Statistics at SpringerPlus

Dear Colleagues,Justine Shults

I am Section Editor for the statistics section of SpringerPlus, and I would like to invite you to consider SpringerPlus for your next manuscript submission.

To let you know a little about me, I am an Associate Professor of Biostatistics in the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Pennsylvania and am Co-Director (with Russel Localio) of a pediatric section of Biostatistics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. I teach Linear Models for students in our PhD program and am also the principal investigator of a Renal & Urologic Biostatistics Training Grant (2T32DK060455) that is funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease (NIDDK) in the National Institutes of Health. I am involved as a statistician co-investigator on NIH funded projects that include studies of bone health in children, psychological effects of injury in urban black men, issues surrounding kidney transplant, taste preference of formula- fed infants, and an intervention that employs social media (in particular, a Facebook group) to promote healthier choices for new mothers. My participation in these studies motivates my own work to develop improved statistical methods for the analysis of longitudinal and clustered data.

Like most of you, I am pulled in many directions, by the demands of administrative work, teaching, and research. I also struggle with where to submit papers that deal with statistical methods and applications, especially given the increasing number of requests to consider publication in new online journals. Our goal for the statistics section of SpringerPlus is to develop a highly regarded venue for your publications, so that you will consider SpringerPlus when deciding where to submit your next paper.


We provide a venue for your papers that are of high scientific merit, but that may have struggled to find an appropriate journal for publication.

Some examples might include (but are not limited to):

A review paper of an established or emerging area of research.

Any nicely written paper that describes new results, or offers interesting statistical insights, for which you struggle to find an appropriate journal.

A paper that describes a new method, or extension, but that lacks data from a compelling motivating study. It is sometimes hard for those who don’t have access to (or aren’t allowed to publish) study data, to publish manuscripts that demonstrate their methodology. A paper that considers a data set that has been widely used by other statisticians could be suitable for publication in SpringerPlus.

A paper that describes the application of a complex approach in a “real” study. For example, as the biostatistician on a medical study, you might have learned about a new method that has not been widely applied previously in the medical literature. Your paper would serve as a companion paper to the manuscript that describes the study findings, by explaining how you implemented the approaches in this analysis, and providing general guidelines for the readers.

A paper that demonstrates the application of a new statistical approach. For example, you may have developed a new method as part of your dissertation, or more established research program.  You would like to encourage the use of your methodology by describing how it can be applied, and demonstrating its use in a data set. This sort of “useful” manuscript would be of great interest to our readers, would encourage the implementation of your methods, and (hopefully) increase the number of citations of your methods papers in this area.


Some of the benefits of publishing in SpringerPlus include the following:

  1. Your paper will be peer-reviewed. You can also suggest reviewers who are well-qualified to review your manuscript.
  2. Short review times. In our field, it is not uncommon for it to take several years from submission to publication of a manuscript. Your paper will be processed quickly, especially if you edit it carefully. (Nicely written papers facilitate the review process.)
  3. We will try to be reasonable in the review process. For example, we avoid requesting extensive simulations.
  4. Your paper will be easily accessible to readers. Unlike other journals that require subscription fees for readers, SpringerPlus will make your paper available online within a week of acceptance and at no cost to readers.
  5. Springer is a leading academic publisher.

If you would like to organize a special issue, e.g. of papers presented at a conference, then we would also be very happy to discuss your ideas with you.

Thank you very much for considering SpringerPlus for publication of your work.

Sincerely, Justine Shults
Associate Professor of Biostatistics, University of Pennsylvania

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