Guide for Authors

  • The Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology (CJO) is the official journal of the Canadian Ophthalmological Society and is committed to timely publication of original, peer-reviewed ophthalmology and vision science articles.

    1. Manuscript submission
    1.1 Online submission
    1.2 Editorial office contact information
    1.3 Cover letter
    1.4 Forms

    2. Manuscript categories
    2.1 Original Article
    2.2 Review article
    2.3 Case series
    2.4 Correspondence
    2.5 Letter to the Editor
    2.6 Editorial

    3. Manuscript preparation
    3.1 Title page
    3.2 Abstract
    3.3 Text
    3.4 Acknowledgements
    3.5 References
    3.6 Keywords
    3.7 Units, symbols, and abbreviations
    3.8 Drug names
    3.9 Tables
    3.10 Figures
       3.11 Figure legends
    3.12 Video

    4. Editorial review and publication
    4.1 Peer review
    4.2 Suggestions for peer reviewers
    4.3 Presentation of revised manuscripts

    5. Editorial policies for authors
    5.1 Authorship requirements and responsibility
    5.2 Data access and responsibility
    5.3 Financial disclosure
    5.4 Funding, support, or sponsorship
    5.5 Ethical considerations
    5.6 Use of animals in biomedical research
    5.7 Patient consent
    5.8 Clinical trial registration
    5.9 Permission to reproduce previously published material
    5.10 Rejection by previous journal
    5.11 Online only publication
    5.12 Authorship disputes
    5.13 Changes to authorship after manuscript acceptance
    5.14 Cancer classification scheme
    5.15 Reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses
     

    1. Manuscript submission

    1.1 Online submission
    Manuscripts must be submitted via the journal's online submission and peer review system (http://ees.elsevier.com/cjo/). Please refer to section 3 "Manuscript preparation" and section 5 "Editorial policies for authors" for submission requirements. Manuscripts may be submitted in English or French.

    1.2 Editorial office contact information
    Managing Editor, Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology, 610-1525 Carling Avenue, Ottawa ON Canada K1Z 8R9, tel: 613-729-6779 ext 224, fax: 613-729-7209, email: cjo@eyesite.ca

    1.3 Cover letter
    Manuscript submissions must be accompanied by a cover letter that includes a data access and responsibility statement (see 5.2 " Data access and responsibility"), information on any related papers published or submitted for publication elsewhere, as well as any other information the authors may wish to convey to the Editor-in-Chief.

    1.4 Forms
    Authors must complete, sign, and return the following forms to the editorial office (via fax or email) at the time of manuscript submission:

    2. Manuscript categories

    2.1 Original article
    Includes: systematic review, meta-analysis

    • Structured abstract (objective, design, participants, methods, results, conclusions)
    • Abstract maximum 250 words
    • Manuscript maximum 2500 words
    • Maximum 50 references
    • Maximum 10 tables and (or) figures
    2.2 Review article
    Narrative literature reviews are by invitation only. Authors may request consideration from the Editor-in- Chief by providing a detailed outline of a proposed review article.
    • Unstructured abstract
    • Abstract maximum 250 words
    • Manuscript maximum 3000 words
    • Maximum 100 references
    • Maximum 10 tables and (or) figures
    2.3 Case series
    Large case series (more than 10 cases) should be submitted as an original article.
    • Minimum 3 cases
    • Structured abstract (objective, design, participants, methods, results, conclusions)
    • Abstract maximum 250 words
    • Manuscript maximum 1500 words
    • Maximum 30 references
    • Maximum 7 tables and (or) figures
    2.4 Correspondence
    Includes: case report (1 or 2 cases), brief research report
    • No abstract
    • Maximum 1000 words
    • Maximum 15 references
    • Maximum 5 tables and (or) figures
    • Maximum 5 authors
    2.5 Letter to the Editor
    Letters concerning matters arising in recent CJO articles should be submitted within 4 months of the article's publication.
    • Maximum 350 words
    • Maximum 5 references (including the article being addressed)
    • Maximum 3 authors
    2.6 Editorial
    Editorials are by invitation only.
    • Maximum 1,000 words
    • No maximum number of references
    3. Manuscript preparation

    Manuscripts that do not conform to the CJO guidelines will be returned to the corresponding author for technical revision prior to review.

