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Journal of Suffolk Student Research: Author Information

An Online Academic Journal

Guidelines for Authors


Introduction

Thank you for considering submitting your work to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research. Before submitting your manuscript to the journal, please ensure that you have fully read this document and understand the expectations regarding the submission and formatting requirements for this journal.

The purpose of this document is to offer guidance and support to authors during the preparation of their manuscript for submission. Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the Journal of Suffolk Student Research we appreciate that manuscripts may differ in structure and presentation due to subject and research specific requirements.

Alongside this Guidelines for Authors document there are three supporting documents which will aid you in understanding the submission and review process. These supporting documents can be found within the journal website under the ‘Author Information’ section.

The first document ‘Submission Process’, provides some general guidance on submitting your research to the journal and includes a helpful submission timeline and information on how to submit your manuscript.

The second document ‘Submission Checklist’, needs to be submitted alongside your manuscript and details key aspects which need to be included/considered as part of your submission. 

The final document ‘Review Process’, outlines the process your manuscript will undergo once submitted to the journal. It includes a useful review timeline.

Please feel free to contact the editorial team – suffolkjournal@uos.ac.uk, if you require any assistance or clarification during the preparation of your manuscript for submission. 

 

 

 

Submission Guidance and Requirements

The Journal of Suffolk Student Research accepts manuscripts from undergraduate and taught postgraduate students, which contain primary research or secondary data analysis research .  Your manuscript should be based on work undertaken for your undergraduate/masters dissertation/research project. The research can be quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods. The journal may also consider the following types of manuscripts eligible for submission: clinical audit, service evaluation, case reports and case studies.

The following types of manuscripts are not eligible for submission to the journal: creative writing, essays, reviews, posters, abstracts, presentation, short module lab reports, secondary research (with no data analysis) or systematic reviews. If the editorial team receive a submission of this type they will not consider it for the journal and it will be returned to you without review.

The journal will only accept work that has received a ratified mark from a course assessment board. You cannot submit work which is awaiting assessment or is to be submitted for assessment.  Your manuscript must be original and must not be under consideration, or have been previously published or submitted, for review elsewhere.

The journal reserves the right to refuse the publication of any submissions they deem unfit for publication. 
Your manuscript should be no longer than 4,000 words which includes footnotes but excludes abstract, table and figure titles, references and appendices (further details are provided later in this document). 

The Journal of Suffolk Student Research accepts articles throughout the year. If accepted your manuscript will be made available on the journal’s website as an advanced online publication. All manuscripts accepted by November will be combined into the journal volume which will be published in January.  If your manuscript is accepted for publication after November it will appear as an advanced online publication on the journal’s website and your manuscript will be included in the following year’s January volume.

The journal is an online, open access, academic journal, dedicated to the publication of high-quality undergraduate and taught postgraduate student research undertaken by University of Suffolk students. The journal is designed with non-specialist and non-academic readership in mind. Therefore, please ensure that you avoid using jargon and write in a clear and concise manner which is suitable for a multidisciplinary, non-specialist and non-academic readership. 


 

Article Contents

Submitted manuscripts should include the following sections.

1. Title page

2. Abstract

3. Keywords

4. Introduction

5. Methods/Research Methodology

6. Results/Findings

7. Discussion/Conclusion

8. References

9. Acknowledgments

10. Appendices

1. Title Page

This is the first page of your manuscript and should contain the following information:

· Title of manuscript

· Author details – full name (as you want it to appear in the publication), School, Degree studied (when research was carried out)

2. Abstract

The second page of your manuscript should contain an abstract which summarises your manuscript. It should contain the heading ‘Abstract’, which should be centred. It should be between 100-200 words and formatted as one paragraph. It should be written in the third person and in the past tense. Abstracts should summarise the key aim of the research, the methods used, the key findings and conclusions and implications arising from the research. When writing the abstract ensure that it is appropriately written for a non-specialist, multidisciplinary audience.

3. Keywords

Underneath the abstract (on the second page) you should identify approximately five key words or key phrases which capture the ‘essence’ or topic of your manuscript. It should contain the heading ‘Keywords’, which should be left justified. These will be used for indexing purposes and allow individuals searching for these terms to be direct to your manuscript. For example, research looking into attraction preferences may have the following key words/phrases: Attraction, Sexual Preferences, Sexual Orientation, Masculinity, Evolution.

4. Introduction

This section should start on the third page of your manuscript. It should not contain a heading. This section may vary dependent upon subject and research specific requirements. However, most manuscripts would contain a general introduction to the topic(s) researched, a literature review, and research aim(s)/question(s) and/or hypothesis/hypotheses.

