Submission guidelines

Instructions for Authors

Types of papers

Types of articles and topics published in Education and Treatment of Children include experimental research (Original Articles), data-based case studies (Brief Reports), literature reviews (Reviews), issue-oriented papers (Commentaries), and book reviews. All submissions should emphasize impact of the paper on the practical concerns of professionals serving children and youth who are at-risk for or experiencing emotional or behavioral problems.

Original Articles:

Original Articles describe data-based evaluations of assessment or intervention procedures, or other experimental procedures, for children with or at-risk for emotional or behavioral problems. Manuscripts should demonstrate usefulness of the described procedure, adequacy of the data in showing a functional relationship between the procedures and observed behavior changes, and evidence that measurements taken were reliable. Replications are welcome. Original research studies that investigate procedures of use to practitioners are also welcome. Potential usefulness of the procedures, behavior changes of magnitudes that have practical implications, accuracy of the data, and clarity of the presentation for practitioners are the considerations used by our reviewers when judging an experimental study manuscript's suitability for publication in ETC. The manuscript should follow APA formatting guidelines throughout.

Brief Reports:

Brief Reports describe data-based case studies that meet the following criteria: (1) a demonstration of direct, empirical measurement of specific client behaviors repeated over time that guided the clinical and/or educational decision making reported in the study; and (2) a contribution to advancing teaching/training/treatment effectiveness by serving (a) as a source of ideas and hypotheses for further research, (b) as a source of developing teaching/training/treatment techniques, such as a study of a rare phenomenon, (c) as a counterinstance for notions that are considered to be universally applicable, or (d) as persuasive and motivational (see ETC, 22 (2), for references). Although the topic should be of broad interest, the data presented in Brief Reports may include smaller samples or have more limited generality. Replications in everyday situations of procedures developed under rigorous research protocols are welcome, especially when the original study was a highly controlled experiment, as are manuscripts highlighting efficient and effective means to collect data that guide treatment/teaching.

Brief Reports should follow APA formatting but not exceed 2500 words, including abstract, references and figure legends. The body of the manuscript should contain a summary of the prior literature, general procedures, detailed results and implications of the findings. The manuscript should have no more than one Figure or Table.

Reviews:

Reviews should be focused on the implications of the results of studies for practitioners whose clients may benefit from the procedures described by the literature. Reviews need not be comprehensive as long as the literature not included would in no way alter the implications for practice described by the review. Reviews do not require the inclusion of novel data, but such data may be included (e.g., the proportion of studies on a particular topic that describe an outcome). The style, format, and organization should be such that practitioners will clearly understand what is being presented. It is important to caution practitioners about the limitations of the implications for practice drawn from the research literature. This may include discussions of legal, ethical, scientific, and logistical limitations and associated issues.

Reviews should follow APA formatting.

Commentaries:

Papers for the Commentaries section of ETC will generally be discussions of legal, ethical, and other issues important to persons working with children and youth who are at risk for or experiencing emotional or behavioral problems; discussions and/or descriptions of methods and techniques that provide information directly applicable to the assessment, treatment, and evaluation of services for children; descriptions of guidelines or criteria useful in planning and implementing assessment, treatment, and evaluation programs for children and youth; theoretical papers that focus on the potential applications of the position taken; or survey research that addresses important social and criterion-related validity issues regarding evidence-based practices that improve the services for children and youth. It is difficult to describe a set of specific review criteria that are appropriate for the wide variety of manuscripts that can be considered for the Commentaries section of ETC.

In general, Commentaries will be reviewed to determine if the manuscript provides information that can be directly applied to the education and treatment of children; addresses an issue or problem that affects a large population of children, professionals, or parents; clearly and cogently make its points; considers all of the critical information relevant to the topic; and adds to our knowledge regarding the education and treatment of children and youth who are at risk for or experiencing emotional or behavioral problems. Unlike Reviews, Commentaries need not focus on the implications of the existing research, and can include conceptual analyses of problems related to working with children and youth with or at-risk for emotional and behavioral problems. Commentaries should follow APA formatting.

Book Review:

Book reviews should focus on materials relevant to research and practice related to behavioral approaches for children or youth with or at-risk for emotional or behavioral problems. Manuscripts should follow APA formatting and be no longer than 10 double-spaced pages in length.

Manuscript Submission

Manuscript Submission

Submission of a manuscript implies: that the work described has not been published before; that it is not under consideration for publication anywhere else; that its publication has been approved by all co-authors, if any, as well as by the responsible authorities – tacitly or explicitly – at the institute where the work has been carried out. The publisher will not be held legally responsible should there be any claims for compensation.

Permissions

Authors wishing to include figures, tables, or text passages that have already been published elsewhere are required to obtain permission from the copyright owner(s) for both the print and online format and to include evidence that such permission has been granted when submitting their papers. Any material received without such evidence will be assumed to originate from the authors.

Online Submission

Please follow the hyperlink “Submit online” on the right and upload all of your manuscript files following the instructions given on the screen.

