Publishing a scholarly journal article, particularly if it is the first time you are doing it, can feel overwhelming. In order to demystify the process, the American Astronomical Society has recently released a set of videos on YouTube to guide you through the process of publishing in the AAS Journals. These ~5-minute videos provide insight into and tips about how to make your publishing experience as smooth as possible.

The AAS plans to release more videos in the coming weeks, so subscribe to the AAS YouTube channel to stay up to date! We’ve also linked video series in the AstroBetter Wiki under Technical Communication: Reading, Writing, Reviewing for your future reference.


Conferences can be an invigorating experience for many astronomers, giving people a chance to share research, make new contacts in the field, and socialize with colleagues. For many, however, meetings end up being stressful and anxiety-inducing, particularly for people in marginalized groups. 500 Women Scientists recently published a guide on how to organize inclusive scientific meetings.

This guide has been highlighted recently by the AAS Committee on the Status of Women blog Women in Astronomy and Nature and provides detailed principles and resources to use and consider when organizing a scientific conference.

For future reference, you can also find this guide is linked on the AstroBetter Wiki under Conference Hosting.


Today, AstroBetter is celebrating its 10th anniversary! During the last ten years, we have had many important discussions on the blog, covering issues of policy, computing, productivity, career path, and more. We’ve had some difficult discussions about the work commitment required of astronomers, diversity, racism, and equity. The advent of the AstroBetter Wiki has provided a centralized location for useful topics to astronomers. The Rumor Mill, while controversial, continues to be an open source of information for job seekers. The Career Profiles series provided insight into how other astronomers have pursued the careers of their choice. AstroBetter has been honored to be a source of information and debate on these topics and more. In celebration of AstroBetter’s tenth anniversary, we wanted to revisit some of our most popular posts.

The post that generated the most discussion: Not What We Want

Computing: The Astropy Project, IDL vs. Python, iObserve

Conferences: Conference Organizing 101, Fabric Conference Posters FTW!, Twitter at Conferences Series

Career: Is an R1 for you?, Honing Your Hubble Application, Career Profiles Series

Policy: Let’s Discuss the NSF Portfolio Review,, A call for open access to all data used in AJ and ApJ articles, A Call to Action to Save JWST

Community: Nature on PhD Overproduction, Minimize Unconscious Bias in Recommendation Letters, 2010 Decadal Survey approach to minorities

We hope that the astronomy community will continue to contribute to both the blog and the wiki. The wiki is open source and editable by all, so if you come across information that you think would benefit the community, please add it! If you are an astronomer and interested in contributing a guest post to the blog, please email us at We look forward to being a continuing resource for astronomers everywhere.


The 234th American Astronomical Society Conference will take place June 9-13, 2019 in St. Louis, MO. The ComSciCon (Communicating Science Conference) workshop series is partnering with AAS to bring a science communication training workshop for graduate students who are interested in bettering their science communication skills, held on June 9 and June 13. According to the organizers of the workshop:

Our goal is to empower future leaders in technical communication to share the results from research in their field to broad and diverse audiences… ComSciCon is a unique professional development program focused on science communication skills, organized both by and for STEM graduate students.

Note that although preference is given to graduate students, senior undergraduate students, post-baccalaureate researchers, and postdoctoral researchers are also welcome to apply. The deadline to apply is April 2, 2019.

Contact if you have any questions.


Kids these days and their publications lists [Cross-post]

by Guest February 25, 2019

Growing up by the mountains of Northern Greece, Hercules (aka Iraklis) Konstantopoulos developed a fascination with the night sky and all its intrigue. After a career as a researcher in astrophysics that spanned ten years and four continents, he became drawn to addressing a greater variety of data-related problems. Data science ensued with work on […]


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exo.MAST: A New Tool for Navigating Exoplanet Data

by Guest February 4, 2019

Susan Mullally is a Senior Archive Scientist for the MAST at STScI. She is an astronomer who likes working with time series data and improving the reliability of exoplanet catalogs. The Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) at STScI introduces a new way to explore the archive’s exoplanet data: exo.MAST. For confirmed planets and planet […]

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Information for Astronomers Regarding the Partial US Government Shutdown

by Joanna Bridge January 24, 2019

The partial shutdown of the United States government is have far-reaching affects on US-based astronomers. The American Astronomical Soceity (AAS) sent an action alert to its members today. “Many federal agencies, including NSF, NASA, and Smithsonian, have been shut down to all but essential operations for 33 days and counting… Hundreds of AAS members are […]


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Best Practices for Hosting Remote Meetings

by Guest January 14, 2019

Our guest post today is by Dr. Sarah Gallagher and details important guidelines for hosting effective remote meetings. Dr. Gallagher (@scgQuasar) is the Science Advisor to the President of the Canadian Space Agency and an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Western Ontario in Canada. Research groups and […]


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Resources for the AAS Winter Meeting #AAS233

by Joanna Bridge January 4, 2019

It’s that time of year again: The 233rd Meeting of the American Astronomical Society is nearly upon us. To make the most of your time at the meeting, we at AstroBetter would like to remind you of some resources available on the blog and wiki. First, the post that everyone attending a winter AAS meeting […]


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An American perspective of astro graduate school outside the US II: PhD

by Guest December 17, 2018

This is the second of two guest posts contributed by Dr. Abbie Stevens, who completed her Masters at the University of Alberta in Canada and her Doctorate at the Universiteit van Amsterdam in the Netherlands. She is now an NSF Astronomy & Astrophysics postdoctoral fellow at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. In […]


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