Miami CTSI

May 12: Dialogues in Research Ethics - The Ethics of Text Recycling


The Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy and the Scientific Writing Programs present “Dialogues In Research Ethics: The Complicated Ethics of Text Recycling,” featuring Cary Moskovitz, Ph.D., of Duke University, on Friday, May 12, at from noon to 1 p.m., in the Mailman Center for Child Development, Room 5003. A light lunch will follow.

Text recycling (often called “self-plagiarism”) is the reuse of textual material from existing documents in a new text without the use of quotation marks or other means of identifying the reused material as such. Some argue that text recycling is inherently unethical, yet organizations such as the American Psychological Association and the Committee on Publication Ethics state that in some situations it is acceptable and even desirable.

This presentation will examine ethical and practical issues that text recycling poses for both professional and student researchers: When is it acceptable to recycle text? Which authors of a multi-authored paper have the right to recycle which material? How do/should expectations for students differ from those of professional researchers? The presentation will include as-yet unpublished data from recent surveys of expert and novice STEM researchers on text recycling.

Dr. Moskovitz is Director of Writing in the Disciplines at Duke University’s Thompson Writing Program. His articles and essays related to text recycling and the teaching of writing have appeared in such publications as Science, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Bioscience, and Research Integrity and Peer Review. He has served as a consultant on writing pedagogy and writing in the undergraduate curriculum for a number of U.S. colleges and universities.

Dialogues in Research Ethics is a series of monthly conferences. For more information, contact UM Ethics Programs at 305-243-5723 or

This event is co-sponsored by the University of Miami Health System, University of Miami Hospital, University of Miami CTSI, UMHC/Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and College of Arts & Sciences Scientific Writing Programs.

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