Use of wordprocessing software
It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the wordprocessor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the wordprocessor’s options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier: http://www.elsevier.com/guidepublication). Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the ‘spell-check’ and ‘grammar-check’ functions of your wordprocessor.
Subdivision – numbered sections
Divide your article into clearly defined and numbered sections. Subsections should be numbered 1.1 (then 1.1.1, 1.1.2, …), 1.2, etc. (the abstract is not included in section numbering). Use this numbering also for internal cross-referencing: do not just refer to ‘the text’. Any subsection may be given a brief heading. Each heading should appear on its own separate line.
State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.
Material and methods
Provide sufficient detail to allow the work to be reproduced. Methods already published should be indicated by a reference: only relevant modifications should be described.
Results should be clear and concise.
This should explore the significance of the results of the work, not repeat them. A combined Results and Discussion section is often appropriate. Avoid extensive citations and discussion of published literature.
The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusions section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of a Discussion or Results and Discussion section.
Essential title page information
- Title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
- Author names and affiliations. Where the family name may be ambiguous (e.g., a double name), please indicate this clearly. Present the authors’ affiliation addresses (where the actual work was done) below the names. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author’s name and in front of the appropriate address. Provide the full postal address of each affiliation, including the country name and, if available, the e-mail address of each author.
- Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that telephone and fax numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address. Contact details must be kept up to date by the corresponding author.
- Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a ‘Present address’ (or ‘Permanent address’) may be indicated as a footnote to that author’s name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes.
A concise and factual abstract is required. The abstract should state briefly the purpose of the research, the principal results and major conclusions. An abstract is often presented separately from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, then cite the author(s) and year(s). Also, non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself. Abstracts for Original Articles should not exceed 250 words.
Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 10 keywords, using American spelling and avoiding general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, ‘and’, ‘of’). Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes.
Collate acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the article before the references and do not, therefore, include them on the title page, as a footnote to the title or otherwise. List here those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g., providing language help, writing assistance or proof reading the article, etc.).
Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other units are mentioned, please give their equivalent in SI.
Present simple formulae in the line of normal text where possible and use the solidus (/) instead of a horizontal line for small fractional terms, e.g., X/Y. In principle, variables are to be presented in italics. Powers of e are often more conveniently denoted by exp. Number consecutively any equations that have to be displayed separately from the text (if referred to explicitly in the text).
Footnotes should be used sparingly. Number them consecutively throughout the article, using superscript Arabic numbers. Many wordprocessors build footnotes into the text, and this feature may be used. Should this not be the case, indicate the position of footnotes in the text and present the footnotes themselves separately at the end of the article. Do not include footnotes in the Reference list.
Indicate each footnote in a table with a superscript lowercase letter.
- Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
- Save text in illustrations as ‘graphics’ or enclose the font.
- Only use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times, Symbol.
- Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
- Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
- Provide captions to illustrations separately.
- Produce images near to the desired size of the printed version.
- Submit each figure as a separate file.
A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website:
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
Regardless of the application used, when your electronic artwork is finalised, please ‘save as’ or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
EPS: Vector drawings. Embed the font or save the text as ‘graphics’.
TIFF: Color or grayscale photographs (halftones): always use a minimum of 300 dpi.
TIFF: Bitmapped line drawings: use a minimum of 1000 dpi.
TIFF: Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale): a minimum of 500 dpi is required.
If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply ‘as is’.
Please do not:
- Supply files that are optimised for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); the resolution is too low;
- Supply files that are too low in resolution;
- Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF, EPS or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in color on the Web (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in color in the printed version. For color reproduction in print, you will receive information regarding the costs from Elsevier after receipt of your accepted article. Please indicate your preference for color: in print or on the Web only. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
Please note: Because of technical complications which can arise by converting color figures to ‘gray scale’ (for the printed version should you not opt for color in print) please submit in addition usable black and white versions of all the color illustrations.
Ensure that each illustration has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used.
Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Place footnotes to tables below the table body and indicate them with superscript lowercase letters. Avoid vertical rules. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article.
Citation in text
Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). Any references cited in the abstract must be given in full. Unpublished results and personal communications are not recommended in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text. If these references are included in the reference list they should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the publication date with either ‘Unpublished results’ or ‘Personal communication’. Citation of a reference as ‘in press’ implies that the item has been accepted for publication.
As a minimum, the full URL should be given and the date when the reference was last accessed. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.
References in a special issue
Please ensure that the words ‘this issue’ are added to any references in the list (and any citations in the text) to other articles in the same Special Issue.
The references should be based on the readily available texts published in the latest and major journals mainly written in English. Number the references (numbers in square brackets) in the list in the order in which they appear in the text.
Model of reference to a journal publication:
Last name, initial, full paper title, journal full name, year, volume (number) first and last page.
Reference to a journal publication:
 Paivio A, Jansen B, Becker LJ. Comparisons through the mind’s eye. Cognition 1975;37(2):635–47.
 Ulbrich SE, Kettler A, Einspanier R. Expression and localization of estrogen receptor α, estrogen receptor β and progesterone receptor in the bovine oviduct in vivo and in vitro. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 2003;84(2-3):279-289.
Reference to a book:
 Letheridge S, Cannon CR, editors. Bilingual education: teaching English as a second language. New York: Praeger; 1980.
Reference to a chapter in an edited book:
 Strunk Jr W, White EB. The elements of style. 3rd ed. New York: MacMillan; 1979 [chapter 4].
Reference to a conference:
 Douglis F, Ball Th. Tracking and viewing changes on the web. In: Proc. 1996 USENIX technical conference; 1996.
Elsevier accepts electronic supplementary material to support and enhance your scientific research. Supplementary files offer the author additional possibilities to publish supporting applications, high-resolution images, background datasets, sound clips and more. Supplementary files supplied will be published online alongside the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect: http://www.sciencedirect.com. In order to ensure that your submitted material is directly usable, please provide the data in one of our recommended file formats. Authors should submit the material in electronic format together with the article and supply a concise and descriptive caption for each file. For more detailed instructions please visit our artwork instruction pages at http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
Ensure that the following items are present:
One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
- E-mail address
- Full postal address
- Telephone and fax numbers
All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
- All figure captions
- All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
- Manuscript has been ‘spell-checked’ and ‘grammar-checked’
- References are in the correct format for this journal
- All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
- Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web)
- Color figures are clearly marked as being intended for color reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print, or to be reproduced in color on the Web (free of charge) and in black-and-white in print
- If only color on the Web is required, black-and-white versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes
For any further information please visit our customer support site at http://support.elsevier.com.