University Guidelines

Responsible conduct of research Penn State Hotline University Ethics Policies

Responsible Conduct of Research - (RCR)

Areas of Importance in Research Ethics

The Office of Research Integrity at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has identified "areas of importance" in the responsible conduct of research (RCR). Penn State's Office for Research Protections provides educational programs addressing each of these areas, as well as resources and tools for Penn State faculty to use in teaching these topics to their students.

The Office of Ethics & Compliance

Penn State Hotline

At Penn State, we have made a commitment to the highest standard of ethical behavior among all in our community. As a part of that commitment, we believe that our employees and students should be able to raise questions or voice concerns about workplace and University issues. This includes financial matters such as fraud, theft of University assets, or conflicts of interest; and other misconduct or violations of University policy, including research compliance matters, discrimination, athletics-compliance issues, or sexual misconduct.

Individuals can report issues and/or ask questions via phone at 1-800-560-1637 or online. 

All reports can be anonymous so you can help maintain an ethical workplace and University without fear of retaliation. We have made a commitment to ethical behavior and are asking you to do the same. If you witness questionable activity in the workplace, report it.

  • All reports to the hotline can be anonymous.
  • An independent third party, EthicsPoint, administers the hotline on behalf of Penn State.
  • The operators answering the calls are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and are trained in making callers feel at ease and gathering information that will enable the University to fully investigate the issues raised.
  • The hotline system allows an individual to follow up, either by telephone or the Internet, to obtain status updates. They can be accessed by using passwords related to the specific complaint.
  • When something is reported, it is forwarded to our office where the concerns are investigated or sent on to another appropriate Penn State department for investigation.

University Ethics Policies

Legal and Policy Compliance

The following is a list of University policies that provide further information on the duties summarized in AD88: Code of Responsible Conduct. However, this list is not to be considered comprehensive. Additional information about Penn State policies may be found at