How to Get Published in the National High School Journal of Science

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

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How to Get Published in the National High School Journal of Science

Just recently, high school scientists snagged over $9 million in prizes at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair 2024. This shows how publications like the National High School Journal of Science (NHSHS) are. They give high school students a chance to publish their research and share their discoveries with the world.

We’ll walk you through the submission process for the National High School Journal of Science. We’ll go over the submission guidelines and share some research writing tips. Follow these steps, and you’ll boost your chances of getting your work published and making a mark in the scientific community.

What Is the National High School Journal of Science?

The National High School Journal of Science is a free, online, student-run, and peer-reviewed research journal just for high school students. The journal is all about making science accessible and getting students excited about learning beyond the classroom.

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Though run by students, NHSJS maintains high publication standards thanks to dedicated peer reviewers and a Scientist Advisory Board made up of professional researchers. The journal publishes original research by high school students and articles on important science and policy developments. It also features interviews with experienced scientists and advice for aspiring researchers.

National High School Journal of Science Submission Guidelines

Before you submit to the National High School Journal of Science, here are the key details you need to know:


High school students from around the world can submit their work to NHSJS. Whether you’re a freshman just starting out or a senior with lots of research experience, you can contribute to this journal.

Submission types

NHSJS accepts papers on a wide range of subjects, including biology, chemistry, computer science, math, neuroscience, physics, policy, and social sciences.

Here are the types of manuscripts they accept:

Manuscript type Description
Original Research Original research papers must present new findings. Your paper should have an abstract, an introduction, up to six figures or tables, and sections with subheadings. Don’t forget to include a maximum of 40 references. Be sure to detail your materials, procedures, and objectives in the supporting online material. Also, include any extra info that backs up your conclusions.
Short Articles Short articles are for sharing significant developments in science. You can include up to 40 references and 4 figures or tables. Instead of rehashing what’s already known, these articles should tell readers about ongoing research or new breakthroughs.
Policy Policy articles explore science-related issues that affect public policy. These help readers understand the intersection of science and policy, shedding light on current debates and regulatory changes.
Media Media submissions are reviews of books, multimedia, exhibitions, and films that are interesting to NHSJS readers. These reviews provide insights into new and exciting scientific content across various platforms.
Technical Comments Technical comments discuss papers published in NHSJS within the past few months. You can include up to two figures or tables. The authors of the original paper will get a chance to respond to your comments.
Letters Letters talk about material published in NHSJS or discuss general interest issues. Submit letters directly to the editor. They might be edited for clarity and space, and the editor decides whether to publish the whole letter or just a part of it.

Manuscript sections

When submitting to the National High School Journal of Science, follow this structure to keep things consistent and clear. Your manuscript should include these sections in this order:

  • Title
  • Authors and affiliations
  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • Methods
  • Acknowledgments
  • References

Citation style

When you’re ready to submit your article, you’ll need to prepare two citation formats: one for reviewing and one for online publishing.

For the standard reviewing format: Number your references sequentially as they appear in the text. These numbers should appear as superscripts before the punctuation mark, without a space between the number and the word. Only one publication per number.

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For formatting the references themselves: List all authors with their initials first followed by their last name (e.g., J. B. Robertson, P. L. Cole). The titles of cited articles should be in sentence case (first word capitalized), but not italicized. Book titles should be italicized and use standard capitalization. Journal names should be italicized, volume numbers bolded, followed by page numbers, and the publication year in parentheses. For websites, include the author if known, the title of the cited page, the full URL, and the year it was posted in parentheses.

  • Example: D. Tao, Z. He, Y. Lin, C. Liu, Q. Tao, Where does fear originate in the brain? A coordinate-based meta-analysis of explicit and implicit fear processing. Neuroimage. 227, 117686 (2021).

For the online publication citation format: Use the same structure, but instead of superscript numbers, put the complete citation within double parentheses wherever it appears in the text. Make sure there’s a space before the open parentheses.

