Plagiarism in Scientific Writing
Categories Scientific Communication

Plagiarism in Scientific Writing: Consequences, Identification and Prevention


Plagiarism is a serious concern in the writing world. The cases of plagiarism are increasing. Plagiarism has various consequences including the destruction of career, monetary penalties, and legal repercussions. There are various ways to avoid plagiarism.


Plagiarism is an act of copying someone’s work without giving any credit to the original creator. Plagiarism may be intentional or unintentional. In both ways, plagiarism brings bad name to the person who had plagiarized both on professional as well as the academic front.

Consequences of Plagiarism in Scientific Writing

Plagiarism is becoming a more common phenomenon in recent times. This increasing trend may be due to various reasons. Whatever the reason may be, plagiarism is a serious ethical and moral misconduct. In the arena of scientific writing, the readers require a continuous infusion of new, informative, and updated knowledge. Providing readers, a plagiarized material not only brings the writer in poor light but is also hamper the credibility of the editor and journal as a whole. Following are some of the consequences of plagiarism in scientific writing:

Serious dent on reputation: Writing a plagiarized content is considered as a serious offence among the intellectual fraternity. The academic reputation, professional reputation, and reputation as a student can be ruined because of writing plagiarized material. As a student, you might be suspended for the first offence and may be expelled for a subsequent offence.

Monetary consequences: There are monetary repercussions associated with plagiarism. The person who has written the plagiarized material may be directed to pay money to the original creator of the work.

Legal repercussions: There are strong laws in place to protect the rights of an original writer such as copyright law. Copyright law is strict in some countries and may attract prison sentences apart from monetary damages. So, as a writer, you should be aware of plagiarism and how to avoid them. You should not use the other writer’s work without citation and reference and within the ambit of fair use.

Failure in the examination: Some universities and colleges take the act of plagiarism too seriously and may expel the student or fail them in the class.

Thus, because of the serious consequences associated with plagiarism, the writer should identify and avoid plagiarism.

Identification of Plagiarism

As a writer, you should well-aware of various methods to identify plagiarism so that the corrective measures can be taken instantly. Following are some of the methods to identify plagiarism:

How much is too much: The writer should write the article completely in his own words. However, the writer must know how much copying of the content amounts to plagiarism and copyright infringement. Verbatim copying of a significant amount of content from an article amounts to plagiarism and copyright infringement.

Due credit not given: The writer should give due credit to the original creator of the content. If the work is copied and credit and references are not supplied, it may lead to plagiarism.

Paraphrasing: Avoiding plagiarism through paraphrasing is a grey area. Plagiarism is indicated when the writer not only uses some other’s words but also the idea, without giving credit to the original creator of the idea.

Google check: If you have to check the plagiarism for a small paragraph or few lines, this can be done with the help of Google. Just copy the paragraph or lines and paste them on the Google search. Do not forget to put a quotation mark in the starting and end of the lines to get the exact word match.

Plagiarism tools: Various free and paid plagiarism tools are available to check the plagiarism. These tools are quite powerful and also provide you with the services of rewriting the plagiarized content. Some tools also fix grammatical errors.

Avoiding Plagiarism in Scientific Writing

Avoiding plagiarism is one of the prerequisites of writing. Following tips may help you in avoiding plagiarism:

Understand Plagiarism: Before writing the article and checking for plagiarism, get a basic understanding of the acts that constitute plagiarism. This will help you to build a strategy for avoiding plagiarism.

Citation: Do not forget to cite the source from where the content is extracted. The citation should be proper and complete. The citation style should adhere to the recommendation of a particular journal.

Quotation: If you want to take the word as it is from a source, the quotation would be your best option. You can use the quotation marks at the start and end of the sentence to give a clear indication that these are not your own words. You can place a direct citation next to the quotation.

Always write in your own words: You should prefer to be a creator of original content. Use your own words in explaining a concept, idea, or disseminating any information. If you write in your language, there are very dim chances of getting into the trouble of plagiarism.

Accurate paraphrasing: Paraphrasing when done accurately may also help you in avoiding plagiarism. While doing paraphrasing, you should change the language, style, and tone of the original content.

Do not rely very much on plagiarism software: Although plagiarism software is of great help in preventing plagiarism they may also skip some content. So, try to be the original creator of the article.

