Good Scientific Practice Online-Course Research Integrity

"Integrity is a positive asset in our personal life and in society in general. Scientific behaviour of integrity is therefore of prime importance in all research activity. We understand scientific integrity as the commitment of researchers to adhere to the basic rules of good scientific practice. Honesty and sincerity, self-discipline, self-criticism and fairness are indispensable for behaviour of integrity. They form the basis for all scientific activity and are prerequisites for the credibility and acceptance of science" (Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences, Integrity in scientific research, Principles and procedures).

The University of Bern is aware of the importance of scientific integrity. In addition to ensuring the integrity of its research activities, it actively imparts this knowledge. In addition to training courses in degree programs and graduate schools, it offers all members of the University of Bern the online course "Research Integrity" on its virtual learning platform ILIAS. The course imparts the basic principles of good scientific practice and provides an overview of the international standards for scientifically behavior with integrity. Course participants are sensitized to the topic and thus their awareness of scientific integrity in the entire research process is strengthened.

The course is available in five different versions adapted to the different disciplines. For example, the courses "Social and Behaviour Sciences" and "Biomedical Sciences" deepen the various aspects of human and animal research. The courses can be tested and certified, if passed:

  1. Research Integrity for Arts and Humanities
  2. Research Integrity for Social and Behaviour Sciences
  3. Research Integrity for Biomedical Sciences
  4. Research Integrity for Natural and Physical Sciences
  5. Research Integrity for Engineering and Technology


The courses are in English and consist of five modules:

  1. Introduction (principles and professional responsibilities, dealing with misconduct, research training and professionalism)
  2. Designing (importance of good research planning, research with human participants and animals*, managing and protecting interests, financial interests and intellectual property, workplace and environmental safety)
  3. Conducting (research record and data, data interpretation and presentation, collaboration and the research environment, international collaborations)
  4. Reporting (research communication and scholarly publishing, pressure to publish, plagiarism, authorship, peer review)
  5. Responsibility to society (engagement with the public and obligations to society, advocacy)

*only in Research Integrity for Social and Behaviour Sciences and Research Integrity for Biomedical Sciences