Please ensure you provide all relevant editable source files. Failing to submit these source files might cause unnecessary delays in the review and production process.

Title page

Title Page

Please use this template title page for providing the following information.

The title page should include:

  • The name(s) of the author(s)
  • A concise and informative title
  • The affiliation(s) of the author(s), i.e. institution, (department), city, (state), country
  • A clear indication and an active e-mail address of the corresponding author
  • If available, the 16-digit ORCID of the author(s)

If address information is provided with the affiliation(s) it will also be published.

For authors that are (temporarily) unaffiliated we will only capture their city and country of residence, not their e-mail address unless specifically requested.

Abstract

Please provide an abstract of 150 to 250 words. The abstract should not contain any undefined abbreviations or unspecified references.

For life science journals only (when applicable)

Trial registration number and date of registration

Trial registration number, date of registration followed by “retrospectively registered”

Keywords

Please provide 4 to 6 keywords which can be used for indexing purposes.

Declarations

All manuscripts must contain the following sections under the heading 'Declarations'.

If any of the sections are not relevant to your manuscript, please include the heading and write 'Not applicable' for that section.

To be used for non-life science journals

Funding (information that explains whether and by whom the research was supported)

Conflicts of interest/Competing interests (include appropriate disclosures)

Availability of data and material (data transparency)

Code availability (software application or custom code)

Authors' contributions (optional: please review the submission guidelines from the journal whether statements are mandatory)

To be used for life science journals + articles with biological applications

Funding (information that explains whether and by whom the research was supported)

Conflicts of interest/Competing interests (include appropriate disclosures)

Ethics approval (include appropriate approvals or waivers)

Consent to participate (include appropriate statements)

Consent for publication (include appropriate statements)

Availability of data and material (data transparency)

Code availability (software application or custom code)

Authors' contributions (optional: please review the submission guidelines from the journal whether statements are mandatory)

Please see the relevant sections in the submission guidelines for further information as well as various examples of wording. Please revise/customize the sample statements according to your own needs.

Text

Text Formatting

Manuscripts should be submitted in Word.

  • Use a normal, plain font (e.g., 10-point Times Roman) for text.
  • Use italics for emphasis.
  • Use the automatic page numbering function to number the pages.
  • Do not use field functions.
  • Use tab stops or other commands for indents, not the space bar.
  • Use the table function, not spreadsheets, to make tables.
  • Use the equation editor or MathType for equations.
  • Save your file in docx format (Word 2007 or higher) or doc format (older Word versions).

Manuscripts with mathematical content can also be submitted in LaTeX.

LaTeX macro package (Download zip, 188 kB)

Headings

Please use no more than three levels of displayed headings.

Abbreviations

Abbreviations should be defined at first mention and used consistently thereafter.

Footnotes

Footnotes can be used to give additional information, which may include the citation of a reference included in the reference list. They should not consist solely of a reference citation, and they should never include the bibliographic details of a reference. They should also not contain any figures or tables.

Footnotes to the text are numbered consecutively; those to tables should be indicated by superscript lower-case letters (or asterisks for significance values and other statistical data). Footnotes to the title or the authors of the article are not given reference symbols.

Always use footnotes instead of endnotes.

Acknowledgments

Acknowledgments of people, grants, funds, etc. should be placed in a separate section on the title page. The names of funding organizations should be written in full.

References

Citation

Cite references in the text by name and year in parentheses. Some examples:

  • Negotiation research spans many disciplines (Thompson 1990).
  • This result was later contradicted by Becker and Seligman (1996).
  • This effect has been widely studied (Abbott 1991; Barakat et al. 1995; Kelso and Smith 1998; Medvec et al. 1999).

Ideally, the names of six authors should be given before et al. (assuming there are six or more), but names will not be deleted if more than six have been provided.

Reference list

The list of references should only include works that are cited in the text and that have been published or accepted for publication. Personal communications and unpublished works should only be mentioned in the text. Do not use footnotes or endnotes as a substitute for a reference list.

Reference list entries should be alphabetized by the last names of the first author of each work.

Journal names and book titles should be italicized.

  • Journal article Harris, M., Karper, E., Stacks, G., Hoffman, D., DeNiro, R., Cruz, P., et al. (2001). Writing labs and the Hollywood connection. Journal of Film Writing, 44(3), 213–245.
  • Article by DOI Slifka, M. K., & Whitton, J. L. (2000) Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. Journal of Molecular Medicine, https://doi.org/10.1007/s001090000086
  • Book Calfee, R. C., & Valencia, R. R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
  • Book chapter O’Neil, J. M., & Egan, J. (1992). Men’s and women’s gender role journeys: Metaphor for healing, transition, and transformation. In B. R. Wainrib (Ed.), Gender issues across the life cycle (pp. 107–123). New York: Springer.
  • Online document Abou-Allaban, Y., Dell, M. L., Greenberg, W., Lomax, J., Peteet, J., Torres, M., & Cowell, V. (2006). Religious/spiritual commitments and psychiatric practice. Resource document. American Psychiatric Association. http://www.psych.org/edu/other_res/lib_archives/archives/200604.pdf. Accessed 25 June 2007.

