4 Reasons Why Students Should Be Involved in Research

College is an experience, for better or for worse, that many of us go through. And while the work can be overwhelming, it can also be life-changing. For plenty of students, a career is only something they are tentatively exploring during young adulthood, while others have known what path they wanted to pursue since they were children.

For those who may be untethered to a career path, the right push from an attentive professor is just the nudge they need. And for those eagerly following their chosen paths, a professor’s encouragement is just the thing to launch their ideas to the next level. The benefits of having students involved in scientific research aren’t one-sided; certainly, there are many great reasons for students to get involved at the benefit of themselves, but it’s also in the professor’s best interest to have student assistants in their laboratory. Let’s explore four reasons why.

Students Offer a Fresh Perspective

The brain is limitless in its power to think, but oftentimes that power stagnates in repetitive thought patterns without the correct stimulus to advance beyond that rut. A fresh perspective from an eager mind is just the thing to expand a traditional way of thinking. It takes 10 to 15 long years to develop an effective medicine, and science and research play a huge part in that medicine coming to fruition, but without minds that can think outside of the box, it could take even longer to develop. A student asks questions that makes a professor think outside of their usual realm of understanding, which can lead to incredible discoveries.

A Student Is Eager to Learn

Some professors are experts in their field because they’ve worked very, very hard in it for countless years, but that tried and true method of working isn’t always very exciting. A student’s eagerness to learn can be a breath of fresh air that inspires their fellow students as well as faculty to look at problems and questions in a new light, and perhaps take on a bit of that eagerness for themselves. Human beings will never be at a point of knowing everything, and no one is ever too old to learn something new. Follow in that student’s example and find out something new.

Student Researchers are Exposed to a Lab Setting

Laboratories are different than traditional classrooms for a host of obvious reasons. What your student may not know before entering a research environment is just how cautious they must be for the sake of their experiments, their results, their peers, and themselves. By exposing a student to a lab environment sooner rather than later, and allowing them to work in an environment that more or less imitates the setting they’ll find themselves in after graduation gives them a huge leg up in the business, while keeping themselves safe from harm.

Interaction with Their Peers

Classmates and professional peers are in two different categories, and not every student understands this. By allowing student researchers the chance to interact with professors and assistant researchers, they are given to chance to learn how to collaborate, experiment, and simply learn in an environment that is extremely conducive to their success and to successes in the world of science and medicine.

The Importance of a Laboratory Notebook

lab notebooks

Lab notebooks? You have probably heard about them, right? If you have been conducting laboratory tests regularly, you have already realized that you could forget many discoveries and procedures without proper organization. Lab notebooks will play a vital role in organizing your life as a lab technician. The following are benefits of using lab notebooks.

1. Record Your Data

This is so obvious, but it’s worth mentioning that a lab notebook is a convenient place to record your data. In laboratory experiments, you will probably do thousands of procedures. Everything becomes chaotic around you, and you could be in serious danger of forgetting what you are doing. With lab notebooks, everything will be kept in check. You will be able to record all the necessary information around you. Your data will be kept safe, and you will remain in control of your business.

2. To Do List

In a laboratory, there are several procedures that you need to follow for an experiment to be successful. However, these procedures are very many, and most of the times they keep on changing depending on the experiment. A laboratory notebook will detail all the things that you need to do after entering the research room so that you can be successful. The notebook could be important, especially where there are innumerable tasks to carry out. Having a guide of what needs to be done and then creates a good course of action and helps in avoiding trouble.

3. Protocols

Every science experiment has everything to do with protocols. You cannot achieve reliable or authentic scientific results without following a laid down procedure. Each experiment has its protocol, and it’s difficult to substitute one protocol for another. If you are preparing to have an experiment in the future, you can have its protocol already lined up in your scientific lab notebook. If you need to repeat any experiment, you will only need to refer back to your notebook.

4. A Reference for Others

In most cases, scientific research is carried out by teams. However, some of the members are not conversant with scientific studies, and they highly depend on the guidance that comes from the experienced researchers. With a scientific notebook, other members can reference for important data, details, and protocols. You don’t have to keep answering hundreds of questions from amateur researchers. Just direct them to your notebook and the entire research will move smoothly towards its objectives.

