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Submitting articles to math journals

  1. Jan 6, 2012 #1
    I am in the lower 6th and I have always done independent mathematics research and learning. I have come up with a topic that I would like to write about in the form of a formal research paper and would love to have the opportunity to publish it in a math journal. Which journals are easier targets but reasonably prestigious? For your reference, the topic I have in mind is the exploration of the relationship between abstract algebra and modular arithmetic(The Chinese remainder theorem can be expressed by both, how are other theorems based on either one of the branches of mathematics represented by the other?). Please advise. If you have any comments on the topic that I selected, please also say so - is this feasible?
     
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  3. Jan 6, 2012 #2

    chiro

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    Hey huey910 and welcome to the forums.

    When you say 6th form, does that mean you are in your last year of high school?

    If this is the case, you should probably find a university lecturer who teaches higher algebra, number theory, or group theory and then give them a copy of a cleaned up version of your paper that has clarity, but does not have any redundancy (get to the point, but don't skimp on important details).

    You will have to do a bit of work on your part to get to this stage, and I'm certain that you can find resources out there, whether they include other people, books, guides and so on, to get to this stage.

    Once this is done, and you get some feedback from people that are able to give you good constructive criticism and advice and feel that you have a shot, then you need to find an appropriate journal (that most likely they will recommend) and then if it is accepted by them (maybe after multiple attempts), then it will go.

    Just note that journals turn away people all the time from publications for all sorts of reasons, so keep that in mind.

    But I want to re-emphasize the importance of getting a few opinions from people who know their stuff, give an unbiased, unemotional assessment, and who will provide beneficial advice for you is really important. Also it's important that you put in the required effort before hand to make things streamlined and to the point for these people: when people see that you have put in an effort, it makes a hell of a lot of difference.
     
  4. Jan 6, 2012 #3
    Thank you so much for your advice. Though I am in the second last year of high school, not the last, this is still worth a shot if I put in the effort, right?
     
  5. Jan 6, 2012 #4

    chiro

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    To be perfectly honest, I don't know.

    You will need to produced at least a summary that is polished for a lecturer/researcher/professor to understand it in a quick amount of time. Remember that there is nothing worse for a busy person to waste their time.

    But I think this will be a good experience for you, especially if you end up doing some kind of research because you will get exposed to the process and you will find out what is expected of you, both in quantity and quality of a paper.

    The thing is, chances are there are a few papers and maybe even books out there that explore exactly what you are writing in your paper, and you need to realize that this happens a lot. If this happens, the best thing to do is to not get alarmed: you want to find anything that goes into depth and use that to see if something hasn't been covered that you are writing about.

    The other thing to note is that there are quite a few resources out there that present the exact same thing, but they add context and perspective to the knowledge that is presented in a very distinct way in comparison to other authors. If you can provide a kind of context and perspective that isn't widely available or known, then your work is most likely still going to have some kind of value.

    As some extra advice for you, it would be beneficial for you to also look at some textbooks or papers on the subject if you can access them. There are two reasons for this:

    a) You can get a pretty good idea of the direction of a subject to see what the thinking and direction is like which will help you later
    b) You can also see the syntax (mathematical symbols and vocabulary) as well as the structure of a good argument, proof, or other discourse of some sort.
     
  6. Jan 6, 2012 #5

    chiro

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  7. Jan 7, 2012 #6
    thank you very much indeed.
     
  8. Jan 10, 2012 #7
    There will be a mathematics professor from Cambridge coming to my school this Friday. I would love for him to help me with my project(as stated above). Should I present him with a neat copy of what I have done up till now or should I just brief him about what I want to do? I know my project is very much in its initial stages but it helps to make a first impression first, right? How should I put it?
     
  9. Jan 10, 2012 #8
    Is the professor an expert in the field you are currently working on?

    I suggest writing a scientific (extended) abstract, as if it were for a paper, and let him read that. If he is into he topic, he will know if it is worth writing a paper about, and if he thinks it is worth the time, you can let him read what you have come up with. Make sure that what you have right now is understandable and readable.
    If he is not so into the topic, you can ask him if he knows which person/group to contact.
     
  10. Jan 10, 2012 #9
    thanks!
     
  11. Jan 10, 2012 #10

    mathwonk

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    the topic you mention, connecting abstract algebra and chinese remainder theorem, is quite interesting and has interested many people for a long time. hence it is quite possible your ideas are familiar ones. do not be discouraged if the professor points this out. they are new to you and worth pursuing for your own benefit. they may also be suitable to publish in a journal say of high school or undergraduate research. the word "prestigious:" may be optimistic for research of this level, but so what? hopefully you are doing it for enjoyment and self benefit.
     
  12. Jan 17, 2012 #11
    Since the topic of my research is evidently not new, my work will never be publishable - is there any other way for me to share my work with others?
     
  13. Jan 17, 2012 #12

    chiro

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    Of course.

    You should realize that many people write expositions, treatises and other works on results and areas that have been around for quite a while.

    What you can do is add your own perspective. It might be the same equations, but you might analyze it in a unique way.

    I can't answer what that way should be since I have no idea about the subject you are describing, but it will help if you read the literature and try and guage what perspective the respective authors are describing. If you do this, you will get an idea of the methods of thinking are in the area as well as seeing the context of these lines of thought.

    Don't underestimate the importance of understanding things for a different perspective, or in a different context.

    To give you an example of context, Alain Connes has written with other authors work that connects prime numbers with Quantum Field Theory. These two areas seem at a glance to be highly mutually exclusive, yet authors like Connes and his colleagues have shown otherwise.
     
  14. Jan 18, 2012 #13

    mathwonk

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    other than my research reprints, none of the documents on my web page are new results. they are all my expositions of known topics. I still enjoy sharing them this way with others.
     
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