Is it considered bad to copy literature survey from 1st/initial report of the dissertation to the final report?

Does it count as self plagiarism?

Generally speaking one should include more recent researches, if any, related to the topic in the final report but what if there is only a 2-3 months period between two reports that happens for masters students in some countries (and in my case too).

  • 3
    How did your advisor answer this question? (You did ask your advisor, didn't you?)
    – JeffE
    Jul 24, 2014 at 14:57
  • no, i didn't. I thought of having a polite answer first if that question sounds rude or offensive, I'm not sure. Jul 24, 2014 at 15:56

1 Answer 1


In some institutions, one of the goals of the provisional report is to get the student to write something that will eventually be included in their dissertation/thesis. In this way the student feels that he or she has already made a start on the (dreaded) writing up process and therefore feels confident that - in further small, incremental steps - the rest of the document can be created.

In such cases, it would be unreasonable to consider the re-use of the literature review appearing in the provisional report in the final work as being plagiarism.

Matters may be a little different if the initial report was published in some manner, and released outside of the institution. As per one of the comments to your question so far, get your advisor's input.

  • Thanks, I will now because it doesn't sound extremely wrong now. Report wasn't published anywhere. Jul 25, 2014 at 7:11

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