Start early: Always schedule your writing in such a way to have sufficient time to research and write it in your own words. If the time is less, you may be inclined more towards copying and pasting someone’s work.

How Scientific Writing Service Providers Help you in Avoiding Plagiarism?

Scientific writing services company help you in different ways to produce a plagiarism-free content. They may advise you regarding the research and assist you in an effective and accurate paraphrasing. The service providers will also help you in correct citations and make good use of quotations. They may also run your paper on their paid plagiarism software to identify any plagiarism.

5 Unethical Practices to Avoid While Publishing Your Research
Categories Scientific Communication

5 Unethical Practices to Avoid While Publishing Your Research

Performing a medical research and documenting the findings in a research paper are painstaking and time-consuming process. Nevertheless, the research authors must conform to the scientific ethics at each stage of performing a research and documenting its results.

‘Ethics’, derived from the Greek word ‘ethikos’ are a set of principles for right conduct in a particular field. They carry a greater significance in the field of medical research and publication as these are directly related to the suffering humanity.

In recent times, there has been a gradual neglect towards the ethical principles guiding a scientific research paper writing, and its publication. The misconduct in behavior may be intentional or may arise due to ignorance. Whatever be the cause of misconduct, the consequence is the same. And it not only affects other authors, reviewers, and editors, but also the common man. As a research author, it’s absolutely essential to abreast yourself with these ethical principles and avoid any scientific misconduct.

Here is a list of 5 common unethical practices you must avoid while publishing your research paper:

1.Duplicate Submission

Submission of your research paper or its publication in two or more identical journals with or without acknowledgement to another is called duplicate submission/publication.

Such a practice is done by authors to increase their number of publications. But, bear in mind! It’s unethical as it wastes the time of journal reviewers, publication resources, and renders no benefit to humanity or scientific community.

You can query multiple journals for submitting your research paper, but finally submit to one only!

2.Falsification/fabrication of research data

Falsification is the manipulation of the methods used in research or its key findings to produce a desired outcome. Fabrication is the false recording or recording of a fictitious data when none exists.

Such practices are more common in pharmaceutical industry where results are fabricated to promote a particular drug in the market, ignoring its side-effects. Not only unethical and wastage of limited research resources, such fabrications have negative effects on the physician’s clinical practice and creates mistrust amongst the consumers or general population.


Plagiarism is the practice of using other’s work or ideas in your scientific writing without giving them due credit and passing them off as one’s own in publication journals to gain recognition. Even using your own text from other publications in the current writing without due reference is considered plagiarism, more specifically called self-plagiarism.

If you think you are smart and your plagiarised content will escape the eyes of the journal editors, you are highly mistaken. Detection of plagiarism has become easier with the advent of numerous plagiarism checking tools.

Sometimes plagiarism is not intentional, but happens accidentally. However, you can avoid it by providing references of all the sources you have used for writing your scientific content.

Always cite the author appropriately whose work you use in your research paper, even if they are from your past publications.

4.Authorship Conflict

As per the International Committee of Medical Journal Editor (ICMJE) guidelines, any person who contributes to the conception, designing or acquisition of research data, analysis of data, drafting or revision of the article, and its final approval before publication is entitled for the authorship of that paper.

Following unethical practices surmount to an authorship conflict:

  • Not including the name of the person who contributes to the research in any manner.
  • Failure to obtain consent from a person whose name is cited in the manuscript.
  • Adding an extra author or removing the name of an existing author before or after publication.
  • Citing a person as an author just on the basis of seniority, family or professional relationship when none of them contributed to the research or its writing.

The conflict can be prevented by deciding the authorship in the beginning of the research. That’s the reason why journals ask the authors to submit their checklist for the criteria of authorship.

5.Conflict of interest

Conflict of interest is a situation in which the author of the research study may be influenced by personal and/or financial considerations to affect the quality or the end result of the research.

If any such conflicts of interest arise, be they personal, financial or any other, they must be disclosed with complete honesty to the editorial team.

Though our publication support services experts guidelines and principles exist to prevent any misconduct in research and publication, ideally you shouldn’t require them. Self-restraint and welfare of the fellow members of the community must be the sole driving force for conducting an honest research and publication.