Misconduct in Science

Policy on Misconduct in Research and Scholarship


Central Connecticut State University recognizes that it has an important responsibility to support the scholarship and research activities of faculty. Implicit in this responsibility is the requirement that the University make every effort to ensure that high ethical standards are maintained in research that is performed under its auspices. The policies and procedures described and defined in this document are intended to maintain the integrity of the research process. They form the basis for uniform procedures to deal with those rare instances of alleged or apparent misconduct in research done at CCSU.


"MISCONDUCT" is defined as:

(1) Fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, or other serious deviation from accepted practices in proposing, conducting, or reporting results from research. This definition does not include honest error or honest differences in interpretations or judgments of data.

(2) Retaliation of any kind against a person who reported or provided information about suspected or alleged misconduct and who has not acted in bad faith.

(3) The act of submitting a wrongful and malicious report of misconduct against another individual.

An "INQUIRY" consists of information gathering and initial fact finding to determine whether an allegation or apparent instance of misconduct warrants an investigation.

An "INVESTIGATION" is a formal examination and evaluation of all relevant facts to determine if an instance of misconduct has taken place. If misconduct has already been confirmed, an investigation may proceed to determine the extent of any adverse effects resulting from the misconduct.


It is the responsibility of all employees at CCSU to ensure the following:

1. Affected individuals will receive confidential treatment to the maximum extent possible, a prompt and thorough investigation, and an opportunity to comment on the allegations and findings.

2. In cases where a formal investigation is warranted, Public Health Service's (PHS) Office of Scientific Integrity (OSI) will be notified if mandated by the grantor.

3. Appropriate interim administrative actions will be taken to protect federal funds.

4. Efforts to restore the reputation of people will be taken if the allegations are not confirmed.

5. If allegations are substantiated, appropriate sanctions will be taken.

6. OSI will be notified of final outcomes with a written report documenting the investigative process and findings when mandated.

7. The coordination of the above policies will be overseen by the Director of Grants & Funded Research.

8. In the event of suspected misconduct, a written allegation should be submitted to the Chair of the CCSU Human Studies Council (HSC). The HSC Chair then informs the Director of Grants & Funded Research who in turn contacts the appropriate Vice President. The HSC Chair convenes a Commission on Misconduct in Research to review the charges and fulfill the responsibilities listed in Section IV of this document. Membership of the Commission on Misconduct in Research will include one member each from the Human Studies Council and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, two appointees chosen from a panel of tenured professors in appropriate disciplines, and a tenured professor selected by the person against whom the charges have been brought.

9. As explained in Article IV, the Commission on Misconduct in Research will, at the conclusion of its investigation, present a report of its findings to the President. Such a report may constitute the basis for discipline under the appropriate articles of the CSU-AAUP Collective Bargaining Agreement, the CSU-AFSCME Collective Bargaining Agreement, or the CSU-BOT Personnel Policies for Management and Confidential Employees.

IV. Responsibilities of the Commission on Misconduct

1. Conduct an immediate inquiry into any allegations or other evidence of misconduct. This should be completed within 30 days following the receipt of the initial allegation and should result in a formal statement to the appropriate VP describing the nature of the allegation and the results of the inquiry.

2. Protect the privacy of those who, in good faith, report apparent misconduct, and provide safeguards that the position and reputation of such individuals not be jeopardized.

3. Insure that any Commission member with a conflict of interest is excused from the Commission during the course of the deliberations.

4. Provide confidential treatment to the individual against whom the allegation has been made.

5. Provide the individual with an opportunity to comment on the allegation and the findings of the Commission and further provide that the individual has the right to legal and union representation.

6. Document the basis for recommending that a full investigation should or should not be undertaken.

7. Maintain detailed documentation of each inquiry for a period of three (3) years and provide such records to the appropriate office at the Department of Health and Human Services upon request.

In the event that an investigation is warranted, it shall be the further responsibility of the Commission to:

1. Conduct a full investigation of the allegation and maintain adequate records of all the proceedings.

2. Initiate the investigation within 60 days of the completion of the inquiry.

3. Complete the investigation within 120 days.

4. Maintain all records of the investigation for a period of three (3) years.

5. Present a formal report to the President, which will include the findings of the investigation and full documentation of the Commission's conclusions or opinions.