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2016 November 13

BioTreks—a specialized research journal for high-school students

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 18:09
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Five and half years ago, I published a blog post, Journals for high school researchers, which listed the tiny number of venues I knew of that were open to high-school researchers.

At iGem this year, I heard about a new peer-reviewed journal for high-school students: BioTreks.  Currently the journal is planning on one issue a year, and solely on the subject of synthetic biology, which seems a bit narrow to me:

In 2016, BioTreks will begin publishing open access, peer-reviewed articles related to the implementation and outcome of high school student-driven synthetic biology research. We’re currently accepting original articles that present perspectives, methodologies, and outcomes related to the study and practice of synthetic biology in high schools. Students, educators, and biologists from around the world are invited to contribute content that promotes and describes synthetic biology education and research at the high school level. Authors who are interested in contributing original research articles, methods papers, literature reviews, editorial perspectives to the journal are encouraged to contact us for more information. We look forward to hearing more about your experiences in synthetic biology and discussing ways in which you can share your insights in our journal. Please contact us to learn more about publishing in the journal.

I chatted with one of the originators of the idea for a while at the iGEM Jamboree, and they may be open to expanding the journal to be “synthetic biology and bioengineering”, which is a considerably wider scope, and which may open up opportunities for a lot more high school students.

I don’t know whether this would require them to rewrite their description of their goals:

Ars Biotechnica is a 501(c)3 public charity whose mission is to support science education by introducing high school students to the emerging field of synthetic biology. We do so by awarding grants for schools to use in obtaining laboratory supplies, coordinating local and regional symposia on synthetic biology, and administering a peer-reviewed journal. Our organization has been providing financial and technical support to iGEM-bound synthetic biology teams since 2013 and supporting high school focused synthetic biology symposia since late last year. We’re now excited to announce the launch of BioTreks, a peer-reviewed journal just for high school synthetic biology.

The organization has a very small budget and relies mainly on volunteers:

BioTreks is maintained by a volunteer staff of dedicated biologists, students, and educators. If you have a background in biology, education, peer-reviewed publication, or graphics design and would like to help us develop and maintain the journal, then we would like to hear from you. Volunteers can work remotely and on their own time to coach students on writing scientific papers, serve as section editors, copy editors, and peer-reviewers, and contribute to the journal’s overall presentation and design. Please contact us to learn more about volunteer opportunities at the journal.

They don’t charge anything to students for publication—they aren’t a vanity press that makes money off of selling overpriced printing to suckers students.

If anyone knows of other journals interested in high-school submissions (not vanity presses), let me know, and I’ll blog about them!

2011 February 27

Journals for high school researchers

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 15:10
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Got a high-school student doing publishable research and want to help them get published?  Anyone can submit to the academic journals, but it is often difficult for a high-schooler to break into them, as the barriers are pretty high for anyone outside mainstream acadème. Luckily, there are a few journals that offer more hope for high schoolers.

For anything dealing with history, The Concord Review seems like a good choice.  The claim that The Concord Review is the only quarterly journal in the world to publish the academic research papers of secondary students.” I think that this claim is a little too strongly worded, as other journals have published such papers.  Perhaps it is more correct to say that The Concord Review is the only journal devoted to the academic research papers of secondary students. I know one high school student who published there (actually, he was in 8th grade and taking community college classes, so he missed high school in both directions, but they published his paper).  And no, it was not a relative of mine.

An AP bio teacher on the ap-bio mailing list suggested the Journal for Young Investigators, which is an online journal for undergraduate science researchers that is refereed by undergraduates.  I know a high school student who has published there also with a project that he had done for science fair in his sophomore year (again, not a relative).

Another teacher suggested trying the Biotechnology Institute.  They have a contest for student research called the International BioGENEius Challenge, and they publish a magazine for students.  I suspect that they don’t have much student writing in the magazine, but I’ve not checked.  There are a number of contests for high-school science students, some with good prizes (like ISEF), but this is not quite the same thing as academic publication.

For younger kids, there are even fewer venues, though Stone Soup Magazine provides a nice outlet for creative work (poems, stories, and art) by 8- to 13-year-olds. Muse magazine for ages 10 and up has their Muserology column written by Muse readers, but the style of writing is more chatty than academic.

If anyone has other journal publication options for high schoolers, add them to the comments.

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