  • Single citation example: These conduction electrons can oscillate and give rise to surface plasmon resonance ((U. Kreibig, M. Vollmer, Optical Properties of Metal Clusters. Springer Series Mate, 13–201 (1995).)). Surface plasmon resonance is a technique used to characterize binding interactions.

If you have multiple citations: Each one should be in its own set of double parentheses, separated by a superscript comma.

  • Multiple citations example: These conduction electrons can oscillate and give rise to surface plasmon resonance ((U. Kreibig, M. Vollmer, Optical Properties of Metal Clusters. Springer Series Mate, 13–201 (1995).)), ((W. Hou, S. B. Cronin, A Review of Surface Plasmon Resonance-Enhanced Photocatalysis. Adv Funct Mater. 23, 1612–1619 (2013).)). Surface plasmon resonance is a technique used to characterize binding interactions.

Review process

The review process at the National High School Journal of Science has three main steps:

  1. Initial Review: First, the Editorial Staff checks out your submitted paper and decides whether to reject it or send it for peer review.
  2. Peer Review: If it passes the first check, your submission goes to one or two peer reviewers for their feedback.
  3. Advisory Board Review: Finally, a member of their Scientist Advisory Board—made up of experienced researchers and professors—reviews the paper. They volunteer their time to guide young scientists and provide valuable feedback for both the author and the peer reviewers.

After these steps, the journal sends the submission back to you with comments for improvement. Once that’s done, the Editorial Staff takes care of copyediting, layout formatting, and proofreading before publishing it online.


NHSJS accepts submissions on a rolling basis. The journal usually takes 1-2 months to decide whether to accept a submission. The editing process can add up to another month.

Submission fees

There’s no fee to submit your manuscript. However, if your paper gets accepted, there’s a $250 publication fee.

Submission portal

Ready to submit your manuscript? Head over to this page to request the submission form.

Tips for Getting Published in the National High School Journal of Science

Getting published in the National High School Journal of Science is super rewarding. Here’s a quick guide to help you write your papers following the journal’s format.

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1. Abstract

Keep it between 200-250 words. Make sure it contains:

Elements Description
  • Outline the background or context of the study.
  • State the main objective or research question being addressed.
  • Explain why the study was conducted.
  • Identify the gap in knowledge or problem it aims to address.
  • Provide an overview of the research design, methodology, and techniques used.
  • Include details about the participants or sample.
  • Describe data collection methods.
  • Explain data analysis procedures.
  • Summarize the main findings of the study.
  • Highlight key outcomes, trends, and significant results.
  • Present these findings objectively and succinctly.
  • Sum up the implications and conclusions drawn from the study’s findings.
  • Address how the results answer the research question or contribute to the broader field of study.
  • Discuss any potential applications, recommendations, or further research suggested by the findings.
  • Include a list of relevant keywords or phrases.
  • These keywords help index the abstract and make it easier for readers to find the paper when searching for related topics.

2. Introduction

In your NHSJS submission, include all the necessary background info and set the stage for your research:

Elements Description
Background and Context
  • Introduce the broader context within which your research is situated.
  • Discuss the general field of study, existing theories, previous research, or relevant historical developments.
  • Provide enough information to help the reader understand the context of your study.
Problem Statement and Rationale
  • Clearly state the research problem or question you’re addressing.
  • Explain why this problem is worth investigating.
  • Discuss why it’s relevant to the field.
  • Address any gaps, inconsistencies, or limitations in existing research that your study aims to address.
Significance and Purpose
  • Explain the significance of your research.
  • Describe how your study will contribute to the field’s understanding, knowledge, or practice.
  • Highlight potential implications, practical applications, or theoretical advancements from your findings.
  • State the specific objectives of your study.
  • Explain what you aim to achieve with this research.
  • Present the research questions or hypotheses that guide your investigation, if applicable.
Scope and Limitations
  • Clearly define the scope of your study.
  • Specify what aspects are included and excluded.
  • Discuss any limitations, such as constraints on resources, data availability, or potential biases.
Theoretical Framework
  • Introduce the theoretical framework or conceptual model grounding your research.
  • Explain how this framework informs your study.
  • Describe how it provides a lens through which to analyze the data.
Methodology Overview
  • Provide a brief overview of the research methodology you employed.
  • Describe the general approach taken to gather and analyze data.
  • Note that detailed methodology should be saved for the “Methods” section later in the paper.

