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Quality assurance in research

Quality Assurance in Research (QAR) comprises all the techniques, systems and resources that are deployed to give assurance about the care and control with which research has been conducted. QAR is typically concerned with:

  • the responsibilities of those involved in the research
  • transparent project planning
  • the training and competence of research staff
  • facilities and equipment
  • documentation of procedures and methods
  • research records
  • the handling of samples and materials

The University code of good practice in research [UCOGPR] (PDF-1.21MB) lays out the principles by which research is to be conducted at the University. It applies to all those who conduct research at the University including visiting workers, and is revised annually after consideration by the appropriate committees

Before applying for funding, applicants should familiarise themselves with the UCOGPR, and also with the potential funder's QAR requirements

Many funders now specifically ask for reassurance that appropriate systems for QAR (or, more generally, for Research Governance) are in place before awards will be granted. Notably, the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) now require contractors to confirm that they will comply with their
Funders joint code of practice (PDF-37kb)

Animal Research

The University has an Animal Research Policy which governs research using live animals. It explains what we do, how it is regulated and who is involved. It should be read in conjunction with the University of Reading Ethical Framework, which sets out broader ethical principles for all our activities.

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