For authors using EndNote, Springer provides an output style that supports the formatting of in-text citations and reference list.

EndNote style (Download zip, 4 kB)

Tables

  • All tables are to be numbered using Arabic numerals.
  • Tables should always be cited in text in consecutive numerical order.
  • For each table, please supply a table caption (title) explaining the components of the table.
  • Identify any previously published material by giving the original source in the form of a reference at the end of the table caption.
  • Footnotes to tables should be indicated by superscript lower-case letters (or asterisks for significance values and other statistical data) and included beneath the table body.

Artwork and Illustrations Guidelines

Electronic Figure Submission

  • Supply all figures electronically.
  • Indicate what graphics program was used to create the artwork.
  • For vector graphics, the preferred format is EPS; for halftones, please use TIFF format. MSOffice files are also acceptable.
  • Vector graphics containing fonts must have the fonts embedded in the files.
  • Name your figure files with "Fig" and the figure number, e.g., Fig1.eps.

Line Art

  • Definition: Black and white graphic with no shading.
  • Do not use faint lines and/or lettering and check that all lines and lettering within the figures are legible at final size.
  • All lines should be at least 0.1 mm (0.3 pt) wide.
  • Scanned line drawings and line drawings in bitmap format should have a minimum resolution of 1200 dpi.
  • Vector graphics containing fonts must have the fonts embedded in the files.

Halftone Art

  • Definition: Photographs, drawings, or paintings with fine shading, etc.
  • If any magnification is used in the photographs, indicate this by using scale bars within the figures themselves.
  • Halftones should have a minimum resolution of 300 dpi.

Combination Art

  • Definition: a combination of halftone and line art, e.g., halftones containing line drawing, extensive lettering, color diagrams, etc.
  • Combination artwork should have a minimum resolution of 600 dpi.

Color Art

  • Color art is free of charge for online publication.
  • If black and white will be shown in the print version, make sure that the main information will still be visible. Many colors are not distinguishable from one another when converted to black and white. A simple way to check this is to make a xerographic copy to see if the necessary distinctions between the different colors are still apparent.
  • If the figures will be printed in black and white, do not refer to color in the captions.
  • Color illustrations should be submitted as RGB (8 bits per channel).

Figure Lettering

  • To add lettering, it is best to use Helvetica or Arial (sans serif fonts).
  • Keep lettering consistently sized throughout your final-sized artwork, usually about 2–3 mm (8–12 pt).
  • Variance of type size within an illustration should be minimal, e.g., do not use 8-pt type on an axis and 20-pt type for the axis label.
  • Avoid effects such as shading, outline letters, etc.
  • Do not include titles or captions within your illustrations.

Figure Numbering

  • All figures are to be numbered using Arabic numerals.
  • Figures should always be cited in text in consecutive numerical order.
  • Figure parts should be denoted by lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.).
  • If an appendix appears in your article and it contains one or more figures, continue the consecutive numbering of the main text. Do not number the appendix figures,"A1, A2, A3, etc." Figures in online appendices (Electronic Supplementary Material) should, however, be numbered separately.

Figure Captions

  • Each figure should have a concise caption describing accurately what the figure depicts. Include the captions in the text file of the manuscript, not in the figure file.
  • Figure captions begin with the term Fig. in bold type, followed by the figure number, also in bold type.
  • No punctuation is to be included after the number, nor is any punctuation to be placed at the end of the caption.
  • Identify all elements found in the figure in the figure caption; and use boxes, circles, etc., as coordinate points in graphs.
  • Identify previously published material by giving the original source in the form of a reference citation at the end of the figure caption.

Figure Placement and Size

  • Figures should be submitted separately from the text, if possible.
  • When preparing your figures, size figures to fit in the column width.
  • For large-sized journals the figures should be 84 mm (for double-column text areas), or 174 mm (for single-column text areas) wide and not higher than 234 mm.
  • For small-sized journals, the figures should be 119 mm wide and not higher than 195 mm.

Permissions

If you include figures that have already been published elsewhere, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner(s) for both the print and online format. Please be aware that some publishers do not grant electronic rights for free and that Springer will not be able to refund any costs that may have occurred to receive these permissions. In such cases, material from other sources should be used.

Accessibility

In order to give people of all abilities and disabilities access to the content of your figures, please make sure that

  • All figures have descriptive captions (blind users could then use a text-to-speech software or a text-to-Braille hardware)
  • Patterns are used instead of or in addition to colors for conveying information (colorblind users would then be able to distinguish the visual elements)
  • Any figure lettering has a contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1

Electronic Supplementary Material

Springer accepts electronic multimedia files (animations, movies, audio, etc.) and other supplementary files to be published online along with an article or a book chapter. This feature can add dimension to the author's article, as certain information cannot be printed or is more convenient in electronic form.

