Journal Article Organization and Formatting

Welcome to IGI Global's Journal Article Submission Guidelines. This guide has been carefully crafted to help authors format their articles to follow IGI Global's in house style guide. Articles formatted according to IGI Global's in house style guide have a higher chance of receiving favorable comments from the reviewers and editors and may have a higher chance of receiving a formal acceptance.

Please ensure that the formatting of the items within the article are following the submission guidelines as listed below as closely as possible. If there is something within your article that has not been explained in this guide below, please feel free to reach out to the editor of the journal you are interested in submitting to. They will be able to forward your inquiry to the correct channels in order to get your question answered.

What You Can Find in This Guide
TopTypes of Submissions

IGI Global Journals can publish the following types of submissions:

    1. Research Articles
    2. Literature Reviews
    3. Book Reviews
    4. Research Notes
    5. Position Papers
    6. Case studies examining current, past, or future problems

Important Note: While IGI Global publications are capable of publishing all of the above types of papers, it is strongly recommended that authors reach out to the editors of the journal to ensure that your type of paper is considered, as some editors do choose not to publish some types of papers.

TopWhat Makes A...

TopResearch Article

Research articles are the mandatory type of paper that IGI Global Journal Publications consider and publish in the journal. Research articles are expected to consist of research that is impactful to the academic community. This type of papers go through the double-blind peer review process. Research articles have accompanying referenced research and completed research trials to prove what the authors are adding to the academic community. Traditionally, research articles are required to have at least 8-10 formal references that helps support their research. Please see the "References" section under the "Body of the Article" heading to ensure that the references in your paper are following the APA 7th edition style guide.

Any reference that is included in your article must have at least one in-text citation in the body of the article. For more information and examples on properly citing sources in the body of your article in APA style, please see IGI Global’s APA Citation Guidelines.

The following materials can be included in a research article:

Conceptual models

Conceptual models are representations of systems in the academic community. This representation is where the authors provide a visual representation of the system that was used in the research to help the audience know, understand or simulate a subject model. Conceptual models are typically presented near the beginning of the article to explain the author's process and how they came to the conclusions that they did at the end of the article.

Theory building

Authors typically use theory building within their article to merge their concepts, definitions and existing theory/theories for the topic that they are researching in order to tie it to a broader topic.

The theoretical framework strengthens the study in the following ways:

  1. An explicit statement of theoretical assumptions permits the reader to evaluate them critically.
  2. The theoretical framework connects the researcher to existing knowledge. Guided by a relevant theory, you are given a basis for your hypotheses and choice of research methods.
  3. Articulating the theoretical assumptions of a research study forces you to address questions of why and how. It permits you to move from simply describing a phenomenon observed to generalizing about various aspects of that phenomenon.
  4. Having a theory helps you to identify the limits to those generalizations. A theoretical framework specifies which key variables influence a phenomenon of interest. It alerts you to examine how those key variables might differ and under what circumstances.
Innovative methodologies and policies
Research focusing on policy implications

These materials are specifically formulated by the researcher themselves and will have less citations

Research articles can also be specially vetted by the editor(s) of a journal. These types of submissions are called Invited Papers. These articles are reviewed by the editor(s) of the journal and all revisions are done after the editor(s) review. The peer review process is not needed for these articles since the editors are specially inviting content from esteemed individuals within the academic community.

Working Papers

IGI Global also accepts working papers. These types of papers are typically published with preliminary findings or proposed methodologies or technologies. These articles are also often expanded upon in the future with one or two future parts to the articles that report on how the methodologies or technologies have been utilized for a greater study.

IGI Global defines these type of papers as "Working Papers" and we do publish them as long as the articles pass the peer review and the editor and reviewers find the work to be far enough along to publish.

TopLiterature Review

Literature reviews are part of academic writing that allows the authors to show their knowledge and understanding on a specific topic placed in context. Authors are expected to provide their knowledge and understanding in these papers as well as a critical review of the materials as well.

In a literature review, it is good practice to:

  • Summarize and analyze previous research and theories
  • Identify areas of controversy and contested claims
  • Highlight any gaps that may exist in research to date

Literature reviews are also required to have a reference list of the material that is being reviewed by the author. Learn More.

