New course requirements for Responsible Conduct of Research

If you’re a researcher at OHSU, you know that the university and funders such as NIH require you to keep up to date in your knowledge of the responsible conduct of research. In the past, we used our in-house Big Brain tool and in-house courses. But as of May 1, 2016, RCR education has moved to the University of Miami’s CITI Program. The CITI Program meets NIH standards and is the standard for the majority of academic institutions in the U.S. and the Veteran’s Administration.

Depending on your work, you will need to take at least one of the following modules.

  • Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR). Previously called “RCR for All” in Big Brain. This course is required for anyone involved in research at OHSU.
  • Animal Care and Use (ACU): Working with the IACUC. Previously called “RCR involving Animal Subjects” in Big Brain. This course must be completed by researchers who use animals.
  • Human Subjects Research (HSR): Human Researchers. Previously called “RCR involving Human Subjects” in Big Brain. This course must be completed by researchers conducting research with human subjects.
  • Biosafety/Biosecurity: Working with rDNA/Infectious Agents/Toxins. Previously called “RCR involving rDNA, Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules and Infectious Agents/ Biological Toxins” in Big Brain. This course must be competed if you work with recombinant DNA, synthetic nucleic acid molecules in cells, organisms or viruses, infectious agents, or biologically derived toxins.
  • Good Clinical Practices (GCP). Previously called “RCR for FDA Regulated Products” in Big Brain. This course must be completed by investigators or staff on a clinical trial of an FDA-regulated product (drug or device).

Changes for all researchers

In the past, you may have taken one class and then only needed to take a booster every year. You will now be required to renew your CITI training every three years in lieu of taking a research-specific booster training. Refresher training is important because the regulatory environment is always changing—and it’s the standard at many institutions, such as UCSF, University of Arizona, Case Western among many others.

Other changes: the CITI modules take longer than Big Brain modules. Expect to devote at least an hour to each one.

First time user of CITI?

Please follow these instructions for accessing OHSU’s CITI account.

Advantages of CITI

Because CITI is so well adopted across the U.S., it allows a high degree of reciprocity for multicenter research as well as for faculty conducting research at the VA and faculty transferring from other universities.  Be sure to follow the instructions for linking an already established CITI account to get credit for modules already completed!

Additionally, using the CITI program allows OHSU to take advantage of regularly updated content and new course options.

When do I have to complete CITI training?

If you completed the RCR course in Big Brain before May 2014:

  • You will be notified beginning July 2016 that you must take the required CITI course modules
  • You must complete the CITI course before May 31, 2017 to be considered compliant for grant funding, eIRB applications, etc.

If you completed the RCR course in Big Brain after May 2014:

  • You will be notified beginning  July 2017
  • The course certification expires beginning May 31, 2018 on a rolling 3-year basis, dependent on when you last completed the Big Brain course. For example, if you completed your course between June 1, 2014 and May 31, 2015, you will not be due until May 31, 2018. After this, your certification will expire every 3 years.

Log into Compass to find your due date. You will also receive periodic reminders from OHSU Research Integrity about the deadline.

If you no longer need to complete a course that has been assigned to you, please reply to Let them know which course specifically no longer applies to you and why; they will remove the course from your transcript and stop sending you reminders.

Visit the website for more information on RCR education and contact with any questions.