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Want to join Bioscience Horizons?

Click on the roles below to apply via our Google form!

You can find out more about the structure of the journal and the role descriptions below.

We are an online peer-reviewed, open-access journal publishing outstanding undergraduate and master’s research in the field of biosciences.


We publish insightful and original research articles and reviews authored by students worldwide to contribute to scientific progress and disseminate bioscience awareness. Bioscience Horizons is a project in association with UCL Press and is run by undergraduate and graduate students supervised by a board of academics from various leading UK universities.

Topics include (but are not restricted to): agriculture, anatomy, animal and human physiology, behavioural science, biochemistry, bioinformatics, biology, biotechnology, botany, conservation biology, forensic biology, ecology, environmental biology, genetics, marine biology, medical science, microbiology, neuroscience, pharmacology, sports science, and zoology. 

Who are we looking for?

Good candidates have a strong interest in the field of biosciences and science communication. We are looking for undergraduate and graduate students committed to publishing impactful student manuscripts and learning about the process behind high-quality academic publishing. Previous experience in academic writing is appreciated but not essential. Willingness to learn and strive for excellence is crucial.

Bioscience Horizons presents an incredible opportunity for you to learn transferrable skills useful for a future career either within or outside of academia and network with peers and academics within UCL and around the world.

The whole student team operates on a volunteering basis (therefore, we cannot offer remuneration for your work at this time).

Structure of Bioscience Horizons

Bioscience Horizons is run by a Student Board composed of Undergraduate and Master’s students being current students and recent graduates from UCL. The Student Board is responsible for the general management of the journal, supported by the supervision of an Academic Editorial Board in order to ensure rigor and professionalism. In particular, the peer review process is performed by student peer reviewers alongside academic experts in the field, belonging to the Academic Editorial Board or recruited as needed. The Editor in Chief of the Academic Editorial Board ensures smooth execution of the functions of the Academic Editorial Board.
Bioscience Horizons’ Management Board supervises the overall administration of the journal.

 

The Student Board hosts two departments: Submissions and Marketing/Outreach.
Part of the Submissions Department are the Section Editors and Online Editors. The Submissions Department works closely with Peer Reviewers and Scientific Advisors, which represent the core of Bioscience Horizons mission: publishing the highest quality student research via a thorough peer review process.

Part of the Marketing Department are the Marketing Officers. The Student Executive Board is responsible for the successful implementation of the overall direction of the journal. Within the Student Executive Board, the Editor in Chief is assisted by two Deputy Chief Editors.

 

Staff Policies

 

It is important to note that student members of Bioscience Horizons are all volunteers. Bioscience Horizons recognizes the peer review process as an essential part of scientific progress, therefore believes in performing this important service to science. We also believe that Bioscience Horizons gives back to students by offering a unique opportunity of personal development by equipping them with invaluable transferrable skills to pursue careers within and outside of academia.
Members of the Bioscience Horizons Student Board are allowed to participate to the journal’s activities while they are enrolled as undergraduate or postgraduate students in a UK university. Although, members of the Student Board should be UCL students, with some exceptions to ensure continuity of the journal. Peer Reviewers and Scientific Advisors do not have to necessarily be UCL students.

Student Board members are allowed to continue working for Bioscience Horizons for up to one year after graduation upon approval by both the Student and Academic Editor in Chief. Bioscience Horizons encourages its Student Board members to apply to more senior positions within the board and especially to the Student Executive Board, after familiarizing themselves with the activities and scope of the journal. Open vacancies will be advertised on Bioscience Horizons’ social media channels and monthly newsletter.

 

 

Roles and responsibilities

 

Below are listed the responsibilities of each role within Bioscience Horizons.

 

 

Student Executive Board

 

Editor in Chief (1):

 

  • Heads all the departments of the organization and tracks the departments’ progress with the Academic Editor in Chief.

  • Develops the short and long-term mission of the journal with the collaboration of the Academic Editor in Chief and the members of the Management Board. Proposes new ideas for the growth of the journal.

  • Communicates student editorial agreements to the Academic Editorial Board in editorial meetings. Discusses journal activities and improvements.

  • Undertakes the overall supervision of all the submitted contributions to ensure the content is up to the publication’s standard. Manages complaints relating to the journal or its manuscripts after publication.

  • Establishes relationships with other journals, universities, organisations and the media, in consultation with the Academic Editor in Chief. In particular, works with the publication stakeholders to maximise media coverage and other engagements by supervising marketing and outreach matters.

  • Maintains the relationship between the journal and UCL Press.

