Guide for Authors
AIMS & SCOPE
The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment (JSAT) features original research, systematic reviews and reports on meta-analyses and, with editorial approval, special articles on the assessment and treatment of substance use and addictive disorders, including alcohol, illicit and prescription drugs, and nicotine. JSAT values high quality empirical research that is relevant for translation by treatment practitioners from all disciplines and across any setting where persons with substance use problems are encountered. The editors emphasize that JSAT articles should address assessment techniques and treatment approaches that have clear relevance for routine practice. Accordingly, the scope of JSAT includes health services research, including the design, organization, delivery mechanisms and workforce characteristics of treatments in routine settings.
It is the policy of JSAT that treatment research for individuals with substance use disorders meet the same scientific evaluative standards as treatments for those with any other health-related condition or illness. Thus, research articles submitted for publication in JSAT are expected to achieve the same empirical standards of reliability, validity, and empiricism. Theoretical models, clinical experience, and case vignettes are recognized as important supplements to, but not as substitutes for, research-based evidence.
It is recognized that research-based evidence may take many forms, such as randomized controlled trials; case-controlled field evaluations; or time series evaluations. In early stages of research development, qualitative study or small trials may be appropriate and necessary first steps. Regardless of the specific type of study, authors of research articles should aim to: (1) use one or more reasonable comparison or control conditions in the design and analysis of collected data, (2) use data collection methods and measures that have been previously validated in the subject population, and (3) analyze data (qualitative or quantitative) with the use of appropriate statistical methods.Authors must insure that the research as reported was conducted ethically, and that all protections to human subject participants were afforded. This insurance must be verified by the appropriate institutional review board or committee for the protection of human subjects. In addition, the editors of JSAT will not consider articles that use pejorative and stereotypical expressions when discussing individuals who suffer from substance use disorders.
In drawing conclusions, authors are expected to use a parsimonious, cautious and conservative approach in the interpretation of findings. Hyperbole and overgeneralization beyond the data are considered irresponsible.TYPES OF ARTICLES
Three types of articles will be accepted for publication in JSAT:
- Regular Article: Typically a research study of approximately 16-25 double-spaced pages, exclusive of abstract, references, tables, or figures.
- Brief Article: Typically a research study of less than 16 double-spaced pages, exclusive of abstract, references, tables, or figures.
- Special Article: Any one of several types of articles, such as:
- Systematic review of research in a clinical or treatment area;
- Meta-analysis of research findings on an assessment or treatment approach;
- Invited commentary on a topic of special import to the addiction treatment field; and
- Report on dissemination, implementation or sustainability of substance use disorder assessment or treatment practices.
Authors who are considering submission of a manuscript to be published as a Special Article should contact the Editor-in-Chief, Dr. Mark P. McGovern, via the Managing Editor (Chantal.A.Lambert@Dartmouth.edu), before preparation to determine the appropriateness of the topic and the feasibility for potential publication.SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS
Electronic Submissions: The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment is no longer accepting manuscripts via hard copy or e-mail. JSAT is now using the Elsevier Editorial System (EES), an online submission and review system, which can be found at: http://ees.elsevier.com/jsat. The system is quite user-friendly but detailed instructions and a 'Tutorial for Authors' are available at the same site: http://ees.elsevier.com/jsat. To work online, please go to http://ees.elsevier.com/jsat, "Author Login" section and register your user name and password. If you have authored a manuscript through JSAT in the past, you may have received an e-mail with a username and password. You may use that information to register or register with a new user name and password. From this point the instructions are prompted to the submitting author and are self-explanatory. If you should have questions feel free to contact the Managing Editor, Chantal Lambert-Harris, at Chantal.A.Lambert@Dartmouth.edu or visit www.elsevier.com/submissionsupport.
