Ampitheatre

Frequently Asked Questions:
Undergraduate Research Journal

Who can submit to The USC Upstate Undergraduate Research Journal?
Any current or recent USC Upstate undergraduate who has concluded a research project or creative activity can submit to the Undergraduate Research Journal. Non-USC Upstate undergraduates who have completed a project under the mentorship of a USC Upstate faculty member are also eligible. The student should only submit their contribution after receiving approval from their faculty mentor.

What is the Undergraduate Research Journal submission deadline?
The submission deadline for papers is November 1st of each fall semester. More details can be found on the Call for Papers page.

Can creative project manuscripts be submitted?
Yes. For creative projects, we invite an extended description of the project, illustrations or more appropriate materials instead of a full-length manuscript.

Can my submission be the result of a class research or creative project?
Yes. Outstanding research or creative manuscripts resulting from a class project are welcomed. In this case, your course instructor would be your faculty mentor.

Can I also submit my paper to the Annual USC Upstate Research Symposium?
Yes. You are encouraged to submit an extended version of a paper/poster that you presented at the Annual SC Upstate Research Symposium.

What is the review and selection process for the Undergraduate Research Journal?
The Faculty Editorial Board reviews submissions, makes the final selection of articles and coordinates the final publication of the Undergraduate Research Journal with the University Communications Department.

What are the selection criteria for the papers?
Papers are reviewed based on the following criteria:

  • A well-written paper
  • Significance and purpose of the research is well described for a multi-disciplinary audience
  • Well-developed research design and methodology
  • Thoughtfully interpreted and analyzed results
  • Excellent utilization of supporting materials or references
  • A non-repetitive, efficiently organized, convincing and easy-to-follow paper

Can I have a co-author?
You can have USC Upstate undergraduates and your faculty project advisor as co-authors. Other research personnel should be recognized in the Acknowledgements section of your paper.

Can I request an extension on the deadline to submit my paper? 
Yes. If your project or paper will not be completed by the deadline, and you are still interested in submitting for the Undergraduate Research Journal, send an e-mail to mpilgrim@uscupstate.edu, CURS Office, explaining your situation.

How will I know if my paper has been selected for the Undergraduate Research Journal?
You and your faculty mentor will receive an email about your status.

What subjects and how many papers do you publish each year in the Undergraduate Research Journal?
We welcome papers from all disciplines, and the decision to publish a paper depends only on the quality of the paper. We do not have a quota as to how many to publish. Decisions are based on quality only. If all the papers submitted are excellent, we will publish them all; likewise if all the papers are poor, no Undergraduate Research Journal will be published that year.

What kind of format is required for the Undergraduate Research Journal? 
Paper Submission Guidelines can be found on the Call for Papers page. Only papers that adhere to these guidelines will be considered for possible publication in the Undergraduate Research Journal.

My faculty mentor has not read my paper. Should I submit it anyway?
No. All papers that are submitted must be read by faculty mentors prior to submission. A faculty mentor's approval is extremely important and may increase your chance of being published.

I don't know how to cite sources. Where can I go for help?
For citing sources, you must use the guidelines stated on the Call for Papers page. The Paper Submission Guidelines on the Call for Papers also lists how to cite common references, such as books, scholarly journals, magazine and newspaper articles, and anthologies.

My project involves the use of human or animal subjects. What should I do?
If your project involves human or animal subjects, please make sure your study has obtained the appropriate IRB or IACUC approval prior to starting your project. You must provide the number approving this study. If you do not have this approval, your paper will not be considered for possible publication. See website of the Office of Research Compliance - http://orc.research.sc.edufor additional information.

Do I need to respond to the biographical questions and turn in a picture?
Yes. After your paper has been accepted, you be instructed on how to get your picture taken by a photographer on campus and you will need to answer a short questionaire. Published papers will include a brief biographical section about the authors.

Can I make revisions to my paper after I submit it?
Yes, but only if the Faculty Advisory Board deem such changes are necessary and would greatly enhance the understandability of your paper. Revisions should be submitted only after you receive a request from the Editorial Board for such changes. Such papers are considered borderline cases and have a good chance of being published.

Can I also submit my paper to other journals?
Yes, but make sure the other publications do not object if your paper ends up being selected for publication in The USC Upstate Undergraduate Research Journal. This is assuming that you are submitting identical versions of the paper to both journals.

 For any other questions, please contact Dr. Melissa Pilgrim, mpilgrim@uscupstate.edu, (864) 503-5457.