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I am currently doing a research project with a professor and 3 other students in an area that is usually seen as a "recreational" math topic; that of change-ringing and its relation to group theory. The papers regarding change-ringing that I have managed to find on JSTOR are generally of an expository nature, and since we do have one or two somewhat original results (we were trying to see what subgroups of Sn can be enumerated using transformations allowed under the restrictions of change-ringing), I think we might have something at least worth trying to submit to a small journal.

Does anyone have any recommendations?

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Offhand, it seems most appropriate to raise this with the professor first. – Deane Yang Dec 13 '10 at 2:20
Au contraire, Alex, that other question is about journals suitable for undergraduates to read, not to publish in. – Willie Wong Dec 13 '10 at 2:27
(But of course, some of the suggestions in that thread will also be appropriate to this question.) – Willie Wong Dec 13 '10 at 2:28
The AKS primality test was published in Annals; two of the authors performed their work on this while undergraduates. – Steve Huntsman Dec 13 '10 at 2:30
No journal I know of cares a hoot about what degrees the authors have or don't have. It's only the work that counts. On other hand, if it's joint work, the discussion should definitely start among the collaborators first. And, for better or worse, the senior member of the team probably has the most say on what happens. I would have reacted better to this question if it had been made clear that the collaborators had already discussed this before posting the question on MO. – Deane Yang Dec 13 '10 at 2:51

Permit me to draw attention to the journal, Involve—A Journal of Mathematics (which I also mentioned in a related MO posting). Snippets from About the Journal:

"Involve is dedicated to showcasing and encouraging high quality mathematical research involving students (at all levels). ... Submissions in all mathematical areas are encouraged. However, each manuscript should include a minimum of 1/3 student authorship. ... Involve is a publication in between the extremes of purely undergraduate research journals, which in general are aimed at undergraduate audiences, and mainstream research journals."

The current issue is its 10th.

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Although there are a few other journals that routinely publish student work, Involve is the only journal I know that is explicitly dedicated to showcasing students efforts (undergraduates or graduates). This is a very commendable goal that deserves our support. – Thierry Zell Dec 13 '10 at 3:57
Thanks so much! It looks like a really interesting endeavor. – SAC Dec 13 '10 at 23:07
There's also the Canadian journal Crux Mathematicorum ( Though it is a problem solving journal, they do regularly publish short articles. With an audience primarily of undergraduate and secondary school students, your results might be a bit too advanced (I suspect group theory is too advanced -- number theory is probably better received, or "pure" combinatorics), but others with similar questions might find them a better fit. – kow Dec 14 '10 at 16:31

Electronic Journal of Combinatorics might be a good candidate considering the topic. My contention is that if the paper has a real result which is mathematical and combinatoric in nature, and is well-written, then the education-level of the author(s) should not play a role in whether the paper is appropriate or not for a particular journal.

Whether or not one or more of the authors is an undergraduate still working on their studies or already holds a Ph.D. or teaching position should not be a factor. However, the best person to tell you about the most appropriate forum in which to attempt to publish your findings is your mentor, the professor sponsoring or advising you as you do this research. It is your advisor's job to advise about something like this, and they will have the best and most appropriate answer for you. People who don't know the details of your work, as the rest of these readers/commentators on Mathoverflow and slashdot are, cannot give you an informed answer. You should look closer to home, and ask your teachers and your undergraduate advisors, or an appropriate mathematician in your local mathematics department.

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You might first want to read the article by Arthur White & Robin Wilson: "The hunting group", The Mathematical Gazette 79, no. 484, March 1995, which is about the group theory of change ringing.

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A later, web-accessible, article with many references (though not this one) is – John Bentin Dec 13 '10 at 16:09
Indeed! I've really enjoyed looking at White's "ethnomathematical" works, since they deftly combine the history of change-ringing, which was developed before Galois and Abel introduced any modern group-theoretical concepts, with sketches of proofs concerning the "ringability" of certain groups. In this project, we've made a small amount of headway into looking at groups that White doesn't cover, such as the alternating group. – SAC Dec 13 '10 at 23:12

I haven't seen mentioned the AMS undergraduate mathematics page, in particular the "Clubs, Conferences, Events, Online Journals" section. The section mentions the following journals targeting undergraduates:

There is also a new undergraduate journal The Waterloo Mathematics Review from the University of Waterloo (full disclosure: I am one of the editors) in a similar style to the HCMR, though it also accepts original research. We are currently accepting submissions for our second issue, while this answer may find you too late I hope you consider submitting.

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The HCMR was defunct for a year or so but I was told they were back up and running again. Huh. – Qiaochu Yuan May 3 '11 at 23:35
Thank you! Question: the website for the Waterloo Review says that the submissions are from "undergraduates across Canada" - does that still allow for work from elsewhere in North America? – SAC May 5 '11 at 3:02

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