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research and no pubs

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by urasia, Nov 11, 2001.

  1. urasia

    urasia Member
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    does anyone have a friend or know anyone in a situation where s/he worked day and night in the research lab, produced some excellent data, wrote a seniors thesis based on the research, only getting an acknowledgement at the end of the paper (approx half of the paper was based on the senior thesis) when it got published? well, a student who used to work in my roomie's lab seems to be running into a similar situation, and that worries me a little.
     
  2. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
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    The story of my life after 2 years of research...BS acknowledgements...oh well...sucks to be us!
     
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  3. urasia

    urasia Member
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    hey scooby, do you know why the PI didn't at least put your name in the author section of the paper? i mean, 2 years is a long time.
     
  4. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
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    Well six months in one lab..then left b/c the grad student left..she put me on an unimportant project just to see what would happen.

    The next year was spent on the last quarter of a 4 year long project and my PI was really anal about having only the names on the paper who contributed to the WHOLE project or at least 3/4 of it. So no pub there.

    Now we are starting another 4 year long project where I will be gone after the first year so no pub there.

    I did do a technical paper for my senior thesis project but it has yet to be published and somehow I am getting third author on it even though I did a majority of the planning and stuff for it. Oh well...
     
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  5. none

    none 1K Member
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    I'm pretty sure the majority of undergrads who do research remain unpublished until they start grad work. If you have a PI who'll try to get an undergrad published...you're a very lucky person. If you're at a university who will allow freshman and sophomores to pursue research, you're even luckier!
     
  6. kutastha

    kutastha 2K Member
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    Many, if not most PIs will not give an undergrad enough responsibility in lab to warrant anything other than an acknowledgement. My first PI was actually one of the more generous ones and would put the undergrads name on a paper even if they just worked there for a few weeks and did something. On the other hand, in one of the labs I rotated in, I generated 8 out of the 10 figures and didn't even receive an acknowldegement. Authorship is not up to you, it is up to the first author and the PI. If they didn't feel your work was the backbone of the paper, you may get an acknowledgement or left off all together. Sometimes it's just a crapshoot.

    Andrew
     
  7. TheAce

    TheAce Attending
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    PI's should be including you on the paper if you contributed to the data in a figure. The more you contribute, the higher in the author list you should go.

    I was fortunate enough to be in a lab where the PI believed that all people (undergrads, grad students, research assistants, ...) should be include in a paper where they made an important contribution. In my nearly 4 years of research in that lab, I will have three publications - one as 5th of 6 authors (secondary project), one as first author (primary project), and one as 3rd of 5 authors (secondary project). The work I did on the third paper was critical to the paper, but didn't take that long. Additionally, there should be at least one more paper where I'm second author, but it's still in the works.

    On a research project during med school, I will be first of two authors.

    So, it is possible to publish during your undergrad and med school careers. Just be sure that you are at the bench conducting research, NOT washing dishes.
     
  8. urasia

    urasia Member
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    thanks Ace,

    i collected a lot of usable data and did a great deal of analysis. i don't work in the lab anymore, so i'm hoping that my grad student supervisor would keep his word and include my name in the paper.
     
  9. paisley1

    paisley1 Senior Member
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    I could care less if I publish a paper or not--does that make me weird? I enjoy working in my lab and I just got some kick-a** results the other day and the thrill of that alone is enough for me. I am wondering, seriously, am I missing something?
     
  10. kutastha

    kutastha 2K Member
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  11. S. Ahmed

    S. Ahmed Junior Member
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    Sorry to hear about your stories folks! Thats not fair. In my undergrad work, I knew many undergrads who were much smarter than many grad students.

    I went to Univ. of MN - Duluth. Being primarily an undergrad school, I was lucky enough to find a very nice faculty member as my advisor. I did research for him for almost 2 years. I went to one national conference and another one in Argonne National Lab.
    He was always extremely helpful.

    S.A
     
  12. TechMan

    TechMan Dreams Stuff are Made of.
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    Could someone explain the difference b/w first author, second author, etc.

    I am about to start a year long project, and this is what the outline of the work includes in it:

    "A minimum of two publications are expected from the work and hence they can expect to co-author two or more papers as an outcome of the work."

    what does co-author mean? does that i would be first author, second author, or what?
     
  13. kobe8

    kobe8 Member
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    Urasia,
    You could have told us that your roommate's coworker was you. It's all good.
    ;)
     
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  14. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member
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    I THINK co-author is 2nd author.... hmm.. i always assumed it was.

    I guess I've been lucky. I did the lab work and some analysis for one section of a paper. and wrote up the methods/analysis procedure. I got my name second author. I think, it was a small lab. I worked right under the PI, no grad student/post doc. (when I started, our lab didn't even have a grad student). But, I guess my PI was impressed by me, and the ideas i brought, so he gave me credit. It was work i'd done the last year and a half. I often felt i didn't commit enough time to lab and such, but I guess he like the work i did do.
     
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  15. kutastha

    kutastha 2K Member
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  16. TechMan

    TechMan Dreams Stuff are Made of.
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    kutastha - What you said is the impression I get from the paper outlining my research project. It seems like the grad student I will be working with, as well as myself, will be contributing equally to the papers, and thus we would both be first author. I could be wrong, but I meet with him tomorrow, and i guess i could ask him.
     
  17. TheAce

    TheAce Attending
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  18. TheAce

    TheAce Attending
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  19. urasia

    urasia Member
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    kobe8,
    actually, my roomie's co-worker wasn't me, but i did work in a lab with a possible pending publication. and i'm really hoping that her situation won't occur to anyone.
     

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