Inline Supplementary Material

About inline supplementary material

With Inline Supplementary Material (ISM), Elsevier is piloting an approach to improving the presentation of supplementary material. Authors can indicate where in the text their supplementary material is most relevant, and the material will subsequently be inserted at that place in the online (HTML) article in an expandable box. This makes it more visible and places it in the appropriate context to add value for readers.

The pilot currently applies to supplementary figures, tables, and computer code. The following journals are participating: Journal of Archaeological Science, Precambrian Research, NeuroImage, NeuroImage Clinical, Evaluation and Program Planning. Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Information Sciences, The Journal of Web Semantics, Astronomy and Computing, and Physics of the Dark Universe.ISM screenshot

Mock-up example of Inline Supplementary Computer Code. Note that this material is presented inside an expandable text box.

Some example articles with Inline Supplementary Material:

Benefits for authors and readers

  • Authors have the option to display supplementary material at the point of reference within their article to showcase their research better.
  • Inline Supplementary Material is displayed within the article's webpage without the need to install plug-ins on your computer browser
  • Inline Supplementary Material is available in an expandable text box, which is initially closed so that it does not interfere with the main reading flow.
  • Inline Supplementary Material can be downloaded separately to facilitate validation of results, and re-use of data.

Innovating & enriching content

For almost 350 years, academic articles have been published in a similar layout – a format which starts with an abstract and ends with a conclusion and a list of references. Articles were presented in this way with the reader of the printed version in mind. However most researchers now access articles online, which means that readership styles and how information is gathered have changed.

We are adapting to these changes because we want to help authors improve how their research is presented online and readers to gain deeper insights faster. Offering Inline Supplementary Material functionality in our journals is just one of the ways we are doing this.

The Inline Supplementary Material functionality enables authors to enrich their paper by displaying additional content in the context in which it is most appropriate.

How to submit inline supplementary material:

Submission of inline supplementary material (ISM) is very similar to submitting regular supplementary material (see here for instructions). The difference is that you are asked to indicate where the Inline Supplementary Material should appear within your article, by including an instruction such as: "Insert Supplementary Table 1 here" or by referencing the Inline Supplementary Material in the body of the text e.g. "see Inline Supplementary Table 1".

For Inline Computer Code, please ensure you submit this in *.txt format and include a title and caption that references the characteristics of the code, to support discoverability and reusability.

We would like to encourage you to submit your supplementary material as inline wherever relevant.