Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
AMS FAQs will answer questions often received at Headquarters, with the goal of providing further insight into the organization, administration, and operation of the Society. AMS will publish answers to questions deemed to be of general interest. Questions will be added on a regular basis, and all questions received will be reviewed and updated as appropriate. Please forward candidate questions for AMS FAQs may be addressed to: mailto: email@example.com. Specific questions regarding your account, membership status, or other AMS activity may also be addressed directly to AMS staff.
Questions of a general nature regarding meteorology and related sciences can often be answered by searching the Internet with popular search engines. In addition, there are a number of Web sites that specialize in listing meteorological resources, such as:
The University of Michigan "WeatherNet" http://cirrus.sprl.umich.edu/wxnet/
The NWS Industrial Meteorology Web site http://www.nws.noaa.gov/im/index.html
Yahoo Meteorology Page http://dir.yahoo.com/Science/Earth_Sciences/Atmospheric_Sciences/Meteorology/
AMS Services in General
Q: I am an attorney preparing for an upcoming court case. I am trying to locate a meteorologist willing to testify as to the weather conditions on a certain date. Where can I find such an individual?
A: Why don't you contact a Certified Consulting Meteorologist (CCM)?
A CCM is a professional meteorologist who has an in-depth understanding of the atmosphere and its behavior. Services and products provided by CCMs are founded upon their abilities to apply this specialized knowledge to a broad range of related activities, issues, and inquiries.
A meteorologist must fulfill several requirements in order to apply for the CCM, and must pass written and oral examinations before the CCM is granted. Certification by the AMS enables users of meteorological services to select consultants with a greater confidence in the quality and reliability of the products and services they will receive.
For a listing of CCMs click on Directory of Certified Consulting Meteorologists
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Q: I am a junior in high school, and I am writing a research paper for my science class. Where can I find information about tornadoes, hurricanes, and other weather-related natural disasters? My teacher wants us to use published articles as well as the Internet for this assignment.
A: You can obtain articles that have appeared in the AMS Bulletin by going to the AMS Journals Online site and searching for these topics. Bulletin articles are free of charge. The full text for articles from the other journals requires a subscription to access. There are, of course, many other Web sites with information on these topics that can be found through searches in any of the major Web search portals, such as Yahoo and others.
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Meetings and Conferences
Q: How do I find out about upcoming meetings of the AMS and related orgnizations?
A: A full listing of upcoming meetings is available on the AMS Web site. Click on "Meetings and Exhibits", then either choose to view the full "Calendar and call for papers" or look at the additional information for AMS meetings and other meetings and workshops of interest.
Q: My company is an AMS corporate member. Am I entitled to special member rates at conferences?
A: Even though your company is a corporate member of the AMS, special conference rates are available only to those who are individual members of the AMS. For more information on becoming an individual member click on "Membership Information"
Q: I am interested in a paper that was presented at a previous AMS conference. How do I go about ordering a preprint from a past meeting?
A: You can do so by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org, and they will place your order and ship the preprint to you.
Q: Our group has an idea for a short course/workshop that we would like to see offered at an AMS conference. How do I go about getting this idea to the right people?
A: Send your idea to the AMS Committee on Continuing Education at email@example.com. They are always looking for new ways to provide quality educational offerings to the AMS community.
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Q: Do I have to have a degree in meteorology to become a member of the AMS?
A: No, anyone can become an Associate Member of the AMS and enjoy the benefits of membership, such as special pricing for books and journals. To become a full voting member you will need to fulfill certain educational and experience criteria.
Q: Does the AMS offer reduced dues for members that have retired from the workforce?
A: While the AMS does not offer reduced rates to every retired member, those retired individuals who have been active members of the Society for 25 or more years may be eligible for the grade of Member Emeritus. To quote from the American Meteorological Society's constitution:
"Any person who is a member of 25 or more years will, on reaching the age of 70, be relieved of paying dues, if he so requests, without curtailing his rights as a member to receive the publications appropriate to his grade over the last five years."
Members Emeritus, while exempt from paying dues, continue to enjoy the many benefits of membership, including voting rights and a complementary subscription to the Bulletin.
Eligible individuals interested in changing their member status may contact Headquarters by telephone to 617-227-2426, ext. 209 or 237 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Q: How can I join an AMS board or committee?
A: All members are welcome (and encouraged!) to volunteer their service on AMS boards and committees.
There are currently 30 committees on the Scientific and Technological Activities Commission (STAC); three boards and one committee on the Education and Human Resources Commission; five boards on the Commission on Professional Affairs; 10 boards and one committee on the Publications Commission, and over a dozen committees of the Council and Executive Committee. Each of these is generally staffed by five to ten volunteers who rotate through on multi-year terms. And thus there are literally many dozens of openings each year.
