Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

I know you are but what am I? School program paper pulled for duplication

without comments

sciworldjrnlAn article on youth development programs in Hong Kong has been retracted for its similarity to another article on youth development programs by the same authors.

The paper, “Process Evaluation of a Positive Youth Development Program in Hong Kong Based on Different Cohorts,” appeared in 2012 in The Scientific World Journal, and was written by a pair of researchers with appointments in Hong Kong, Macau, Shanghai, and the United States. It has been cited twice, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

According to the abstract:

There are only a few process evaluation studies on positive youth development programs, particularly in the Chinese context. This study aims to examine the quality of implementation of a positive youth development program (the Project P.A.T.H.S.: Positive Adolescent Training through Holistic Social Programmes) and investigate the relationships among program adherence, process factors, implementation quality, and perceived program success. Process evaluation of 97 classroom-based teaching units was conducted in 62 schools from 2005 to 2009. Findings based on different cohorts generally showed that there were high overall program adherence and implementation quality. Program adherence and implementation process were highly correlated with quality and success of the program. Multiple regression analyses further showed that both implementation process and program adherence are significant predictors of program quality and success. Theoretical and practical implications of the findings are discussed.

Turns out that if you’re going to reuse your own material, maybe it’s best not to do so in a field with “few” studies.

As the retraction notice states:

The paper titled “Process Evaluation of a Positive Youth Development Program in Hong Kong Based on Different Cohorts” [1], published in The Scientific World Journal, has been retracted as it is found to contain a substantial amount of material, without referencing, from the published article titled “Process Evaluation of a Positive Youth Development Program: Project P.A.T.H.S,” Ben M. F. Law and Daniel T. L. Shek, Research on Social Work Practice, vol. 21, no. 5, pp. 539–548, 2011.

Here’s the abstract of the earlier article:

There are only a few process evaluation studies on positive youth development programs, particularly in the Chinese context. Objectives: This study aims to examine the quality of implementation of a positive youth development program (Project Positive Adolescent Training through Holistic Social Programs [P.A.T.H.S.]) and investigate the relationships among program adherence, process factors, implementation quality, and success. Method: Process evaluation of 20 Secondary 3 classroom-based programs was conducted in 14 schools. Results: Overall program adherence, individual evaluation items, quality, and success had high ratings. Principal components analysis showed that two components, namely, implementation process and implementation context were extracted from 11 evaluation items. The correlational analysis indicated that program adherence, implementation process, and context were highly correlated with quality and success. Multiple regression analyses show that teaching process and program adherence predicted quality, whereas teaching process, teaching context, and program adherence predicted success. Conclusions: The implementation quality of the Tier 1 Program of Project P.A.T.H.S. was generally high.

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