3. Methods

For research papers, detail your research methods clearly:

Elements Description
Research Design
  • Describe the overall structure of the study (e.g., experimental, observational, cross-sectional, longitudinal).
Participants or Sample
  • Specify the characteristics of the participants or subjects involved in the study.
  • Include demographic information and any relevant selection criteria.
Data Collection
  • Detail the methods used to collect data (e.g., surveys, interviews, experiments, observations).
  • Explain how the data was collected and why those methods were chosen.
Variables and Measurements
  • Clearly define the variables under investigation.
  • Explain how they were measured or operationalized.
  • Discuss any tools, scales, or instruments used for measurements.
  • Outline the step-by-step procedure followed in the study.
  • Include the sequence of activities from data collection to analysis.
Data Analysis
  • Describe the techniques employed to analyze the collected data.
  • Provide details about the methods and tools used, whether using statistical tests, qualitative analysis, or a combination.
Ethical Considerations
  • Mention any ethical concerns associated with the study.
  • Explain how these concerns were addressed, including informed consent, confidentiality, and adherence to relevant guidelines.

As for review papers, explain your approach to reviewing the literature:

Elements Description
Search Strategy
  • Describe the systematic approach used to search for relevant literature.
  • Include databases, keywords, inclusion and exclusion criteria, and any filters applied.
Inclusion Criteria
  • Explain the criteria used to select the studies included in the review.
  • Mention factors such as publication dates, study designs, and relevance to the topic.
Data Extraction
  • Detail how data from selected studies were extracted.
  • Include information about the authors, publication dates, research designs, key findings, and other relevant data points.
Synthesis Method
  • Discuss how the gathered information was synthesized and organized.
  • Describe the approach used, such as thematic analysis or narrative synthesis, to derive meaningful insights from the literature.
Quality Assessment
  • If applicable, explain how the quality of the included studies was assessed.
  • Mention any tools or criteria used to evaluate the validity and reliability of the selected research.

4. Discussion

Don’t introduce new info in the discussion of your NHSJS submission. Focus on summarizing and discussing what you’ve already presented:

Elements Description
Restatement of Key Findings
  • Summarize the main results of your study.
  • Provide a concise overview of the most important findings that directly address your research objectives or questions.
Implications and Significance
  • Discuss the implications of your findings.
  • Explain how your results contribute to the field’s understanding of the research problem.
  • Highlight the practical, theoretical, or academic significance of your work.
  • Show how your study advances existing knowledge or fills gaps in the literature.
Connection to Objectives
  • Reflect on whether your research objectives or hypotheses were met.
  • If they were not fully met, discuss why and consider any unexpected outcomes.
  • Offer recommendations for future research or practical applications based on your findings, if applicable.
  • Suggest areas that could benefit from further investigation.
  • Discuss how your study provides a foundation for future work.
  • Acknowledge the limitations of your study.
  • Address any constraints, biases, or factors that may have impacted the reliability or generalizability of your findings.
  • Being transparent about limitations demonstrates a thoughtful and critical approach to research.
Closing Thought
  • End the discussion with a thought-provoking or insightful statement that leaves the reader with a lasting impression.
  • This could be a reflection on the broader implications of the research or a call to action related to the research topic.

To boost your chances of getting accepted, make sure your manuscript is free from grammatical errors and typos. Review your work carefully or have a peer or mentor proofread it. This step is key to presenting a polished and professional paper.

