Scenarios on Plagiarism
A set of scenarios that cover ethical issues that arise when a students are preparing manuscripts and homework with help from others or relevant literature.
Working in Groups
First Student: "It has been great being in the homework group with Alex. Alex has a real gift for explaining things and has helped me to see the big picture in many of our homework assignments. I learn a lot from the way Alex writes down the steps in her reasoning. We are supposed to write up the problems on our own, but I really like to write-up the problem step by step in just the way that Alex describes. Is that okay?"
Second Student: "Yeah, I think it is great having Alex in the group, too. I would never have time to do the homework without her. I just listen and write down what she says. I ask her for any details that I miss. She can't very well refuse me, since she also helps others and I am her sorority sister."
I am a graduate student in Biomedical Engineering. I am writing up a report on the research I have been conducting. I feel overwhelmed by the assignment. I am afraid that if I do not do well on this assignment I will lose (or next semester not get) funding support and will have to leave school. One of my friends has helped me find some literature on the subject, and I believe I have correctly selected the parts relevant to my topic. I have copied those parts into my paper and reworded a few things. I was careful not to change much, because I am afraid that in changing the phrasing I will introduce errors. I wonder how many of those works I should put in the bibliography to my paper. If I leave out too many, it may look as though I did not review the relevant literature, but if I include them, the instructor may more easily see how much I borrowed from them.
- What should I do?
I am a graduate student in Biomedical Engineering and writing up a report on the research I have been conducting. I believe that I have identified and correctly referenced all the relevant literature in the bibliography for my paper, but I am having some problems with the write-up itself, because my English skills are weak and the supervising professor has often said he does not understand what I am saying. The literature I have reviewed seems to be written in clear English. I want to use it as a model of how to phrase things.
- How should I proceed?
Not My Field
I am a graduate student in Biomedical Engineering and am writing up a report on the research I have been conducting. I believe that I have identified and correctly referenced all the relevant literature in the bibliography for my paper, but I am having some problems with the write-up of the parts that deal with the medical side of this issue, because medicine is not my field. I want to rely heavily on the medical literature for the most clear and accurate description of the medical end of things.
- Can I do that, and if so, how?
Caroline Whitbeck introduced methods and modules for discussing numerous issues in responsible conduct of research at a Sigma Xi Forum in 2000. Partial funding for the development of this material came from an NIH grant.
You can find the entire sequence on the OEC at Scenarios for Ethics Modules in the Responsible Conduct of Research. Some information in these historical modules may be out-of-date; for instance, there may be a new edition of the professional society's code that is referred to in an item. If you have suggestions for updates, please contact the OEC.