Introduction

Transcript

1 A Graduate Student’s Guide to Determining Authorship Credit and Authorship Order APA Science Student Council 2006 For more information about the APA Science Student Council, please visit http://www.apa.org/science/leadership/students/

2 Introduction As a graduate student, conducting research and publi to your shing your work is essential Your involvement in this proces professional development and s the advancement of your career. the opportunity to learn new skills, network with other researchers in your area of provide s As you interest, and in your studies, personally contribute new knowledge to the field. advance you will likely carry increased responsib re search process , including the ility throughout the investigations , collecting and analyzing data, and presenting and publishing your development of findings. Although it is often viewed as the final stage and endpoint of a given study, publication actually reflects the culmin ation of efforts and contributions made by everyone involved that has . Authorship is often the primary made the dissemination of findings possible way by which to acknowledge the contributions of individuals involved in a project, and as a t, it can be a rewarding experience and achievement to see your name on a graduate studen time. Because of the importance placed on publication in published manuscript for the first psychology and related fields, and the increasing number of multi - authored articles (Glad ding, 1984; Iammarino, O’Rourke, Pigg, & Weinberg, 1989), negotiating and determining a hip uthors is an important part of the research process. A n open discussion on authorship n a project is necessary among all individuals involved i throughout the researc h process. Specific issues involving authorship may become more salient at different points in a project, and can reflect either new developments or revisited issues from an earlier discussion. As such, we view the negotiation and determination of author ship as a predetermined or fixed decision. his process to proceed in the dynamic process, rather than a T spirit of collaboration and in an egalitarian manner among all individuals involved in the study. introduce and pro vide The purpose of this website is to information regarding the process of negotiating and determining authorship, particularly from a graduate student perspective. You materials and reso urces that outline a variety of issues and topics related to will also find ) T included worksheets and agreements (which can be found here he can be used to authorship. facilitate a dialogue with your advisor and/or colleagues around authorship, and can be referred to throughout the research process. In addition, references to pertinent articles and link s to examples of university guidelines are provided. What is Authorship and How is it Determined? Authorship entails a public acknowledgment of scientific or professional contribution to a and includes in volvement in various tasks disseminated piece of information (see APA, 2002) associated with the project (National Health and Medical Research council, 1997) As such , a . number of interrelated factors are considered in determining authorship. The APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Condu ct (2002 , Section 8.12 ) also addresses certain criteria for authorship by stating : (a) Psychologists take responsibility and credit, including authorship credit, only for work they have actually performed or to which they have contributed. (b) Principal authorshi p and other publication credits accurately reflect the relative scientific or professional contributions of the individuals involved, regardless of their relative status. Mere possession of an institutional position, such as Department

3 Chair, does not jus tify authorship credit. Minor contributions to the research or to the writing for publication are appropriately acknowledged, such as in footnotes or in an introductory statement. A student is usually listed as principal author on any multiple ticle that is - (c) authored ar based primarily on the student’s dissertation or thesis. Faculty advisors discuss publication credit with students as early as feasible and throughout the research and publication process as appropriate. Negotiating Authorship nes and definitions of authorship provided by various professional organizations offer The guideli general conceptualizations and provisions for researchers. As such, they may not offer comprehensive or unambiguous definitions (Fine & Kurdek, 1993), and collaborators must further discuss and reach consensus on certain issues, such as identifying what constitutes a scientific contribution, how authorship order is decided upon, and how to engage in the process of authorship determination. uthorship order will optimally begin Discussion of authorship and a at the inception of a research project, and involve a purposeful and thoughtful examination of expected contributions of the individuals who are involved in the project (Winston, 1985). icular project, it is possible that several manuscripts will be Depending on the scope of a part planned, each of which could involve different authors or different authorship orders. In this event, it is especially important to discuss authorship at the beginning of the project. When d iscussed, it is helpful for everyone to recognize that initial authorship and authorship order can development of the project if necessary in order change throughout the to better reflect the actual contributions of all investigators. Although it is not a lways the case that significant changes are made in regard to authorship after the initial determination , several common reasons for change are discussed below. A ll individuals involved in the project to take part in these discussions in an open and profe ssional manner. Changes should be decided upon consideration mutually after . of each individual’s perspective and review of each individual’s contributions The Basics - related planning should include the collaborative discussion of the expecte d roles Authorship and responsibilities of each contributor. As a graduate student who is significantly involved in a research project, it will be helpful for you to consider several issues as part of this process. For - term and long - example, consider your short m goals, and how your involvement on this ter specific project will provide the opportunity to work toward these goals. Keep in mind that each project brings unique opportunities and responsibilities, and that you will most likely be involved in multiple proj ects simultaneously as you advance in your graduate studies . Authorship can provide the opportunity to begin, enhance, and advance your involvement on future and related projects, affiliations with other graduate students and professors, a nd strengthen your advance your overall career. Given your status as a graduate student, it may at first feel intimidating to discuss the role(s) you would like or expect, and your place as a contributing author. However, this can be viewed as an excellent learning oppo rtunity that will contribute to your professional identity as a researcher and scholar, and that will eventually contribute to your identity as a co lleague among other researchers. Most advisors and senior researchers will be happy to talk with you about authorship, and consider this a part of the student - advisor relationship.

