholarship with the highest ethical standards. To this end, The Graduate School (TGS) requires all graduate and graduate-professional students to complete Responsible and Ethical Conduct of Research (RECR) education. The current education program (est. 2017) is comprised of (i) a basic component (Years One and Two) consisting of on-line training modules and a series of instructor-led, discussion-based workshops and (ii) an annual refresher component (Years Three and beyond, Ph.D. students only). TGS offers a series of workshops each academic year that can be used to fulfill the basic education requirements. These workshops cover topics pertinent to research integrity. They allow for interactive discussion, case studies to be reviewed, and questions to be answered on key topics such as mentoring, authorship, plagiarism, research misconduct and detrimental research practices, data management, etc. These workshops build upon the foundational aspects introduced in the on-line CITI modules. Moreover, these sessions serve to develop a culture of responsible conduct and ethical awareness, as well as fulfilling the in-person discussion hours and content required by federal funding agencies (e.g., NIH, NSF and USDA-NIFA).

Workshop Series Coordinators

Dr. Greg Swain, RECR Education Coordinator, Tel. 517-353-1090,

Topics for 2023-2024 RECR Workshops

Discussions will be framed around a main presentation given by Dr. Greg Swain, or by other individuals from key units across campus. The purpose for these workshops is to help students better understand the importance of responsible behavior, learn about proper research and creative activity practices, and connect to important regulatory and information offices across the MSU campus. Each topic, as listed below, is paralleled by a CITI lesson such that a student could pair an online module with a discussion session.

All instructor-led workshops will be conducted virtually at the designated time, 6:00-7:30 pm. Zoom link information will be provided to registrants.

All workshop slides and other materials can be found in Ability as “Class Documents” under each workshop/course.

Ethics in Research and Creative Activity, and Effective Mentoring (RCR-1200-ILTVC), September 12, 2023

Case Studies in Mentoring (1 h), September 26, 2023

Authorship, Plagiarism and Peer Review (RCR-4195-ILTVC), October 10 24, 2023 (Moved to October 24th)

*CANCELLED* Case Studies in Authorship and Plagiarism (1 h), October 24, 2023

Detrimental Research Practices, Teamwork and Conflict Resolution (RCR-3647-ILTVC), November 14, 2023

Record Keeping, Data Management, and Sharing Information (RCR-3628-ILTVC), December 12, 2023

Research Misconduct and Reporting (RCR-3390-ILTVC), January 9, 2024

Research Collaborations and Student Conflicts of Interest, January 30, 2024

Animal Subjects and Animal Use Protocols (RCR-3392-ILTVC), February 13 20, 2024

Human Subjects and Human Use Protocols (RCR-3391-ILTVC), March 12, 2024

Rigor and Reproducibility in Research (RCR-3393-ILTVC), April 2, 2024

Non-Disclosure Agreements, Intellectual Property and Export Controls (RCR-3648-ILTVC), April 23, 2024

Possible Options for Annual Refresher RECR Education

The Center for Statistical Training and Consultation (CSTAT) at MSU offers seminars and workshops regularly (at least once each semester) that can fulfill Annual Refresher RECR Education requirements. Details on the workshops and other events can be found at Example workshops include:

Oct 12. Ten best kept secrets in statistics (Prerequisite: first course in statistics)
Presenter: Dr. Schell, Moffit Cancer Center

Nov 7. Statistical analysis of high-dimensional biomedical data: a gentle introduction to analytical goals, common approaches and challenges (RCR for grad students in quantitative sciences)
Presenter: Dr. Lusa, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

Nov 9. Conversation about qualitative research
Presenter: Dr. Greenhow, College of Education, MSU

Nov 19. Data confidentiality
Presenters: Chip Shank and Justin Booth (IT, MSU)

For more information on these workshops, please consult

Participation in the VERITIES Initiative workshops. VERITIES is an NSF-supported institutional transformation initiative here at MSU that aims to foster a culture of excellence and integrity in university and professional settings by infusing traditional Responsible and Ethical Conduct of Research (RECR) education with an appreciation and understanding of the scientific virtues. Details can be found at

Participation in the upcoming virtual conference titled, “Navigating International Collaborations and Research Integrity” to be held on Nov. 1 and 2, 2023. The conference is sponsored by the Big Ten Academic Alliance – Responsible Conduct of Research Collaborative. Website with conference information and registration details can be found at: About – Navigating International Collaborations and Research Integrity || Virtual Conference November 1-2, 2023 (