  • Understands research metrics to measure the journal’s performance.

  • Supervises the journal’s content on social media channels and on the website.

  • Leads Student Board meetings and supervises the training of new members of the journal.

  • Ensures UCL editorial policies are adhered to.

  • Selects and commissions special features, including review articles.

  • Manages recruitment of new members of the Student Board, Peer Reviewers and Scientific Advisors. Motivates and leads the staff of the journal.

  • Manages the publication’s budget alongside the Management Board and chooses where to allocate resources.

  • Represents the publication at conferences, social events and in written features.

 

Time commitment: The Editor in Chief is expected to dedicate roughly 5 hrs/week to the journal to perform tasks such as organizing and leading team meetings, supervising the team and working on the overall management of the journal.

 

 

Deputy Chief Editors (2):

 

  • Takes over the Editor in Chief’s role in their absence, including attendance at meetings and other events.

  • Acts as intermediary between the Student Board and the Student/Academic Editor in Chief to ensure smooth running of the journal.

  • Undertakes the overall supervision of all the submitted contributions to ensure the content is up to the publication’s standard.

  • Communicates student editorial agreements to the Academic Board in editorial meetings. Discusses journal activities and improvements.

  • Leads student board meetings in case of absence of the Editor in Chief and supervises the training of new members of the journal.

  • Helps the Editor in Chief with the recruitment of new members of the Student Board, Peer reviewers and Scientific Advisors.

 

Time commitment: The Deputy Chief Editor/s is expected to dedicate 5 hrs/week to the journal to perform tasks such as organizing and leading team meetings, supervising the team and working on the overall management of the journal.

 

 

 

Submissions Department

 

Section Editor (4):

 

  • Manages Peer Reviewers and Scientific Advisors. Section Editors are though the main point of contact of the Student Editor in Chief.

  • Assigns manuscripts to Peer Reviewers.

  • Acts as a primary supervisor of the Peer Reviewer for general matters such as ideas, questions, issues and concerns.

  • Guarantees that deadlines of peer review are kept.

  • Decides whether to accept or reject a manuscript taking in consideration the peer reviewers’ suggestions. Communicates this suggestion to the Student Editor in Chief, who liaises with the Academic Board and the Academic Editor in Chief.

  • Recruits subject experts to advise on the scientific rigor of the publication if needed.

  • Ensures ethical integrity and checks for textual overlap and suspected plagiarism. In the case of a breach of the journal’s policies raises the issues to the Student Editor in Chief.

  • Copyedits the accepted manuscript to make the text ready for publication. In particular, ensures that the manuscript is clear, consistent, correct and complete.

  • Typesets accepted submission to fit the Bioscience Horizons publication template with the help of the Online Editor.

 

 

Time commitment: The Section Editors are expected to dedicate 2 hrs/week to the journal to give final feedback on the manuscript and the Peer Reviewers’ reports.

 

 

Online Editor (1/2):

 

  • Manages and updates Bioscience Horizons’ online platforms (both Janeway and www.biosciencehorizons.com websites) and social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn).

  • Manages manuscript typesetting together with the Section Editor.

  • Publishes new articles in full (.pdf format) on Janeway and the essential information of the article, including the abstract, on www.biosciencehorizons.com.

  • Monitors the journal’s traffic and statistics.

  • Monitors journal’s Clarivate Analytics impact factor and indexes published articles.

 

Time commitment: The Technical Officer is expected to dedicate 2 hrs/week to the journal to keep updated the website and add newly published articles.

 

 

 

Student Peer Reviewer (>10):

 

  • Provides written, unbiased and constructive peer-review feedback to improve submitted manuscripts.

  • Assesses manuscripts for scientific accuracy, originality and interest to a bioscience audience.

  • Conducts background research on the field to which the manuscript belongs to in order to perform a better review (journal article searches, internet searches, conferences and seminars).

  • Recommends a preliminary acceptance, rejection or revision of manuscripts to the Section Editor allocated. The Section Editor then refers these comments first to the Student Editor in Chief.

  • Liaises with the Section Editor for any ideas, issues or concerns.

  • Liaises with the Scientific Advisor to collect feedback on the peer review report.

  • Assesses manuscripts for clarity and proficiency of writing.

  • Completes peer review training.

 

Peer Reviewers are mainly students with the following scientific interests and/or backgrounds: Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Cellular Biology, Molecular Biology and Neuroscience. In case that a manuscript is submitted that does not belong to one of these most popular categories, additional peer reviewers can be recruited one-off.