4 Given the number of responsibilities associated with the completion of a research project, there of contributors. this can offer a helpful outline of the are usually a number A checklist like various necessary tasks and who will be responsible for completing each task. As such, this delegation of various responsibilities, it checklist not only helps facilitate the organization and also provides an initial opportunity to begin a collaborative negotiation of authorship and initial This checklist can also serve as a authorship order among the individuals involved in the project. for the development of your own checklist that is specific to the given research basic example project. Authorship Negotiation Worksheet (Winston, 1985) An authorship determination worksheet such as this provides a quantitative example for - determining authorship and authorship order. Detailed information on this worksheet is provided by Winston (1985) and general information is provided below. The use of this worksheet is most effective when completed collaboratively among all individuals involved in the project. The overall purpose of the instrument is to provide an easy and clear way to negotiate and determine authorship and to clarify the expected roles of each contributor. This involves discussing who will do or has done certain tasks, and then assigning appropriate points to each task. For example, the conceptualization and clarification of the research idea and design is assigned 50 points by default. These points can also be delegated to several contributors to reflect relative contributions to each task (e.g., contributor A may receive 40 points, and contributor B may receive 10 points). The default weight given to each task might also be negotiated depending on the given project. For example, less weight will likely be attached to the conceptualization section of basic replication and ex tension project . It should a be noted that not all projects fall within the scope of this instrument, thus creating a situation in - off scores should be which aspects such as total points available per task or authorship cut adjusted. In other cases, tasks might need to be added or deleted (e.g., statistical analyses are not always relevant in qualitative research). After all tasks have been discussed and points have been assigned, each contributor’s points should then be totaled. A minimum total should be collaboratively agreed upon by the involved researchers to warrant authorship. Throughout this process, individuals should have an open discussion regarding responsibilities, expectations, and intentions for the project. For example, if - negotiate this process is conducted at the inception of the project, an individual might ask to re responsibilities if they would like to increas e their total points in order to qualif y as an author on the project. A Caveat for Interdisciplinary Research Research in psychology has become increasingly interdisciplinary (Sung et al., 2003), and it is important to know that other fields may have dif ferent authorship cultures. For example, in the biomedical field it is customary for the advisor (as head of the lab) to be the last author. It is therefore all the more important to start authorship discussions early so that all the contributors’ expect ations are aligned.

