How is the URNCST Journal different from other undergraduate research journals?
Prior to the launch of the URNCST Journal, there was no publication that focussed on creating a legacy for undergraduate-level research conferences or providing innovative undergraduate research education initiatives. Commonly, undergraduate students spend a relatively short amount of time working alongside a principal investigator, however, it often takes much longer for research projects to be completed and ready for publication in an academic journal. As a result, many undergraduate researchers submit their abstracts to undergraduate research conferences, however, these abstracts often also go unpublished. This presents an exceptional challenge for undergraduate students who may have an interest in further pursuing their career as a researcher, by means of graduate or professional school, where it is increasingly common for highly competitive applicants to show evidence of the research they have conducted. Thus, the URNCST Journal was created to provide dedicated undergraduate researchers with a cost-effective and meaningful platform to showcase their research findings with an international audience that includes their peers and mentors, and potential future research supervisors, not to mention committees responsible for academic awards and scholarships, as well as graduate and professional degree program admissions.
As an undergraduate conference planner or mentored paper author, you want your article to be published in a research journal that offers its authors the best combination of quality editorial standards and high article visibility. Here are 8 reasons why the URNCST Journal is the gold standard among undergraduate research publications:
- Open Access – As opposed to subscription-based journals, all research articles accepted in the URNCST Journal are fully accessible and can be downloaded, read and cited by any academic in the world who has an internet connection.
- Prestigious and Peer-Reviewed – The URNCST Journal only publishes conference abstracts that have been rigorously peer-reviewed by a planning committee. Furthermore, only select abstract authors - typically designated presenters of poster or oral competitions at a conference OR the URNCST Journal Mentored Paper Competition - are invited to publish a full-article in the URNCST Journal. Instead of relying on local experts or a single academic institution, the URNCST Journal’s editors carefully review over these articles before calling upon principal investigators and graduate students around the world who are experts in the manuscript’s specific topic area.
- Rapid Turnaround Time – We understand that your abstract or article comes with the hope that you will be able to share your published research with a potential research placement or thesis advisor or a graduate or professional school committee, thus we endeavour to publish all conference abstracts before the date of the conference or reach a peer-reviewed decision on full articles and publish them within two months.
- International – While many undergraduate research journals are based out of/only accept submissions from one university, the URNCST Journal accepts submissions from undergraduate research conference planning committees internationally, calls on peer-reviewers internationally, and all published articles are available for an international audience.
- Broad and Multidisciplinary – We value submissions from undergraduate students conducting research in any discipline within the natural and clinical sciences and technology. We understand that as an undergraduate student, you may choose to conduct research in multiple scientific disciplines throughout your degree, attend multiple undergraduate conferences or pursue a second and/or professional-undergraduate degree and the URNCST Journal serves as a platform to showcase all of your work.
- Indexed – While many undergraduate research journals are difficult to find, lack proper archiving methods, and lack indexing, abstract books and articles published in URNCST Journal are easily found as a result of SEO optimization, archived securely on Open Journal Systems servers, and are indexed to Google Scholar once published. The URNCST Journal is also a CrossRef member, which means that all published abstract books and articles undergo content registration (metadata deposit) and receive their own digital object identifier (DOI). As a newly launched publication, future plans include also index articles in other academic databases including PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus among others, meaning that even currently published articles will likely be later disseminated much more widely.
- Innovative – The URNCST Journal team values the opinions of authors, reviewers and researchers. We welcome your feedback on how to improve our publication, but more importantly we want your thoughts on how we can support undergraduate research endeavours worldwide. For example, it is our hope that we will be able to offer URNCST Journal undergraduate research awards in the future.
- Social Media Promoted – While it is increasingly common for research journals to have social media platforms, the URNCST Journal team takes it a step further by posting a message promoting your research article the day it is published on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, thereby maximizing the visibility of your work.