Mailed Submissions: JSAT is no longer accepting hard copy submissions. If you do not have access to the worldwide web, please contact Managing Editor, Chantal Lambert-Harris, at Chantal.A.Lambert@Dartmouth.edu or by phone at 603-271-5248 for further instructions.Format of the Submission: The Elsevier Electronic Submission system allows authors to upload documents (cover letter, abstract, manuscript, and any tables and figures) in their original formats (Word, WordPerfect, TIFF, EPS, etc). This should be time-saving and less troublesome for authors as they will not have to convert their manuscripts to PDF format before logging into the EES system. Upon completion of the submission/re-submission process, the EES system will generate a pdf file containing all of the submitted materials. Authors will be prompted to view and approve the submission. After a submission has been approved, authors will be e-mailed a confirmation that the manuscript is in process with instructions for tracking the progress of the review through the Elsevier system.
STYLEResources: JSAT follows the guidelines of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition, 2009). Authors should use this manual for most aspects of manuscript preparation. The following resources are also useful to authors: Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th edition, 2003) for spelling and hyphenation of nonmedical terms: Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary (32nd edition, 2011) for medical terms: and The Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition, 2010) and The Elements of Style (by Strunk and White; 4th edition, 1999) for general style (grammar, punctuation, capitalization).
Numbers: Authors should use numerals for all units of measure and time and for all enumeration (e.g., 3 mg, 55%, 2 hours, 9 months, 20 years, 1 of 19 patients). The numbers one through nine are to be spelled out only for general usage (e.g., "We considered only two possibilities."). Numbers beginning a sentence are spelled out. In most figures of 1,000 or more, commas are used between every group of three digits in text and in tables.Cover letter
Your cover letter should contain the following statements:
- All authors substantially contributed to the writing and editing of the manuscript;
- All authors approve the submission of the manuscript to JSAT;
- The manuscript and data have not been previously published or currently under review for a separate publication; and
- All ethical standards for protecting human subjects have been followed in accordance with standards of the institution's internal review board or committee for the protection of human subjects where the study was conducted and the Helsinki Declaration of 1975.
Abstract and Keywords: Each manuscript requires an abstract. Your abstract should precede the manuscript (typically page 2 of your submission). The abstract should be no longer than 150 words and should succinctly state the purpose of the study, basic procedures, most important findings and principal conclusions with an emphasis on the new aspects of the study. The abstract is to be prepared on one continuous paragraph and not divided into sections or by headings. All abbreviations should be spelled out the first time they are mentioned, followed by the abbreviations in parentheses. Authors should provide five key words for indexing purposes (the EES system will prompt authors for key words as part of the online submission process).
- Manuscripts should be organized in the following format (and sections numbered or unnumbered as indicated): 1. Introduction, 2. Materials and methods, 3. Results, 4. Discussion, Acknowledgments, References, tables (each on a separate page), figure legends (listed as a group on one page [or more pages if necessary]), and figures (each on a separate page). Other descriptive headings and subheadings may be used if appropriate, and these would be numbered accordingly (e.g., 2.1., 2.2.,).
- Every effort should be made to avoid jargon, to spell out all abbreviations the first time they are mentioned, and to present the contents of the study as clearly and as concisely as possible.
- The methods, apparatus (including manufacturer's name and address), and procedures should be identified in sufficient detail to allow other investigators to reproduce the result.
- For experiments in which human subjects were studied, authors should indicate whether (1) subjects provided informed consent and (2) the procedures followed were in accord with the standards of the Committee on Human Experimentation of the institution in which the experiments were done or in accord with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975.
- For drugs and chemicals, the generic name should be used at first mention and preferably thereafter. Trade names may appear in parentheses and should be capitalized.
- Patients' names, initials, or hospital numbers should not be used.
- References should be given for all discussions of previous studies and for all nonstandard methods used. Authors should ensure that reference citations follow the style outlined in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association and that all names and dates cited in the text have been checked against and match the information provided for the respective citations in the References to ensure spelling and year of publication are correct. Authors should also ensure that every text citation has a corresponding entry in the References and, conversely, that every entry in the References list is cited in the text. Finally, authors should ensure that References are complete and accurate by comparing the information provided against the original source.
