Guide for Authors

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Your Paper Your Way

We now differentiate between the requirements for new and revised submissions. You may choose to submit your manuscript as a single Word or PDF file to be used in the refereeing process. Only when your paper is at the revision stage, will you be requested to put your paper in to a 'correct format' for acceptance and provide the items required for the publication of your article.
To find out more, please visit the Preparation section below.

Cretaceous Research provides a forum for the rapid publication of research on all aspects of the Cretaceous Period, including its boundaries with the Jurassic and Palaeogene. Authoritative papers reporting detailed investigations of Cretaceous stratigraphy and palaeontology, studies of regional geology, and reviews of recently published books are complemented by short communications of significant new findings.

Papers submitted to Cretaceous Research should place the research in a broad context, with emphasis placed towards our better understanding of the Cretaceous, that are therefore of interest to the diverse, international readership of the journal. Full length papers that focus solely on a local theme or area will not be accepted for publication; authors of short communications are encouraged to discuss how their findings are of relevance to the Cretaceous on a broad scale.

Research areas include:

  • Regional geology
  • Stratigraphy and palaeontology
  • Palaeobiology
  • Palaeobiogeography
  • Palaeoceanography
  • Palaeoclimatology
  • Evolutionary Palaeoecology
  • Geochronology
  • Global events (K/Pg boundary)

A Full Length Article and a Short Communication are both research articles, following the same editorial process in Cretaceous Research. Both articles should have a complete set of empirical data that support the claims on the report (see comments on the Mandatory Submission of Data Sets). A Short Communication should have a maximum of 14 pages of core double-spaced manuscript text, that is, not including the abstract, references, all tables and figures (which should be limited to a maximum of 6 figures).

It is important to note that a Short Communication is not a publication that contains too few or preliminary data to justify a full paper, though it may commonly reports "urgent data" that should be communicated to the scientific community prior to the completion of the full investigation. In a way, shortening the articles makes them more concise, succinct and objective, easier to read and assimilate the scientific results. A Short Communication research article actually highlights the importance and significance of new research findings, calling more attention of the scientific community to the paper, and most likely will boost the citation and impact of the article.

Submission checklist

You can use this list to carry out a final check of your submission before you send it to the journal for review. Please check the relevant section in this Guide for Authors for more details.

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

All necessary files have been uploaded:
• Include keywords
• All figures (include relevant captions)
• All tables (including titles, description, footnotes)
• Ensure all figure and table citations in the text match the files provided
• Indicate clearly if color should be used for any figures in print
Graphical Abstracts / Highlights files (where applicable)
Supplemental files (where applicable)

Further considerations
• Manuscript has been 'spell checked' and 'grammar checked'
• 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 Internet)
• A competing interests statement is provided, even if the authors have no competing interests to declare
• Journal policies detailed in this guide have been reviewed
• Referee suggestions and contact details provided, based on journal requirements

For further information, visit our Support Center.

Ethics in publishing

Please see our information pages on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication.

Declaration of competing interest

All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. Authors should complete the declaration of competing interest statement using this template and upload to the submission system at the Attach/Upload Files step. Note: Please do not convert the .docx template to another file type. Author signatures are not required. If there are no interests to declare, please choose the first option in the template. This statement will be published within the article if accepted. More information.

Submission declaration and verification

Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract, a published lecture or academic thesis, see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, including electronically without the written consent of the copyright-holder. To verify originality, your article may be checked by the originality detection service Crossref Similarity Check.

Please note that preprints can be shared anywhere at any time, in line with Elsevier's sharing policy. Sharing your preprints e.g. on a preprint server will not count as prior publication (see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information).

Use of inclusive language

Inclusive language acknowledges diversity, conveys respect to all people, is sensitive to differences, and promotes equal opportunities. Content should make no assumptions about the beliefs or commitments of any reader; contain nothing which might imply that one individual is superior to another on the grounds of age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition; and use inclusive language throughout. Authors should ensure that writing is free from bias, stereotypes, slang, reference to dominant culture and/or cultural assumptions. We advise to seek gender neutrality by using plural nouns ("clinicians, patients/clients") as default/wherever possible to avoid using "he, she," or "he/she." We recommend avoiding the use of descriptors that refer to personal attributes such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition unless they are relevant and valid. These guidelines are meant as a point of reference to help identify appropriate language but are by no means exhaustive or definitive.

