Responsible Conduct of Research - Year 1 (2022-VIII)


Target audience

Compulsory course for all GSLS PhD Candidates whose PhD tracks start from 1 September 2020 onwards. 

Open for registration to all other GSLS PhD Candidates.

This course is the first part out of a series of four, which are introduced as a compulsory training for PhDs at Utrecht University.

Course description

Being a scientist is complicated. You have to deal with responsibilities towards your colleagues, your profession, science in general and society. On top of that, you have to perform state of the art research providing thrilling results and new insights for the life sciences.

Everyone knows that one should not cheat in science, but still it happens. Why? This course will help you to remain a good citizen in science. The main aspects of responsible conduct of research will be discussed in short by examples taken from the life sciences. Tools will be provided to withstand the seductions and challenges put on you by supervisors, “the system” and your own ambitions. In addition, we will also discuss daily life experiences in research practice which will help you to responsibly maneuver through the grey areas of science.

Learning objectives

Participants learn strategies on how to discuss and deal with issues and dilemmas that occur in life science research; and they will learn to deal with these issues from a Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) perspective. Furthermore, participants learn to identify breach of RCR by other researchers, e.g., in publications, research proposals, and behaviour.

Instructional method

Participants prepare for the course by reading an article on RCR. 1) A lecture will introduce the different aspects of RCR in the life sciences. 2) Participants will subsequently discuss in small outbreak groups either premade dilemmas, or they can enter their own experience as a discussion topic. 3) The outbreak groups will shortly present their dilemma, the discussion outcome and considerations in a plenary session.


Lucianne Groenink is associate professor of Psychopharmacology in the department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, at Utrecht University. Her research group studies brain mechanisms that contribute to the development of stress-related disorders. Currently her research focuses on early life stress and mechanisms of resilience and vulnerability. Lucianne is engaged in several initiatives to enhance the impact and quality of nonclinical research. She is Ambassador of SYRCLE (SYstematic Review Center for Laboratory animal Experimentation) and also serves as a member of the Ethical Review Board (Faculty of Science & Faculty of Geosciences). Lucianne is Programme coordinator of the College of Pharmaceutical Sciences and teaches a broad range of topics, including pharmacology, the central nervous system, ethics and research methods.

Group size         

50 participants

Number of credits                                 

0.15 EC

Course schedule


Preparation: You will need to read an article on RCR (1 hour preparation time).

Course certificate                                

You will receive a course certificate after actively participating in the full session.

Cancellation and No-show policy

This course is free for GSLS PhD candidates. However: free of charge does not mean free of responsibility. Once you have signed up for a course, we expect you to attend. For every late cancellation or no-show we have had to disappoint others who would have liked to attend. This is our policy:

  • You may cancel free of charge up to 4 weeks before the start of the course. After this date you can only cancel if you have a GSLS PhD candidate to replace you in the course. Send the name and contact information of your replacement to, at least 2 working days before the start of the course;
  • We expect that you actively attend the full course, but at least 80%. It is mandatory to attend the first session. If you are absent the first session you cannot follow the remaining of the course;
  • Not meeting the above requirements means you will be charged a no-show fee (€ 50). We will send the invoice after the course has ended. We are unable to make any exceptions, unless you have a valid reason (i.e., illness or death in the family 1st/2nd degree or partner). Your supervisor has to send an e-mail to indicating the reason.

Unfortunately we don’t offer this course for participants not part of the GSLS. Our courses tend to be fully booked by GSLS PhD candidates.

Start date and time
End date and time
Utrecht Science Park
Entrance fee
This course is free for GSLS PhD candidates.

Registration for this course opens 2 months before the course start. You can register via our course portal. After opening, the portal shows how many spots are still available.

More information
PhD Course Centre