Q: What are some important issues that a researcher should be aware of before publication?

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I have just started my research work. What are some of the important issues in academic publishing that I need to be aware of before I aim to write and publish a paper?

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Answer:

The most important aspect of academic publication that every researcher needs to be aware of is publication ethics. Apart from ethics, there are a few other important things that will smoothen out the manuscript writing and publication process for you.
 

When you plan to write a paper for publication, make sure you avoid the following:

Plagiarism: If you are borrowing any ideas from some other work, you should always cite the source. However, even if you cite the source, you should not copy anything directly.  Try to paraphrase, that is, rewrite it in your own words.

Self-plagiarism: Even if you are using something from another work of your own, you have to cite it and reword it. Else, it will be considered as self-plagiarism.

Simultaneous submission: You can submit your manuscript only to one journal at a time. If it gets rejected by that journal, you can submit it to another one. You can also choose to withdraw your paper from one journal and submit it to the second. However, you can do that only after a confirmation of withdrawal from the Editor of the first journal.

Duplicate publication, authorship and conflict of interest are some other ethical issues that you need to be aware of.


Apart from ethics, here are a few other things you need to keep in mind:

• You should select your target journal in advance and read through their author guidelines. Make sure you follow these guidelines carefully.

• Make a habit of reading scientific literature in your field. This will help you understand the style to follow when you writing your manuscript and will also be helpful for your literature review.

• Create a publication schedule well in advance. This will help you complete your paper and submit it on time.