Author contributions

For transparency, we encourage authors to submit an author statement file outlining their individual contributions to the paper using the relevant CRediT roles: Conceptualization; Data curation; Formal analysis; Funding acquisition; Investigation; Methodology; Project administration; Resources; Software; Supervision; Validation; Visualization; Roles/Writing - original draft; Writing - review & editing. Authorship statements should be formatted with the names of authors first and CRediT role(s) following. More details and an example

Changes to authorship

Authors are expected to consider carefully the list and order of authors before submitting their manuscript and provide the definitive list of authors at the time of the original submission. Any addition, deletion or rearrangement of author names in the authorship list should be made only before the manuscript has been accepted and only if approved by the journal Editor. To request such a change, the Editor must receive the following from the corresponding author: (a) the reason for the change in author list and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed.
Only in exceptional circumstances will the Editor consider the addition, deletion or rearrangement of authors after the manuscript has been accepted. While the Editor considers the request, publication of the manuscript will be suspended. If the manuscript has already been published in an online issue, any requests approved by the Editor will result in a corrigendum.

Article transfer service
This journal is part of our Article Transfer Service. This means that if the Editor feels your article is more suitable in one of our other participating journals, then you may be asked to consider transferring the article to one of those. If you agree, your article will be transferred automatically on your behalf with no need to reformat. Please note that your article will be reviewed again by the new journal. More information.


Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (see more information on this). An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement.

Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations. If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has preprinted forms for use by authors in these cases.

For gold open access articles: Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete an 'Exclusive License Agreement' (more information). Permitted third party reuse of gold open access articles is determined by the author's choice of user license.

Author rights
As an author you (or your employer or institution) have certain rights to reuse your work. More information.

Elsevier supports responsible sharing
Find out how you can share your research published in Elsevier journals.

Role of the funding source

You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.

Open access

Please visit our Open Access page for more information.

Elsevier Researcher Academy
Researcher Academy is a free e-learning platform designed to support early and mid-career researchers throughout their research journey. The "Learn" environment at Researcher Academy offers several interactive modules, webinars, downloadable guides and resources to guide you through the process of writing for research and going through peer review. Feel free to use these free resources to improve your submission and navigate the publication process with ease.

Language (usage and editing services)
Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's Author Services.


Our online submission system guides you stepwise through the process of entering your article details and uploading your files. The system converts your article files to a single PDF file used in the peer-review process. Editable files (e.g., Word, LaTeX) are required to typeset your article for final publication. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, is sent by e-mail.

Submit your article

Please submit your article via

Please submit the names and institutional e-mail addresses of several potential referees. For more details, visit our Support site. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used.


Submission to this journal proceeds totally online and you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of your files. The system automatically converts your files to a single PDF file, which is used in the peer-review process.
As part of the Your Paper Your Way service, you may choose to submit your manuscript as a single file to be used in the refereeing process. This can be a PDF file or a Word document, in any format or lay-out that can be used by referees to evaluate your manuscript. It should contain high enough quality figures for refereeing. If you prefer to do so, you may still provide all or some of the source files at the initial submission. Please note that individual figure files larger than 10 MB must be uploaded separately.

There are no strict requirements on reference formatting at submission. References can be in any style or format as long as the style is consistent. Where applicable, author(s) name(s), journal title/book title, chapter title/article title, year of publication, volume number/book chapter and the article number or pagination must be present. Use of DOI is highly encouraged. The reference style used by the journal will be applied to the accepted article by Elsevier at the proof stage. Note that missing data will be highlighted at proof stage for the author to correct.

Formatting requirements
There are no strict formatting requirements but all manuscripts must contain the essential elements needed to convey your manuscript, for example Abstract, Keywords, Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Conclusions, Artwork and Tables with Captions.
If your article includes any Videos and/or other Supplementary material, this should be included in your initial submission for peer review purposes.
Divide the article into clearly defined sections.

Please ensure the text of your paper is double-spaced and has consecutive line numbering – this is an essential peer review requirement.

Figures and tables embedded in text
Please ensure the figures and the tables included in the single file are placed next to the relevant text in the manuscript, rather than at the bottom or the top of the file. The corresponding caption should be placed directly below the figure or table.

Peer review

This journal operates a single blind review process. All contributions will be initially assessed by the editor for suitability for the journal. Papers deemed suitable are then typically sent to a minimum of two independent expert reviewers to assess the scientific quality of the paper. The Editor is responsible for the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of articles. The Editor's decision is final. More information on types of peer review.


Use of word processing software
Regardless of the file format of the original submission, at revision you must provide us with an editable file of the entire article. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier). 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 word processor.

Article structure

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.

