#1. Do you accept submissions with no mentors and only one student author? My research was done independently.
While you do not need a formal mentor who supervised your independent work, you must have a professional in your field who will vouch that your submission is worthy of faculty-level peer review in a national-level journal. You can talk to any professor in your university in your field and ask if what you wrote is of publishable quality; he or she does not need to become a co-author of your publication. That person needs to write a note expressing support for your manuscript review and potential publication at AJUR to firstname.lastname@example.org.
#2. I wanted to make sure my article would still be considered after I received my degree (which was a year ago). All of the research I intend on presenting in my article was conducted while I was an undergraduate.
No problem, you may submit.
#3. Do you publish literature reviews?
Yes; however, very few to date have made it through the review process. As per guidelines at http://ajuronline.org/submissions/, “We accept new work in all fields and reviews/interpretations in creative fields if they demonstrate sufficient novelty & contribution to the field,” which is somewhat demanding. That is why you need someone who knows your field well, to help you and to tell you if maybe you “invented a bicycle.” Such a validation step in the submission procedure helps us avoid receiving low-quality submissions. Also, please note that STEM reviews are VERY rarely reviewed and published at AJUR. While we commend you for working on your project, writing a review, and making sure that our submission guidelines are carefully followed, often, due to the fact that STEM reviews are available as full-fledged reviews and as introductions in numerous manuscripts already published, the novelty or value of such a review, despite the novelty of the topic, unfortunately, might be insufficient for publication.
#4. I am a high-school student who performed research with Professor Y at X university. May I submit my article to AJUR?
Sorry, no. There are many other venues for such manuscripts, such as http://nhsjs.com
#5. May I submit my theses to AJUR?
You should rework your theses to be a typical paper in your field, then submit.
#6. What is your confidentiality policy?
Editors and reviewers are instructed to not personally use or share the manuscript’s’ data and ideas with anyone.
#7. What should I do to proof-check my article?
Make sure you check the most updated requirements on our website. Pay particular attention to authors’ names and contact information, the paper’s scientific context, text, grammar, punctuation, spacing, alignment, formatting, figures, formulas, tables, symbols, and please check references one more time. Please work with all authors and mentors and then send us one finalized document.
#8. What is AJUR’s ranking?
We have no formal ranking. AJUR has ~20,000 successful Crossref resolutions annually. Please see Q#9 below for additional information. We have a significant impact on students’ careers:
#9. What is AJUR’s impact factor?
American Journal of Undergraduate Research (AJUR) is a national, independent, peer-reviewed, open-source, quarterly, multidisciplinary student research journal indexed by EBSCO and Crossref. Our print ISSN is 1536-4585, and our web ISSN is 2375-8732. Our acceptance rate is 22%. We do not keep electronic access numbers. The paper print count is low. It is done for the library, donors, and authors only. Papers are typical of an advanced undergraduate level; as such, they demonstrate high-quality student work and the professor’s engagement with students and ability and willingness to take students’ work to the level of being published in a peer-reviewed national journal. Such a publication is definitely worth more than a poster or an oral presentation. It is also entirely possible that publication in AJUR is at a level equal to that published in the narrow professional field journal. However, it depends on the field and the paper itself- we are a journal of undergrad publications after all. On the other hand, we are the leading undergraduate journal nationwide: we are the only publication providing DOI numbers to all articles published, and our content is archived by the US Library of Congress. As mentioned above, AJUR boasts ~20,000 successful DOI resolutions annually.
#10. The results section of my article has several sections and subsections created for clarity. Upon reading the instructions I only found one level of subsections (italicized and mixed case flush left). What would you suggest for the next two levels of subsections of my paper? Without more levels, I believe the clarity of the results of my study would be compromised.
In this case, you may number all sections in the body of the paper, Intro as 1. INTRODUCTION, etc., and for results, 2. RESULTS, 2.1. Subsection Title, 2.1.1. Subsubsection Title, etc. Please do not number ABSTRACT or any sections following CONCLUSIONS.
#11. My article also has two sections, “Future Studies” and “Limitations” that are not outlined in the instructions. Are these acceptable to include in the article, or should they be incorporated into other sections?
