Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is Scientia?

A: Simply put: Scientia is a series of research publications covering important issues in science, education and technology, with the sole aim of bridging the gap between science, education, policy, research, government and the private sector. The key aim of Scientia is not to change or challenge the traditional scientific publishing format; instead, we aim to complement this accepted form of dissemination – speaking in a new, easy-to-understand language. In doing so, we not only help researchers communicate their research to their own scientific community, but also to a wider audience, with the dual aims of establishing future research collaborations and developing direct stakeholder participation.

Q: Why should I consider publishing with Scientia?

A: We believe that science should be communicated in a very understandable, enjoyable and accessible format to help enhance the scientific community as a whole. Also, with the majority of research being funded at government level through the tax-paying public, we believe it is crucial to connect science and society without any restrictions.

Q: Is Scientia peer reviewed?

A: No. We are not disclosing researchers’ scientific results for the first time, so peer review would not make sense. We are simply making (already peer-reviewed) research understandable and widely available to a broader audience, so that non-specialists can learn about the research and appreciate its significance.

Q: If Scientia is not peer-reviewed, then how can you control the quality and credibility of the science you publish?

A: We work on an invitational basis, and we only discuss projects and results that have already undergone peer review.

In other words, we write our articles using background material in the following categories only: research articles or reviews that have been published in reputable peer-reviewed journals, and successful grant proposals from reputable funding bodies (these will have undergone peer review too).

Q: Is Scientia listed in PubMed and alike?

A: As Scientia is not a peer reviewed journal, we are not listed in repositories such as PubMed. These repositories are only for original peer-reviewed literature.

Q: Does Scientia have an Impact Factor?

A: Again, as Scientia is not a peer-reviewed journal, we are not measured by citations and impact factors. Our aim is to reach and educate the widest possible audience beyond traditional scholarly publishing. However, our articles have been proven to increase the Altmetric score of the original research we cover.

Q: Why is SciComm important?

A: Quoting the Research Excellence Framework: “Scientists must provide accountability for public investment in research and produce evidence of the benefits of this investment.”

As you probably already know, academics are becoming increasingly aware of their responsibility to communicate more broadly, especially to the public. The current pandemic has highlighted the gap and lack of trust between science and the general public.

It is vital to support traditional scholarly publishing and transform science into something enjoyable, understandable and impactful that everyone has a chance to be involved with. Increasing the visibility and accessibility of your research will help to create more opportunities for funding, employment, partnerships, and support.

Q: Can I use the article you produce for my own use?

A: Yes, we encourage all groups we work with to extend the impact of each article by personally utilising it. We publish under a creative commons license so that you have unlimited and unrestricted use outside of our media. We want your article to reach beyond Scientia’s readership – we want you to use your article as an outreach and public engagement tool.

For example, post it directly on your University’s website or newsletter, add a link to it in your CV as a summary of your recent work, or shout about it on social media – the choice is yours.

Q: Can I include my collaborators in the article?

A: Yes, we actively encourage researchers to showcase the collaborative efforts that their project might entail. Even if all collaborators are not involved in the article production, we can make sure they are all recognised and cited within the article.

Q: Can I cite Scientia articles?

A: Yes, on each article page you will see citation text and a DOI link.

Q: Ok, so how do I produce a Scientia article?

A: In short, we do the majority of the work. Scientia is an end-to-end production and dissemination service supporting time-poor researchers in communicating their work and reaching a much broader and more diverse audience.

Each article is based on background information you provide to us (technical papers, proposals, white papers, etc), and our team work to present the research in the most accessible, understandable and enjoyable way. Readers with varying levels of expertise and knowledge will be able to understand the significance and potential impact of the research.

We have a simple 5-step production process that will take a maximum of 3–4 hours of your time over a period of 6–12 weeks.

Q: What is your simple 5-step production process?

A: Step 1 – We simply ask that you provide us with the most relevant background material of your studies to date. These do not have to be written from scratch and could comprise already available literature.

Step 2 – We ask you to note any key aspects of your work that you want us to highlight. That way, we can tailor the piece to your personal goals and objectives.

Step 3 – We then produce a draft of the article, which is sent back to you for review and approval. We do not publish anything without your 100% approval.

Step 4 – We have a design team that specifically takes care of the visual component of the article. We value your input, so if you would like us to include any particular images or logos, you can simply pass these over to our team and we will take care of the rest.

Step 5 – That’s it, job done! The process shouldn’t take more than 3–4 hours of your time in total over a 6–12-week period.

Q: Will I or my institute communications department get a chance to review and approve before publishing?

A: Absolutely! We want to produce, publish and disseminate your article for you, but we are working FOR you, and this is your research. The article is sent to you in text draft and graphic design draft for your review and feedback. Nothing is published without your 100% approval.

Q: Where will you publish my article?

A: We will publish and archive your article in our digital library. You will receive a dedicated article html blog webpage, which will also help with discoverability on search engines such as Google. Your designed PDF article will then appear in a full edition of the Scientia publication. We publish all material in an open and barrier-free format under a creative commons licence. We have no pay walls or subscribe walls to view, download or share any of our material.

We also link our media with many news aggregates such as Google news and Flipboard, so that your article will be available on many sites beyond our own, helping you to truly reach a very broad and diverse audience.

Q: Where will you promote my article?

A: Our dissemination team promotes each article to our direct audience of around 80,000 readers worldwide. As well as promoting the article to our readership and through our social media channels, we also publish through news aggregate sites such as Google news and Flipboard, helping you to reach a much larger and more diverse audience worldwide.

Q: What licence covers my article?