In systematic sections, subgenera and higher taxonomic groupings and synonymies are set against the left-hand margin, species and accompanying figure references are indented. For example:

Superfamily: Acanthocerataceae Grossouvre, 1894
Family: Lyelliceratidae Spath, 1921
Genus Stoliczkaia Neumayr, 1875
Subgenus Stoliczkaia Neumayr, 1875
Type species. Ammonites dispar d'Orbigny, 1841, p. 142, pl. 5, figs. 1, 2, by subsequent designation of Diener, 1925, p. 179.
Stoliczkaia (Stoliczkaia) notha (Seeley, 1865) Spath, 1931
Figs. 5A, D; 6A-C
1860 Ammonites dispar d'Orbigny: Pictet and Campiche, p. 264 (pars), pl. 38, fig. 7; fig. 4.
1865 Ammonites naviculari Mantell var. nothus Seeley, p. 232. ...etc.
Description. The....
Remarks. Other....
If a new taxon is to be described, then the following subheadings are likely to be pertinent:Derivation of name, Holotype, Type locality, Stratigraphic horizon, Diagnosis, Description, Remarks.

State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.

Area descriptions, methods and material studied
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.

A Theory section should extend, not repeat, the background to the article already dealt with in the Introduction and lay the foundation for further work. In contrast, a Calculation section represents a practical development from a theoretical basis.

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.

Summarize the main findings of your study and the major pieces of evidence supporting those findings at the end of the manuscript in a separate section as "Conclusions" or "Concluding remarks". It is your opportunity to synthesize your ideas and briefly demonstrate the broader significance and importance of your findings for the readers, leaving a lasting impression.

Mandatory Submission of Data Sets
Authors are required to provide all the underlying data which were used to generate the study results, and are shown in graphs or tables, as precisely documented files to be included as supplementary material (online publication), unless such data sets are already available online at an official data repository elsewhere, in which case a URL must be provided. Proprietary issues may be relevant in some cases. Any restrictions on the availability of data sets must be notified to the editor at the time of submission and clearly disclosed in the submitted manuscript. It will be at the editor's discretion whether the paper can then be reviewed. Exceptions will not be considered later in the review and publication process.

Data Availability
Authors are encouraged to include a 'Data Availability' section in their manuscript which is visible in ALL reading formats and may refer to data hosted in ANY repository. It should be placed before the references to provide readers with information about where they can obtain the research data required to reproduce the work reported in the manuscript, and typically consists of a simple sentence giving the URL(s) of and citation(s) to the dataset(s). Full information can be found here.

For Cretaceous Research all illustrations are numbered figures (none are plates). Figures (and Tables) must be ordered in the same sequence that have in the text in terms of 1A, 1B, 1C, 2, 3A, 3B, 3C, etc....

If there is more than one appendix, they should be identified as A, B, etc. Formulae and equations in appendices should be given separate numbering: Eq. (A.1), Eq. (A.2), etc.; in a subsequent appendix, Eq. (B.1) and so on. Similarly for tables and figures: Table A.1; Fig. A.1, etc.

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. Please clearly indicate the given name(s) and family name(s) of each author and check that all names are accurately spelled. You can add your name between parentheses in your own script behind the English transliteration. 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. This responsibility includes answering any future queries about Methodology and Materials. Ensure that the e-mail address is given and that contact details are 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.

Authors should use their own transliteration of Cyrillic names where necessary.


Highlights are mandatory for this journal as they help increase the discoverability of your article via search engines. They consist of a short collection of bullet points that capture the novel results of your research as well as new methods that were used during the study (if any). Please have a look at the examples here: example Highlights.

Highlights should be submitted in a separate editable file in the online submission system. Please use 'Highlights' in the file name and include 3 to 5 bullet points (maximum 85 characters, including spaces, per bullet point).


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.

Graphical abstract
Although a graphical abstract is optional, its use is encouraged as it draws more attention to the online article. The graphical abstract should summarize the contents of the article in a concise, pictorial form designed to capture the attention of a wide readership. Graphical abstracts should be submitted as a separate file in the online submission system. Image size: Please provide an image with a minimum of 531 × 1328 pixels (h × w) or proportionally more. The image should be readable at a size of 5 × 13 cm using a regular screen resolution of 96 dpi. Preferred file types: TIFF, PDF or MS Office files. You can view Example Graphical Abstracts on our information site.
Authors can make use of Elsevier's Illustration and Enhancement service to ensure the best presentation of their images and in accordance with all technical requirements: Illustration Service.


Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 6 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.

Classification codes

Please select one or more classification codes from the list you can view when submitting a manuscript on-line.

Define abbreviations that are not standard in this field in a footnote to be placed on the first page of the article. Such abbreviations that are unavoidable in the abstract must be defined at their first mention there, as well as in the footnote. Ensure consistency of abbreviations throughout the article.