- The approximate positions of all tables and figures must be called out in the text, numbered according to the order in which they appear. Data appearing in the tables or figures should be summarized, not duplicated, in the text. All data cited in the text should be checked carefully against data displayed in respective tables or figures to ensure that they correspond. Any ambiguous symbols (e.g.,the letter "O" versus the numeral "0," the letter "l" versus the numeral "1") should be clearly identified.
Acknowledgments: Authors should describe, in a section titled Acknowledgments and preceding the References list, (1) any financial support for the study or paper and (2) (if applicable) individuals who were involved in the study or of direct help in preparation of the manuscript. In addition, authors should acknowledge if a limited portion of the manuscript was presented, for example, as an abstract at a scientific conference or meeting or in a report form.
References: Citation of literature will follow the format outlined in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. Text citation follows the author/date system, and entries in the References at the end of the manuscript are listed in alphabetical order. The References section is to be double-spaced, and entries should contain the following:
- all authors of the work, with surnames and initials (not full name) in inverted order.
- year of publication in parentheses (followed by ending period).
- title of journal article, chapter, or book.
- facts of publication: (a) for journals: journal name in full, typed in Italics; volume number, typed in Italics; inclusive page numbers; and (b) for books: city of publication and publisher's name. Examples of correct citation (including capitalization and punctuation) of commonly cited media are as follows:
Book: Cahalan, D. (1970). Problem drinkers.San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Chapter in Book: Heller, K. (1979). The effectsof social support: prevention and treatmentimplications. In A. P. Goldstein & F. H.Kanfer (Eds.), Maximizing treatment gains:transfer enhancement in psychotherapy (pp.302-314). New York: Academic Press.
Article in Journal: Jackson, J. K., & Connor,R. (1953). Attitudes of parents of alcoholics,moderate drinkers and non-drinkers. Quarterly Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 14,596-613.Tables: Each table should be typed on a separate page and double-spaced. If the table must exceed one typewritten page, all headings are to be duplicated on the second sheet. Very wide tables are difficult and expensive to typeset and should be avoided by dividing the data into smaller tables. Tables are to be numbered in the order in which they are cited in the text. Every table should have a title, and every column in the table, including the left-hand (stub) column, should have an abbreviated heading. All abbreviations should be defined (even if they have been defined previously in the text). Units of measurement should be indicatedfor all values. Vertical rules are not to be used, and horizontal rules are to be used only to separate sections (e.g., table title from column headings). All empty spaces or dashes should be explained. Footnotes to the table should be designated with superscriptletters (a, b, c. etc.) cited in alphabetical order as the table is read horizontally. Asterisks (*, **, ***, etc.) are to be used for statistics in the table body and footnotes. If data obtained from any other source, published or unpublished, are used, permission for their use must be obtained (and submitted to the editorial office). In addition, appropriate credit must be provided as a footnote to the table.
Abbreviations: Abbreviations that appear as word entries in Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary do not need to be defined the first time they are used. Abbreviations are to be used for standard Latin terms, statistics, and reference terms in parenthetical material (e.g., i.e.,) as well as for metric units. Terms appearing frequently within a manuscript may be abbreviated, but they should be spelled out at first citation, with the abbreviation following in parentheses.Title Page (Page 1 of Manuscript): Should include (a) title of manuscript (80 spaces maximum); (b) authors' full names with degrees; (c) affiliations (department [if any], institution, city, state, ZIP or postal code, and country where the work was done), indicating which authors are associated with which affiliations; (d) name, address (including ZIP or postal code and country), telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail address of the corresponding author; and (e) if other than the corresponding author, name, address (including ZIP or postal code and country), telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail address of the person to contact for reprint requests.
