NSCI 327: Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Biomedical Research

Spring Term, 2019

Thursdays in HSRF 400, 4:00-5:15 PM
Course Directors: Margaret Vizzard & Gary Mawe
Course Syllabus printer-friendly PDF version

This course arise from a growing public concern that many students, postdoctoral fellows, technicians, and even faculty, arrive in the laboratory not fully informed about the norms of science, the ethical requirements of research, or the policies and regulations that govern research. In addition, many situations in which ethical issues arise are complex, and they require a skilled approach for identifying and assessing problems and for finding solutions.  This course provides a discussion forum for achieving these goals.  Each 75 min session will consist of a presentation on the indicated topic, followed by a discussion of relevant cases and scenarios.  The goal of this course is to instill in trainees a strong sense of integrity in science so that they will propagate this culture to future generations of scientists.

Whether you pass this class is based upon your attendance and participation in discussions.  You must sign and turn in your attendance sheet at the end of every session.  You are allowed to miss one session. If you miss more than one and you have a contacted us in advance with a reason for your absence, you may have an option to make the session up.  You cannot make up more than 2 sessions. Postdocs and mentored junior faculty who are auditing this class to fulfill their training requirement in Responsible Conduct must also sign in.

Jan. 17

I. Ethical thinking in clinical and research contexts


Timothy Leahy, MD

Professor, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine

Jan. 24

II. Misconduct in Science



Charles Irvin, PhD

Assistant Dean for Faculty at the LCOM, Professor, Medicine

Jan. 31

III. Statistics in Experimental Design/Data Analysis/Interpretation


Jan Bunn, MD

Research Assistant Professor, Engineering & Mathematical Sciences

Feb. 7

IV. Image Manipulation


Doug Taajtes

Professor, Pathology,

Director, COM Microscopy Imaging  Facility

Feb. 14

V. Confidentiality/Peer Review



Gregory Holmes, MD

Professor & Chair, Department of  Neurological Sciences

Feb. 21

VI. Responsible Authorship



David Warshaw, PhD

Professor & Chair, Department of  Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

Feb. 28VII. Collaborations

Gary Mawe, PhD

Professor, Neurological Sciences

March 7VIII. Mentor-Trainee Relationships

Christopher Francklynn, PhD 

Professor, Biochemistry

March 11-15Spring Break
March 21IX. Human Subjects

Alexandra Potter, PhD

Assistant Professor, Psychiatry

March 28

X. Animals in Research



Margaret Vizzard, PhD

Professor, Neurological Sciences

April 4

XI. Open Access Publishing; Evaluating Scientific Impact of Papers



Gary Ward, PhD

Professor, Microbiology & Molecular Genetics

April 11XII. Rigor and Transparency

Rodney Scott, MD, PhD

Professor, Neurological Sciences

April 18XIII. Intellectual Property: Ownership and Sharing

Kerry Swift, MS

Technology Licensing Officer