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.).

Though that is not mandatory, if you know the name of any of the reviewers you are expected to acknowledge specifically for his/her contribution. If you do not know the name, they are usually referred to as an "anonymous reviewer".

Formatting of funding sources
List funding sources in this standard way to facilitate compliance to funder's requirements:

Funding: This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health [grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]; the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Seattle, WA [grant number zzzz]; and the United States Institutes of Peace [grant number aaaa].

It is not necessary to include detailed descriptions on the program or type of grants and awards. When funding is from a block grant or other resources available to a university, college, or other research institution, submit the name of the institute or organization that provided the funding.

If no funding has been provided for the research, please include the following sentence:

This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Symbols, numbers, dimensions and other units

All symbols should be clearly defined the first time they are used. In the text, numbers up to and including ten are spelt out except where they refer to characters or specific dimensions; for example, 6-8 tubercles (not 6 to 8); a bed 2 m thick; a 2-m-thick bed. Large numbers are given in figures, but these should not normally be used to open a sentence. If more than 9999 they should include commas; hence 10,000, 24,360.

The Système International (SI) must be used for most units, but some non-standard measurements, in centimetres for example, are acceptable. If the original measurements were made in Imperial units, conversion figures should be inserted in parentheses in the text, and a double scale with both types of unit added to maps and sections. The following abbreviations of length-measurements are used in the singular number without a full stop: km, m, cm, mm, ft, yd.

All fractions are written out (one-quarter, three-fifths). Use 57% (not per cent), 45°C (not degrees C), K-Ar techniques, 40Ar/39Ar ratios; spell out first, sixth etc. Greater than and less than signs (> and <) may only accompany scaled measurements (e.g., > 40%).

The age of a stratigraphic unit or the time of a geological event may be expressed as years before present. The recommended abbreviations are Ma and ka for millions and thousands of years respectively. There is no need to add "ago" or "before present". On the other hand, numbers of years without reference to the present are better indicated using the informal abbreviations my, ky or similar (e.g., myr).


Authors should follow standard procedures and general principles. System, series, stage, biozone, group, formation, member and bed should have an initial capital letter when used formally, as in Wadhurst Formation of the Hastings Group, but begin with a lower case letter in the plural form; e.g., Ashdown and Wadhurst formations. The following abbreviations and contractions may be used on figures: Gp (Group), Fm (Formation), Mbr (Member), Sst (Sandstone), Slst (Siltstone), Mdst (Mudstone), Sh (Shale), Congl (Conglomerate), and Lst (Limestone).

For stratigraphic units that contain a taxonomic name, quote both genus and species in full at first mention, as in Deshayesi forbesi Zone. Subsequently the generic name can usually be abbreviated to a single upper case letter followed by a full stop, or dropped altogether as in forbesi Zone. This is the preferred format, but Forbesi Zone is also acceptable.

There is often confusion in the literature over the use of lower, upper, early and late.

As a rule, lower/middle/upper should refer to rocks (e.g., lower Wadhurst Formation, an informal reference to a part of the Wadhurst succession; Upper Greensand Formation, a generally recognized rock unit) or chronostratigraphic (time-rock) units (e.g., lower Hauterivian strata; upper Aptian Taft Formation of Central Iran; lower Albian of France). It is a more appropriate use when you are referring to geological material, stratigraphic position of rock units (STAGES), a particular geographic region/sedimentary basin, or to lithostratigraphic units (formations/members).

Use early/middle/late for all time (geochronological) units (AGES); hence early Cenomanian, earliest Turonian, late Maastrichtian. Statements such as "these sediments were deposited during the lower Valanginian" should be avoided; write "...during the early Valanginian" instead.

Subdivisions of Ages/Stages of the Cretaceous (i.e., late/upper Aptian, early/lower Albian, middle Albian, etc.) and Epochs/Series of the Paleogene (e.g., early/lower Paleocene, etc.) and Neogene are informal and thus should not be capitalized. See also the current official geologic time scale of the International Commission on Stratigraphy at

Capitalized words pertaining to time may, however, be used if they are applied precisely to formally defined divisions. Only the subdivision of the Cretaceous period, into two epochs, Lower/Early Cretaceous and Upper/Late Cretaceous, and of the Jurassic, into Lower, Middle and Upper, are formal, and thus should be left in upper case. The "mid-" or middle Cretaceous is informal.

The use of the informal term "Senonian" is not recommended, as it is an imprecise combination of stages? replace by "Upper Cretaceous" or "uppermost Cretaceous".

