What is Research Misconduct?

Research misconduct is the fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research, or in reporting research results.

  • Fabrication is making up data or results and recording or reporting them.
  • Falsification is 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 [i.e. the record of data or results that embody the facts emerging from the research, and includes, but is not limited to, research proposals, progress reports, abstracts, theses, oral presentations, internal reports, journal articles, and books].
  • Plagiarism is the appropriation of another person's ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit.

Research misconduct does not include honest error or differences of opinion.

VCU Policy on Research Misconduct
An introduction to research misconduct (tutorial)– 5/2014