This section needs to convey why this topic is being researched, review the existing knowledge in the field, the contribution your manuscript will make to the field and what you will be exploring with your project.

5. Methods/Research Methodology

This section should continue from the end of the previous section in your manuscript. It should contain the heading ‘Method’ or ‘Research Methodology’, which should be centred. The content of this section will vary dependent upon subject and research specific requirements. The aim of this section is to provide sufficient details to allow replication of your research. Most methodology sections include subheadings to aid clarity, for example: Participants, Design, Materials/Stimuli,

Procedure/Data Collection, Ethical Considerations (if applicable). Any subheadings should follow guidance provided in the ‘Formatting Requirements’ contained within this document.

6. Results/Findings

This section should continue from the end of the previous section in your manuscript. It should contain the heading ‘Results’ or ‘Findings’, which should be centred. The content of this section will vary dependent upon subject and research specific requirements. The aim of this section is to provide details of analysis undertaken to address the research aim(s)/question(s) and/or hypothesis/hypotheses stated at the end of the introduction section. For quantitative research descriptive and inferential statistics should be provided along with assumption testing. For qualitative research the key findings and relevant evidence/quotes should be provided along with the analysis method you have used. FRANK TO ADD SUBHEADINGS USED FOR COMPUTER DESIGNS

7. Discussion/Conclusion

This section should continue from the end of the previous section in your manuscript. It should contain the heading ‘Discussion’ or ‘Conclusion’, which should be centred. The content of this section will vary dependent upon subject and research specific requirements. The aim of this section is to relate and explain your results/findings to the research aim(s)/question(s) and/or hypothesis/hypotheses you provided at the end of the introduction section. In addition, this section should relate and explain your results/findings to the existing literature. It should discuss reasons for contradictory findings, limitations, future research and summarise the overall implications and applications of your research.

8. References

This section should start on a new page. It should contain the heading ‘References’, which should be centred. All manuscripts should contain a references list and in text references. The references list should contain only the sources directly referenced within your manuscript. Bibliographies should not be included.

References should adhere to your subject specific referencing guidelines (e.g. APA, UoS Harvard, MHRA, OSCOLA). Please see the ‘Schools and Referencing System’ document and the specific referencing formatting guides which can be found within the journal website under the ‘Author Information’ section. If assistance is required with the subject specific referencing system, please seek support from the University of Suffolk Learning Services Team.

9. Acknowledgments

This section should start on a new page. It should contain the heading ‘Acknowledgments’, which should be centred. This is not a submission requirement. However, you may wish to acknowledge any particular academic or professional person(s) or organisations that have supported you during your research. This might include your project supervisor or external organisations.

10. Appendices

This section should start on a new page. This is not a submission requirement. It should contain the heading ‘Appendices’, which should be centred. This section should provide essential materials directly referred to within your manuscript. The aim of this section is to include materials which allow for replication of your research. For example, a questionnaire or interview schedule that you have created, a full model which is summarised in text, stimuli images. Standardised materials are not required, such as, information sheet, consent form, debrief, ethics documentation, ethics approval, pre-existing questionnaires, interview transcripts, data output. Each appendix should be separately numbered, include a title (which is centred) and appear on a new page. Appendices should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they appear in the manuscript.

 

Formatting Requirements

All submissions MUST adhere to the following formatting requirements. Manuscripts submitted which do not adhere to these requirements may be returned without review for resubmission.

