Top NavTop NavTop Nav

Responsible Conduct of Research

CSUEB Responsible Conduct of Research Training

CSUEB requires all the appropriate training and oversight in ethical conduct of research to all undergraduates, gradate students and postdoctoral researchers who are supported by National Science Foundation (NSF).  Responsible Conduct of Research training (RCR) is required when CSUEB applies and receives financial assistance from the NSF.  This requirement is pursuant to Section 7009 of the America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (America COMPETES) Act, which states that ‘‘each institution that applies for financial assistance from the Foundation for science and engineering research or education describe in its grant proposal a plan to provide appropriate training and oversight in the responsible and ethical conduct of research to undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers participating in the proposed research project.”

The requirements are in two sections of Title VII, which authorizes NSF funding: Section 7008 – Postdoctoral research fellows, and Section 7009 – Responsible conduct of research. For more information, go to General Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training resources, including training on ethics, are accessible at

The CITI Course in the Responsible Conduct of Research can be accessed here:

If you need access to this training please send an email to requesting access to this training and someone from ORSP will follow up with your request.

Roles and Responsibilities



  • Upon verification that an NSF award is received ORSP staff must notify PI of this training requirement when applicable. This can be done prior to orientation.
  • Providing RCR training to all required personnel (Currently done via CITI Training)
  • Verification of training completion.
  • Reporting all instances of non-compliance to Institutional Official

Principal Investigator (PI)

  • Ensuring all personnel subject to this training complete this training prior to working on any NSF awarded project.
  • Maintaining records of completion for all personnel who are working on their NSF funded projects that are subject to this training requirement.
  • Notifying ORSP of any change in personnel to ensure compliance with this policy.


Update:  Memo from NSF August 2017:



SUBJECT: Training in Responsible Conduct of Research – A Reminder of the NSF Requirement

The National Science Foundation (NSF) requires that each institution submitting a proposal certify that it has a plan to provide appropriate training and oversight in the ethical conduct of research to all undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers who will be supported by NSF to conduct research. The institutions are responsible for verifying that the training has been received. This is in accordance with the 2007 America COMPETES Act.

The NSF recognizes the importance of research integrity and the responsible and ethical conduct of research. The scientific research enterprise is critical to our nation, and its progress depends on maintaining integrity in the process of conducting research. A recent report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, called Fostering Integrity in Research, notes that the core values and guiding norms underpinning research integrity are crucial to assure that new generations of researchers are able to meet the challenges of a dynamic research environment.

NSF’s Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) requirement applies to the breadth of research disciplines the Foundation funds and the different educational levels of the students and post-doctoral researchers the agency supports. The training should be effective and appropriately tailored to the specific needs and circumstances at each university. Accordingly, it is the responsibility of each institution to determine both the focus and the delivery method for appropriate training.

The NSF Office of the Inspector General (OIG) has studied a sample of academic institutions to find out how they have implemented the RCR requirement. I encourage you to read the OIG report as well as the Fostering Integrity in Research report cited above. Both of these reports draw attention to the importance of maximizing the effectiveness of RCR education. The OIG report suggests that universities could
benefit from best practices. I would like to draw your attention to Chapters 9 and 10 in the Fostering Integrity in Research report to learn more about some best practices and the many resources available for RCR educational materials and strategies.


I believe we can all do more to achieve and demonstrate the effectiveness of RCR training and improve strategies for fostering research integrity. This will continue to be a topic of discussion at NSF, including the National Science Board, and among the scientific societies, universities, colleges, and other institutions involved in the research enterprise. Thank you for your continued commitment and dedication to this important endeavor.

France A. Córdova Director

© California State University, East Bay. All Rights Reserved.