Before submitting research datasets as electronic supplementary material, authors should read the journal’s Research data policy. We encourage research data to be archived in data repositories wherever possible.

Submission

  • Supply all supplementary material in standard file formats.
  • Please include in each file the following information: article title, journal name, author names; affiliation and e-mail address of the corresponding author.
  • To accommodate user downloads, please keep in mind that larger-sized files may require very long download times and that some users may experience other problems during downloading.

Audio, Video, and Animations

  • Aspect ratio: 16:9 or 4:3
  • Maximum file size: 25 GB
  • Minimum video duration: 1 sec
  • Supported file formats: avi, wmv, mp4, mov, m2p, mp2, mpg, mpeg, flv, mxf, mts, m4v, 3gp

Text and Presentations

  • Submit your material in PDF format; .doc or .ppt files are not suitable for long-term viability.
  • A collection of figures may also be combined in a PDF file.

Spreadsheets

  • Spreadsheets should be submitted as .csv or .xlsx files (MS Excel).

Specialized Formats

  • Specialized format such as .pdb (chemical), .wrl (VRML), .nb (Mathematica notebook), and .tex can also be supplied.

Collecting Multiple Files

  • It is possible to collect multiple files in a .zip or .gz file.

Numbering

  • If supplying any supplementary material, the text must make specific mention of the material as a citation, similar to that of figures and tables.
  • Refer to the supplementary files as “Online Resource”, e.g., "... as shown in the animation (Online Resource 3)", “... additional data are given in Online Resource 4”.
  • Name the files consecutively, e.g. “ESM_3.mpg”, “ESM_4.pdf”.

Captions

  • For each supplementary material, please supply a concise caption describing the content of the file.

Processing of supplementary files

  • Electronic supplementary material will be published as received from the author without any conversion, editing, or reformatting.

Accessibility

In order to give people of all abilities and disabilities access to the content of your supplementary files, please make sure that

  • The manuscript contains a descriptive caption for each supplementary material
  • Video files do not contain anything that flashes more than three times per second (so that users prone to seizures caused by such effects are not put at risk)

After acceptance

Upon acceptance of your article you will receive a link to the special Author Query Application at Springer’s web page where you can sign the Copyright Transfer Statement online and indicate whether you wish to order OpenChoice, offprints, or printing of figures in color.

Once the Author Query Application has been completed, your article will be processed and you will receive the proofs.

Copyright transfer

Authors will be asked to transfer copyright of the article to the Publisher (or grant the Publisher exclusive publication and dissemination rights). This will ensure the widest possible protection and dissemination of information under copyright laws.

Offprints

Offprints can be ordered by the corresponding author.

Color illustrations

Online publication of color illustrations is free of charge. For color in the print version, authors will be expected to make a contribution towards the extra costs.

Proof reading

The purpose of the proof is to check for typesetting or conversion errors and the completeness and accuracy of the text, tables and figures. Substantial changes in content, e.g., new results, corrected values, title and authorship, are not allowed without the approval of the Editor.

After online publication, further changes can only be made in the form of an Erratum, which will be hyperlinked to the article.

Online First

The article will be published online after receipt of the corrected proofs. This is the official first publication citable with the DOI. After release of the printed version, the paper can also be cited by issue and page numbers.

Open Choice

Open Choice allows you to publish open access in more than 1850 Springer Nature journals, making your research more visible and accessible immediately on publication.

Article processing charges (APCs) vary by journal – view the full list

Benefits:

  • Increased researcher engagement: Open Choice enables access by anyone with an internet connection, immediately on publication.
  • Higher visibility and impact: In Springer hybrid journals, OA articles are accessed 4 times more often on average, and cited 1.7 more times on average*.

  • Easy compliance with funder and institutional mandates: Many funders require open access publishing, and some take compliance into account when assessing future grant applications.

It is easy to find funding to support open access – please see our funding and support pages for more information.

*) Within the first three years of publication. Springer Nature hybrid journal OA impact analysis, 2018.

Open Choice

Funding and Support pages

Copyright and license term – CC BY

Open Choice articles do not require transfer of copyright as the copyright remains with the author. In opting for open access, the author(s) agree to publish the article under the Creative Commons Attribution License.

Find more about the license agreement

Research Data Policy

The journal encourages authors, where possible and applicable, to deposit data that support the findings of their research in a public repository. Authors and editors who do not have a preferred repository should consult Springer Nature’s list of repositories and research data policy.

List of Repositories

Research Data Policy

General repositories - for all types of research data - such as figshare and Dryad may also be used.

Datasets that are assigned digital object identifiers (DOIs) by a data repository may be cited in the reference list. Data citations should include the minimum information recommended by DataCite: authors, title, publisher (repository name), identifier.

DataCite

Springer Nature provides a research data policy support service for authors and editors, which can be contacted at researchdata@springernature.com.

This service provides advice on research data policy compliance and on finding research data repositories. It is independent of journal, book and conference proceedings editorial offices and does not advise on specific manuscripts.

