Questions tagged [ethics]

On making a decision based on morals or common ethical codes instead of etiquette, rules, institutional or government policy, or technical or procedural reasons.

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Is pseudonymous publication ethical?

From this MathOverflow question: William Sealy Gosset published a result under the pseudonym Student. (Because his employer, the Guinness brewing company, did not allow their employees to publish ...
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6 votes
2 answers
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Publishing the same results at multiple conferences

I presented my psychology thesis at an undergraduate conference, an international conference in France, and am now interested in submitting it to be presented at the 2013 APA conference in Hawaii. ...
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30 votes
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Is it ethical to use another university's journal subscription if yours doesn't have access?

As a graduate student, sometimes I really could use access to journals or databases of tables that for some reason my university doesn't subscribe to. I have friends at other Universities that do ...
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28 votes
6 answers
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Are the Hardy-Littlewood “rules” unethical?

For the second time recently, someone mentioned to me the Hardy-Littlewood rules for collaboration (and on that very site). From what I read about it, they include the following rule: And, finally, ...
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What is the principal investigator’s responsibility regarding data authenticity?

Every now and then, you hear stories of data being fabricated by a graduate student (or post-doc) who felt the pressure to publish groundbreaking results was too much. This unethical behavior makes me ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Is it ever alright to add a subtitle to a title shortened by publication when citing?

Let's assume that a paper was submitted under the "Extremely long and necessary title that explains you are studying pieces of Class A, Class B and Class C of this Bigger (and much more frequently ...
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3 answers
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Would it be ethical to hire a proofreader for theses and academic articles?

Proofreading documents for orthography is a pain. I consider that I am decent at writing in my native language (on the grammar and orthography side), but proofreading for typos and whatnots is a time-...
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10 votes
5 answers
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Is it ethical to request additional money for non-research related work in a research lab as a grad student?

I work in a computational research lab as a graduate research assistant. We're all funded under various grants to do research in our field and we are also working on a thesis, which may or may not be ...
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38 votes
4 answers
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Is it reasonable to collaborate with a professor when you are employed by a different professor?

How wise is it to collaborate with another professor while working as a staff under one professor? Is there a ethical conflict in doing so even if the other professor is from a slightly different area?...
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22 votes
2 answers
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Isn't ghostwriting reverse-plagiarism?

Ghostwriting is when an author writes a work and attributes it to someone else. Isn't this reverse-plagiarism (someone taking credit for someone else's work, but with permission)? I'm not sure it ...
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47 votes
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Will self-citation be viewed as self-promotion in academia?

As we know, citation counts are important to judge one's research activity. Is it good to cite one's previous works? Will it be viewed as an act of advertisement or self-promotion?
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Are relationships allowed between students and faculty?

What sorts of restrictions do universities place on romantic or sexual relationships between faculty and graduate students, and what are the underlying issues that motivate these restrictions? For ...
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148 votes
5 answers
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What to do if a referee plagiarises the result after rejecting a paper?

I find myself in an awkward situation. Nearly two years ago I submitted a paper to a reputable mathematics journal. After 15 months it was rejected with the rationale that there had been papers ...
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26 votes
5 answers
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Is it ethical for a journal to request substantial payment for publishing a paper?

A while ago, I spoke with a colleague of mine who advised me to beware of journals that require you to pay to publish your work, as they may be predatory. Today, I spoke with my advisor who informed ...
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19 votes
5 answers
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Are academic book buyers legitimate?

I have recently been receiving number of visits from "academic book buyers" that are looking to buy books that I no longer want. It is never stated outright but they seem to be looking mainly for ...
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15 votes
3 answers
588 views

Ethics of a journal requiring that submissions cite existing articles in the journal

Recently, I became aware by own experiences and friend's stories that some international statistical journals (whose names I prefer to omit) are rejecting papers because they do not include a ...
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12 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is it fair to organize conferences in beautiful tourist places?

Sometimes I receive some emails to attend scientific conferences organized in beautiful tourist places. For example, recently I got a message for a conference in the wonderful Italian Cinque Terre, ...
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15 votes
2 answers
653 views

Is reuse of "internal" results considered self-plagiarism if used in a later publication?

This is a little bit different from the case of reusing boilerplate text. Say one has done a series of experiments (either real or "virtual") to produce a set of results. Because the results are ...
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29 votes
2 answers
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In writing a paper, how far can criticism of previous works go?

What are the appropriate limits when criticizing the previously published work of others that you're citing in a paper? Are there limits with respect to maintaining decorum and decency?
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18 votes
1 answer
1k views

When should an author retract their paper as a result of misinterpreted results?

I'm curious when should an author make a call on retracting their paper vs. sending an errata or a correction. Many say it is when an error is involved that influences the interpretation of the paper. ...
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25 votes
3 answers
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Can I show my co-author the final version of an accepted publication I reviewed?

I was reviewing a journal paper recently that is closely related to work a colleague and I are doing. We are currently in the process of writing up our paper, and I plan to cite the paper I reviewed ...
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20 votes
5 answers
1k views

Is it rude to ask for accommodations due to a learning disability?

I have a learning disability where I can only learn through seeing (not seeing and hearing). As a result, I need to have headphones in class to block all sound. Should I just tell the professor this?
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7 votes
1 answer
673 views

How to evaluate an open access journal? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do you judge the quality of a journal? How to evaluate the genuineness/authenticity, impact, significance & reputation of an open access journal? The prestigious ...
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17 votes
3 answers
1k views

Are reviewers allowed to discuss their review with each other?

Suppose you find out that someone you know well or work with is reviewing the same journal paper you are reviewing (i.e., finding out this information on your own, and not via the journal or editor, ...
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16 votes
1 answer
389 views

Being quoted for an incorrect statement

Once I expressed an opinion on a question in a discussion with a person working on the problem. My opinion didn't work in its original form but could be modified a little to make it correct, i.e., ...
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38 votes
6 answers
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Who is responsible for detecting plagiarism in a PhD thesis?

Background I am asking this question in the context of the long running plagiarism scandal in Germany.The most prominent victim of the scandal of plagiarized doctoral dissertations by politicians was ...
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5 votes
1 answer
240 views

Publishing previous results from a previous lab

I just looked over this article from Retraction Watch. To make a long story short, a student used previous data from their former lab and then published it without the PI's permission or knowledge. ...
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18 votes
2 answers
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Do PhD programs care about the personalities of applicants?

Can a very extroverted person, for example, be more favored than a very quiet person? Or is this not ethical? Can someone who is psychopathic be barred from admission?
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19 votes
5 answers
26k views

Who can see a student's grades? [closed]

I have a question. Can all the professors in a department see a particular student's grades? Can the chair of a department see a student's grades?
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56 votes
4 answers
31k views

Should I waive my right to view my recommendation letters?

Most graduate applications provide a choice for applicants to view their recommendation letters at a later date. There is a mention of some US mandate alongside. Is it a better option to forgo this ...
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64 votes
2 answers
17k views

How to acknowledge a deceased advisor’s contributions to a paper?

One of my advisors suddenly passed away while I was in graduate school. We had some discussions and ideas about future publications, but he passed away before any of the work was completed. When the ...
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