The Virt2ue Project, founded by the European Commission in 2018, has developed a new blended learning train the trainer program on Research Integrity which provides participants with the knowledge and skills to conduct a research integrity course. Trainers are taught how to foster reflection on scientific virtues in researchers, and how to promote understanding of the European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity.
This free training program will be offered at different locations across Europe.
The training will offer:
A virtue ethics approach to teaching research integrity
The train-the-trainer program has an aspirational approach, and focuses on what it means to be a good and virtuous researcher. Instead of teaching about rules and norms, the training focuses primarily on promoting reflection on personal attitudes and behaviors. Participants learn how to train others to reflect on concrete cases and moral dilemmas in research, and to use tools that foster reflection in others. This will foster skills that enable trainees to integrate the European Code of Conduct in their day-to-day professional life.
The VIRT2UE train-the-trainer program combines online and face-to-face components. Online materials are designed for individual learning and reflection and provide an introduction to the main research issues and philosophical concepts in research integrity. The face-to-face training develops participants’ teaching skills and provides opportunities for interactive, reflective and case-based group activities. The online and face-to-face courses are complementary. Online preparation is required for the face-to-face exercises, and the online exercises need to be supported by experiences provided in the face-to-face meetings.
To enable contextualized research integrity teaching across Europe, the VIRT2UE Train-the-Trainer program provides adaptable course material. The exercises represent a toolbox from which trainers can build their own courses tailored to the needs of their students. Trainers are encouraged to adapt the materials and modules, as long as the underlying virtue ethics approach and learner-centeredness are maintained.
The VIRT2UE toolbox will be completely open source and available on The Embassy of Good Science, an online wiki-platform which serves as a hub for all of those committed to ‘good science’. The platform’s wiki functionalities allow for extra flexibility because trainers can access the training material directly online, suggest changes, and build new modules and share them with a community of trainers.
By registering for the VIRT2UE train-the-trainer program you have the opportunity to become a certified trainer in the field of research integrity and ethics.
The interactive online modules provide a basic understanding of relevant concepts, like virtues, values, norms, moral dilemmas and moral conflicts. They also provide an overview of the principles underlying the European Code of Conduct on Research Integrity. It is crucial for participants to complete the online course in advance of the face-to-face training in order to acquire a shared understanding of the program’s core concepts.
In the face-to-face training, participants learn and practice five exercises, supervised by a trainer. Participants meet twice: the first time in a two-day meeting and the second time in a one-day meeting. During the first meeting, participants learn to use the five exercises. Between the two meetings, participants practice the exercises in their own institution or setting. In the second meeting they reflect on their experiences of practicing the exercises and practice selected exercises again under supervision.
Program participants receive a certificate when they have completed the online and face-to-face courses and trained ten further researchers. The training of ten further researchers can be completed during or after the duration of the program.
A number of 25 trainings will be hosted in 10 different EU countries.