12 posts categorized "Publication process"

April 08, 2010

Beneficial Supplements

Daisiesby Stefanie

You have written your manuscript for an APA journal (or another scholarly publication), and now you are looking at all of your fantastic supporting materials and deciding what to include. There’s a color figure that rivals the rainbow in beauty and precision, perfectly illustrating your points but beyond your shoestring budget to include in the print publication. There’s a huge table, filled with insightful calculations that you did not quite get a chance to cover in the text but that is valuable nonetheless. You would love to share the digitized video and music clips used in the study. Not to mention that the raw data your experiment generated is truly a gold mine. Can you include all of these materials with your article?

In the past, the answer might have been no, given technological limits and concerns about space and the cost of printing color figures. But now all of these resources and more can be posted online as supplemental material for your article! Once published, the print version of your article will include a URL on the first page and the online version of your article will have a live link, both taking readers to a landing page that presents the cache of data treasure you have provided (see a sample landing page here).

The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, sixth edition, notes that “web-based, online supplemental archives tend to be more appropriate for material that is more useful when available as a direct download as well materials that are not easily presented in standard print format” (p. 39). Examples of such materials, in addition to the ones mentioned above, are lengthy computer code, mathematical or computational models, detailed intervention protocols, and expanded methodology sections.

Supplemental materials are usually subject to peer review and should be included with journal submissions. Each document should have a title and a context statement specifying what is in it, and the electronic files should follow a consistent naming convention (e.g., ABN.Smith20100001.doc, ABN.Smith20100001.wav, ABN.Smith20100001.jpeg). APA journals practice is to post accepted supplemental materials without further editing or polishing; the procedures of other publishers may vary.

The Publication Manual notes that supplemental materials should be included “only if they help readers to understand, evaluate, or replicate the study or theoretical argument being made” (p. 40). Also keep in mind that supplemental materials are subject to all relevant ethical standards; be especially aware of permissions issues when reprinting images of human participants or any formerly published materials.

Information on acceptable file formats for APA journals supplemental materials may be found here. For more information on this topic, please see the Publication Manual, pp. 39–40 and 230.

July 02, 2009

The Sixth Edition: Effective Now?

 Paige-for-web-site 75x75

by Paige Jackson


When will I need to start using the sixth edition of the APA Style Manual?




It will take a while to figure out what’s different about the revised manual and for the new style rules to become second nature. That may take a year or so. At APA, 2010 journal issues will be the first ones to adhere to the revised manual.



Do I need to update manuscripts that are in peer review so they conform to the revised manual?




We do not expect authors who have manuscripts near the final stages of peer review to revise their papers to conform to the sixth edition. APA staff will make the necessary changes during copyediting.



What if I’m thinking about submitting a new manuscript to an APA journal?




APA journal editors expect that new manuscripts submitted after January 1, 2010, will conform to the sixth edition. Before then, new submissions will probably be a mixture of fifth and sixth edition styles. Authors, in their later revisions, and/or APA staff will make sure all accepted articles follow sixth edition style. APA’s Instructions to All Authors contain the latest updates about submitting manuscripts to APA journals.



What about requirements for courses or for submitting to non-APA journals?




Professors or editors of other journals that use APA style may have different expectations—so be sure to check individual course requirements and journal instructions to authors to figure out what timetable for the transition will apply. Some will start in the fall of 2009, and some in the winter of 2010. Ask in your class.


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