Figures: Please prepare all figures as PDF files prior to submitting online. Ensure that letters, numbers and symbols are clear throughout and large enough to remain legible. Also ensure that there are no broken letters or uneven type and that abbreviations are used in a consistent fashion (with those in the text).Figure Legends: Type double-spaced and numbered with Arabic numerals corresponding to the number of the illustration. If symbols, arrows, numbers, or letters are used to identify parts of the illustrations, explain each clearly in the respective legend. Define all abbreviated terms the first time used (even if the term has been defined in text). The legends should permit the figures to be understood without reference to the text. Include the appropriate credit line (for permission to reprint and to acknowledge the original source) if an illustration has been published previously.
MANUSCRIPT REVIEWManuscripts are examined by the Editor-In-Chief and/or Associate Editors and at least two reviewers in two steps.
1. Initial Review: As a service to authors who wish to have a quick response, the Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief review the abstract and first few pages of the manuscript within 21 days of receipt. This review includes a check for appropriateness, topic areas for which JSAT already has covered substantially in previous issues, as well as for obvious problems with the manuscript or research. Any problems of this nature will prohibit publication and lead into an immediate rejection. Although nevera welcome decision, an early rejection will at least allow authors to rapidly submit the manuscript to another journal.
2. Full Review: After Initial Review, the manuscript is assigned to the Editor-In-Chief, Associate Editors, or a special editor, and at least two expert reviewers who are experienced in the topic areas of the manuscript. Reviewer guidelines are presented below as a service to authors. Editors and reviewers make recommendations to the Editor-in-Chief, who then makes the final decision on the evaluation of the paper..
GUIDELINES FOR REVIEWERSReviews: Editors will invite potential reviewers via e-mail through the EES system. Reviewers will be asked to respond to the e-mail, indicating acceptance or rejection of the request. Those accepting will be asked to go directly to the website to:
- Log in with a user name and password.
- Read the manuscript on the site or print the PDF for later review.
- Complete the review forms on the site.
- Write a review of the manuscript directly on the site or cut and paste it into the prepared area from a separately prepared Microsoft Word document. Reviewers will be automatically notified of the Editor's decision and will receive a copy of other reviewers' comments.
- Please ensure that your e-mail server allows receipt of e-mails from the domain "elsevier.com", otherwise you may not receive vital e-mails.
- We strongly advise that you download the latest version of Acrobat Reader, which is available free at: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html
- For first-time users of Elsevier Editorial System (EES), detailed instructions and a 'Tutorial for Reviewers' are available at: http://ees.elsevier.com/jsat. If you have any technical difficulties whatsoever, please visit www.elsevier.com/reviewersupport.
Treatment Relevance of the Subject: The first goal for JSAT is to provide useful research-based information to treatment providers, charged with the care of persons with substance use disorders.Two important questions for reviewers in this area are the following:
- Is the topic relevant to the treatment of substance use and/or addiction as it is currently practiced-or as it may be practiced in the future?
- Is there sufficient background and rationale to translate the findings to clinically experienced treatment practitioners? Failure of the manuscript to show relevance or rationale will be grounds for rejection. Relevance and rationale are not easily corrected in revisions.
Subject/patient and Treatment Descriptions: JSAT strives to provide useful and empirically validated guidelines for treatment providers in the real world. Thus, there should be a clear description of the subjects/patients with whom the study was conducted. There should be adequate information about the treatment situation and the specific elements of the clinical procedures (if this is a treatment study). The level of detail expected here is that which would enable researchers and clinically experienced readers to understand important procedural elements of the study. Better studies will have sufficient detail to enable researchers and sophisticated practitioners to replicate the treatments or interventions described. Important questions for reviewers in this area are the following:
- Are subject/patient characteristics adequately described?
- If the subjects/patients are a very select group, do the results from study of this group offer some important treatment information for a practitioner?
- Are relevant aspects of the treatment environment and the treatment elements described in sufficient detail to provide an informative picture? Failure to describe patients or treatments adequately is quite serious and must be clarified if the manuscript is to be published.
