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  1. Because science advances incrementally, scientists often need to repeat material included in their prior work when composing new texts. Such “text recycling” is a common but complex writing practice, so authors and editors need clear and consistent guidance about what constitutes appropriate practice. Unfortunately, publishers’ policies on text recycling to date have been incomplete, unclear, and sometimes internally inconsistent. Building on 4 years of research on text recycling in scientific writing, the Text Recycling Research Project has developed a model text recycling policy that should be widely applicable for research publications in scientific fields. This article lays out the challenges text recycling poses for editors and authors, describes key factors that were addressed in developing the policy, and explains the policy’s main features. 
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  2. When writing journal articles, STEM researchers produce a number of other genres such as grant proposals and conference posters, and their articles routinely build directly on their own prior work. As a result, STEM authors often reuse material from their completed documents in producing new documents. While this practice, known as text recycling (or self-plagiarism), is a debated issue in publishing and research ethics, little is known about researchers’ beliefs about what constitutes appropriate practice. This article presents results of from an exploratory, survey-based study on beliefs and attitudes toward text recycling among STEM “experts” (faculty researchers) and “novices” (graduate students and post docs). While expert and novice researchers are fairly consistent in distinguishing between text recycling and plagiarism, there is considerable disagreement about appropriate text recycling practice. 
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  3. Over the past decade, text recycling (TR; AKA ‘self‐plagiarism’) has become a visible and somewhat contentious practice, particularly in the realm of journal articles. While growing numbers of publishers are writing editorials and formulating guidelines on TR, little is known about how editors view the practice or how they respond to it. We present results from an interview‐based study of 21 North American journal editors from a broad range of academic disciplines. Our findings show that editors' beliefs and practices are quite individualized rather than being tied to disciplinary or other structural parameters. While none of our participants supported the use of large amounts of recycled material from one journal article to another, some editors were staunchly against any use of recycled material, while others were accepting of the practice in certain circumstances. Issues of originality, the challenges of rewriting text, the varied circulation of texts, and abiding by copyright law were prominent themes as editors discussed their approaches to TR. Overall, the interviews showed that many editors have not thought systematically about the practice of TR, and they sometimes have trouble aligning their beliefs and practices.

     
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