5. To Support Future Publications

You may need to publish lab results, papers, patents, and findings of a particular research study. However, you need to justify and show evidence that you own the results before publishing. Without documented evidence, you cannot justify that the results you are likely to publish belong to you, and therefore, you’ll not have any merit. A notebook is, therefore, one of the most important books, especially to the researchers, who have the intentions of publishing their findings in the future.

6. Data Audit Trail

An experiment is characterized by hundreds of errors that need to be adjusted as the process continues. However, for the sake of data security, any changes made to the data need to be noted and highlighted on the notebook. This gives other team members a clue of what is happening and why you have changed data. Data integrity is an essential aspect of any scientific research.

7. Record Ideas

Besides everything that has to do with research and planning the experiment, you will also come up with your ideas. These thoughts are very useful in future as they could help make the experiment better. You need to make sure that you record them somewhere. Lab notebooks are the most secure area where you can record such ideas and harness them to find out whether they are beneficial in any way.

Current trends indicate that the pharmaceutical market will reach $1.12 trillion by 2022. However, before that time and figure are reached, thousands of experiments will have to be done to improve the drugs currently available in the market and the best area to record those experiments is on a lab notebook.

How to Safely Write on Archival Photographs

archival materials

Did you know that China, Japan, and the United States are responsible for over 50% of the paper being used globally?

When sorting or putting away photographs in archival materials, it can be tempting to scribble down notes directly onto the back of photos as you go through them.

And while you can do this, it’s only wise if you’re using the right kind of writing tool. (And, ideally, you really shouldn’t write on photographs, period.)

To learn how to write on photographs without damaging them, read on for four tips on writing on photos for archival purposes.

1. Do NOT Use a Standard Ball-Point Pen

Photographic evidence or documentation can have enough trouble staying intact during its lifetime in archival materials—especially if the photos are old. Honestly, photographs usually aren’t that sturdy. So it’s best not to add to its instability by writing on it with a standard ball-point pen.

While it’s perfectly appropriate to label photos with important relevant information, you should never do so with a ball-point pen. This is because the kinds of ink used in ball-point pens tends to smear on photographic surfaces, defeating the purpose of writing with them in the first place. Additionally, the non-archival oils and solvents used in the cheap ink can cause the ink to bleed through the photo paper to the front.

Obviously, it’s also unwise to use most kinds of markers, as they can smear, as well.

2. DO Use a Pencil

Instead of traditional ball-point pens, professional archivists often use soft #2 pencils to write on the back of fiber-based photographic prints.

Note that this applies to fiber-based prints specifically—results of a method no longer in use everywhere. More modern plastic- or resin-based prints have a shiny, slippery back to them, which can’t be written on effectively with a pencil. But for older photographs, using a pencil works well, and is commonly recommended.

One reason to use a pencil for fiber-based photos is that writing in pencil is easily erasable. Besides that, pencil leads are relatively inert—they contain none of the oils in ink pens that can ruin photographs.

However, even when using pencils, it’s necessary to use a very light touch when writing on the back of an important photo for archival materials. Pressing too hard can cause considerable damage to the photograph.

3. Use a Stabilo-All Pencil

Stabilo-All pencils are specially-designed for archival materials. They are water-soluble, and they can be wiped off of practically any smooth surface with a wet cloth. They are also highly erasable on paper.

Best of all, they allow you to write clearly on many surfaces typically resistant to writing, including modern photographs, film negatives, and even glass and metal.

Stabilo-All pencils come in three colors—black, red, and white—so you’ll always have one for any colored surface.

4. If Possible, DON’T Write on Photographs

Sometimes, you’ve just gotta do what you’ve gotta do. For some purpose or another, whether you’re a student or a laboratory researcher, there may be times when you need to write legibly on a photograph.

But in a best-case scenario, you should use other archival materials to avoid writing on photos altogether.

Some materials you can use instead of writing on photos are photo sleeves, bound lab notebooks, index cards and boxes, and acid-free envelopes.

As another quick tip, you should always write on the envelope, sleeve, or card before inserting the photo—just to be sure you avoid damaging the print.

student lab notebook

Why Encourage Pharmaceutical Studies in University Settings for Job Growth

Whether you own a pharmaceutical company, are in charge of research and development at your firm, or you have an avid interest in how the pharmaceutical and medical world works, your primary goal should be reaching out to recent graduates in related studies. With biomedical jobs growing by nearly 25% in recent outlooks, students are more and more leaning towards these types of studies, and your company can take advantage of new and fresh talent.

