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The Ultimate Guide to the Journal of Student Research

Getting your research paper published in an academic journal is a great way to gain external validation and credibility for your work. There are various journals that now publish high school research and it can get overwhelming to decide the one that matches your specific requirements.


For students, who are looking for a journal with a less time-consuming review process, the Journal of Student Research is a great option.


Journal of Student Research (JSR) is a multidisciplinary, and faculty-reviewed journal based in Houston, Texas that publishes research by high school, undergraduate, and graduate students. The journal publishes articles in an array of disciplines and in general, papers on all topics, ranging from applied to theoretical research in any discipline, are eligible for submission. The journal has fixed deadlines for submissions in February, May, August, and November.


The Journal of Student Research is particularly popular among high school students due to the variety of research it accepts. Interested high school students can submit research projects, research articles/posters, review articles, and also AP Capstone Research to the Journal of Student Research.


As we explain in detail in the next section, we usually recommend students aim for a more selective journal as a target and in case that does not work out, the Journal of Student Research can be a good safety option. In our experience of guiding more than a hundred students through this journal, we believe that the Journal of Student Research is best suited as a second preference due to its relatively high acceptance rate and less time-consuming editing process.


Given these advantages, it is fairly popular among student researchers. In 11 years of service, they have published around 950 articles from more than 2000 authors!


How selective/prestigious is the Journal of Student Research (JSR)?

We rate it as moderately selective. Around 65% of all our students who submit to the Journal of Student Research get published, which is higher than most other journals where our students submit their research. This is why we mostly recommended the Journal of Student Research (JSR) as a safety journal.


However, this does not imply that publishing at the Journal of Student Research would not add any value to your profile or to your college application. Getting published here would still demonstrate the fact that your research has been through a review process and that it meets benchmarks of rigor and credibility.


If you’re interested in more prestigious and selective journals, check out our guides for The Concorde Review or The Journal of Emerging Investigators.


What topics are acceptable at the Journal of Student Research (JSR)?

As mentioned earlier, the Journal of Student Research is popular among students because of the wide variety of mediums that it accepts research in (posters, papers, projects, etc). Not only that, but the Journal of Student Research accepts research in all disciplines! To give you some idea of this, here are a few examples of work that has been published:

  • The Social Cognitive Theory and Female Empowerment in Grey’s Anatomy: The research analyzes every episode of Grey’s Anatomy and questions viewers of the show in order to determine how female characters are depicted in Grey’s Anatomy and how this depiction empowers female viewers.

  • Deep Neural Network Classifier for Alzheimer’s Disease: The paper proposes using statistical methods such as principal component analysis, etc. combined with Benjamini-Hochberg correction through feature selection and dimensionality reduction to isolate significant features associated with AD.

  • A Study of the Endowment Effect in Phase II and III of the EU Emissions Trading System: The author investigates the endowment effect in the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) over Phase II and Phase III using complete transaction records from the market.


As we can see here, the range of disciplines is very diverse for you to choose from. Make sure you are pursuing research in the area you are most interested in!


Case Study - Gia Han

To understand a bit more about what a potential project topic looks like, we will look at Lumiere alumna, Gia Han, who was part of our Summer 2021 cohort. Gia got accepted into Stanford recently and was one of our students who got published at the Journal of Student Research (JSR).


At Lumiere, she worked with our mentor Philip Liang who has completed his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago. Gia has always been interested in behavioral economics. While she did not have formal economics in school, she learned it informally (often through debating competitions). A research program was a way for her to pursue this interest further.


Gia wanted to test the strength of the theoretical analysis of nudges’ effectiveness by applying it to the context of companies in Vietnam. She surveyed 41 companies in various sectors and used regression models to interpret the data. Her first study found a positive significant relationship between automatic registration, monetary rewards, and the percentage of employees vaccinated. In the second study, they found no evidence that sanitizing nudges encourage employees’ usage of sanitary utensils provided to them. Their findings put the functionality of nudges into a developing country’s context and analyzed socio-economic factors that might have caused our results to differ from prior research.


Gia’s example is a great case study of the rigor research has to go through to get published, even in a journal that has a higher acceptance rate!


Who is eligible to publish?

  • The first author of the submission must be a High School Student at an accredited academic institution.

  • Manuscripts are not eligible for publication without a high school affiliation and a teacher/advisor contact information. Student authors must have a teacher/advisor who will guide them to submit the manuscript.

  • The names and email addresses of the teacher/advisor must be listed in the contributor section by clicking the “add contributor” during Step 3 of the submission process.

  • Only 5 authors including advisors are free of charge per manuscript submission. For additional author charges, read this.

Submission and Review Process

For most journals, the submission and review process is where most students find themselves confused. In this section, we will guide you on the different steps you will go through with the Journal of Student Research (JSR) once have a finished draft of your research paper.


