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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word file format.
  • Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  • The text is double-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  • If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.

Author Guidelines

Manuscripts to be submitted must be Microsoft Word documents, double spaced in 12pt font with numbered pages, to aid reviewers in making comments. If you are an undergraduate student, your submission does not need to be anonymised. If you are a postgraduate student, please ensure that your name is not visible on any part of your submitted piece of work. Images, figures and tables, where used, should be in the body of the text and appropriately numbered. Footnotes are preferred, rather than endnotes. We accept a several different citation styles. If you a submitting a piece from the discipline of law, please use OSCOLA. Any other disciplines may use Harvard or APA. Whichever you choose, please make sure it is used consistently throughout your paper.

Any work submitted to the journal must already have been accessed by your institution. We will not provide feedback on work which has not yet been formally assessed and we will report anyone who attempts to do this.

The word count for each piece submitted should be:

Reflective Pieces – 500-700 words. These pieces will be a dialogue around a particular issue or experience in professional practice. Reflective pieces are more personal, sharing your thoughts and feelings, creating a narrative account. These pieces are not expected to be long and should be thought of as a snapshot of a professional practice encounter. We ask that any submissions are cautious not to include any confidential matters of third parties, e.g. client names. Further, if you are submitting this work for an assessment, please check with your institution that publishing it with this journal will not affect your submission.

Research Papers – 5,000 -7000 words. Research papers are open to whatever the student is working on. Undergraduate students may wish to submit research papers on their dissertation topic or to further explore a module they have enjoyed. Postgraduate students, including PhD students on any course, can submit work based on or around their thesis or work from another academic interest. Postgraduate papers will go through a blind peer review, as they would with any other journal.

Undergraduate Dissertations –These are often very insightful and important pieces of work which are not always made available by the institutions where they were produced. Dissertations which have received a good First Class grade are generally considered to be published. There is an opportunity, however, for students’ work which did not receive a high dissertation grade, but which is innovative, to work with a supervisor to develop this work further for publication. If you are interested in developing a dissertation for publication please email the General Editor to discuss this further.

Master’s Dissertations - Submissions can either be the whole dissertation, chapters or reworked sections. We ask that any Master’s dissertations are accompanied by a peer support dialogue, a contextual piece, outlining the importance of the work and its potential impact on society and/or the profession.

Policy Pieces – 3,000 – 7,000 words. Policy pieces can include any responses to consultation papers or reports prepared for change to policy or practice. We expect these pieces to be support by rigorous research, empirical or theoretical. These will only be peer reviewed if not already submitted to a relevant organisation or body and only if undertaking consultation out of interest. Please state in your email to the Editor in the submission form whether this has been submitted elsewhere.

Specialist Area Reports – up to 4,000 words. We welcome shorter pieces, which focus on different specialist areas. These may be developed from coursework (which has already been assessed) and other work done during university and other courses. It is an opportunity to further develop ideas students have enjoyed.

Visual Pieces – This includes, but is not limited to, any posters which have been presented at conferences or other visual means of presenting work. If you would like to, you can submit a 1,000 word maximum piece of written work to accompany and compliment your visual piece. We are welcome to any innovative ideas and ways to share research, so please contact the journal with any visual pieces or designs you have.

Special Issues – The Student Journal of Professional Practice and Academic Research will publish special issues when the opportunity arises. For example, if there has been a student conference or a special event, we are willing to publish any resulting work. Please contact us if you have any events upcoming and would like to create and put out a call for papers for a special issue.

If you feel as though your work does not fit into any of these categories, please contact the Managing Editor in the first instance to discuss it.

You may submit manuscripts to the journal at any time during the year. Please note, however, that all content is subject to some form of review. All content is reviewed by the Managing Editor. After the editorial check, your piece will be sent to a reviewer for a blind review. Whilst we aim to have the review completed and the piece back to the author, with or without comments, within a month, this is not always possible, as our reviewers also have other responsibilities. There then follows a period of proof-reading and copy-editing for publication. This means that a piece submitted without any revisions needed could be in press for 6-8weeks. However, you may want to make want to make some amendments yourself to enhance your paper, even if the reviewers have specifically requested that amendment. Submissions with more substantial amendments needed, which can occasionally happen, will take longer to get to press than those without minor or no amendments. Once the paper is ‘in press’ it is likely to appear in the next edition. This process is transparent to the authors throughout. 

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