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Quality Assurance in Research

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What is QAR?


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

QAR typically concerns itself with: Responsibilities of those involved; Transparent project planning; Training and competence of research staff; Facilities and equipment; Documentation of procedures and methods; Research records; Handling of samples and materials. While adoption of sound QAR practices does not guarantee high value research outputs, serious QAR deficiencies greatly increase the risk that the research contract will not yield worthwhile, reliable, repeatable answers.

Crucially, the ‘Q’ does not refer to the intrinsic value of the research outputs. This much more important, most would argue, facet of quality remains exclusively the concern of the range of public, funder- and peer-review processes that university researchers are familiar with.


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Page last updated March 17, 2011
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