Also, seek constructive feedback from teachers, mentors, or peers before submitting. Their insights can help you refine your manuscript to meet the journal’s standards.

National High School Journal of Science Sample Papers

One of the best ways to get published in the National High School Journal of Science is to check out their previously published papers. Let’s look at a few and see what we can learn from them.

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Paper 1: “Comparative Analysis of Machine Learning Based Bank Note Authentication through Variable Selection” by Rick Nie


Rick Nie’s research is all about banknote authentication, which is super important for keeping our financial system secure. He uses a machine learning dataset from UCI to study the properties of images of real and fake banknotes. After cleaning and prepping the data, Nie compares six machine learning algorithms.

He finds that K-Nearest-Neighbors (KNN) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) with Gaussian Kernel are the most accurate. He even suggests that these algorithms could be used in mobile apps, which would be great for developing countries with limited banking infrastructure.

Why the paper is good

Nie’s paper stands out because of its thorough and systematic approach. He meticulously prepped the data—cleaning, normalizing, and scaling it—to ensure it was in the best shape for analysis. This level of detail in data preparation is crucial for the validity of machine learning studies.

Moreover, Nie didn’t just stick to one algorithm. He compared six different ones. This deep analysis shows that his conclusions are well-founded and reliable. He identified KNN and SVM with Gaussian Kernel as the top performers, backing this up with detailed performance metrics, which adds a lot of credibility to his findings.

The paper also has significant practical implications. Nie suggests integrating these algorithms into mobile apps, especially useful for developing countries. This real-world application shows that his research doesn’t just solve a technical problem but also has a meaningful impact.

Paper 2: “Effect of Language Proficiency in the Well-being of Syrian Refugees in Türkiye” by Ceren Argin


Ceren Argin’s research dives into how well Syrian refugees in Türkiye are doing based on their Turkish language skills. The study looks at how knowing Turkish affects their well-being, measured by PTSD and life satisfaction scales. The research involved 33 Syrian refugees in Istanbul’s Fatih area, using an online survey.

The study discovers that while language skills don’t really affect PTSD levels, they do significantly impact life satisfaction, especially when education is factored in. The study points out that education plays a big role in how satisfied refugees are with their lives.

Why the paper is good

First off, the study tackles an important social issue with real-world relevance. By focusing on the well-being of Syrian refugees, Argin’s study gives policymakers useful insights. The detailed look at language skills and their effect on life satisfaction, considering education, adds depth to the research.

The research methodology is also solid despite the small sample size. Using an online anonymous survey helps keep participants’ privacy and encourages honest answers. The study is upfront about its limitations, like the small and specific sample, which actually adds to its credibility by showing a critical approach.

Lastly, the practical implications of the findings are well-explained. Argin suggests that improving language skills among refugees could help create a more integrated society—highlighting the potential policy applications of the research. The paper’s conclusion calls for more studies with larger, more diverse samples and additional factors to control for, showing a forward-thinking approach that adds to the ongoing conversation on refugee well-being.


Getting published in the National High School Journal of Science is an awesome chance for young researchers to show off their work. Remember, every step you take to refine your research and writing brings you closer to publication. Embrace the process, ask for feedback, and strive for excellence. Your dedication to science and commitment to quality will set you on the path to success.

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What research topics does the National High School Journal of Science accept?

The journal accepts a wide range of research topics across all scientific disciplines. This includes original research, short articles, policy discussions, media reviews, and technical comments.

What is the acceptance rate of the National High School Journal of Science?

The acceptance rate is between 60-70%. This shows the journal’s commitment to high standards while still encouraging student submissions.

Does the National High School Journal of Science charge fees?

There’s no fee to submit a manuscript. If your paper gets accepted, though, there’s a $250 publication fee.

When is the deadline for submission to the National High School Journal of Science?

There’s no specific deadline since the journal accepts rolling submissions. You can submit your manuscript any time throughout the year.


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