    3.1 Title page
    The title page must include the following:

    • Title (maximum 20 words)
    • Full name, highest degree(s), affiliation(s), city, and country of each author
    • Full name, mailing address, email, telephone, and fax number of corresponding author
    • Word count excluding title page, abstract, acknowledgements, references, tables, and figure legends
    • Name, date, and location of meeting if paper was presented orally
    3.2 Abstract
    Structured abstracts are required for original articles and case series (within 250 words) and must include the following headings:
    • Objective: state main goal or principal question addressed
    • Design: identify study design using standard study design terminology (e.g., cross-sectional study, cohort study, randomized clinical trial, experimental study)
    • Participants: describe study population including number of persons or eyes studied
    • Methods: describe setting (e.g., multicentre, institutional, clinical practice), selection criteria, and principal treatment(s), procedure(s), or test(s) performed
    • Results: provide and quantify main outcomes
    • Conclusions: state conclusions directly supported by the results
    Unstructured abstracts within 200 words are required for review articles. No abstracts are required for correspondence, letters to the editor, and editorials.

    3.3 Text
    Text must be double-spaced with unjustified right margins. Appropriate headings (according to manuscript type) and subheadings should be included in the main document. Tables and figures must be cited in numerical order as they are first mentioned in the text. Tables and figures must not be embedded in the main document but submitted as individual files. Pages should be numbered and presented in the following order: title page, abstract, main text, acknowledgements/disclosure, references, keywords, tables, figures, and figure legends.

    3.4 Acknowledgements
    The following items must be included in the acknowledgements section as applicable:

    • Disclosure: financial and (or) proprietary interests must be explicitly stated
      • if authors have no disclosure(s) to declare, this must also be explicitly stated
    • Funding/support: granting and sponsoring agencies must be explicitly stated
      • grant or contract numbers should be included if possible
    • Additional contributions: all contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be stated
      • all persons named in the acknowledgement section must provide the corresponding author with written permission to be listed
      • a copy of this consent may be requested by the CJO from the corresponding author prior to publication
    3.5 References
    Authors are responsible for the accuracy of the references. References must be numbered in the order they appear in the text ("Vancouver" or "Uniform Requirements" style [http://www.icmje.org/#prepare]) and cited by superscript Arabic numbers placed after punctuation marks. References to unpublished data, meeting abstracts, and personal communication should be cited parenthetically in the manuscript text only. Web references should be used only when a print reference is not available and must include the accessed date. Authors should keep a print copy of web reference material in case of future queries.

    3.6 Keywords
    A minimum of 3 keywords must be provided to represent the key topics presented in the manuscript. Keywords should be chosen from the medical subject headings list of Index Medicus (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?db=mesh).

    3.7 Units, symbols, and abbreviations
    Internationally accepted units (Système International d'unités [http://physics.nist.gov/cuu/Units/]), symbols, and abbreviations must be used. Abbreviations should be used sparingly and must be introduced in parentheses upon first mention. Abbreviations that have meaning only within the context of the specific manuscript should be avoided.

    3.8 Drug names
    Generic drug names must be used in the title and throughout the manuscript text. The proprietary name should be included in parentheses, along with the name of manufacturer, and city upon first mention in the text.

    3.9 Tables
    Tables should be used sparingly. Number each table in the order cited in the text and include a brief, specific, descriptive title. All abbreviations should be spelled out in a footnote. Data presented in tables should not be duplicated in the manuscript text.

    3.10 Figures
    Figures must not be embedded in the manuscript text but provided as separate files. Number each figure in the order cited in the manuscript text. Clinical photographs (including MRIs, visual fields, etc.) must bemasked to prevent identification of the patient. Photos showing anything more than just the eyes of the patient are considered identifiable and require written consent from the patient.

    • Acceptable graphic files include .tif, .jpg, .pdf, .cdr, or .eps formats and graphs as vector graphs or in the original program files.
    • Minimum resolution is 300 dpi for greyscale or colour halftones, 600 dpi for line art.
    • Do not identify panels (A, B, etc.) directly on photographs or over shaded areas; this will be done during production to ensure consistency.
    • Lettering should be 6.5-7.5 point (1.5-2 mm high) after figures are reduced to 1 or 2 columns. Letters used for labelling features should be sans serif typeface (Helvetica or Arial).
    • Electron micrographs should include a scale bar to indicate magnification.
    The CJO charges authors for the cost of reproducing colour figures in print (approximately $900 Cdn). 3.11 Figure legends
    Legends should briefly explain the figures without the use of abbreviations and should be understandable without reference to the text. For micrographs, specify the staining techniques, magnification, and the lengths represented by scale bars (if unlabelled). Define or explain all symbols, arrows, labels, or abbreviations used in the figure.

    3.12 Video
    Video clips accompanying accepted articles may be published online only to supplement the printed article. Acceptable formats include .mov, .mpg, or .avi files, and accompanying audio commentary is encouraged. Video clips should be referenced in the manuscript text in parentheses. Video files should be tested by the author(s) for playback prior to submission.