A: We publish all material in an open and barrier-free format under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. We have no pay walls or subscribe walls to view, download or share any of our material.

Q: What type of research do you accept?

A: We have a large team of PhD-level science writers who can understand and write about any subject. No subject is too complex to transform into a Scientia article. In fact, we do enjoy working on more complex subjects that tend not to receive attention from the mainstream media. We are not looking for click-bait headlines, we are all about creating a fair and level publishing platform to educate those who may not know about your research already.

Q: Can I choose the focus of the article?

A: Absolutely, we want this to be of value to you. As we are an extension of scholarly communication and not a peer-review publication, we will only discuss projects and results that have already undergone peer review.

In other words, we write each article only using research articles or reviews that have already been published in reputable peer-reviewed journals.

Q: Will there be any copyright issues with the original publisher?

A: No, we are not re-publishing or re-working the same material. We are producing new content based on the original paper. This is similar to how a press release would work, and our aim is to increase the visibility of your original paper as well as make your research widely accessible.

Q: How will a Scientia article affect impact?

A: Science communication and outreach has been shown to significantly improve the Altmetric scores and visibility of academic papers. Scientia has been proven to improve the visibility and approachability of authors and institutes. See a case study of a recent group we worked with. Click here

Q: Is there a cost to read or subscribe to Scientia or access the digital library?

A: No, we publish everything in a barrier-free format. Nobody has to pay to subscribe, read, download or share on social media. Encouraging and accelerating open knowledge sharing is our first and foremost goal.

Q: This all sounds good, but what is the cost to publish with you?

A: As you can understand, employing a team of professional writers, editors, graphic designers, website developers, and marketers, comes at a cost.

We have listened to researchers, institute finance departments and communications departments, who understand that SciComm is important, but maintain that the cost needs to be reasonable. We have done our utmost to deliver a small number of editorial packages that cater for different communication needs and different SciComm budgets.

Our fees cover the full production process, from writing to design through to the distribution and digital library archiving of the article. Our fees are NOT an open-access article processing charge, this is a TOTAL cost that covers the full service we offer.

Please visit our editorial packages and associated costs page for more information. 

Q: So, is Scientia pay-for-play?

A: Well, yes, as is any other journal, publication, or magazine. We all rely on a fee one way or another to make what we produce possible. Some rely on advertisement fees. Some rely on subscription or article access fees. Some rely on open access fees or article processign charge. Some rely on charitable donations, external funding, or institutional level support. Our model is reliant on a fee from those who wish to publish with us – we receive no external funding, we receive no advertisement fees, we do not charge our readers to subscribe or access our material. We simply ask for a fee from those who wish to work with and publish with us – part of this fee goes to the production costs involved in creating each article, and part of this fee goes to keeping Scientia truly open and free to read, share, and download. We try to make this as fair and transparent as possible, and our end goal is to make scientific research open and available to the masses.

Q: Is Scientia a predatory publisher?

A: No.

The first thing to clarify is that we are NOT a peer-reviewed scholarly publisher, predatory or not. We are also NOT the general media. Scientia sits somewhere in between to help bridge the communication gap. Scientia is an outreach publication and quite different to your typical scientific, peer-reviewed publication. We do not disclose researchers’ scientific results for the first time, we simply make already peer-reviewed research understandable and widely available to a broader audience.

We work on an invitational basis, and we only discuss projects and results that have already undergone peer review.

Where we are very different to traditional scholarly publishing and the general media is that we actually write, edit, design, publish, and disseminate each article. We are not just a publisher; we are a professional science communication service for those wanting to present their research to a broader audience but without the expertise or platform to do so. To make Scientia possible, we do rely on a publication cost which covers the full article production through to publication and dissemination.

Because we work on an invitational only basis and because we have a cost, we are sometimes incorrectly mistaken as a predatory publisher. We work extremely hard to produce each article, and we have done our upmost to keep our costing as low as possible when all elements of our service are taken in to account. We will only work with research that has already undergone review and been published with a reputable peer-reviewed journal.

Q: Is this an eligible expense for my grant?

A: Yes. If your grant has an outreach, knowledge translation, publication engagement, or communication component, then Scientia is an eligible expense. If we can help with any grant administration then just let us know. Likewise, if you want to include Scientia in your future grant applications, just let us know what information you require.

Your University may also have a public engagement funding scheme to help financially.

Q: Is this an allowable expense for academic publishing?

A: Yes. A large number of academics are actively being encouraged by their institute or funding agency to engage with the public and showcase their work beyond their own niche communities and traditional publishing channels, especially when it comes to taxpayer-funded research. Please consult with your granting agency for clarification on allowable expenses.

Q: What payments do you accept?

A: All payments are welcome. Either choose to pay with a credit card or invoice on our order screen. All major credit cards are accepted and processed securely by Stripe. If you request an invoice then we can arrange a PO or bank/wire transfer.

Our invoices have a 45-day payment term which has been set to allow plenty of time for the first draft of the article to be produced by us, and approved by you. Our intention here is making sure that we are not asking for the payment in advance of any works being produced, as is familiar in scholarly publishing. However, where we do differ from scholarly publishing is the fact that we incur editorial and production costs from the get-go. So, the 45-day term is there to be fair to our authors and institutes, and also to be fair to our initial financial commitment in taking each project on.

Q: This all sounds good. How do I start?

A: Because we work on an invitation basis, we ask you to submit your topic through our digital enquiry form. This will then be reviewed by our editorial team to ensure the topic meets our requirements. If accepted, you will be invited for a consultation to discuss the topic and editorial process in more detail. Please enter your details here