Likewise, avoid using the informal term "Neocomian", replace by "Lower Cretaceous" or "Berriasian-Hauterivian".

In addition, the use of local (informal) substage and stage names, which are not recognized internationally, should be avoided, but can be secondarily referred to in studies of local importance; adopt the current nomenclature from the International Chronostratigraphic Chart/Time Scale (please see

Currently there is no Tertiary in the accepted geologic time scale, so its use is not valid. The recommended usage is Cretaceous-Paleogene (K/Pg) when referring to the boundary event and transition.

Do not use "sediments", which apply only to unconsolidated material. Use "deposits", "sedimentary rocks", "rocks", "strata", . Use "sediments" only in a historical sense.

For rock terms use: marlstones not marls (which are unconsolidated); the same for sandstones, mudstones, packstones, grainstones, wackstones, limestones, etc...; use always in the plural, as you do not find a single "shale", but yes "sha

Fossil nomenclature

The mandatory provisions of, and recommendations in, the current editions of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature and International Code of Zoological Nomenclature must be followed unless there is good reason to do otherwise, in which case this should be justified. The repository for all type and figured specimens should be indicated.

The generic name must be given in full at the first mention of a species. It may be abbreviated subsequently to the initial capital letter followed by a full stop unless confusion with another genus is likely.

The authorship of generic and specific names should be given at least once, either at first mention or preferably, if there are more than just a few, in a list of all taxa mentioned in the paper with author attributions and dates. Short lists of taxa within the text should usually be arranged alphabetically according to genus, and to the species referred to each. Depending on their purpose, longer lists may be incorporated in the body of the text as a table or consigned to an appendix, which is placed after the references. They may include hierarchical classifications if these are appropriate to the context of the paper.

Standard abbreviations of names of authors attributed to extant taxa are acceptable but all those pertaining to fossils should be spelt in full. In the case of authors with the same surname, add their initials (e.g., B.D. Tschudy, R.H. Tschudy); where initials and surnames are identical, give the distinguishing forenames (e.g., Donald E. Green; David E. Green).

The following may be applied to fossil names in roman (not italic) font: gen. nov., sp. nov., cf., aff., ex gr., var. and similar notations; e.g., Pachypteris sp. cf. P. lanceolata.

Author guidelines for papers in which a new taxon is described

The PDF version of an accepted manuscript is made available online earlier than the hardcopy printed issue. In order to comply with the requirements of the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN), amendment to Article 8.5.3, we recommend that authors register their works at the final revision stage in ZooBank, the ICZN Official register of Zoological Nomenclature, and the unique digital ZooBank registration identifier (the LSIDs - Life Science Identifiers) be clearly stated in the Material and Methods section. In addition, though the registration of new scientific names and nomenclatural acts is not required by ICZN, we recommend that the naming of new zoological species be registered in ZooBank at the revision stage, and the assigned LSID number(s) be incorporated into your manuscript and listed under the new species name(s) in the Systematic Palaeontology section.

Provenance of studied fossil material

Authors are responsible for providing adequate and detailed records on the provenience or find spot of the studied fossil material. This information has to be complemented by a location map of the studied locality combined, whenever possible, with a stratigraphic profile of the outcrop marking the position of the fossiliferous beds. Photographs of the outcrop could also be added for reference, but are not necessary. Geographic coordinates for the quarry locality should be added in the manuscript, preferably in the captions for the location map.

Fossil material of uncertain or dubious provenance will not be accepted for publication in Cretaceous Research. This includes material currently housed in museum collections which lack detailed field collecting records, and/or which provenance cannot be definitively ascertained with certainty.

Repository of studied and illustrated material
All the figured studied material has to be adequately curated in a recognized institution, so as to guarantee the replicability of research. State in "Material and methods" the institutional repository of the studied material (samples, thin sections and fossils), and in the figure captions the curatorial museum numbers of all illustrated specimens.

Names of places and localities

It is helpful to show principal localities and place-names on a map. Names in languages that use the Latin alphabet should normally be as officially recognized in the country of origin. Allowable exceptions are well-known alternative spellings, such as Prague for Praha and Florence for Firenze. Names in non-Latin alphabets must be transliterated. Some modifications of these are also acceptable; for example, Moscow for Moskva.

All maps should have a scale, and either a north arrow or an indication of degrees of latitude and longitude, or both. Upper case letters should begin words indicating points of the compass only when the area referred to is a widely recognized geographic region or political division; for example, the Far East, North Korea, but west Wales and southern England. They should also be used for topographic, historic and other formally named features and places; e.g., River Thames, Mississippi River, Grampian Mountains, Huntly Castle.

