Ethical issues and responsible practice policy – higher degrees by research
Ethical issues and responsible practice
1. Conformity with RMIT policies and guidelines
Every candidate’s research program must conform where appropriate with the ethics policies of RMIT University. Candidates and supervisors must abide by guidelines and policies governing ethics and responsible practice in research.
2. Relevant requirements
RMIT University has accepted the National Health & Medical Research Council (NH&MRC) / Universities Australia/ Australian Research Council Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research 2007 and also abides by other relevant federal and state government requirements governing ethical practice in research.
3. Experimentation on animals
When the research program includes experimentation on animals, it must conform to the requirements of the Code of Practice for the Care and Use of Animals for Experimental Purposes in Australia. This code has been endorsed by the NHMRC, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Australian Agricultural Council. Applications which include such experimentation must be approved by the RMIT Animal Experimentation Ethics Committee before the program will be accredited by the Research Committee.
4. Experimentation involving humans
When the research program includes experimentation involving humans, it must conform to the requirements of the National Health and Medical Research Council’s National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research (2007). Programs which include such experimentation must be approved by the RMIT Human Ethics Committee before the program will be accredited by RC.
5. Human subjects
Research programs involving human subjects must conform to the ethics requirements of the University Human Research Ethics Committee and College Human Ethics Advisory Networks (CHEANs).
6. Personal relationship
Any personal relationship which interferes with the professional relationship between supervisor(s) and candidate will be considered in accordance with the Personal relationships between staff and students policy and procedure.
7. Misconduct in research practice1
Misconduct in research practice includes:
a) Fabrication of data to claim results where none have been obtained;
b) Falsification of data;
c) Plagiarism2: Plagiarism is not acceptable under any circumstances. The use of another person’s work or ideas must always be acknowledged;
d) Misleading ascription of authorship, including misappropriation and misrepresentation;
e) Interference where intentionally and without authorisation the research related property of another is taken or damaged;
f) Any other practice that is commonly considered misconduct within a particular research community;
g) Misconduct does not include honest errors of well-founded differences in interpretation of data or results.
8. Failure to engage in responsible practices
Failure to engage in responsible practices may result in charges of academic misconduct which carry a range of penalties including cancellation of examination results and termination of candidature.
1 See also the RMIT Research integrity policy.
2 For full details, please refer to the RMIT Plagiarism Policy and the RMIT Procedure for the Management of Plagiarism in Research Programs.[Next: Supporting documents and information ]