5 Written Authorship Agreements Authorship agreements are forms that outline each contributor’s responsibilities, roles, efforts, ). The purpose of these agreements is to provide and publication intent (for example, click here more explicit information regarding such things as the order of authors, the ownership of data use of authorship gathered as part of the project, and expectations for publication. Similar to the worksheets, authorship agreements can be used to facilitate discussion with your advisor and/or other collaborators on a project regarding your desire to contribute to the publication of research a given project, and how you envision for your role and place in authorship. For example, you might negotiate with your advisor the expected time frame to publish your dissertation, and the responsibilities each of you would like to take as part of this process. Authorship agreement used in combination with authorship determination worksheets. This adds the forms can be - benefit of further ensuring that all contributors can participate in authorship related discussions and decisions. In addition, the research responsibility checklist can also be used by collaborators to take responsibility for specific tasks. Common Reasons for Changes in Authorship , and only a limited sample There are several common reasons for making changes in authorship are included in this section . In addition , although these reasons may be common, of examples the fairness and appropriateness for any changes is situation - dependent, and the context in which the changes are occurring must necessarily be examined and considered . Changes can refer to including additional auth ors, rearranging authorship order . reducing the number of authors, or Several reasons for why authors might be added to a manuscript include: (a) the project has expanded beyond the original purpose, conceptualization, or scope; (b) the added author may ossess valuable expertise necessary for the completion of the project or to address major p concerns expressed by a reviewer of the submitted manuscript; or (c) a contributor to the project who originally was intended to be thanked in the acknowledgement sec tion of the manuscript became significantly more involved to the extent that their contributions warranted authorship. Several reasons for why an author may be later omitted from authorship include: (a) the author inally expected or agreed upon; or (b) the author did not contribute to the project as orig d or relocate d graduate ould be significantly undertaken, and the author’s before a project c relocation prevented her or him from reasonably or substantially contributing to the proposed project. Several re asons for why authorship order may be revised include: (a) the actual contributions of authors differed significantly from the originally expected contributions at the beginning of the project; or (b) an author would like to accept increased responsibility , or would like to delegate a portion of her or his responsibility to other authors. As a graduate student, you will also want to consider several specific situations when becoming involved in certain projects. F or example , you may wish to give special consideration to projects that are primarily longitudinal. In this case, it would be beneficial to discuss with the primary investigator whether she or he intends to produce manuscripts only at the end of the investigation, or if several manuscripts are planned throughout the process. You will also want to discuss if or how your authorship or authorship order would be affected if you graduate before the completion of the entire project or the completion of the manuscript. Involvement in

6 longitudinal res earch can be particularly rewarding if clear expectations and understandings exist at the beginning of your involvement. For example, if you are able to negotiate authorship on several manuscripts throughout the process of the project and for manuscripts after the completion of the project, this could greatly assist you in developing a publica tion history not only as you apply for faculty positions, but also as you go up for tenure. Therefore, although some potential difficulties given the nature your involvement in longitudinal projects can present status , they of your Additional considerations here ] graduate student can also be rewarding. [ Concerns Regarding Authorship professional and Negotiating authorship is in most cases a respectful endeavor. However, situations and concerns can develop throughout this process that erstandings, can lead to misund , and unethical behavior. In a survey conducted among experienced authorship disagreements researchers, many of the ethical concerns related to facul ty - student collaboration involved Because the negotiation of authorship is authorship issues (Goodyear, Crego, & Johston, 1992). a process, efforts can be made throughout to minimize the potential for the development of these collaboratively resolve any disputes before they escalate. Open disputes, or to identify and communication , understanding, and revisiting of expectations are essential, and provide a basic way to identify any early development of disputes. Discussing authorship at regular intervals or at major developments in the project can help minimize the potential for the development of a disagreement later on in the project . H owever, if an authorship disagreement has developed, as a graduate student, you have several options for recourse. We expand upon several options in the space below, and in addition, we recommend that you further consult your university’s handbook for information that applies specifically to your own institution. he first level at which disagreements e attempted to be resolved is between Generally, t should b on the project. This can occur the contributors through additional discussion or by joint completion of a post hoc authorship determination worksheet. ome prepared with a critical C contribut ions relative to those of others, understanding of your own and also an open - mind to consider the perspective of other collaborators. It can be helpful to approach the situation with the perspective that you, your advisor, and/or other collaborators have common ground and interest s. At this stage, it may be necessary to first correct any existing miscommunications or misunderstandings. If the process of authorship determination was not explicit at the beginning he actual level of involvement of the project, it could be that collaborators have been unaware of t of others on the project, especially when the project is being conducted at multiple institutions or sites , or has been a particularly long project . As a graduate student, you might also find it helpful to consult with other individuals outside of the project in order to gain an objective perspective, or to receive feedback and suggestions on how you might best approach the situation. This could include other faculty members or advanced graduate students. There might also b e other relevant consultants given your specific situation. If the initial concern cannot be appropriately resolved, you may wish to directly consult your university’s handbook at t his time to identify the steps outlined by your institution. This may