Math formulae
Please submit math equations as editable text and not as images. Present simple formulae in line with 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. Many word processors 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.


Electronic artwork
General points
• Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
• Preferred fonts: Arial (or Helvetica), Times New Roman (or Times), Symbol, Courier.
• Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
• Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
• Indicate per figure if it is a single, 1.5 or 2-column fitting image.
• For Word submissions only, you may still provide figures and their captions, and tables within a single file at the revision stage.
• Please note that individual figure files larger than 10 MB must be provided in separate source files.
A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available.
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 finalized, 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):
TIFF (or JPG): Color or grayscale photographs (halftones): always use a minimum of 300 dpi.
TIFF (or JPG): Bitmapped line drawings: use a minimum of 1000 dpi.
TIFF (or JPG): Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale): a minimum of 500 dpi is required.
Please do not:
• Supply files that are optimized 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.

Color artwork
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG) 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 online (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 online only. Further information on the preparation of electronic artwork.

Scale bars
Because figures may be resized in the course of production please use scale bars and not magnification factors. Even if the illustrations are sized close to the dimensions of the printed version, there is no guarantee that there won't be any deviation during the production of the manuscript, and so any magnification included in the caption may not accurately reflect the final size. Authors must add scale bars to all figured specimens, and place their magnification sizes and provenance (sample number) in the figure captions.

Figure captions
Ensure that each illustration has a caption. 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.


Please submit tables as editable text and not as images. Tables can be placed either next to the relevant text in the article, or on separate page(s) at the end. Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text and place any table notes below the table body. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in them do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article. Please avoid using vertical rules and shading in table cells.


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.

Web references
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.

Data references
This journal encourages you to cite underlying or relevant datasets in your manuscript by citing them in your text and including a data reference in your Reference List. Data references should include the following elements: author name(s), dataset title, data repository, version (where available), year, and global persistent identifier. Add [dataset] immediately before the reference so we can properly identify it as a data reference. The [dataset] identifier will not appear in your published article.

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.Do not mention a year of publication in these cases: This might not yet be certain.

Reference management software
Most Elsevier journals have their reference template available in many of the most popular reference management software products. These include all products that support Citation Style Language styles, such as Mendeley. Using citation plug-ins from these products, authors only need to select the appropriate journal template when preparing their article, after which citations and bibliographies will be automatically formatted in the journal's style. If no template is yet available for this journal, please follow the format of the sample references and citations as shown in this Guide. If you use reference management software, please ensure that you remove all field codes before submitting the electronic manuscript. More information on how to remove field codes from different reference management software.

Users of Mendeley Desktop can easily install the reference style for this journal by clicking the following link:
When preparing your manuscript, you will then be able to select this style using the Mendeley plug-ins for Microsoft Word or LibreOffice.

Reference formatting
There are no strict requirements on reference formatting at submission. References can be in any style or format as long as the style is consistent. Where applicable, author(s) name(s), journal title/book title, chapter title/article title, year of publication, volume number/book chapter and the pagination must be present. Use of DOI is highly encouraged. The Harvard reference style 2 used by the journal will be applied to the accepted article by Elsevier at the proof stage. Note that missing data will be highlighted at proof stage for the author to correct. If you do wish to format the references yourself they should be arranged according to the following examples:

Reference style
Text: All citations in the text should refer to:

1. Single author: the author's name (without initials, unless there is ambiguity) and the year of publication;
2. Two authors: both authors' names and the year of publication;
3. When a work has three or more authors, the text citation should consist of the first author followed by 'et al.' and the year of publication;
4. All in-text citations outside parenthesis use "and" not "&" to join the two last authors' surnames.
For example: 'Buffetaut and Pouit (1994)', '(Buffetaut and Pouit, 1994)',

Citations may be made directly (or parenthetically). Groups of references should be listed first alphabetically, then chronologically, in the same order in which they appear in the reference list. Separate the citations with semicolons.

Arrange two or more works by the same authors (in the same order) by year of publication. Give the authors' surnames once; for each subsequent work, give only the date. Place in-press citations last.

Example: '(Buscalioni et al., 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003; Company et al., 2005; Delfino et al., 2008a, b; Martin, 2007, 2010; Martin and Buffetaut, 2008; Martin and Delfino, 2010; Martin et al., 2010, 2014a, b, c; Ösi and Weishampel, 2009; Ösi et al., 2007; Rabi and Sebök, in press)'.

Oguro, M., Imahiro, S., Saito, S., Nakashizuka, T., 2015. Mortality data for Japanese oak wilt disease and surrounding forest compositions. Mendeley Data, v1.