Helpdesk

Ethical Responsibilities of Authors

This journal is committed to upholding the integrity of the scientific record. As a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) the journal will follow the COPE guidelines on how to deal with potential acts of misconduct.

Authors should refrain from misrepresenting research results which could damage the trust in the journal, the professionalism of scientific authorship, and ultimately the entire scientific endeavour. Maintaining integrity of the research and its presentation is helped by following the rules of good scientific practice, which include*:

  • The manuscript should not be submitted to more than one journal for simultaneous consideration.
  • The submitted work should be original and should not have been published elsewhere in any form or language (partially or in full), unless the new work concerns an expansion of previous work. (Please provide transparency on the re-use of material to avoid the concerns about text-recycling (‘self-plagiarism’).
  • A single study should not be split up into several parts to increase the quantity of submissions and submitted to various journals or to one journal over time (i.e. ‘salami-slicing/publishing’).
  • Concurrent or secondary publication is sometimes justifiable, provided certain conditions are met. Examples include: translations or a manuscript that is intended for a different group of readers.
  • Results should be presented clearly, honestly, and without fabrication, falsification or inappropriate data manipulation (including image based manipulation). Authors should adhere to discipline-specific rules for acquiring, selecting and processing data.
  • No data, text, or theories by others are presented as if they were the author’s own (‘plagiarism’). Proper acknowledgements to other works must be given (this includes material that is closely copied (near verbatim), summarized and/or paraphrased), quotation marks (to indicate words taken from another source) are used for verbatim copying of material, and permissions secured for material that is copyrighted.

Important note: the journal may use software to screen for plagiarism.

  • Authors should make sure they have permissions for the use of software, questionnaires/(web) surveys and scales in their studies (if appropriate).
  • Authors should avoid untrue statements about an entity (who can be an individual person or a company) or descriptions of their behavior or actions that could potentially be seen as personal attacks or allegations about that person.
  • Research that may be misapplied to pose a threat to public health or national security should be clearly identified in the manuscript (e.g. dual use of research). Examples include creation of harmful consequences of biological agents or toxins, disruption of immunity of vaccines, unusual hazards in the use of chemicals, weaponization of research/technology (amongst others).
  • Authors are strongly advised to ensure the author group, the Corresponding Author, and the order of authors are all correct at submission. Adding and/or deleting authors during the revision stages is generally not permitted, but in some cases may be warranted. Reasons for changes in authorship should be explained in detail. Please note that changes to authorship cannot be made after acceptance of a manuscript.

*All of the above are guidelines and authors need to make sure to respect third parties rights such as copyright and/or moral rights.

Upon request authors should be prepared to send relevant documentation or data in order to verify the validity of the results presented. This could be in the form of raw data, samples, records, etc. Sensitive information in the form of confidential or proprietary data is excluded.

If there is suspicion of misbehavior or alleged fraud the Journal and/or Publisher will carry out an investigation following COPE guidelines. If, after investigation, there are valid concerns, the author(s) concerned will be contacted under their given e-mail address and given an opportunity to address the issue. Depending on the situation, this may result in the Journal’s and/or Publisher’s implementation of the following measures, including, but not limited to:

  • If the manuscript is still under consideration, it may be rejected and returned to the author.
  • If the article has already been published online, depending on the nature and severity of the infraction:

    - an erratum/correction may be placed with the article

    - an expression of concern may be placed with the article

    - or in severe cases retraction of the article may occur.

The reason will be given in the published erratum/correction, expression of concern or retraction note. Please note that retraction means that the article is maintained on the platform, watermarked “retracted” and the explanation for the retraction is provided in a note linked to the watermarked article.

  • The author’s institution may be informed
  • A notice of suspected transgression of ethical standards in the peer review system may be included as part of the author’s and article’s bibliographic record.

Fundamental errors

Authors have an obligation to correct mistakes once they discover a significant error or inaccuracy in their published article. The author(s) is/are requested to contact the journal and explain in what sense the error is impacting the article. A decision on how to correct the literature will depend on the nature of the error. This may be a correction or retraction. The retraction note should provide transparency which parts of the article are impacted by the error.

Suggesting / excluding reviewers

Authors are welcome to suggest suitable reviewers and/or request the exclusion of certain individuals when they submit their manuscripts. When suggesting reviewers, authors should make sure they are totally independent and not connected to the work in any way. It is strongly recommended to suggest a mix of reviewers from different countries and different institutions. When suggesting reviewers, the Corresponding Author must provide an institutional email address for each suggested reviewer, or, if this is not possible to include other means of verifying the identity such as a link to a personal homepage, a link to the publication record or a researcher or author ID in the submission letter. Please note that the Journal may not use the suggestions, but suggestions are appreciated and may help facilitate the peer review process.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

To ensure objectivity and transparency in research and to ensure that accepted principles of ethical and professional conduct have been followed, authors should include information regarding sources of funding, potential conflicts of interest (financial or non-financial), informed consent if the research involved human participants, and a statement on welfare of animals if the research involved animals.

