This month has the usual roundup of stories on scientific misconduct and retractions, in addition to features on consent, authorship and the challenges to improve scientific reporting. The case of the month is on revoked parental consent which was discussed at the COPE forum. This is a difficult issue if it occurs after publication as little can be done regarding copies already in circulation. A survey of postgraduate medical trainees found that 90.1% were unaware of authorship criteria. Thus medical schools should provide instruction on the topic. Christie Aschwanden, in the article 'Science isn’t broken', concludes that "The scientific method is the most rigorous path to knowledge, but it’s also messy and tough." Thus teaching on scientific methods, and research and publication ethics, should occur as early as possible in universities and be regularly updated.
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