Friday, May 9, 2014
What is CrossCheck and How Does the Journal Use It?
Stephanie Casway, Production Editor
Once the latest version of a manuscript is uploaded to the program, CrossCheck compares the document to the Internet and over 37 million published research articles from medical, scientific, and technical publishers worldwide. The program returns a similarity report and index, which shows how much of the manuscript matches other sources.
Having lots of experience with scholarly research, we understand that all manuscripts will contain some content that matches other documents. Thus, we exclude references and all quotes from the similarity report. Still, common phrases like, “this study was reviewed by the (name your favorite medical school) Institutional Review Board,” and, “a P value of less than .05 was considered to be statistically significant,” appear in the report. For these reasons, a journal staff member reviews each line on the report to determine whether matched items constitute plagiarism or just a commonality.
When journal staff detect a problem, it often stems from the manuscript author’s own published works (what the Committee on Publication Ethics terms “redundancy”
). While redundancy (or self-plagiarism) may not seem serious, it is still plagiarism. In this case, journal staff would ask the author to rework necessary text to avoid self-plagiarism.
If you have any questions about journal CrossCheck procedures or plagiarism, please contact the journal at firstname.lastname@example.org
or (202) 314-2317.