7 inc lude discussing the situation with program or department chair, who may act as your arbitrators, or who can provide more specific information on how to further proceed. there are s in whi ch to From the perspective of several helpful way ethical decision making, frame and approach your current concern. For example, the application of Welfel’s (2002) model of ethical decision making could help you as your attempt to resolve authorship disagreements. Welfel’s model includes (a) defining the dilemma and alter native actions; (b) ethical referencing ethics codes, laws, ethics literature, and principles ; (c) applying fundamental ethical principles to the current situation (i.e., autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, justice, (e) informing others of the decision ( (d) de liberating and deciding; and fidelity); d) consulting; and implementing the decision; and (f) reflecting on the experience. Final Considerations Authorship disagreements can generally be resolved professionally, and early engagement in the ion of developing disagreements significantly contribute to successfully resolving discuss can s . As a graduate student, it is especially concern to engage in open discussion at the important start of the process , particularly due to the default power differential between you and your advisor, and when discussion of authorship is not engaged in collaboratively. The negotiation of authorship should be an exciting and positive experience when participating individuals other individuals’ abili ties and contributions. As such, it is beneficial to demonstrate respect for become involved in conducting research and participating in manuscript preparation whenever possible, whether it is with your immediate academic advisor, other faculty members, or your peers. Your cont inued involvement in conducting research and disseminating your findings through professional presentations or peer reviewed journals will significantly advance your professional development as a scient ific researcher in psychology.

8 Resources Forms Authorship contract - determination worksheet Authorship Research responsibilities checklist Authorship contract combined with authorship determination w orksheet Links APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct: Contains all of APA’s ethical guidelines. British S Contains ociological Association: Authorship Guidelines for Academic Papers: detailed information regarding authorship order and the necessary contributions of authors. Committee on Publication Ethics : Guidelines and Code of Conduct: A comprehensive set of guidelines covering a number of publication - related topics from authorship to peer review. Harvard Faculty Authorship Guide An example of university guidelines. lines: Provides alternative The Aga Khan University Institute for Educational Development: quantitative methods for determining authorship as well as detailed guidelines (select “Authorship Guidelines ” for full .pdf file that contains additional determination strategies ) . The QUAD system (Verhagen, Wallace, Collins, & Scott, 2003): This is another quantitative system from determining authorship that was published in Nature .

9 References American Psychological Association. (2002 ). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of . 5 , 1060 American Psychologist, 1073 7 conduct. - Fine, M. A., & Kurdek, L. A. (1993). Reflections on determining authorship credit and - student collaborations. American Psychologist, 48 authorship order on faculty - , 1141 1147. ( ) link Gladding, S. T. (1984). Multiple authorship in the : A 12 - year Personnel and Guidance Journal study. , 628 - 630. Personnel and Guidance Journal, 62 Goodyear, R. K., Crego, C. A., & Johnston, M. W. (1992). Ethical issues in the supervision of student resea rch: A study of critical incidents. Professional Psychology: Research and - Practice, 23, 203 210. Iammarino, N. K., O'Rourke, T. W., Pigg, R. M., & Weinberg, A. D. (1989). Ethical issues in Journal of School Health, 59 , 101 - research and publication. 105. National Health and Medical Research Council (1997). Joint NHMRC/AVCC statement and guidelines on research practices. Retrieved August 1, 2005, from http://www.nhmrc.gov.au/funding/policy/6 Welfel, E. R. (2002). tandards, research, and Ethics in counseling and psychotherapy: S nd emerging issues (2 ed.). Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole. Winston, R. B. (1985). A suggested procedure for determining order of authorship in research publications. Journal of Counseling and Development, 63 , 515 - 518. (Note that th is article is available through EBSCOhost)

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