    4. Editorial review and publication

    4.1 Peer review
    All original articles, review articles, and case series are subject to peer review and editorial approval. Correspondence, letters to the editor, and editorials are subject to editorial review and approval and may be sent for external peer review when deemed necessary. Manuscripts accepted for external peer review are assigned to an appropriate section editor and then sent to external reviewers. Reviewers are selected based on their expertise within the topic area of the submission, and their purpose is to assist the authors and the journal by providing a critical review of the manuscript. The CJO follows a single-blind peer review process: peer reviewer identities are kept confidential but author identities are made known to reviewers.

    The Journal receives a large number of case report submissions (i.e., Correspondence). High clinical relevance and excellent quality in presentation of clinical, radiologic, or histopathologic images are key determining factors in the review of these types of submission.

    The existence of a manuscript under review is revealed only to peer reviewers and editorial staff. Communication regarding a specific manuscript will take place between the journal and the designated corresponding author only.

    4.2 Suggestions for peer reviewers
    At the time of online submission, authors may provide the names of potential reviewers who are experts in the relevant topic area and who may be able to provide an unbiased opinion of the manuscript.

    4.3 Presentation of revised manuscripts
    A cover letter must accompany a revised manuscript and must address each of the concerns raised by the reviewers point by point. Each review comment (following the numbering provided by the Journal at the time of decision) should be immediately followed with the author response (explanation) and clear indication where the changes can be found in the manuscript submission. All relevant files (including figures and tables) must be re-uploaded for revised submissions. Revised manuscripts must be submitted within the timeframe requested by the CJO. If not, the manuscript file will be closed and the resubmission will be considered a new submission.

    5. Editorial policies for authors

    The CJO requirements are in accordance with the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals set by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) (http://www.icmje.org).

    5.1 Authorship requirements and responsibility
    Authorship credit should be based on the ICMJE criteria:

    1. substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data
    2. drafting the article or revising it for important intellectual content
    3. editing and participating in final approval of the version to be published
    Each author must meet all three criteria for authorship, and those who qualify must be listed. Acquisition of funding, principal authorship by unnamed persons or companies, collection of data, and (or) general supervision of the research group, by themselves, do not justify authorship.

    All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in the acknowledgements section (such as those providing technical or writing assistance). All persons named in the acknowledgements section must provide the corresponding author with written permission to be listed. A copy of this consent may be requested by the CJO from the corresponding author prior to publication.

    Once a manuscript has been submitted, the order of authorship (including adding or removing authors) should not be changed. Exceptions must be approved by the Editor-in-Chief and all authors must sign a letter of support for the requested change. The corresponding author is responsible for assuring that all the involved authors concur with the change (see item 5.13).

    The CJO does not permit guest authors (individuals designated as authors who do not meet authorship criteria) or ghost authors (individuals who contributed substantially to the manuscript but are not named as authors nor acknowledged).

    Articles prepared by contract research organizations may be submitted for consideration by the CJO. Manuscripts submitted by contract research organizations must comply with the CJO's Authorship requirements as stated in the journal's instructions for authors.

    5.2 Data access and responsibility
    For manuscripts reporting on original data, at least one author who is independent of any commercial funder or sponsor must be explicitly named in the cover letter as having had full access to all data in the study and that he/she takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and accuracy of the data analysis.

    5.3 Financial disclosure
    Authors are required to disclose all relationships that may present a potential conflict of interest including specific financial and (or) proprietary interests as well as relationships and affiliations (other than those affiliations listed in the title page of the manuscript) relevant to the subject of their manuscript. When in doubt, authors should err on the side of full disclosure. Disclosures must be explicitly stated in the acknowledgements section of the manuscript text. If there are no conflicts this must also be explicitly stated. Disclosure statements will be published with all accepted articles.

    5.4 Funding, support, or sponsorship
    The CJO requires funding and sponsoring agencies to be explicitly stated in the acknowledgements section. Grant or contract numbers should be included if possible. Authors must describe the role of the study sponsor(s), if any, in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; and preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript. If the funding or sponsoring agency had no such involvement, this must also be stated.

    5.5 Ethical considerations
    The critical assessment of manuscripts submitted to the CJO includes ethical considerations. All research that involves human subjects (i.e., human subjects, human derived materials, and [or] human medical records) requires review and approval by an appropriate independent ethics committee or institutional review board (IRB) (http://www.pre.ethics.gc.ca/english/policystatement/section1.cfm#5A).

    The name of the ethics committee(s) or IRB must be stated in the Methods section of the manuscript for all original articles and case series submitted to the CJO. The manuscript must also include a statement confirming that informed consent was obtained from the study participants and defining the manner in which it was obtained (written or oral). A copy of the ethics approval confirmation from the IRB may be requested by the CJO from the corresponding author.