Authors should include the following statements (if applicable) in a separate section entitled “Compliance with Ethical Standards” when submitting a paper:

  • Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest
  • Research involving Human Participants and/or Animals
  • Informed consent

Please note that standards could vary slightly per journal dependent on their peer review policies (i.e. single or double blind peer review) as well as per journal subject discipline. Before submitting your article check the instructions following this section carefully.

The corresponding author should be prepared to collect documentation of compliance with ethical standards and send if requested during peer review or after publication.

The Editors reserve the right to reject manuscripts that do not comply with the above-mentioned guidelines. The author will be held responsible for false statements or failure to fulfill the above-mentioned guidelines.

Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest

Authors must disclose all relationships or interests that could influence or bias the work. Although an author may not feel there are conflicts, disclosure of relationships and interests affords a more transparent process, leading to an accurate and objective assessment of the work. Awareness of real or perceived conflicts of interests is a perspective to which the readers are entitled and is not meant to imply that a financial relationship with an organization that sponsored the research or compensation for consultancy work is inappropriate. Examples of potential conflicts of interests that are directly or indirectly related to the research may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Research grants from funding agencies (please give the research funder and the grant number)
  • Honoraria for speaking at symposia
  • Financial support for attending symposia
  • Financial support for educational programs
  • Employment or consultation
  • Support from a project sponsor
  • Position on advisory board or board of directors or other type of management relationships
  • Multiple affiliations
  • Financial relationships, for example equity ownership or investment interest
  • Intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, copyrights and royalties from such rights)
  • Holdings of spouse and/or children that may have financial interest in the work

In addition, interests that go beyond financial interests and compensation (non-financial interests) that may be important to readers should be disclosed. These may include but are not limited to personal relationships or competing interests directly or indirectly tied to this research, or professional interests or personal beliefs that may influence your research.

The corresponding author collects the conflict of interest disclosure forms from all authors. In author collaborations where formal agreements for representation allow it, it is sufficient for the corresponding author to sign the disclosure form on behalf of all authors. Examples of forms can be found

here:

The corresponding author will include a summary statement on the title page that is separate from their manuscript, that reflects what is recorded in the potential conflict of interest disclosure form(s).

See below examples of disclosures:

Funding: This study was funded by X (grant number X).

Conflict of Interest: Author A has received research grants from Company A. Author B has received a speaker honorarium from Company X and owns stock in Company Y. Author C is a member of committee Z.

If no conflict exists, the authors should state:

Conflict of Interest: The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Research involving human participants, their data or biological material

Ethics approval

When reporting a study that involved human participants, their data or biological material, authors should include a statement that confirms that the study was approved (or granted exemption) by the appropriate institutional and/or national research ethics committee (including the name of the ethics committee) and certify that the study was performed in accordance with the ethical standards as laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration or comparable standards, the authors must explain the reasons for their approach, and demonstrate that an independent ethics committee or institutional review board explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study. If a study was granted exemption from requiring ethics approval, this should also be detailed in the manuscript (including the reasons for the exemption).

Retrospective ethics approval

If a study has not been granted ethics committee approval prior to commencing, retrospective ethics approval usually cannot be obtained and it may not be possible to consider the manuscript for peer review. The decision on whether to proceed to peer review in such cases is at the Editor's discretion.

Ethics approval for retrospective studies

Although retrospective studies are conducted on already available data or biological material (for which formal consent may not be needed or is difficult to obtain) ethics approval may be required dependent on the law and the national ethical guidelines of a country. Authors should check with their institution to make sure they are complying with the specific requirements of their country.

Ethics approval for case studies

Case reports require ethics approval. Most institutions will have specific policies on this subject. Authors should check with their institution to make sure they are complying with the specific requirements of their institution and seek ethics approval where needed. Authors should be aware to secure informed consent from the individual (or parent or guardian if the participant is a minor or incapable) See also section on Informed Consent.

Cell lines

If human cells are used, authors must declare in the manuscript: what cell lines were used by describing the source of the cell line, including when and from where it was obtained, whether the cell line has recently been authenticated and by what method. If cells were bought from a life science company the following need to be given in the manuscript: name of company (that provided the cells), cell type, number of cell line, and batch of cells.

It is recommended that authors check the NCBI database for misidentification and contamination of human cell lines. This step will alert authors to possible problems with the cell line and may save considerable time and effort.

Further information is available from the International Cell Line Authentication Committee (ICLAC).

Authors should include a statement that confirms that an institutional or independent ethics committee (including the name of the ethics committee) approved the study and that informed consent was obtained from the donor or next of kin.

Research Resource Identifiers (RRID)

Research Resource Identifiers (RRID) are persistent unique identifiers (effectively similar to a DOI) for research resources. This journal encourages authors to adopt RRIDs when reporting key biological resources (antibodies, cell lines, model organisms and tools) in their manuscripts.

