Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR)


Leah Vargas
Research Integrity and Compliance Officer
(916) 278-5674

The responsible and ethical conduct of research (RCR) is critical for excellence, as well as public trust, in science and engineering. Consequently, education in RCR is considered essential in the preparation of future scientists and engineers.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) have added requirements for the completion of RCR education and training when certain conditions apply (see below).

Online RCR Course Registration Guide (pdf)

Training Applicability
National Science Foundation:

  • RCR training is required of undergraduate, graduate, or postdoctoral researchers who receive support from salary and/or stipends to engage in research or if conducting research is included in their academic program.
  • NSF RCR Resources:
  • This requirement is applicable to subawards. 

 National Institutes of Health:

  • All trainees, fellows, participants, and scholars receiving support through any NIH training, career development award (individual or institutional), research education grant, and dissertation research grant must receive instruction in RCR. 
    • If RCR education and training is required, it will be outlined in the call for proposal and planned at the proposal stage.  Online training will not suffice. 
  • NIH RCR Resources:
  • This requirement is applicable to subawards.

It is the responsibility of the Primary Investigator to verify certification of student researchers. If you have any questions, please contact