This unit (ROP8002) of study provides students with the opportunity to gain advanced level understandings of integrity and ethics in relation to the conduct of research in a range of disciplinary contexts. It will develop the postgraduate researchers' capacities to engage in current debates about research ethics and integrity, and to identify and develop positions on critical issues in research integrity and ethics in relation to their own research project area. Topics include research governance and community ethics, research conduct, authorship and intellectual property, research limits, consent and confidentiality, animal research and commercialising research.

Unit details

Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an advanced understanding of fundamental principles and current debates about ethics and integrity in research;  
  2. Demonstrate familiarity with relevant national codes and university policies that impact on research practice and appropriate conduct in various research environments;  
  3. Identify key areas of ethics and integrity that relate to their own area of research practice;  
  4. Demonstrate ability to critically evaluate options and approaches to resolve issues in research integrity and ethics that may arise in their field of research;  
  5. Argue to defend a position in relation to research ethics and integrity as it relates to their own area of research practice; and design of their own research project.  
  6. Develop advanced skills of written and spoken academic communication.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Portfolio Reflective portfolio on ethics and integrity in research. (1000-2000 words). 20%
Research Paper Paper on research ethics and integrity in relation to proposed research area. (2000-3000 words). 60%
Presentation Poster presentation on an ethical or integrity issue in own field (1000 word equivalent). 20%

Required reading

Required resources will be made available through the unit VU Collaborate site Global Research and Integrity Modules (GREIM)

Scientific integrity: Text and cases in responsible conduct of research, 3rd edn,
Macrina, F.L. 2005,
Washington D.C.: ASM Press.

The Student's Guide to Research Ethics,
Oliver, P. 2010,
Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill International, UK.

Universitas 21 Program in Global Research Ethics and Integrity - online course resources.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this unit information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that unit information is current with the Student Contact Centre.