Academic & Research Integrity

Academic and research integrity is the pursuit of scholarly activity in an open, honest and responsible manner. To ensure ethical behavior in an academic research environment, the Graduate School holds all graduate students to the highest standard of academic integrity and expects all doctoral students in the divisions of social science, natural science, and engineering to receive discipline-specific Responsible Conduct in Research (RCR) training. This training is an important part of graduate education and ensures compliance with regulations of federal research sponsors.

Academic Integrity

The ability of the University to achieve its goals depends upon the quality and integrity of the academic work that its faculty, staff, and students perform. Academic freedom can flourish only in a community of scholars which recognizes that intellectual integrity, with its accompanying rights and responsibilities, lies at the heart of its mission. Observing basic honesty in one’s work, words, ideas, and actions is a principle to which all members of the community are required to subscribe.

In all academic matters, graduate students are governed by the presumption that their academic work is held to the highest standards of research and scholarship, and all forms of academic fraud, including plagiarism, multiple submissions, false citations, and the use of false data, are regarded as serious violations and will be subjected to disciplinary action.

As members of the University community, graduate students are bound by the rules and procedures described in Rights, Rules, Responsibilities. Academic and research integrity issues in particular are covered in sections “2.4 Academic Regulations” and “2.6 The Graduate School” of Rights, Rules, Responsibilities.

Responsible Conduct in Research

Researchers at Princeton are expected to undertake research with the highest moral and ethical standards. It is Princeton University’s policy to provide education in responsible conduct in research (RCR) to graduate students proactively as an important element of their training, in compliance with regulations of federal research sponsors. To ensure graduate students conducting research are educated in research ethics, the University and the Graduate School expect all graduate students in the divisions of social science, natural science, and engineering to receive training in responsible conduct in research.

While there is no prescriptive way that departments are required to train their graduate students, all discipline-specific courses educate students on data acquisition, treatment, and management; authorship and attribution; and research misconduct and academic fraud.  Departments in the social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering have discipline-specific RCR courses that cover issues and problems graduate students are likely to encounter in their research experience.

For information on academic integrity or responsible conduct in research training for graduate students, contact:

Alice Seneres
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Sciences and Engineering

Geoffrey Hill
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Humanities and Social Sciences

For general information on RCR compliance, please visit the Office of Research and Project Administration.