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Welcome to the Rice Undergraduate Science Review (The Catalyst) , a publication edited and published by the students of Rice University with the goal of providing a novel voice and forum for natural science undergraduate researchers.
The Catalyst is unique among undergraduate research journals in that it focuses solely on publishing reviews rather than research articles. By concentrating on review articles we hope to fulfill several roles in the undergraduate research community.
Firstly, we hope that the Catalyst can be used as a resource for undergraduates initially starting research in a university or institutional laboratory. Undergraduates have a unique level of knowledge which we feel no current publication aptly appreciates. University courses offer a great deal of necessary background information which render popular science journals too basic; however, professional research journals often assume a certain familiarity with concepts and vocabulary specific to the field which may not be covered comprehensively in such university courses. Catalyst aims to fill this niche which undergraduates uniquely occupy during their transition from scientific dilettante to professional scientists.
Beyond simply providing a resource for undergraduates entering research laboratories we hope Catalyst will be used by undergraduates as a medium for learning what their peers are doing within their own field and other scientific disciplines. Once again popular science journals may be deemed too basic for undergraduates who have strong scientific backgrounds and yet we find that students rarely pick up professional journals to learn about current research due to the journal's, as mentioned, assumptions about the reader's familiarity with the specific topic of discussion.
Finally, Catalyst aims to provide a showcase for the excellent undergraduate research being performed in nearly all universities and scientific institutions.
We are currently seeking submissions from any undergraduate students
who have done research at university or institutional laboratories
in the all areas of science and engineering. To learn more about
the submissions process please visit our Submissions Page.