Help:Assistant Editor's quick start

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    Assistant Editors provide a valuable service to Scholarpedia, lending technical and linguistic expertise to an academic project that receives contributions from a wide range of scholars.

    We hope you will find your work as an A.E. rewarding. You will have the opportunity to interact with giants in your field and develop connections with other Editors and A.E.s worldwide.

    Moreover, of course, you are making a lasting contribution to the both the spread of knowledge and to the general increase in the quality of scientific and scholarly information available on the internet.

    There are a few guidelines to which we hope you adhere in your work with Scholarpedia. These are in place to ensure that Scholarpedia remains authoritative, and that Authors remain enthusiastic about their participation.

    1. It is imperative that A.E.s avoid editing the scholarly/scientific content of articles without receiving advance permission to do so from the article's author.
    2. Ensure that you remain courteous, respectful, and generous of spirit, even when interacting with individuals who appear to be lacking of such qualities. Unless explicitly instructed otherwise, always address authors and those senior to you by their last name, using Dr., Prof. or Ms./Mr. as appropriate (Dr. is usually safest).
    3. Develop and maintain a strong working relationship with any Editors of categories to which you have allied yourself. Each editor will have a slightly different way of operating and set of goals, and keeping these in mind in your interactions will make progress speedier and more pleasant.
    4. Please be vocal about whether you have enough time to perform a particular task -- A.E.s that perform a small amount of work cleanly and on schedule are preferred over inconsistent ones that might perform more.
    5. On the flip-side, if you are unable for whatever reason to perform some task, that's ok! Please email the listserv to request assistance from another A.E., and you'll find help in no time.
    6. Be proactive! There is lots of room for Scholarpedia to develop, and all your contributions will make a difference. Don't hesitate to correct typos when you see them; to make suggestions; to propose new approaches to existing workflows.

    Additionally, we would ask that you gain some familiarity on the following, in part by reading Scholarpedia's help pages:

    • The editorial and authorship processes in Scholarpedia
    • Scholarpedia wikitext (and how it is different from plain Mediawiki)
    • How to use automatic Latex-> WikiText conversion tools
    • The editor/category/encyclopedia structure of Scholarpedia
    • How to add an article to a category
    • The standard structure/layout of a Scholarpedia article, including the mandatory sections (e.g. "See also"/"Further reading") and their contents;
    • The standard Harvard format for references
    • The typical things that authors forget and editors have to correct (e.g. the "XX accepted the invitation" line at the top of the article, excessive double white lines, missing article abstracts, missing "See also" section, figures positioning)
    • Where to find information and whom to contact ( is a good first destination)

    Getting set up:

    1. Join the Scholarpedia Assistant Editors listserv: send email to
    2. Request an email address. These are not necessarily provided immediately. If you have one, however, this address should be used in all your correspondences with other members of the Scholarpedia community
    3. Find a category which you are interested in helping with, and email the category's editor about joining their A.E. team (if you are shy, don't hesitate to request an introduction: email

    Please do not hesitate to contact the Assistant Editor listserv, or , if you have any further questions, comments, or concerns.

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