Source: The Journal of Student Research (JSR) submission guidelines

  1. Go through the submission requirements: The first step involves familiarizing yourself with the different formatting guidelines of the journal. Being thorough on this seemingly straightforward procedural element can save a lot of time in the future! Make sure you go through the sample template here and ensure compliance with it. The formatting guidelines for the same can be found here.

  2. Create an account and follow the submission guidelines: To create a new account, click here and fill out the necessary details. Once Logged in, the portal dashboard will open where you will see the Active Submissions queue. This page lists the submissions currently in the editorial process and has access to past submissions that have been made to the journal under the "Archives" Tab. You can submit a new article by clicking the link for "New Submission". The submission process for the Authors is broken down into different steps, with guidance provided at each one.

  3. Review process: You will be contacted by the editors with a decision once the review process is completed. Reviewers are selected by the Editorial Staff at the Journal of Student Research and the estimated time for the review process is 12-24 weeks. The Journal of Student Research follows the double-blinded closed reviewing policy where the identity of the author is not revealed to the reviewer and vice versa. Scholarly feedback upon reviewing the manuscript by the referees will be provided to you. This feedback will not only help you identify areas of improvement to the submission but help better understand the process in order to be successful at publication in the future.

  4. Decision: If a submission is accepted, it will then proceed to the editing stage of the editorial process. If the Editor's decision is that the submission should be revised and then resubmitted for peer review, you will have to first indicate a willingness to undertake the revisions, using the Editor/Author Correspondence. Once the revisions have been completed, you will upload the revised version for the second round of reviews. The Section Editor will submit it to the same Reviewers or to one or more new Reviewers and notify you when a decision has been reached in a similar manner to the initial review. Note: While the aforementioned editing stage is a part of the journal’s process, in our experience, we have noticed that the journal nearly never gives edits, and students always just advance straight to being accepted. Another important detail to keep in mind about the Journal of Student Research is that the entire review and publication process is extremely time-consuming. Even if students manage to make the required edits quickly, they can expect the journal to take a much longer time to publish (around 7-9 months).

Going through all these stages successfully would lead to your publication in the journal!


How much would it cost?

You are required to pay an Article Processing Charge (APC) to publish at the Journal of Student Research. This fee is common at most journals, particularly since journals may have costs for making research open access, hiring human resources for the review process, etc.


The APC for the manuscripts is paid in two Phases:

  • Pre-review APC: USD 50 at submission.

  • Post-review APC: USD 200 after an editorial decision is recorded and emailed to the authors.

If you are interested in the fast-track review of your submitted manuscript, please contact the team at technical@jsr.org with your manuscript's submission ID. Fast track review option allows you to expedite the publication process by 4-5 weeks. However, please be careful here! Fast-track review specifically speeds up the review process but not the final publication production process. That process can still take months to get published.


5 tips from Lumiere

  1. Budget your time adequately: As mentioned previously, the Journal of Student Research has a very long publication process. Most students don't know that the journal takes 6-7 months to fully publish their work and thus you may find yourself stuck in the process for longer than you had initially anticipated. Please make sure you take this into consideration while planning your journal selection, especially if you are applying to college in the same year.

  2. Have a mentor: Apart from it being an important requirement in the submission process, having a mentor guiding your research is very useful in the research process. On one hand, it will give you the necessary guidance since most students are not exposed to research methodology at the high school level. On the other hand, it will fill in any relevant technical knowledge gaps that you may have in your discipline since a research paper would push you into a deeper analysis.

  3. Partner (if possible) with the right programs: The journal depends on support from various partners that it has (research programs, etc). If possible, you should consider submitting your research through one of these partners. This may increase the chances of your research making the deadlines and various milestones. Students who submit their work independently often face issues in terms of communication with the Journal of Student Research.

  4. Make sure you submit to the high school portal: One of the most common mistakes made by many students is that they submit their research papers on the wrong portal. The Journal of Student Research accepts research from both high school and college/graduate students. To that end, they have separate websites/portals for submission for these two different categories of students. Please make sure that you submit your research to the high school submission portal. Failure to submit in the right portal might mean that your research will be evaluated by college/graduate school standards!

  5. Don’t take your research lightly! Many students assume that given the high acceptance rate for the journal, the journal would compromise on rigor. However, this is highly misplaced. Your research has to meet the minimum standards of scientific rigor to be able to pass through the review process. Make sure you take the process seriously!

Want extra support? The Lumiere Research Scholar Program

If you’re looking for a mentor to submit to a journal like the Journal of Student Research or want to build your own independent research paper, then consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program. Last year over 2100 students applied for about 500 spots in the program. You can find the application form here.


You can see our admission results here for our students.


Manas is a publication strategy associate at Lumiere Education. He studied public policy and interactive media at NYU.

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