Research Design and Methods: JSAT requires that appropriate scientific methods be used in the study of treatments for substance use disorders. Of course, judgment will be required regarding the appropriateness of some scientific methods. Thus, the first decision will be whether reasonable and appropriate methods were used. Clearly, it is not possible or even desirable that randomized controlled trials be used in all treatment research. At the same time, a clinically experienced reader should be able to understand the rationale for the design and methods and should be given sufficient detail to permit replication of the essential aspects of the study. Important questions for reviewers in this area are the following:
- Is the rationale for the study clear? Do the procedures, measures, measurement points, and subject/patient selection criteria follow from that rationale?
- Are the methods appropriate to the question being asked? Does the study use appropriate measures?
- Will the data collected by using this design and methods advance the understanding of substance use and/or addiction treatment? Failure to use appropriate design, methods, and measures should be grounds for rejection. Failure to describe methods and measures adequately is also a serious problem, and authors should be asked to clarify these areas before publication of the manuscript.
Statistical Analyses: JSAT requires appropriate data analyses of all data reported. There is no need for overly complicated analyses-only those analyses that will explicate reasonable questions that follow from the design and methods. Important questions for reviewers in this area are the following:
- Have appropriate analyses been used?
- Are the results reported in a manner that conveys understanding? Failure to describe analyses adequately or to use appropriate analyses should be communicated to authors and must be corrected before publication of the manuscript. Statistical analyses are very important but often subject to the particular tastes of specific reviewers and readers. Of most importance is whether the analytic strategy and individual analyses make sense, not whether the most contemporary analysis was done.
Conclusions: It is a particular disservice to the reader and to the treatment field in general when the conclusions of a study go beyond the logical limits of inference from that study. This is an especially important, but usually correctable, part of a manuscript.
Important questions for reviewers in this area are the following:
- Is there a section describing the limitations of the study procedures or of the findings?
- Is there an attempt to couch the conclusions within the logic and limits of the design, measures, and patient sample?
- Are the limits on generalization described?
- Are any erroneous impressions conveyed? Failure to understand the bounds of what the result can realistically say to researchers and practitioners should be reviewed closely. Authors should be asked to confine generalizations within reasonable limits and to be judicious in what they recommend from the data presented. This is an important but usually correctable section of the manuscript.
Writing Style and Grammar: JSAT favors clear organization, an economical writing style, and a modest tone. There should be an obvious and appropriate organization to the work. If these aspects of style are seriously deficient, this can be grounds for rejection. Repetitive phrasing and discussion of unnecessary or unrelated material should be suggested for deletion. Exaggerations and hyperbole should also be suggested for deletion or rephrasing. Spelling, grammar, and choice of phrasing are editorial responsibilities; comments on these elements of style are helpful but not necessary and not part of the substantive review. Since JSAT is published in English, non-English speaking contributors are advised to submit a well-translated version of their research.ACCEPTED ARTICLE PRODUCTION AND REPRINTS
On acceptance of a manuscript for publication, a copyright transfer form will be sent to the authors from the publisher of JSAT. All material accepted for publication is subject to copyediting. Authors will receive page proofs of their articles before publication and should carefully proofread, check all editorial changes, and answer all queries at this point. Authors are responsible for the scientific content of their articles. The JSAT editorial office is not responsible for any final manuscript changes; this is the responsibility of authors. If author proofs are not returned within 48 hours of receipt, publication of the article may be delayed. The corresponding author will receive a free PDF of the article after publication. A reprint order form will also be sent with the page proofs should the author wish to order paper reprints. Authors who submit a manuscript to JSAT will be given access to Elsevier's Online Article Status Information System (OASIS). They will receive a personal identification code together with the acknowledgment letter sent on receipt of their manuscript. This code will grant authors access to the OASIS site on the Internet, allowing them to track the status of their manuscript.Updated April 2011