Columbia University in the City of New York

BioLinks Scientific Journal Club

Credit: Michael Divito for Columbia's Zuckerman Institute

Building an interest in biological research through scientific literature

Founded by a high-school senior at Horace Mann School in the Bronx, New York, BioLinks Virtual Journal Club is a way for high schoolers to get introduced to scientific research.

Each weeklong journal club will be based around a recent research paper, starting with the field of Neurobiology. By expanding on topics from high school Biology, we gradually build knowledge around the paper and understand some of the key techniques involved in the current biological research field.

Participants will also have the opportunity to ask any questions pertaining to the content covered and interact with scientists from research institutions, who will be present for part of the journal club.


Each weeklong journal club includes:

Pre-journal Club: 15-20 minute introductory reading

Monday: ​1 hour (flexible) initial zoom​ meeting to get introduced to the paper, learn content and ask some questions.

Monday - Friday: ​1-1.5 hour independent, asynchronous work​ completed on each participant's own schedule, involving reading parts of the paper, interpreting figures and answering some questions.

Friday: ​1-hour final zoom​ with scientist on to ask questions and discuss the paper.

NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, Zooms will only be on Monday and Friday of the week; independent work can be completed at any time during that week.

Each journal club is completely independent, and participants should feel free to sign up to any/multiple journal clubs of their choice. All material for independent work and non-interactive parts of the zoom meetings will be available online if participants need to catch up.

The first journal club will be on neurobiology, held from ​June 22 - June 26​. We will discuss a Nature Neuroscience paper that investigates the cellular and molecular basis of common hypersensitivity traits associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder using a mouse model.

To learn more and to sign up for our first journal club, or subsequent clubs, please click here.


This program is geared toward students with at least one year of introductory high school biology.



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