Plagiarism in the work of a scientist

Plagiarism in the work of a scientist

In the last decade, plagiarism has become more common in publications and among scientific research. That is the reason why plagiarism is taken very seriously in academia, especially when it comes to publishing material. Plagiarism can form from copying and pasting someone’s work without giving credit to the original source. The Merriam Webster Dictionary 2014, describes plagiarism as presenting the ideas or words of another as one’s own, (p.378). “In Latin, a plagiarius is a kidnapper, literally one who snares another’s child or slave in a plaga (net),” (Kendrick, W., 1989).

According to Newcomb, A., 2015 there are approximately 4.54 billion pages on the Internet. With so much material available at researcher’s hands, academic integrity has become part of the writing process for many educators. That has made writers lazy and more likely to plagiarize.

In 2002, an American Historian and a Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Ambrose admitted that he plagiarized using passages from other historians in his book called “The Wild Blue,” a book about US Air Force pilots during World War II. Not too long after, he admitted he plagiarized only a passage. Investigation has found that there were other pieces he plagiarized in his books over the years, (NPR, 2002).

Plagiarism is a universal breach of publishing ethics; however, it happens all the time and anywhere in the world. As reported by the Plagiarism Watch, more than 30 papers for Chinese academics have appeared in international journals, (Wang M., and Li R., 2016). According to Wang and Li, “in 2014 China ranked second in the world with 31,040 papers on clinical research published in journals and sixth in the world with 11,597 papers published on medical science.” However, many of these research papers from Chinese authors have been investigated for plagiarism and falsification in recent years.

Thomas Mallon, the author of Stolen Words, a book about plagiarism says, “Honest mistakes happen all the time, but what’s important when it comes to plagiarizing is to use common sense,” (NPR, 2002). According to Mallon the best guideline is to developing a habit that is comfortable and one that works for you.”



Block, M. (2002). Plagiarism. NPR. Retrieved from: story.php?storyId=1136141

Kendrick, W. (1989). The Other Side of Originality. The New York Times. Retrieved from:

Newcomb, A. (2015). How Many Pages It Takes to Print the Entire Internet. ABC NEWS. Retrieved from:

Wang, M., and Li R., (2016). Accusations of Plagiarism Rock China’s Academia. Caixin Online. Retrieved from:

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