TopBook Review

Book reviews are critical assessments of academic book publications. Authors are expected to provide the following in their papers:

  1. The bibliographic citation for the book
  2. An opening statement that ought to peak the reader’s interest in the book under review
  3. A section that points to the author’s main intentions
  4. A section that discusses the author’s ideas and the book’s thesis within a scholarly perspective. This should be a critical assessment of the book within the larger scholarly discourse
  5. If you found errors in the book, point the major ones and explain their significance. Explain whether they detract from the thesis and the arguments made in the book
  6. State the book's place within a strand of scholarship and summarize its importance to the discipline
  7. Include information about the author's affiliation and authority, as well as the physical content of the book, such as visual materials (photographs, illustrations, graphs) and the presence of scholarly apparatus (table of contents, index, bibliography, footnotes, endnotes, credit for visual materials)
  8. Indicate the intended readership of the book and whether the author succeeds in engaging the audience on the appropriate level
  9. Your name and affiliation

TopResearch Note

Research notes are not full academic articles. Instead they are commonly considered "discussion" notes. They are short papers that provide a specific and targeted insight on a specific topic. Authors of these papers can also provide new ideas that they are seeking advancement for, theoretical perspectives, research programs or methodological approaches. This papers are typically short works not usually exceeding 4,000 words.

These types of papers are reviewed by the editor(s) of the journal.

TopPosition Paper

Position Papers are common types of academic argument writing assignments. Authors who are writing these papers are providing their position on a particular issue in the academic community. Many times, the papers may have more than one issue that an author is writing on. Authors are encouraged to choose a particular area of focus when writing position papers to keep their ideas concise.

Authors are expected to provide their stance on the written issue but also to provide how their position on the issue relates to other positions on the same issue. Position papers are expected to have the following:

  1. identifying issues in a set of readings
  2. collecting information from readings on a particular issue
  3. positioning one's claim in relation to other positions on the issue
  4. documenting sources using MLA in-text citations and works cited
  5. choosing an effective organizational strategy
  6. researching the library and Internet for sources

TopCase Studies Examining Current, Past, or Future Problems

Authors can provide detailed studies on a specific subject such as: a person, group, place, event, organization or phenomenon. These studies usually include qualitative methods, however, quantitative data can also be utilized by authors when necessary. Case studies are good for describing, comparing, evaluating and understanding different aspects of a research problem. Case studies are most common in social, educational, clinical and business research, however, all IGI Global Journal Publications - at the discretion of the editor(s) - do accept case studies.

TopResearch Relevancy

IGI Global strongly encourages authors to ensure that the article they are seeking to submit to a journal is in scope with their selected journal. Submitting work that is out of scope for the journal can lead to a desk rejection of the article before it enters the peer review process. IGI Global journals provide descriptions and missions of what sort of research is accepted for the journal. Additionally, IGI Global journals provide a list of topics that are accepted into the journal.

Please ensure that your article fits the scope of the journal before submission! If you are unsure of whether your article fits the scope of the journal, you are interested in, you are free to reach out to the editor of the journal before submitting the article.

TopEthical Publishing for Authors

IGI Global is proudly a full member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and is committed to upholding the integrity of ethical publishing. We as the publisher will follow the guidelines put in place by COPE in regards to all known and potential acts of misconduct. IGI Global has a strict no tolerance policy regarding the following unethical practices:

  • Simultaneous submissions
  • Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism
  • Salami Slicing/Salami Publishing
  • Re-Publication of Previously Published Work
  • Data or Publication Manipulation

Simultaneous submissions occur when an author submits one article manuscript or book chapter to many different publishing outlets whether with the same publisher or across many different publishers. This act is considered unethical due to the potential for accidental multiple publications of the material. Also known as publication manipulation.

Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism can occur when research and/or ideas that are utilized within an article manuscript or book chapter and are not cited properly. Plagiarism is when authors pass off another's work as their own and do not cite the work properly in materials they are publishing. Figures can also be plagiarized as well if researchers do not provide the proper source and/or permissions for a figure they adapted for their article manuscript. Self-Plagiarism is tied to simultaneous submissions and/or publications where an author is not properly citing their previously published work.

Salami Publishing can occur when a researcher is taking chunks of their previously published work and placing them into a working document that they are seeking to get published again. This action also ties into self-plagiarism.

Salami Slicing can occur when a researcher intentionally splits up a study in to many different smaller parts in an effort to increase their submissions.

Re-Publication of Previously Published Work can occur when a researcher seeks to take a previously published article or book chapter and submit it to a new publication outlet without telling the publisher their work has been published previously. Plagiarism checks on a submitted article article manuscript that has been published previously will come back as 100% plagiarized due to the previous publication of the article.

Data Manipulation can occur when data within an article manuscript is falsified or exaggerated to manipulate the study in some capacity

Please note that all manuscripts submitted to IGI Global journals are subject to be screened through plagiarism software by the publisher or editor at any time.

How Can Authors Avoid Unethical Behavior?

  1. Authors should select one publication outlet for their works to ensure simultaneous submissions do not occur. Note: Authors can re-submit their article manuscripts to journals or books if their first submission of the same article manuscript was rejected.
  2. Authors should properly cite all supplementary research they use within their article to avoid plagiarism.
  3. Authors should properly cite their own research within new works to avoid self-plagiarism.
  4. Authors should ensure that they have the proper sources and permissions to use figures or tables within their works.
  5. Authors should ensure that the proper data is reported from their study to avoid data manipulation.
  6. Authors should not seek to re-publish work that has already been published.
  7. Authors should not take chunks of their previously published text and place it in a new working document without proper citation.
  8. Authors should not split up their studies in to different parts unless absolutely necessary.

