The short description of Chemistry Stack Exchange reads

Q&A for scientists, academics, teachers and students

This is certainly not wrong and describes quite well that we are open for a broad audience and that we are not a homework site. It also works quite well together with the short name “Chemistry” for the site, for example in lists like this one.


Q&A for scientists, academics, teachers and students

However, the most important aspect, i.e. that this site is about chemistry, gets lost when the current short description is used without the (long or short) name of the site. In particular, this is problematic when a question is migrated away from Chemistry Stack Exchange

This question came from our site for scientists, academics, teachers and students.

or when a question is migrated to Chemistry Stack Exchange (e.g. from Physics Stack Exchange).

This question belongs on our site for scientists, academics, teachers and students.

This sounds like the question was migrated to Academia Stack Exchange or could lead to the question why Physics Stack Exchange is not supposed to be a site for scientists, academics, teachers and students.

The short descriptions of Stack Exchange sites for other disciplines do not have this problem.

Q&A for active researchers, academics and students of physics

Q&A for biology researchers, academics, and students

Q&A for people studying math at any level and professionals in related fields

Earth Science
Q&A for those interested in the geology, meteorology, oceanography, and environmental sciences

Electrical Engineering
Q&A for electronics and electrical engineering professionals, students, and enthusiasts

Q&A for professionals and students of engineering

Therefore, I propose to change the text “for scientists, academics, teachers and students” to something that includes the “chemistry” aspect. Maybe a simple extension of the wording to “for scientists, academics, teachers and students of chemistry” could already be enough.

  • 8
    $\begingroup$ +400. I noticed this awhile ago and brought it up in chat, but nobody seemed much to care so I dropped it. Absolutely I think this needs to be changed. $\endgroup$
    – hBy2Py
    May 26, 2018 at 19:11
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Good find I would have had no idea. $\endgroup$
    – jonsca
    May 27, 2018 at 2:04

3 Answers 3


"... for scientists, academics, teachers, and students in the field of chemistry."*

"scientists of chemistry" and "academics of chemistry" are awkward compositions, so I think that simply "... for scientists, academics, teachers, and students of chemistry" isn't the best formulation.

  • $\begingroup$ Tour says: 'Chemistry is a question and answer site for scientists, academics, teachers and students of chemistry. It's built and run by you as part of the Stack Exchange network of Q&A sites. With your help, we're working together to build a library of detailed answers to every question about chemistry.' I guess we should change that accordingly. $\endgroup$ Jun 4, 2018 at 13:56
  • $\begingroup$ @Martin-マーチン It would be more consistent if we changed it there, too. It's something of a nitpick -- the simple "... of chemistry" phrasing sounds just fine coming after "teachers and students", after all. It's only when one thinks about it long enough that the usage mismatch becomes apparent. $\endgroup$
    – hBy2Py
    Jun 4, 2018 at 13:58
  • $\begingroup$ I agree, I couldn't find a way to edit the short description yet (I guess we'll have to elevate that). However, the tour we can edit, so I just wanted to put a reminder here. $\endgroup$ Jun 4, 2018 at 14:02
  • $\begingroup$ Particularly given the comma after "teachers", the "in the field of chemistry" can be read (and, really, should be read) to only modify "students", not the other items in the list. But that, perhaps, is best a question for the English Language SE... $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:06

The current description implicitly excludes laymen from our target audience. Surely our site welcomes anyone with a good chemistry question or a good chemistry answer. SE Earth Science does not exclude laymen, by using "those interested". Therefore I propose the following short description, which is clear and concise, and does not exclude anyone:

"Q&A for anyone interested in chemistry."

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ +1 our site does get a few questions from users with non-chemical background as well, and the current description ("scientists, academics, teachers and students") excludes them :( $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2018 at 3:01
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @GaurangTandon - not having a chemistry background does not exclude somebody from being a (new) student of chemistry... $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:07
  • $\begingroup$ @JonCuster well, consider that young plumber who lives down my street. He's broken a bottle of chemicals at his home and they got mixed. He now wants to identify what happened based on the description (think home-experiment). If you ask him, are you a "student of chemistry", would he say yes? ;) $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2018 at 14:18
  • $\begingroup$ @GaurangTandon On the one hand, I think from a "let's cast a wide net" perspective, this is absolutely something we should include in a revised site description. On the other hand, right now I get the impression that many questions from laymen are getting hammered as though they were homework plops, so our current behavior would be at odds with a stated philosophy of openness to lay questions. $\endgroup$
    – hBy2Py
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:20
  • $\begingroup$ @GaurangTandon - for better or worse, if he is asking a question about chemistry that makes him a student of chemistry. Or the creator of a superfund site. Or perhaps both... But I upvoted this answer as being the most succinct and least likely to be misconstrued. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:21
  • $\begingroup$ @hBy2Py Well, many home-experiments and food-chemistry continue to live on our site. Though, in any case, I think the tour assumes ideal behavior, so... $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2018 at 14:37
  • $\begingroup$ @GaurangTandon Not to mention [everyday-chemistry]. $\endgroup$
    – hBy2Py
    Jun 8, 2018 at 15:25

How about:
Q&A for chemists, academics, teachers and students.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Hmmmm.... I'm not a chemist by degree or practice, I'm not an academic, I'm not a teacher, and I'm not a student. I do consider myself a scientist. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:08

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