Why encourage pharmaceutical studies in university settings for future job growth? How do the tools, such as a student lab notebook and active laboratory studies, benefit your company today? Learn why you should be more invested in what the average student does now so you can take advantage of the modern skills they learn in the classroom right in your own business.

You Get Raw And Open-Minded Employees

When you encourage laboratory studies in universities by supplying certain equipment, such as research notebook supplies and other needed tools, you encourage students to work with your pharmaceutical or biomedical company upon graduation. The raw and open-minded talent you receive will help bring your company in a new direction and keep your research from becoming stagnant. Recently graduated students can even help jump-start projects that have hit standstills.

You Get Entry-Level Experience And Pay Accordingly

If pay is an issue, you don’t have to trade quality staff for lower employee pay. Many students fresh out of school are eager to get started with work and will happily work up the pharmaceutical ladder and get paid entry-level wages along the way. This works out great for your company if you are a non-profit organization or if you spend much of your money on scientific research.

You Get To Help The Pharmaceutical World Grow

Even a single donation of a student lab notebook can help grow interest in this important field of research and medical studies. Your contributions to biomedical and pharmaceutical studies in university settings allow students to stay motivated and helps keep your company in business as medical advances change and grow. As you keep pharmaceutical studies going strong by showing unending support, your business benefits in many ways.

lab notebooks

Why Do You Need a Laboratory Notebook?

With the U.S. accounting for about 45% of the global pharmaceutical market, there are numerous biotech companies, research labs, and pharmaceutical development programs throughout the country. And because of the importance of the work these companies and programs are doing, staying organized is a top priority. This is why anyone working in a scientific environment can benefit from great lab notebooks. Let’s take a closer look at a few reasons to use laboratory notebooks.

Keep data organized: One of the biggest benefits of utilizing a research notebook is being able to keep all of your data and information organized. Using a notebook compared to something like note cards or scrap paper can keep data in order. It’s important to have one single place for notes and data because then it’s easy to find what you’re looking for and look back at previous notes. When work gets busy and chaotic, you’ll know right where to look for your data.

Easily share information: Another big reason to use notebooks for laboratory data is that it makes it so much easier to share information. Sorting the data and information in the notebook by projects or even departments in work can help encourage teamwork and collaboration. Instead of only one person knowing where to find certain information, everyone can have access to it if need be. Fellow coworkers can clarify important details and aid in keeping notes on project progress.

Ensure you’re following protocols: When it comes to scientific research, following the proper protocols, like safety regulations and even budgets, is essential. This is why using a notebook can be so helpful — tracking notes and progress for a certain project all in one place can ensure protocols are being followed. This can be especially beneficial if experiments need to be repeated in the future because all of the steps were clearly written down.

As you can see, there are numerous reasons those in scientific settings should be using lab notebooks. Laboratory notebooks play an integral role in keeping track of important data and information. And with the right notebook, data can be easily organized, shared, and accessed as needed.

engineering notebooks

Why Aren’t Regular Spiral Notebooks Working For Me?

Although much of the world is running on digital technology, we’re still largely dependent on paper. In fact, the world produced up to 411 million metric tons of paper and cardboard in 2016 alone.

This may not come as a surprise considering the benefits of using paper notebooks compared to a standard laptop. But sometimes the average notebook isn’t enough for those in engineering and the biomedical fields.

Here are a few reasons why your average paper notebook may not be working for you and why engineering notebooks and laboratory notebooks may be the better option.

Regular notebooks don’t have the layout you’re looking for

One of the tops reasons why regular notebooks may not be working for you is because they don’t have the layout you need. Graph notebooks are more generalized so they can be used by students and workers in many different fields including graphic design and architecture.

But because graph notebooks are generalized, you need to draw out separate areas on the page to include information such as the date, project number, and researchers included in the project. That isn’t the case with science notebooks.

Science notebooks have a layout specifically designed with engineers, biomedical workers, and other science workers and students in mind. Science notebooks include the grid layout you need, but with the signature block included at the bottom for greater project control.

Regular notebooks fall apart easily

You remember from High School days when you would put all your notebooks into your bookbag. Over time, your pages of notes would start to pull away from the spiral binding and you’d be left with loose-leaf pages you’d need to put in a folder.

As a science student, this can be a major issue. The last thing you want to do is lose important data or get your pages mixed up.

