Who is Where on the Author List? -- Graduate Students


Scenario discussing the proper listing of student authors.


A manuscript submitted to a journal was returned to authors with the editor's letter stating that it would only be reconsidered if major changes were made to satisfy the comments of the reviewers. To accomplish this, all the data had to be re-analyzed using a new analysis.

On the original manuscript the first author was student, Origen, who was primarily responsible for gathering data and making the analysis. The second author was faculty member, Overview, who was primarily responsible for the method of analysis, supervising Origen, and writing the manuscript. For the revised manuscript, another student, Secundy, re-analyzed the data using another method developed by Overview, who then had the primary responsibility of revising the manuscript. Since student Origen had already graduated and was engaged in another career situation, he could not participate further and his contribution to the revised manuscript was the original data collection.

What, if any, changes can or should (as a matter of fairness) be made in the author list in the revised manuscript?


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 Some information in these historical modules may be out-of-date; for instance, there may be a new edition of the professional society's code that is referred to in an item.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.

Based on a scenario by Gerald Saidel, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Case Western Reserve University.

Albert R. Meyer. . Who is Where on the Author List? -- Graduate Students. Online Ethics Center. DOI:https://doi.org/10.18130/39d5-rq92. https://onlineethics.org/cases/scenarios-ethics-modules-responsible-conduct-research/who-where-author-list-graduate-students.