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    Hi all,

    I am currently a masters student who has started working on a thesis. I've been asked by my supervisor to research specific aspects to get the ball rolling. Therefore I've been putting a lot of time and energy into forming connections between ideas (as most research students do!). Basically I have a question regarding sharing work with another student who has the same supervisor as me.... is it appropriate to send what I have researched to her? She will be covering quite similar themes for her study and has asked if I would be willing to do this.

    Is this something I should ask my supervisor about? I don't really know what is appropriate to share and what isn't. I haven't quite gauged whether sharing a supervisor means it's appropriate to share ideas in this way.

    Can anyone advise me further?
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    (Original post by PerigeeApogee)
    It's always good to bounce ideas off of students who are doing something similar or related to your own work - but it depends how closely related the work is.

    If you and this other student are submitting a thesis on very closely related works to the same lecturer, then sharing ideas and leads might make your theses prone to what looks like plagiarism.

    In any case, I wouldn't recommend e-mailing your research to her. It would be better to speak in person, and just have an informal discussion about what you've been up to generally, where your research is taking you and what you expect to do next. Then she can come in with suggestions, etc, and vice versa.

    In any case, speak with your supervisor and ask their advice on the matter.
    Thanks for your advice. We're looking at quite similar aspects of an area and I naturally feel quite wary about sending on anything written as I think there is more of a tendency towards inadvertent plagiarism when ideas are laid out a little too clearly (if that makes sense?). I think the process of performing research should involve having someone point you in a certain direction using peer reviewed papers rather than unpublished work... however rough around the edges it seems! I will ask my supervisor about this though.... don't want to turn this into a snitching exercise though!
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    (Original post by StillLearning)
    Hi all,

    I am currently a masters student who has started working on a thesis. I've been asked by my supervisor to research specific aspects to get the ball rolling. Therefore I've been putting a lot of time and energy into forming connections between ideas (as most research students do!). Basically I have a question regarding sharing work with another student who has the same supervisor as me.... is it appropriate to send what I have researched to her? She will be covering quite similar themes for her study and has asked if I would be willing to do this.

    Is this something I should ask my supervisor about? I don't really know what is appropriate to share and what isn't. I haven't quite gauged whether sharing a supervisor means it's appropriate to share ideas in this way.

    Can anyone advise me further?
    Ignore the issue of the shared supervisor as that unnecessarily complicates the issue. In any event, it is highly unlikely that your dissertation will deal with exactly the same topic as your peer (it would be a ridiculous coincidence if it did) so plagiarism is not an issue. However, if you are both dealing with theme x in text y (the theme of crime in Dostoevsky's The Karamazov Brothers, for example) then I would personally avoid sharing solid material (i.e. prose that will go into the final draft), but I would not avoid discussing your ideas with one another. More often than not, hearing the thoughts of others can highlight issues with your own ideas, reassure you or enrich your own work as you learn new things. After all, this is the reason people write essays and go to conferences!
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    (Original post by evantej)
    Ignore the issue of the shared supervisor as that unnecessarily complicates the issue. In any event, it is highly unlikely that your dissertation will deal with exactly the same topic as your peer (it would be a ridiculous coincidence if it did) so plagiarism is not an issue. However, if you are both dealing with theme x in text y (the theme of crime in Dostoevsky's The Karamazov Brothers, for example) then I would personally avoid sharing solid material (i.e. prose that will go into the final draft), but I would not avoid discussing your ideas with one another. More often than not, hearing the thoughts of others can highlight issues with your own ideas, reassure you or enrich your own work as you learn new things. After all, this is the reason people write essays and go to conferences!
    I brought the supervisor issue up because we will be sharing use of the same data set.. some of our hypotheses may coincide.

    I don't want to avoid discussing ideas with anyone purely for the sake of being awkward, I just felt a little worried about sharing text as there is the chance that it may end up in the final write-up. Thanks for the advice.
 
 
 
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