  • Submitted documents (manuscript and submission checklist) must be submitted as a Word Document (.doc, .docx or .odt)
  • Margins should be set at 2.5cm on all sides (top, bottom, left and right
  • 1.5 line spacing should be used throughout the entire manuscript
  • The document should be left aligned
  • The font should be black
  • The font should be set at Times New Roman
  • The font should be size 12pt.*
  • *Headings within the manuscript should appear on separate lines and be left aligned. Please do not number headings. Up to two levels of headings may be used. First level headings should be should be 14pt., Times New Roman and bold (e.g. Introduction, Method). Second level headings should be 12pt. Times New Roman and italicised (e.g. method subsections)
  • A single space should be used after a full stop, comma, colon or semi colon
  • Paragraphs should be denoted by indenting the first line and not leaving a line between paragraphs (this is also known as ‘first line’ in the paragraphing options)
  • Page numbers should appear in the footer of each page and be aligned to the right
  • Numbers in text should be written as the number if over ten (e.g. 11) and written as the word if the number is under ten (e.g. six) or at the start of a sentence. Numerical measurements should be written as the number (e.g. 7 years old)
  • Decimal points should be consistent throughout the manuscript. Two decimal places is most typically used
  • Table Formatting – Tables are commonly used to present numerical or written information. Tables should be presented within the manuscript. They should include a heading presented above the table which includes the table number and title, which is Times New Roman, 12pt., 1.5 spacing and left justified. The contents of the table should be no smaller than 10pt. Tables should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they appear in the manuscript. All tables should be referred to in the text before they are presented. Formatting of the table may vary depending on subject and research specific requirements.
  • Figure Formatting – Figures are commonly used to present visual information such as, graphs, images, photographs and other illustrations. Figures should be presented within the manuscript. They should include a heading presented below the figure which includes the figure number and title, which is Times New Roman, 12pt., 1.5 spacing and left justified. The written contents within the figure such as axis titles, should be no smaller than 10pt. Figures can be presented in either greyscale or colour. Figures should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they appear in the manuscript. All figures should be referred to in the text before they are presented. Formatting of the figure may vary depending on subject and research specific requirements.
  • Footnotes can be are accepted but should be kept to a minimum. These should be formatted using the automatic formatting available within Word
  • References should adhere to your subject specific referencing guidelines (e.g. APA, UoS Harvard, MHRA, OSCOLA). Please see the ‘Schools and Referencing System’ document and the specific referencing formatting guides which can be found within the journal website under the ‘Author Information’ section
  • Bibliographies should not be included
 

Written Requirements

All submissions MUST adhere to the following written requirements. Manuscripts submitted which do not adhere to these requirements may be returned without review for resubmission.

  • Manuscripts should be written using British Oxford English Dictionary spelling not American
  • Manuscripts should be no longer than 4,000 words which includes footnotes but excludes abstract, table and figure titles, references and appendices
  • Ensure your writing is clear and concise and appropriate for a multidisciplinary, non-specialist and non-academic readership
  • Avoid using jargon and highly specialist terms
  • Avoid using contractions within your manuscript (e.g. don’t, weren’t)
  • Throughout your manuscript you should refer to your project as “the current study/project/research”
  • Direct quotations should be presented within double quotation marks. Quotations shorter than three lines should be presented within the main body of text. Quotations exceeding three lines should be presented as a new paragraph and be in italics, indented from the body of the text and not in speech marks
  • All acronyms should be defined on first use before subsequent abbreviation. Acronyms can be used but should be used sparingly.
  • Ensure your manuscript is free from bias such as gender bias. Use language such as ‘they’ rather than ‘he/she’.
 

Ethics

In order to submit your manuscript to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research you must have obtained the required ethical approval. All manuscripts involving participants MUST have gained University of Suffolk ethical approval. In addition, your approved University of Suffolk ethics form must have clearly indicated that the dissemination of the results of the study will include ‘Peer reviewed journal’, ‘Conference presentation’ and ‘Publication on website’. Furthermore, your participants must have been clearly informed in both the information sheet and the consent form that the research they are involved in could be disseminated in an online open access journal and used in conference proceedings.

Any submission which does not have appropriate ethical approval is ineligible for publication in the Journal of Suffolk Student Research and will be returned without review.

Submission Process and Checklist


The Journal of Suffolk Student Research accepts manuscripts from undergraduate and taught postgraduate students, which contain primary research or secondary data analysis research[1].  Your manuscript should be based on work undertaken for your undergraduate/masters dissertation/research project. The research can be quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods. The journal may also consider the following types of manuscripts eligible for submission: clinical audit, service evaluation, case reports and case studies.

The following types of manuscripts are not eligible for submission to the journal: creative writing, essays, reviews, posters, abstracts, presentation, short module lab reports, secondary research (with no data analysis) or systematic reviews. If the editorial team receive a submission of this type they will not consider it for the journal and it will be returned to you without review.

The journal will only accept work that has received a ratified mark from a course assessment board. You cannot submit work which is awaiting assessment or is to be submitted for assessment.  Your manuscript must be original and must not be under consideration, or have been previously published or submitted, for review elsewhere.

The journal reserves the right to refuse the publication of any submissions they deem unfit for publication.

If you are interested in submitting your work to The Journal of Suffolk Student Research, please refer to the journal website ‘Author Information’ section and in particular the ‘Author Guidelines’. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the Journal editors at suffolkjournal@uos.ac.uk.