You don’t need to worry about that with laboratory notebooks. Laboratory notebooks are designed with a soft black cover and smooth binding to keep everything in place and all your data safely secure.

Looking for engineering notebooks and other archival materials?

Paper notebooks are great because it’s impossible for data to get deleted and you don’t have to worry about your laptop’s battery dying when you’re trying to access information. However, a standard notebook doesn’t work for everybody.

If you’re looking for engineering notebooks, student lab notebooks, or research notebooks that have the layout and format you need for your classes or work, Scientific Notebook Company has what you need. To learn more about our engineering notebooks and other archival materials, contact Scientific Notebook Company today.

laboratory notebooks

3 Benefits Of Using Laboratory Notebooks Instead Of A Laptop

In a digital world, paper notebooks are still as relevant as ever. In fact, the U.S. is just one of the three biggest paper-producing countries in the world. China, Japan, and the U.S. account for more than 50% of the world’s paper production.

But why are bound lab notebooks still the optimal choice for both science professionals and students? As it turns out, scientific lab notebooks offer many benefits that your average word document on your computer can’t include:

  1. Paper is meditative. The problem with digital technology is that working on a screen can often make you feel anxious. This is because working digitally means you’re working quickly, so during those times when you need to think you may feel rushed and take more risks. This isn’t a good thing when you’re working in the sciences. When you’re writing your work down in a scientific notebook, it’s just you, the paper, and your pen.
  2. You don’t have to worry about losing your data. Professionals who own notebooks often say the important information is what gets written down. This is because computers, though they’re great for speed and efficiency, are also prone to security breaches and damage. If you drop your laptop or if there’s an unexpected power surge, all your hard work could be gone unless you have it on a backup drive. You don’t need to worry about power surges when you use laboratory notebooks. You just need to keep it dry and don’t lose it.
  3. Laboratory notebooks give you better project control. You can always try to work with Google Docs or another software program to get your scientific records in order. But scientific lab notebooks are specifically developed with your research and development activity in mind. These notebooks provide continuity in research and a source of information that can be independent of staff changes or software updates.

Looking for laboratory notebooks that can keep up with your work?

Scientific Notebook Company understands that you need laboratory notebooks that are dependable and aren’t easily damaged. That’s why we offer a variety of student lab notebooks, engineering lab notebooks, and research notebooks so you can get your work done efficiently no matter where you are in your career.

To learn more about our different science notebooks for professionals and students, or for information on our archival pens, contact Scientific Notebook Company today.

laboratory notebooks

Global Pharmaceutical Outlook: 3 Biggest Pharma Companies In the World

The global pharmaceutical market is projected to reach $1.12 trillion by 2022. Across the U.S. and the world, there are millions of students, researchers, assistants, and pharmacists working toward bettering the industry and helping those in need of medical help.

The pharma industry discovers, develops, produces, and markets pharmaceutical drugs for use as medications to be administered to patients to vaccinate them, alleviate a symptom, or cure them of diseases.

College campuses are filled with kids lugging their laboratory notebooks and equipment to learn the ins and outs of the industry. And those already working in the pharmaceutical field are doing everything they can to develop new medications that could potentially change the world for the better.

Pharma companies deal in either generic or brand medications and medical devices (or both) and are subject to a variety of laws and regulations that govern the patenting, testing, safety, and marketing of each product.

Here are some of the biggest pharmaceutical companies across the globe:

  • Pfizer — Pfizer remains the largest pharma organization in the world, worth around $52.5 billion. This research-based company deals with immunology, oncology, neurosciences, and rare diseases.
  • Roche — Worth approximately $44.3 billion, this Swiss pharma company employs 93,734 people across the globe. Roche develops innovative drugs and devices to fight infectious diseases and other health issues.
  • Sanofi — Sanofi is a French company worth $36.6 billion. They saw a 4.2% revenue growth for its pharmaceutical products, contributing to 85% of the company’s total revenue. A quarter of all their pharma revenue came from their three best selling medications: Lantus, an insulin injection for diabetes, Aubagio, a once-daily pill to treat a form of multiple sclerosis, and Lovenox, an anticoagulant to prevent blood clots.

If you are involved in this thriving industry or are a student and want to keep track of all your notes, ideas, formulas, and more; you’re going to need some quality laboratory notebooks. Both students and professionals alike can benefit from lab notebooks and will likely use the same ones (and more) for decades.

