Why is it important to know about self-plagiarism?

Published by at November 10th, 2021 , Revised On November 19, 2021

Plagiarism is an act of intellectual theft; it attributes with the use of ideas that are not yours. Plagiarism originates from the Latin word “plagium,” meaning kidnapping; in rational terms, it is the kidnapping of someone’s ideas and thoughts. Publications are considered fundamental for faculty members of departments, colleges, and universities around the globe. The number of publications has a significant impact on the CV of research scholars; thus, academic writing is an essential skill for graduate students. The pressure for publications has given rise to another illicit practice of self-plagiarism or often referred to as multiple publications. Sometimes it is accidental, but often it is deliberate.

What is Self-plagiarism?

 Self-plagiarism is the use of one’s previous work in a separate publication without citing the previous work. This heinous practice is considered as a serious ethical problem and is frowned upon in scholarly settings and is termed as recycled fraud. The prior terms vividly highlight the magnitude of the problem.

Self-Plagiarism can lead to several problems, including rejection of a paper or a poor grade on the assignment.

Duplicate Publication or Multiple Publication

 Duplicate publication is referred to as submitting the same paper or intellectual material more than once with minor or no changes at all. An author can submit a single scholarly work multiple times for the sake of an increasing number of publications. It is not considered as a crime but is deemed as academic misconduct.

Why Is Multiple/Redundant Publication discouraged

 Redundant publications can disturb the citation indexes and citation impacts by manipulating the system, although some authors use this scheme to enhance the readership of their research. 

Why you Should Avoid Self-plagiarism

  • Universities have strict intellectual property policies
  • Although it is not pondered as objectionable as plagiarism, still it is likely to get you in trouble as a student
  • Your paper will be rejected or result in a delayed publication as the journals use the plagiarism checking software
  • Copyright Infringement: Some journals allow resubmission of previously published work however it is imperative to check if your previous journal owns the copyright to you work

How to avoid self-plagiarism

If you are looking for more than one publication from one project or want to squeeze one more article from your previous work, work smart. Paraphrasing is a common technique used to avoid plagiarism and cite the source according to the accepted citation style. Whenever using graphs or tables from prior work, don’t forget to acknowledge the source. Do not resubmit old assignments. 

Conclusion

Self-plagiarism might not be as bad as other forms of plagiarism, but it is still considered as academic mischief; it cannot only hurt your grades as a student but also dent your reputation as an academic. Many times students, even academics, do not know about the different types of plagiarism and commit to the misconduct unwittingly, which can reflect negatively in their scope. So it is better to thoroughly study the policy of your university or your publishing agency to avoid any mishaps.