The best way to express your interest in serving is to contact the chair of the appropriate committee or board. These individuals' names and affiliations are listed yearly in the August issue of the Bulletin. In addition, many of these groups have Home ages, which can be found via links on the AMS Web site by clicking on "Boards/Committees"
Finally, you may send a message of interest through AMS Headquarters. Address it to the Director of Executive Programs, Joyce Annese, at email@example.com.
Q: How are individuals nominated for AMS awards, and how are they selected?
A: AMS confers over two dozen awards each year. Separate procedures have been developed for each award, so as to most effectively solicit and collect nominations, and subsequently generate a recommendation for award. The Council of the AMS has the final approval for all awards.
A full list of AMS awards, and procedures for submitting nominations, is printed annually in the August issue of the Bulletin. In addition, each monthly issue of the Bulletin has a condensed version, with specific instructions on submitting nominations.
You do not need to be a member of the AMS to receive an AMS award, but a nominee must be an AMS member to be eligible for election to AMS Fellow. More information on AMS awards and election of Fellows is available by clicking on "Members' Page"
I would like to list my favorite websites on my homepage.
Q: May I link my homepage to the AMS website?
A: Yes. But please be aware that the AMS logo is a registered trademark and may not be used without permission.
Q: Does the AMS make official statements on controversial issues such as "Global Warming"?
A: The AMS Council has issued formal statements on a variety of topics. You can find them by visiting the "Statements of the AMS" page.
Q: Having recently retired from the field of meteorology, I'd like to donate my collection of AMS journals to a worthy organization. Do you have any suggestions as to who might benefit from such a donation?
A: Help developing countries in Asia by donating your journals to Bridge to Asia, a non-profit San Francisco organization. Visit the Bridge to Asia Web site at http://www.bridge.org/Books.html or call them at 415-678-2990 for additional information. All donations and shipping costs are tax deductible.
Q: How would I go about starting an AMS Chapter in my area?
A: For information on starting a local chapter click on "Chapter Information"
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Q: What is copyright?
A: Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U.S. Code) to the authors "of original works of authorship" including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.
This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. Section 106 of the Copyright Act generally gives the owner of copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following to reproduce, to prepare derivative works, to distribute copies or phono records, to perform the copyright work publicly, and to display the copyrighted work publicly.
Q: Why should I transfer copyright to AMS?
A: It allows the AMS to act as the steward for the intellectual property contained in the published works. It also allows the AMS to protect the value of the materials so that they can be used to generate revenue for the Society, which is then used to support the peer-review publication process so crucial to the scholarly scientific endeavor.
Q: Is it required to transfer copyright?
A: Yes. Authors must assign copyright to the AMS as a condition of publishing the work with the AMS. This requirement may be waived for some materials.
Copyright transfer takes place when the work is accepted for publication by an AMS editor or appropriate AMS staff member.
Q: Where can I get an AMS copyright form?
A: You may download the copyright agreement from our website at the "Authors' Resource Center (ARC)" or request one from Headquarters: American Meteorological Society, Attn: Publications Coordinator, 45 Beacon Street, Boston, MA 02018 [phone: 617-227-2425, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org].
It is also published in the August issue of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society.
Q: Who should sign the form?
A: All authors including U.S. government employees.
Q: Which section should I sign?
A: The top section provides for the signatures of authors indicating transfer of the copyright to the AMS on acceptance for publication. The bottom section provides for the signatures of authors submitting a manuscript done as a work of the U.S. Government that is not subject to copyright.
It has become common practice for authors who are government employees to sign the bottom section of the form and all other authors to sign the top section. In reality, even government employees should often sign the top section providing transfer of the copyright to the AMS. In general, the bottom "Government" section of the transfer form should only be signed by authors who are official U.S. government employees and then only when the work being submitted was done as part of the "official duties" of their positions.
A government employee who prepares a manuscript on a subject completely separate from his regular duties (say of a review or of historical nature) should not sign the government portion of transfer form even if some or all of the work was done at the government facility during regular working hours.
I would like to reprint a figure from your journal, Journal of Applied Meteorology.
Q: Do I need written permission?
A: No. Our "blanket permission" in the copyright statement on the inside cover of our journals provides for the use of figures and brief excerpts without formal written permission provided you acknowledge the source of the material. Therefore, written permission is not needed.
Q: I would like to reprint part of my recently accepted article in my doctoral thesis. May I do that?
A: Yes. The author may reuse any portion of the work for personal use in future lectures, press releases, or reviews without the need to request permission from the AMS as long as the author acknowledges that the work has been published by the AMS and that the AMS holds the copyright.
