About Research Misconduct
Research misconduct is defined as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research, or in reporting research results. The three types of misconduct are defined below:
Fabrication is defined as making up data or results and recording or reporting them.
Falsification is defined as manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record.
Plagiarism is defined as the appropriation of another person's ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit. It does not include honest error or differences of opinion.
As defined in Penn State Policy RP02 "Addressing Allegations of Research Misconduct," there are established procedures for addressing allegations and handling inquiries/investigations of research misconduct. Penn State's policy aligns with federal policies on research misconduct. The ORP provides administrative support and oversight of this process. Learn more about the research misconduct process.
Research Misconduct and Students
Because multiple University policies or guidelines may apply to allegations and cases of student research misconduct, we have developed guidance to help determine the appropriate policy or procedure to initiate or follow.
Reporting Research Misconduct
Anyone having reason to believe that a member of the faculty, staff, or student body has engaged in research misconduct has a responsibility to report pertinent facts in accordance with policy RP02.
We encourage anyone wishing to make such a report to contact the Office for Research Protections directly at (814) 865-1775 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also contact us directly for general questions regarding research misconduct and reporting.
To report research concerns that are not research misconduct, please see the information at www.research.psu.edu/report-concerns.
You can also report using the Penn State Ethics Hotline at (800) 560-1637 or online.