 

Time commitment: The Student Peer Reviewers are expected to dedicate 8-10hrs/month to the journal to perform peer reviews. Peer Reviewers are expected to review a minimum of one manuscript per month. This may vary depending the number of manuscripts submitted and decrease and increase upon request. Students will be given 1 full month to complete the peer-review once assigned to a manuscript. Typically, a peer review takes 1-2 days to complete, but normally it should not take longer than 6 hours altogether. If the Peer Reviewer foresees time constraints that might delay the writing of peer review report, they should immediately contact the Section Editor assigned to them and make arrangements to accommodate the Peer Reviewer. Peer Reviewers are responsible for initiating contact and maintaining an active relationship with the Scientific Advisor. To ensure meeting with the Scientific Advisors take place, Scientific Advisors are kindly asked to send an email to the Section Editor stating that he/she has discussed the manuscript with the Peer Reviewer.
Peer Reviewers must also complete training at the start of First Term. This will consist of a 2-week long program where Peer Reviewers are invited to familiarize themselves with the journal’s resources provided, attend workshops, perform a peer review of a bioscience article and incorporate feedback from the Scientific Advisor.

 

 

Scientific Advisor (PhD students/researchers) (>10):

 

  • Provides feedback on peer reviews.

  • Provides feedback on peer review training.

  • Assesses manuscripts for scientific accuracy, originality and interest to a bioscience audience.

  • Attends meeting with Peer Reviewers to discuss the submitted manuscript.

 

Time commitment: Scientific Advisors are advanced students or researchers with extensive experience in reviewing and writing scientific literature. Each peer reviewer is assigned a Scientific Advisor. Scientific Advisors are expected to dedicate 10hrs/month to the journal to guide the Student Peer Reviewers during the peer review process. Scientific Advisors need to meet with the Peer Reviewer at least once per assigned manuscript for 30min-1hr to discuss the scientific rigor of the manuscript and provide feedback on the peer review. These meetings can take place over email correspondence, Zoom/Teams or any other secure online platform. The Scientific Advisor should not give feedback to a Peer Reviewer’s work if this is incomplete or does not represent a sufficient effort. Scientific Advisors must also avoid to rewriting the peer review report on behalf of the Peer Reviewer.

Scientific Advisors are kindly asked to guide the Peer Reviewers through the initial training by addressing any issues or concerns and to liaise with the Submission Officers if any were to arise.

Communication from Peer reviewers is vital for the regular publication of articles at Bioscience Horizons, particularly with the Section Editors and Scientific Advisors. Peer reviewers who do not respond within two weeks to emails that require an immediate answer will receive one warning email. Peer Reviewers should respond to this warning email as soon as possible and usually within a week to avoid being denied the participation to future journal activities.

 


Marketing Department

 

Marketing Officer (2):

 

  • Keeps all social media accounts updated (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn).

  • Manages social media analytics to improve marketing strategy.

  • Designs posters, adverts and graphics.

  • Develops Bioscience Horizons’ brand awareness.

  • Reaches out to other journals, universities and other organizations to build partnerships.

  • Liaises with UCL marketing team to introduce Bioscience Horizons’ to current UCL students and to recruit new members of the Student Board.

  • Looks for media opportunities to increase Bioscience Horizons’ visibility.

 

Time commitment: The Marketing Officers are expected to dedicate 2 hrs/week to the journal to keep social media channels updated, liaise with partners and increase the journal’s media visibility.

 


Academic Editorial Board

 

As Peer reviewers are undergraduate and master’s students, these may not have the sufficient scientific expertise to critique a manuscript intended for academic publication.

Manuscripts submitted to Bioscience Horizons therefore undergo parallel review by the Bioscience Horizons’ Academic Board, formed by professors and researchers with expertise in the field. Firstly, the Academic Editor in Chief critically evaluates whether the submission meets Bioscience Horizons’ submission guidelines and whether it is of interest to the journal. The Academic Editor in Chief then assigns each manuscript to an Academic Section Editor, who is responsible for the recruitment and management of Academic Peer Reviewers and is the main point of contact for the Student Author. The Academic Section Editor decides on whether to accept or reject the manuscript taking in consideration the Academic Peer Reviewers suggestions. The ultimate decision to publish the submitted manuscript must reside with the Academic Board, which is overseen by the Academic Editor-in-Chief. The Academic Editor in Chief maintains a tight link between the departments of the Student Board and between the Student Board and the Academic Board.

Finally, student Peer reviewers will have the chance to discuss the manuscript with the Academic Reviewer or read their feedback upon request.

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