Contact Scientific Notebook Company right away for some quality laboratory notebooks!

laboratory notebooks

The Drug Development Process: 3 Essential Steps

Medications and vaccinations are essential to everyday life. Over the years, there have been tens of thousands of medications that have been developed in order to help with everything from chronic pain management to life-threatening diseases.

Typically, it takes anywhere from 10 to 15 years to develop a medicine or vaccine. Researchers, scientists, and healthcare professionals are constantly updating their laboratory notebooks and making strides toward revolutionary breakthroughs within the scientific and medical sector.

How does a drug, medication, or vaccination go from the pages of laboratory notebooks to pharmacies, doctor’s offices, and medicine cabinets around the world?

The Drug Development Process

The success rate of experimental medications making it to pharmacy shelves and medicine cabinets is actually quite low. Currently, there are more than 180,000 ongoing clinical studies across the U.S. and world. That being said, since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) came into existence in 1938, only 1,453 drugs have been approved through the end of 2013. Similarly, according to, only five out of every 5,000 preclinical drugs will ever be tested on humans.

Here are a few essential steps that need to be taken during the drug development process:

  • Discovery and target validation — First, discovery work needs to be done. This is where drug development organizations select a molecule, such as a gene or protein, to target with a drug. This is also where pages and pages of scientific notebooks are filled with thoughts, notes, ideas, and more.
  • Preclinical testing — Next, in vitro and in vivo testing begins. In vitro testing takes a look at how the drug’s molecules interact inside test tubes. In vivo testing involves testing those molecules on living cell cultures (not humans).
  • Clinical studies — The third step actually involves three separate phases of clinical studies. Phase 1 involves a relatively small group of healthy people and focuses entirely on safety; phase 2 involves 100 or more patients who are no longer healthy volunteers; and phase 3 studies are designed by drug developers and approved by the FDA with guidelines for clearly defined primary endpoints to determine the success or failure of a drug being tested on a specific health condition.

If you want to learn more about the medication or vaccination process, or find high-quality laboratory notebooks to keep track of all the information you obtain along your scientific journey, contact Scientific Notebook Company right away!

research notebook

Biotech 101: History and Various Types of Biotechnology

Biotechnology is the use of biological processes for industrial and other purposes, especially for the genetic manipulation of microorganisms for the production of antibiotics, hormones, and more. Biotechnology is a complicated sector, but it’s a crucial one to understand for those in the scientific community.

Being able to understand the history of this broad area is extremely important and a little intimidating — hopefully, this guide will help you better understand this subsection of biology.

For centuries, humankind has utilized biotechnology in agriculture, food production, and medicine. Biotechnology traces its roots back to 1919, as Hungarian engineer Karoly Ereky coined the term, but it wasn’t until the late 1960s that scientific researchers performed the first successful recombinant DNA experiment.

Biotech relies on all sorts of tools and applications and often overlaps with related fields of molecular engineering, bioengineering, biomedical engineering, molecular biology, biomanufacturing, and more.

Simply put, “Biotechnology is technology based on biology,” according to the Biotechnology Innovation Organization. “[Biotech] harnesses cellular and biomolecular processes to develop technologies and products that help improve our lives and the health of our planet.

It’s important to note, however, whether you’re a biotech student working towards a career in this field or have been studying and researching for decades, biotech requires a lot of research and diligent note-taking. That’s where quality research notebooks come into play. Biotechnicians of all experience levels rely on dozens and dozens of research notebooks that are filled with formulas, notes, ideas, quotes, experiments, and so much more.

Here are some of the most popular types of biotechnology:

  1. Medical Biotech — This involves the study of DNA to get to know how to manipulate the genetic makeup of cells to increase production of beneficial characteristics that humans might find useful such as the production of insulin. Additionally, this field typically leads to the development of new drugs and treatments.
  2. Agricultural Biotech — This focuses on developing genetically modified plants for the purpose of increasing crop yields. Agricultural biotech involves pest-resistant crops, plant and animal breeding, and more.
  3. Industrial Biotech — The industrial applications of biotech range from the production of cellular structures to creating biological elements for all kinds of uses. For example, industrial biotech leads to the creation of new materials within the construction sector, as well as manufacturing alcohol, washing detergents, and other personal care products.

If you want to learn more about the importance of using quality research notebooks, give Scientific Notebook Company a call today!