 

Submission Guidance

Your manuscript should be no longer than 4,000 words which includes footnotes but excludes abstract, table and figure titles, references and appendices.

The Journal of Suffolk Student Research accepts articles throughout the year. If accepted your manuscript will be made available on the journal’s website as an advanced online publication. All manuscripts accepted by November will be combined into the journal volume which will be published in January.  If your manuscript is accepted for publication after November it will appear as an advanced online publication on the journal’s website and your manuscript will be included in the following year’s January volume.

The Journal of Suffolk Student Research accepts manuscripts that meet the submission requirements outlined above, from undergraduate and taught postgraduate students from any School. Staff and Postgraduate research students are not eligible to submit work to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research. Staff and Postgraduate research students seeking to publish their research should discuss publication avenues with the University of Suffolk research team and/or their supervisory teams.

 

[1] Secondary Data Analysis encompasses research which is based on analysis of secondary data (already existing data), which follows the format for the primary data research. Secondary Data Analysis Research cannot be purely descriptive in nature.

Submission Timeline

The diagram below illustrates the key steps involved in preparing your manuscript for submission to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research. 

* The relevant document(s) can be found within the journal website under the ‘Author Information’ section.

.
  • Submission Checklist

  • As part of your submission to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research you will need to complete and submit the Submission Checklist (which can be found below). This checklist includes details about the author, an author checklist, and some author statements. Please submit this checklist as a Word Document (.doc, .docx or .odt) attachment along with your manuscript.

Review Process


Submission Received

Once you have submitted your article to suffolkjournal@uos.ac.uk the review process will begin.

 

Initial Check for Suitability

The editorial team will undertake an initial review to determine whether your manuscript is suitable for publication in the Journal of Suffolk Student Research using the same checklist criteria as you submitted alongside your manuscript.

The editorial team will be in touch within 10 working days to confirm if your manuscript is suitable to be sent out for review.

If your manuscript if deemed unsuitable for publication in the journal it will be returned to the author along with feedback explaining the decision.

 

Review Board

If your manuscript is deemed suitable for publication in the journal it will be sent out to be reviewed by two members of the reviewer’s board. The review process is anonymous so all communication between author and reviewers will be conducted through the editorial team. In addition, your manuscript will be anonymised by the editorial team before it is sent out for review. In most cases, one reviewer will be an academic from within the School in which your research was undertaken and one reviewer will be an academic from outside the School your research was undertaken.

Each reviewer will carefully assess the style and content of your manuscript before completing a ‘Reviewer’s Report’. The role of the reviewer is to review the submitted manuscript and provide objective feedback. Reviewers are expected to have no involvement in preparing your submission.

The ‘Reviewer’s Report’ will comment on whether your manuscript includes the appropriate sections based on the submission requirements. It will also define the successes of the manuscript and its strengths. Finally, the report will provide one of four decisions on the outcome of your manuscript along with a rationale for their decision. Your manuscript will either be:

  1. Suitable for publication in its current state (no changes needed)
  2. Suitable for publication pending minor changes (for example, clarification on methodological details, inclusion of another research example in literature review, incorrect referencing style)
  3. Suitable for publication pending major changes (for example, additional analysis, revision of interpretation of analysis)
  4. Unsuitable for publication
 

Revise and Review Cycles

Once the editorial team have received the required ‘Reviewer’s Report’ from both reviewers a final decision will be made by the editorial team regarding your manuscript. Where possible the Journal of Suffolk Student Research endeavours to operate with a 6 working week turnaround time from submission to communication of the outcome decision.

You will be informed via email of the outcome decision and any actions or revisions required to your manuscript along with a deadline for those revisions to be received. As with most journals the process of revisions may require multiple rounds of revising and reviewing before the final version of your manuscript is accepted for publication in the Journal of Suffolk Student Research.

 

Submission Accepted for Publication

Once your manuscript has been accepted to the Journal of Suffolk Student Research it will be made available on the journal website as an advanced online publication within 4 working weeks of acceptance. The advanced online publication constitutes the author version of the manuscript as a non-journal formatted PDF document.

Manuscripts which have been accepted by November will be combined into the journal volume which will be published in January. This version of your manuscript will be copy edited and formatted in the Journal of Suffolk Student Research style. If your manuscript is accepted for publication after November it will be included in the following year’s January volume.

 

Review Timeline

The diagram below illustrates the key steps that your manuscript will undergo whilst under review at the Journal of Suffolk Student Research.

* You will receive feedback regarding the progress of your manuscript at these stages during the review process.

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