The AMS also grants permission to the author to reuse portions of the work, such as figures, tables, or portions of text, in future publications without needing to request specific permission from the AMS for each individual instance.
Q: Does the AMS accept LaTeX files?
A: Yes, the AMS now offers authors an official Latex template to use when preparing their manuscript. Please go to http://www.ametsoc.org/pubs/journals/manuscripttemplates.html.
Q: Can I submit my manuscript to the Bulletin and other AMS journals using the web? If so how do I go about doing this and what formats are accepted?
A: AMS now requires authors to submit manuscripts electronically to the Bulletin, and all AMS journals if possible. To submit manuscripts to Earth Interactions please visit http://EarthInteractions.org.
A new upload system was implemented in December 2010. Please go to http://www.ametsoc.org/pubs/journals/submitmanuscript.html. More information is available at the Authors' Resource Center (ARC).
Q: I want to post my article on my homepage. Is this allowed?
A: Yes. Permission is explicitly provided to the authors to post their articles on their own personal home page. The policies do not allow a copy of an AMS copyrighted article to be placed on a server in any other way, so articles cannot be posted as part of a collection on a so-called "e-print" server. For more information on this go to the "Authors' Resource Center (ARC)", and then choose the AMS Copyright Policies.
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Student Membership and Services
Q: I have been a student member for the last four years. Now that I've graduated, I'd like to upgrade my status from "student" to "member." How do I do this?
A:If your dues have been paid for the present year, simply complete an
application for Member status and
return it to Headquarters for processing. It is not necessary to
include additional payment. If your dues have not been paid for the
present year, please contact Member Services and request an "application
for upgrade". Once received, your application will be reviewed and then
forwarded to the Society's Council for approval.
Because developing and maintaining a long-term relationship with you is
important to us, we help recent graduates make the transition from
Student Member to full Member with a discounted dues rate for up to five
years after graduation. Once you upgrade to full Member status, the cost
of your membership will increase from $20 for the first full year after
graduation to less than half the member rate for each of the next four
years. This Early Career Dues structure will allow you to make the
transition to full membership affordably, but without a loss of benefits.
Q: What special services are available for student members?
A: AMS has a number of special services for student members. The following is a partial list. Further information is available on the AMS Web site at "Membership Information".
- Reduced membership fees.
- Reduced registration fees for conferences and short courses
- Reduced cost for many publications.
- Undergraduate scholarship and graduate fellowship awards
- Student travel grants to AMS meetings
- Summer opportunities program
- Curricula of degree programs
- Best paper awards at many conferences
- Student local chapters
- Employment announcements
- Job fair at the annual meeting
Q: My 15 year old daughter is extremely interested in the weather and is thinking of pursuing a career in meteorology. Do you have any information on what types of careers are available in this field? Are there any colleges that offer degree programs in the atmospheric sciences?
A: Our career booklet, Challenges of our Changing Atmosphere, is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in pursuing a career in the atmospheric sciences. The booklet is available on our Web site in both HTML and PDF formats. Please contact Headquarters for a paper copy or for multiple copy orders.
There are over 100 colleges and universities in the U.S. and Canada that offer degree programs in the atmospheric and related sciences. In cooperation with the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), the AMS compiles information on these schools and publishes them in the Curricula in the Atmospheric, Oceanic, Hydrologic and Related Sciences. This publication contains detailed information about each individual college or university - types of degrees offered; name, highest degree, Alma Mater and special interest of each faculty member; title of undergraduate and graduate courses offered; number of degrees granted, etc. The CURRICULA is available free of charge on our web site by following the "Student Resources" link.
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Student Scholarship, Fellowship and Travel Programs
Q: Can a student who is presenting a paper or poster at a meeting apply for
the Student Travel Grant?
A: No. In most cases, a student who is presenting at a meeting is being
partially funded. AMS would like to offer students who are not presenting
an opportunity to attend as well. These meetings are valuable to the
students research and/or thesis.
Q: Does AMS offer any other scholarship programs other than what is listed on the
A No. All AMS scholarship and fellowship programs are always posted on the
web site upon availability. We also have a page that lists other
scholarships outside of AMS.
Q: Do you have to be a member to apply for the Student Volunteer Program for
the AMS Annual Meetings?
A: No. However, first preference is given to members AMS.
Q: Does being part of an AMS Local Chapter have first preference for the
Student Volunteer Program?
A: Outside of being a member, there are many areas of the application being
considered. A priority of consideration is always based on the needs of the
AMS staff as well. Being an officer of an AMS Local Chapter may come in to
consideration at times, but not always.