You may list them in RESULTS as subsections or list them as separate sections. Please note that future studies are most often included after conclusions in the CONCLUSIONS section. We are a bit flexible about these two sections since some papers have them and some not.
#12. Can I order several formal printed copies of the journal as gifts to my mentors, family, and friends?
It costs us about $20 per journal copy to print & deliver to you. We will gladly provide you as our published author with a single copy for free, as a gift from AJUR’s sponsors. If you are willing to pay $20/item for additional copies of the journal, then we can help with that too. The print copies become available 4-6 weeks after the on-line publication. The easiest thing for you to do is to personally print several double-sided color copies of your article for your gifts.
#13. May I use footnotes?
Yes. Please use capital letters instead of numbers to list them. In the text, these letters should be bolded and superscripted. A footnote could be placed at the bottom of the page; if many footnotes are used, please list them all in a separate section after the acknowledgments section.
#14. Students in my class often write excellent papers. Can they submit them to AJUR?
Anyone can submit a paper to AJUR: the content is often worked on by students for months, written by undergrads, carefully edited and genuinely supported by their mentors- specialists in a given field, and professionally peer-reviewed by faculty in that field, formally edited for publication, and taken through the layout process, then internationally indexed, placed on the web, and also printed. We spend over 20 hours of faculty work on each paper- please respect that volunteering effort for the sake of undergraduates having a real opportunity to publish at the national level. As you may expect, unfortunately, we do not have the resources to “grade” class papers. Please carefully review a couple of recent issues of AJUR so that you and your students understand better what AJUR is and what level of work we publish. I want to emphasize though that high-quality submissions in your field with the proper use of that field’s methodology are very welcome- it does not matter if they were produced as a result of classwork as long as they are worthy of being published in a national peer-reviewed journal.
#15. I am a graduate student at the University of Z right now. May I submit a manuscript for your consideration?
If this work was done by you at your undergraduate institution previously or if undergraduate students have an important role in your work at your current institution, then you may. If you want to publish work done by you as a graduate student, you should look for an alternative venue. The AJUR is a journal for undergraduate publications.
#16. Is there a page limit or any cost associated with a potential publication? What is the deadline for submission?
There are no costs, page limits, or deadlines. Please carefully review the submission guidelines at http://ajuronline.org/submissions/ one more time.
#17. Can a mentor submit a paper on behalf of his/her students?
Yes; however, such experience helps students grow; you should strongly encourage them to submit it.
#18. The home page of AJUR mentions that it is a “national” journal, but it is also mentioned that foreign nationals might also submit articles. This is confusing me. May I submit if I am a foreign national?
You may submit as a foreign national. Simply keep in mind the following: we are a national-level journal from the perspective of being based in the USA; on the other hand, we are covering topics that are of national and international interest; i.e., a local jurisprudence topic of some sovereign country would be of very limited interest to our readers, while universal ideas and science topics are completely appropriate- no matter who submits them.
#19. Do you have any limitations on access to my paper as a PDF of the finished article?
Since we are an open-source publication, you may use, store, and post your pdf of articles as you wish; however, note that providing the DOI number is the most reliable way to make sure that it can be instantaneously found in permanent archives.
#20. We wanted to ask whether the journal publishes supplementary materials or annexes to the main paper?
Yes. If appendices are brief and essential, we include them in your publication; alternatively, we post them on-line.
#21. We were wondering whether the journal requires that the corresponding author be a student, or whether a faculty member can take on this role?
A faculty member may be a corresponding author.
#22. When we submit an article for publication, the AJUR also requires a list of seven reviewers in the field of the manuscript that are not affiliated with us and would not represent a conflict of interest. Could you provide any more criteria to further define who would be considered an acceptable reviewer?
We often receive the leaders of the field suggested as reviewers and they do not always answer our requests. It seems that listing unaffiliated colleagues of your mentor who go to similar conferences and teach at a similar institution is the best way to go. However, whoever you recommend, we’ll work with them. Our editors have their own lists of reviewers, thus the combination of the two approaches most often end up working just fine.
For questions relating to new or prospective submissions: ajur.new.submissions[at]gmail.com
For all other questions and correspondence: ajureditor[at]gmail.com