Faculty aiming for promotion often hear the advice, “Make it count twice.” That is, if you develop a new curriculum, present it at a conference. If you make a conference presentation, turn it into a journal article. The idea is that once the effort has been expended, the reward should be maximized.

But how original should each piece of scholarship be? A story in Nature describes A Canadian professor of engineering who recycled much of the same content without acknowledgment in 20 different papers. The matter has led to discussions over how universities and journals can police duplicate submissions.

One biomedical researcher has developed software to detect similarities in published papers. Internet searches in general make self-plagiarism easier to detect. Perhaps as a result, the NIH has investigated zero instances of plagiarism in the last three years related to the 325,000 researchers it funds.

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One Response to “Self-Plagiarism”

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