Education for Health

: 2018  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 191--192

Where do medical student authors submit their work?

Yassar Alamri 
 Department of Medicine, New Zealand Brain Research Institute; Department of Medicine, University of Otago; Department of Medicine, Canterbury District Health Board, Christchurch, New Zealand

Correspondence Address:
Yassar Alamri
New Zealand Brain Research Institute, 66 Stewart Street, Central Christchurch 8011
New Zealand

How to cite this article:
Alamri Y. Where do medical student authors submit their work?.Educ Health 2018;31:191-192

How to cite this URL:
Alamri Y. Where do medical student authors submit their work?. Educ Health [serial online] 2018 [cited 2021 Dec 5 ];31:191-192
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Full Text

Dear Editor,

The ability to not only conduct research, but also synthesize the findings and publish them, is increasingly becoming a core competency expected from graduating medical students.[1] However, the process of publishing research findings can be challenging and cumbersome – especially for novice authors.[2] One of the questions student authors often face is where to submit their manuscripts.

Possible avenues for medical student research include “student corners” within parent journals, as well as medical student journals. The latter refers to journals that are commonly run by medical students, but maintain a rigorous process – often expert peer-review – in selecting manuscripts. We have previously reviewed 18 of the currently running medical student journals.[3]

The utility of medical student journals cannot be denied – both for student authors and for student reviewers.[4] Medical student journals allow student authors to experience the scientific method of communication while adopting a “student-friendly” approach. Not only would this motivate students about their current project, but it is also hoped to foster ongoing interest in research involvement.

Two issues related to medical student publishing need to be addressed, however. First, the visibility of research published in medical student journals can be compromised. This is because almost none of the current medical student journals are indexed by medical bibliographic databases.[3] We recently found articles published in non-MEDLINE-indexed student journals to have received significantly less subsequent citations than articles in a MEDLINE-indexed student journal.[5]

Second, a cautionary note is warranted against predatory journals that target student and established authors alike.[6] Such journals give precedence to receiving the submission fee over the quality of the submitted/accepted research. Needless to say, research published in these journals may not necessarily undergo the rigorous peer-review process. The ease and speed with which submitted manuscripts are accepted may lure naïve student authors.

In conclusion, medical student journals may offer a practical medium in which medical students can publish their research. There is an abundance of medical student journals – with target readerships that are local (e.g., University of Toronto Medical Journal), national (e.g., New Zealand Medical Student Journal), or international (e.g., Student BMJ). One potential caveat to keep in mind is that research published in medical student journals could face limited visibility.

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.


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2Lin S. Student journals: Facilitating medical student research and physician-scientist development. Mcgill J Med 2006;9:82-3.
3Alamri Y. How do medical student journals fare? A global survey of journals run by medical students. Educ Health (Abingdon) 2016;29:136-41.
4Al-Busaidi IS. Medical student journals: Critical to the development of physician-scientists. Educ Health (Abingdon) 2016;29:273-4.
5Alamri Y. The Dynamics of Medical Student Journals: Effects of Journal Indexing on Content Visibility. J Elec Resourc Med Lib 2018;15(1):1-6.
6Beall J. Predatory publishers are corrupting open access. Nature 2012;489:179.