STEM Fellowship Journal: Giving students the chance to publish their STEM research
At STEM Fellowship, we want to encourage accessible STEM education for high school and undergraduate students and having access to what other students have done is critical for that purpose. To this aim, we founded an open-access online journal: STEM Fellowship Journal (SFJ). STEM Fellowship is a Canadian Science Publishing client journal and is the only such journal that is dedicated to high school and undergraduate students. Our open-access feature guarantees maximum accessibility given that you don’t have to be in a subscribing university to see what we publish. (Typically, university libraries pay large sums for these subscriptions).
SFJ accepts manuscripts across all areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM!). We promote original interdisciplinary research while also accepting strong review articles. Each issue is balanced to include a variety of disciplines in STEM, however we tend to have more submissions in certain disciplines. For example, we emphasize the importance of Big Data in STEM research and each year we publish the best projects from the STEM Fellowship organized “Big Data Challenge”. Previously, we have also published manuscripts on nanoparticles and chemical reactions.
Another special aspect of SFJ is the combination of peer and professional review that we provide to high school and undergraduate researchers. Submissions are initially reviewed by our student editors, who are all extremely talented student researchers with strong backgrounds in scientific writing and editing. During our review, we assess the quality of the manuscript and try to fix possible flaws in the scientific flow. Most manuscripts are assigned to an editor with a background in that particular discipline. Student editors then provide comments and a recommendation on whether the manuscript is potentially suitable for publication and whether it meets the formatting guidelines posted on our website. The submission is then sent to an academic in the field who would provide comments on the review which are published alongside the manuscript.
Why publish in SFJ?
From my various encounters with student across Canada, I have realized that many high school and undergraduate students underestimate the importance of publishing their work. Many put months of effort into their research and present at various conferences but don’t realize that for their work to add to the global wealth of knowledge and for them to receive due credit, it has to be published.
The core focus of SFJ is providing these students with a chance to have their work published. Through the review process, students get feedback from a professional in their field which allows them to better their future research, and improve their knowledge of formatting and presentation of manuscripts.
For more information on submitting a manuscript for publication, visit STEM Fellowship Journal.
What lies ahead for SFJ?
SFJ is only a year old. However, in this short time, we are steadily transitioning into a platform for presenting top research from high school and undergraduate students from across Canada. This is partly, if not mostly, due to our agreements with various undergraduate research conferences and high school research competitions that promote submissions from participants to SFJ.
Our current aims are to expand our network in Canada and work with students in all provinces as well as having abstracts in French as well as English. SFJ also accepts submissions from outside Canada. Hopefully with the addition of editors from other countries as well as partnerships with foreign institutions, SFJ will have an international appeal among high school and undergraduate students. As SFJ is mainly a platform that aims to foster scholarly discussion, we want authors to see their publication not as an end, but as a milestone.