List: References should be arranged first alphabetically by senior author and then further sorted chronologically if necessary. More than one reference from the same author(s) in the same year must be identified by the letters 'a', 'b', 'c', etc., placed after the year of publication.

Multiple papers are arranged in the following order:

  1. same single authors by date,
  2. two authors alphabetized, then by date, and
  3. three or more authors by date, then alphabetically. Letter suffixes are used to distinguish different papers that would otherwise have identical citations in text.


Ordered and formatted

  • Alegret, Thomas, 2004
  • Alegret, Arenillas, Arz, Liesa, Meléndez, Molina, Soria, Thomas, 2002
  • Alegret, Molina, Thomas, 2003
  • Arenillas, Arz, 2013a
  • Arenillas, Arz, 2013b
  • Arenillas, Arz,Molina, 2004
  • d'Hondt, 1991
  • d'Hondt, Zachos, Shultz, 1994
  • d'Hondt, Donaghay, Zachos, Luttenberg, Lindinger, 1998
  • d'Orbigny, 1826
  • Huber, 1991
  • Huber, 1996
  • Huber, Boersma, 1994
  • Huber, MacLeod, Norris, 2002
  • Olsson, 1960
  • Olsson, 1964
  • Olsson, Hemleben, Berggren, Liu, 1992
  • Olsson, Hemleben, Berggren, Huber (Eds.), 1999
  • Premoli Silva, Bolli, 1973
  • Premoli Silva, Petrizzo, Melloni, 2005

Different kinds of references are properly formatted. Common examples are:

Journal article - Author, Year. Article title. Journal Title volume (issue), pages.

Tappan, H., Loeblich Jr., A.R., 1988. Foraminiferal evolution, diversification, and extinction. Journal of Paleontology 62, 695-714.

Book - Author, Year. Book title. Publisher, Place. If there are three or more authors include all their names. If the book is in its second edition or beyond, you also need to include this information in the reference.

Olsson, R.K., Hemleben, C., Berggren, W.A., Huber, B.T. (Eds.), 1999. Atlas of Paleocene Planktonic Foraminifera. Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 85.

Article or chapter in book - Chapter Author(s), Year. Title of chapter. In: Book Editor ed/eds, Book title. Publisher, Place, chapter page numbers.

Koutsoukos, E.A.M., 2005. The K-T Boundary (Chapter 7). In: Koutsoukos, E.A.M. (Ed.), Applied Stratigraphy, Topics in Geobiology 23. Springer, Dordrecht, 147-161.

Unpublished Theses -

Masse, J.-P., 1976. Les calcaires urgoniens de Provence (Valanginien e Aptien inférieur). Stratigraphie, paléontologie, les paléoenvironnements et leur évolution (Unpubl. PhD thesis). University of Aix-Marseille II, 445 pp.

Mosavinia, A., 2008. Biostratigraphy of the middle Cretaceous in the eastern Koppeh Dagh, NE Iran (based on the ammonite fauna) (Unpubl. PhD thesis). Payame Noor University, Mashad, 1-350, 63 pls. (in Farsi).

Raissosadat, S.N., 2002. Lower Cretaceous (upper Barremian-lower Albian) ammonite faunas of the Kopet Dagh Basin, NE Iran (Unpubl. PhD thesis). University College London, 337 pp.

Unpublished Proofs -

Fondevilla, V., Dinarès-Turell, J., Vila, B., Le Loeuff, J., Estrada, R., Oms, O., et al., 2015. Magnetostratigraphy of the Maastrichtian continental record in the Upper Aude valley (northern Pyrenees, France): placing age constraints on the succession of dinosaur-bearing sites. Cretaceous Research. 1016/j.cretres.2015.08.009

Document on the World Wide Web -

Murphy, M.A., Salvador, A., 1998. International stratigraphic guide e an abridged version. International Commission on stratigraphy. Episodes 22 (4), 255-271. Online version at:

E-journal -

Vila, B., Oms, O., Fondevilla, V., Gaete, R., Galobart, À., Riera, V., et al., 2013. The latest succession of dinosaur tracksites in Europe: hadrosaur ichnology, track production and palaeoenvironments. PLoS One, 8 (9), e72579. 10.1371/journal.pone.0072579.

Software -

StatSoft, Inc., 2005. STATISTICA (data analysis software system). version 7.1, from

References "in press" include the name of the journal or book.

For other reference examples please check papers only in the most recent issues of the journal for guidance. Data visualization

Include interactive data visualizations in your publication and let your readers interact and engage more closely with your research. Follow the instructions here to find out about available data visualization options and how to include them with your article.