    If the ethics committee/IRB determined that approval was not required for this study, authors must state this in the methods section including the name of the ethics committee or IRB that provided the waiver. In this case, a statement is also required that described research adhered to the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki (http://www.wma.net/e/policy/b3.htm).

    5.6 Use of animals in biomedical research
    Manuscripts reporting on animal studies should describe the animal-care protocol followed and confirm that approval was obtained from the appropriate institutional animal care and use committee. These statements, including the name of the approving committee, must be included in the methods section of the manuscript text.

    5.7 Patient consent
    For manuscripts including information or clinical photographs relating to individual patients (living or deceased), where those patients could be identified by readers in any way, written and signed consent to publish must be obtained from the patient, legal guardian, or next of kin. This requires that the patient(s) be shown the manuscript prior to submission. In such cases, manuscripts will only enter the review process once the signed consent form is received at the CJO editorial office.

    5.8 Clinical trial registration
    The CJO requires registration of randomized clinical trials in such public trial registries as those of the National Institutes of Health (http://www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the International Standard Randomized Controlled Trials (http://www.controlled-trials.com). Trials should meet the minimum registration data set as determined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the ICMJE. The definition of a clinical trial as established by the ICMJE is any research project that prospectively assigns human subjects to intervention and comparison groups to study the cause-and-effect relation between a medical intervention and a health outcome.

    Phase III trials must be registered, and phase II trials are appropriate to register. Most phase I trials do not need to be registered. Please clearly state in the methods section of the manuscript the trial registration number including where the registration is publicly available. Visit the website of the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) (http://www.consort-statement.org) for more information.

    5.9 Permission to reproduce previously published material
    Authors are responsible for obtaining written permission to use materials (e.g., figures, tables) from other publications. A copy of written permission from the copyright holder must be sent to the CJO editorial office at the time of submission.

    5.10 Rejection by previous journal
    Rejection by a previous journal does not preclude review of a manuscript by the CJO. Authors are encouraged to notify the Editor-in-Chief of such rejection and include comments from previous reviews.

    5.11 Online only publication
    As space is limited in print publication, the Journal may in some cases decide to offer online-only publication of a paper. The following criteria assist in the decision whether to offer this option:

    • need to publish material that exceeds word count, and table or figure limits, yet is deemed acceptable to publish
    • need to publish material more expeditiously than the journal is able to achieve in print
    • material is felt to be of restricted interest within the general readership of the journal, yet is clearly identified as worthy of publication
    The Editor-in-Chief will advise the corresponding author of acceptance based on online-only publication. Online-only articles will not appear in a print publication of the CJO but be included in the table of contents of a specific print issue and made available within the online version. Online-only articles will be indexed on PubMed; will be searchable through cross-referencing, as with the print articles; and will have equivalent weight to those published in print. Colour figures (if any) will be published online at no charge to the authors.

    5.12 Authorship disputes
    Disputes regarding authorship are to be resolved by the authors, not the editorial board. The corresponding author will be required to:

    1. complete and return new authorship forms
    2. provide a letter of explanation signed by all authors
    3. include the names of all authors and their positions (i.e., author order) for the manuscript in question in the letter of explanation
    4. provide these items by a reasonable date as requested by the Editor-in-Chief
    Pending resolution of an authorship dispute, the journal will suspend production on the manuscript in question. If the authors are unable to resolve the authorship dispute in an acceptable manner and by the date indicated, the journal will withdraw the manuscript from all further publication consideration.

    5.13 Changes to authorship after manuscript acceptance
    In the event that a change to authorship (addition and [or] deletion) is requested, the journal requires:

    1. a letter signed by all authors explicitly stating the new author list (i.e., author order) and the reason for the change
    2. in case of author addition: the new author must also sign and return an authorship form
    3. in case of author deletion: the author being removed must also sign the letter of explanation and state that he/she approves of the change request
    4. provide these items by a reasonable date as requested by the Editor-in-Chief
    The journal will suspend production on the manuscript in question until the required information has been received by the editorial office. After receiving the written request from all authors, the Editor-in- Chief will make the final decision on the requested change.

    5.14 Cancer classification scheme
    Authors should use the American Joint Commission on Cancer classification scheme when describing patients with ophthalmic malignancies; see American Joint Committee on Cancer. ACC Cancer Staging Manual, Seventh Edition, Springer, New York.

    5.15 Reporting of systematic reviews and meta-analyses
    Authors should report systematic reviews and meta-analyses in accordance with the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) statement; see http://www.prismastatement.org.

    Revised August 2012

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