Examples:

Organism: Filip1tm1a(KOMP)Wtsi RRID:MMRRC_055641-UCD

Cell Line: RST307 cell line RRID:CVCL_C321

Antibody: Luciferase antibody DSHB Cat# LUC-3, RRID:AB_2722109

Plasmid: mRuby3 plasmid RRID:Addgene_104005

Software: ImageJ Version 1.2.4 RRID:SCR_003070

RRIDs are provided by the Resource Identification Portal. Many commonly used research resources already have designated RRIDs. The portal also provides authors links so that they can quickly register a new resource and obtain an RRID.

Clinical Trial Registration

The World Health Organization (WHO) definition of a clinical trial is "any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes". The WHO defines health interventions as “A health intervention is an act performed for, with or on behalf of a person or population whose purpose is to assess, improve, maintain, promote or modify health, functioning or health conditions” and a health-related outcome is generally defined as a change in the health of a person or population as a result of an intervention.

To ensure the integrity of the reporting of patient-centered trials, authors must register prospective clinical trials (phase II to IV trials) in suitable publicly available repositories. For example www.clinicaltrials.gov or any of the primary registries that participate in the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform.

The trial registration number (TRN) and date of registration should be included as the last line of the manuscript abstract.

For clinical trials that have not been registered prospectively, authors are encouraged to register retrospectively to ensure the complete publication of all results. The trial registration number (TRN), date of registration and the words 'retrospectively registered’ should be included as the last line of the manuscript abstract.

Purely observational trials will not require registration.

Standards of reporting

Springer Nature advocates complete and transparent reporting of biomedical and biological research and research with biological applications. Authors are recommended to adhere to the minimum reporting guidelines hosted by the EQUATOR Network when preparing their manuscript.

Exact requirements may vary depending on the journal; please refer to the journal’s Instructions for Authors.

Checklists are available for a number of study designs, including:

Randomised trials (CONSORT) and Study protocols (SPIRIT)

Observational studies (STROBE)

Systematic reviews and meta-analyses (PRISMA) and protocols (Prisma-P)

Diagnostic/prognostic studies (STARD) and (TRIPOD)

Case reports (CARE)

Clinical practice guidelines (AGREE) and (RIGHT)

Qualitative research (SRQR) and (COREQ)

Animal pre-clinical studies (ARRIVE)

Quality improvement studies (SQUIRE)

Economic evaluations (CHEERS)

Summary of requirements

The above should be summarized in a statement and included on a title page that is separate from the manuscript with a section entitled “Declarations” when submitting a paper. Having all statements in one place allows for a consistent and unified review of the information by the Editor-in-Chief and/or peer reviewers and may speed up the handling of the paper. Declarations include Funding, Conflicts of interest/competing interests, Ethics approval, Consent, Data and/or Code availability and Authors’ contribution statements. Please use the following template title page for providing the statements.

Once and if the paper is accepted for publication, the production department will put the respective statements in a distinctly identified section clearly visible for readers.

Please see the various examples of wording below and revise/customize the sample statements according to your own needs.

• Provide “Ethics approval” as a heading (see template)

Examples of ethics approval obtained:

• All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The study was approved by the Bioethics Committee of the Medical University of A (No. ...).

• This study was performed in line with the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki. Approval was granted by the Ethics Committee of University B (Date.../No. ...).

• Approval was obtained from the ethics committee of University C. The procedures used in this study adhere to the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki.

• The questionnaire and methodology for this study was approved by the Human Research Ethics committee of the University of C (Ethics approval number: ...).

Examples of a retrospective study:

• Ethical approval was waived by the local Ethics Committee of University A in view of the retrospective nature of the study and all the procedures being performed were part of the routine care.

• This research study was conducted retrospectively from data obtained for clinical purposes. We consulted extensively with the IRB of XYZ who determined that our study did not need ethical approval. An IRB official waiver of ethical approval was granted from the IRB of XYZ.

• This retrospective chart review study involving human participants was in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The Human Investigation Committee (IRB) of University B approved this study.

Examples no ethical approval required/exemption granted:

• This is an observational study. The XYZ Research Ethics Committee has confirmed that no ethical approval is required.

• The data reproduced from Article X utilized human tissue that was procured via our Biobank AB, which provides de-identified samples. This study was reviewed and deemed exempt by our XYZ Institutional Review Board. The BioBank protocols are in accordance with the ethical standards of our institution and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

If any of the sections are not relevant to your manuscript, please include the heading and write 'Not applicable' for that section.

Authors are responsible for correctness of the statements provided in the manuscript. See also Authorship Principles. The Editor-in-Chief reserves the right to reject submissions that do not meet the guidelines described in this section.

All individuals have individual rights that are not to be infringed. Individual participants in studies have, for example, the right to decide what happens to the (identifiable) personal data gathered, to what they have said during a study or an interview, as well as to any photograph that was taken. This is especially true concerning images of vulnerable people (e.g. minors, patients, refugees, etc) or the use of images in sensitive contexts. In many instances authors will need to secure written consent before including images.