Supplementary material

Supplementary material such as applications, images and sound clips, can be published with your article to enhance it. Submitted supplementary items are published exactly as they are received (Excel or PowerPoint files will appear as such online). Please submit your material together with the article and supply a concise, descriptive caption for each supplementary file. If you wish to make changes to supplementary material during any stage of the process, please make sure to provide an updated file. Do not annotate any corrections on a previous version. Please switch off the 'Track Changes' option in Microsoft Office files as these will appear in the published version.

Research data

This journal requires and enables you to share data that supports your research publication where appropriate, and enables you to interlink the data with your published articles. Research data refers to the results of observations or experimentation that validate research findings. To facilitate reproducibility and data reuse, this journal also encourages you to share your software, code, models, algorithms, protocols, methods and other useful materials related to the project.

Below are a number of ways in which you can associate data with your article or make a statement about the availability of your data when submitting your manuscript. When sharing data in one of these ways, you are expected to cite the data in your manuscript and reference list. Please refer to the "References" section for more information about data citation. For more information on depositing, sharing and using research data and other relevant research materials, visit the research data page.

Data linking
If you have made your research data available in a data repository, you can link your article directly to the dataset. Elsevier collaborates with a number of repositories to link articles on ScienceDirect with relevant repositories, giving readers access to underlying data that gives them a better understanding of the research described.

There are different ways to link your datasets to your article. When available, you can directly link your dataset to your article by providing the relevant information in the submission system. For more information, visit the database linking page.

For supported data repositories a repository banner will automatically appear next to your published article on ScienceDirect.

In addition, you can link to relevant data or entities through identifiers within the text of your manuscript, using the following format: Database: xxxx (e.g., TAIR: AT1G01020; CCDC: 734053; PDB: 1XFN).

Mendeley Data
This journal supports Mendeley Data, enabling you to deposit any research data (including raw and processed data, video, code, software, algorithms, protocols, and methods) associated with your manuscript in a free-to-use, open access repository. During the submission process, after uploading your manuscript, you will have the opportunity to upload your relevant datasets directly to Mendeley Data. The datasets will be listed and directly accessible to readers next to your published article online.

For more information, visit the Mendeley Data for journals page.

To maximise the visibility of your data, authors are invited to add a citation to their datasets by including a data reference in their Reference List as per the 'Data References' instructions elsewhere on this page.

Data in Brief
You have the option of converting any or all parts of your supplementary or additional raw data into one or multiple data articles, a new kind of article that houses and describes your data. Data articles ensure that your data is actively reviewed, curated, formatted, indexed, given a DOI and publicly available to all upon publication. You are encouraged to submit your article for Data in Brief as an additional item directly alongside the revised version of your manuscript. If your research article is accepted, your data article will automatically be transferred over to Data in Brief where it will be editorially reviewed and published in the open access data journal, Data in Brief. Please note an open access fee of 600 USD is payable for publication in Data in Brief. Full details can be found on the Data in Brief website. Please use this template to write your Data in Brief.

You have the option of converting relevant protocols and methods into one or multiple MethodsX articles, a new kind of article that describes the details of customized research methods. Many researchers spend a significant amount of time on developing methods to fit their specific needs or setting, but often without getting credit for this part of their work. MethodsX, an open access journal, now publishes this information in order to make it searchable, peer reviewed, citable and reproducible. Authors are encouraged to submit their MethodsX article as an additional item directly alongside the revised version of their manuscript. If your research article is accepted, your methods article will automatically be transferred over to MethodsX where it will be editorially reviewed. Please note an open access fee is payable for publication in MethodsX. Full details can be found on the MethodsX website. Please use this template to prepare your MethodsX article.

Data statement
To foster transparency, we require you to state the availability of your data in your submission if your data is unavailable to access or unsuitable to post. This may also be a requirement of your funding body or institution. You will have the opportunity to provide a data statement during the submission process. The statement will appear with your published article on ScienceDirect. For more information, visit the Data Statement page..

Online proof correction

To ensure a fast publication process of the article, we kindly ask authors to provide us with their proof corrections within two days. Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. Please use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication. Please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility.


The corresponding author will, at no cost, receive a customized Share Link providing 50 days free access to the final published version of the article on ScienceDirect. The Share Link can be used for sharing the article via any communication channel, including email and social media. For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's Author Services. Corresponding authors who have published their article gold open access do not receive a Share Link as their final published version of the article is available open access on ScienceDirect and can be shared through the article DOI link.

Visit the Elsevier Support Center to find the answers you need. Here you will find everything from Frequently Asked Questions to ways to get in touch.
You can also check the status of your submitted article or find out when your accepted article will be published.