Identifying details (names, dates of birth, identity numbers, biometrical characteristics (such as facial features, fingerprint, writing style, voice pattern, DNA or other distinguishing characteristic) and other information) of the participants that were studied should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and genetic profiles unless the information is essential for scholarly purposes and the participant (or parent or guardian if the participant is incapable) gave written informed consent for publication. Complete anonymity is difficult to achieve in some cases. Detailed descriptions of individual participants, whether of their whole bodies or of body sections, may lead to disclosure of their identity. Under certain circumstances consent is not required as long as information is anonymized and the submission does not include images that may identify the person.

Informed consent for publication should be obtained if there is any doubt. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of participants is inadequate protection of anonymity. If identifying characteristics are altered to protect anonymity, such as in genetic profiles, authors should provide assurance that alterations do not distort scientific meaning.

Exceptions where it is not necessary to obtain consent:

• Images such as x rays, laparoscopic images, ultrasound images, brain scans, pathology slides unless there is a concern about identifying information in which case, authors should ensure that consent is obtained.

• Reuse of images: If images are being reused from prior publications, the Publisher will assume that the prior publication obtained the relevant information regarding consent. Authors should provide the appropriate attribution for republished images.

Consent and already available data and/or biologic material

Regardless of whether material is collected from living or dead patients, they (family or guardian if the deceased has not made a pre-mortem decision) must have given prior written consent. The aspect of confidentiality as well as any wishes from the deceased should be respected.

Data protection, confidentiality and privacy

When biological material is donated for or data is generated as part of a research project authors should ensure, as part of the informed consent procedure, that the participants are made what kind of (personal) data will be processed, how it will be used and for what purpose. In case of data acquired via a biobank/biorepository, it is possible they apply a broad consent which allows research participants to consent to a broad range of uses of their data and samples which is regarded by research ethics committees as specific enough to be considered “informed”. However, authors should always check the specific biobank/biorepository policies or any other type of data provider policies (in case of non-bio research) to be sure that this is the case.

Consent to Participate

For all research involving human subjects, freely-given, informed consent to participate in the study must be obtained from participants (or their parent or legal guardian in the case of children under 16) and a statement to this effect should appear in the manuscript. In the case of articles describing human transplantation studies, authors must include a statement declaring that no organs/tissues were obtained from prisoners and must also name the institution(s)/clinic(s)/department(s) via which organs/tissues were obtained. For manuscripts reporting studies involving vulnerable groups where there is the potential for coercion or where consent may not have been fully informed, extra care will be taken by the editor and may be referred to the Springer Nature Research Integrity Group.

Consent to Publish

Individuals may consent to participate in a study, but object to having their data published in a journal article. Authors should make sure to also seek consent from individuals to publish their data prior to submitting their paper to a journal. This is in particular applicable to case studies. A consent to publish form can be found

here. (Download docx, 36 kB)

Summary of requirements

The above should be summarized in a statement and included on a title page that is separate from the manuscript with a section entitled “Declarations” when submitting a paper. Having all statements in one place allows for a consistent and unified review of the information by the Editor-in-Chief and/or peer reviewers and may speed up the handling of the paper. Declarations include Funding, Conflicts of interest/competing interests, Ethics approval, Consent, Data and/or Code availability and Authors’ contribution statements. Please use the template Title Page for providing the statements.

Once and if the paper is accepted for publication, the production department will put the respective statements in a distinctly identified section clearly visible for readers.

Please see the various examples of wording below and revise/customize the sample statements according to your own needs.

Provide “Consent to participate” as a heading

Sample statements consent to participate:

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Informed consent was obtained from legal guardians.

Written informed consent was obtained from the parents.

Verbal informed consent was obtained prior tothe interview.

The patient has consented to the submission of the case report for submission to the journal.

Provide “Consent to publish” as a heading

The authors affirm that human research participants provided informed consent for publication of the images in Figure(s) 1a, 1b and 1c.

The participant has consented to the submission of the case report to the journal.

Patients signed informed consent regarding publishing their data and photographs.

Sample statements if identifying information about participants is available in the article:

Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.

Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.

If any of the sections are not relevant to your manuscript, please include the heading and write 'Not applicable' for that section.

Authors are responsible for correctness of the statements provided in the manuscript. See also Authorship Principles. The Editor-in-Chief reserves the right to reject submissions that do not meet the guidelines described in this section.

Images will be removed from publication if authors have not obtained informed consent or the paper may be removed and replaced with a notice explaining the reason for removal.

Editorial procedure

Double-blind peer review

This journal follows a double-blind reviewing procedure. Authors are therefore requested to submit:

  • A blinded manuscript without any author names and affiliations in the text or on the title page. Self-identifying citations and references in the article text should be avoided.
  • A separate title page, containing title, all author names, affiliations, and the contact information of the corresponding author. Any acknowledgements, disclosures, or funding information should also be included on this page.