TopSubmission Guidelines

TopWhere to Submit

All article manuscripts are required to be submitted to the journal of choice through the eEditorial Discovery Submission System. Any articles that are received through email will not be formally considered.

Find a Journal

There are two models of IGI Global journals: 1. Hybrid Open Access; 2. Full Open Access.

If a manuscript is submitted to a full open access journal or submitted as open access in a hybrid journal and is accepted later for publication, IGI Global will contact the authors for payment of the Article Processing Charge. Learn More

Submit an Article to a Hybrid Open Access Journal

Submit an Article to an Open Access Journal

TopDocument Types

IGI Global's eEditorial Discovery Submission System only accepts article manuscripts in .docx format. Unfortunately, any article manuscript that is in .doc format or any other non-Microsoft Word format is not accepted in the eEditorial Discovery Submission System and the authors will receive an error if they are trying to upload those unsupported documents.

TopLength of Article Manuscripts

The length of an article manuscript is recommended to be between 7,000 and 9,000 words or roughly 14-18 pages. Article manuscripts that are longer or shorter than the recommended length are subject to receive a confirmation from the Editor-in-Chief of the journal before submission.

TopGeneral Formatting

Please format your article following APA 7th edition guidelines. A more detailed outline of the pieces that make up an article is found below.


Your article must include an abstract, consisting of 100-150 words, which provides readers with an overview of the content of your article. It is important that your abstract clearly states the purpose of your article and summarizes the content. The abstract cannot be written in the first or second person (i, me, my, we, us, our, you). When writing the abstract, instead use “this article” or “the authors” for any sentences that require a subject in that capacity.


Please include a list of 8-15 keywords that relate to the research of the article. These words should include important vocabulary, names of systems, and names of organizations. These terms will be included to generate the index for the journal. Please do not include words that are part of the article title. Each word should be capitalized. The words should be separated with a comma or semi-colon and should be listed in alphabetical order.


Keywords: Article Organization, IGI Global, Journal Article Formatting, Journal Articles, Submission Guidelines

Body of the Article

Below you will find the required headings that a journal article should have.


Between the Background and Conclusion should be the body of the article with headings that the authors use that directly relates to the organization of their research in the article. Please see the "Headings" section in this guide for formatting instructions.


This section is meant to describe the general perspective of the article. This section can be ended with by specifically stating the objectives of the article.


In this section, please provide broad definitions and discussions of the topic of your article. This section can include the literature review of other views on this specific topic to help the authors to support, refute or demonstrate your position on the topic.


Please note that the heading should be just "Conclusion" and not "Conclusions." This section can hold all of the conclusions that the research has made, but the heading must remain singular. This section is to provide a discussion on the overall coverage of the article and concluding remarks.


References should relate only to the material you cited within your article (this is not a bibliography). References should be in APA style and listed in alphabetical order based on the last name of the first author of the cited work. For more information and examples on properly citing sources in APA 7th Edition, please see IGI Global’s APA Citation Guidelines. Please reference this guide for proper in-text citations in the body of the articles. Please do not include any abbreviations

It is your responsibility to ensure that all information in your paper that is taken from another source is substantiated with an in-text reference citation. Please also note that your references must strictly follow APA (American Psychological Association) style. Failure to correctly cite and reference any material that is not inherently yours is considered plagiarism and will result in the rejection of your article from consideration in any IGI Global publications.

NOTE: The publisher may return your article to you for correction if you do not properly format your references. Note that this will delay the publication process, and ultimately, the release of the article.

It is highly recommended that you reference an actual APA style manual (7th edition). If you do not own an APA style manual, you may either 1) consult your library or 2) visit APA’s Web site to order your own copy. It may also benefit you to consult the following pages of APA’s Web site for frequently asked questions and other tips.

TopIn-Text Citations

In academic writing, all research and ideas that are not wholly and truly belonging to the researcher must be cited within the body of the text where the researcher uses that outside argument within their article.

Please note that all references that are included in the "References" section at the end of an academic article manuscript must be cited within the body of the article. Failure to cite all of the materials included in the references list and passing someone else's work off as your own is plagiarism and will result in the article manuscript being rejected from consideration or redacted after publication.

Please see IGI Global's APA Citation Guide for more information on in-text citations and how they can be written.

IGI Global is proudly a full member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and is committed to upholding the integrity of ethical publishing. We as the publisher will follow the guidelines put in place by COPE in regards to all known and potential acts of misconduct. Please see IGI Global's Ethics and Malpractice page for more information on the types of plagiarism:

Elements of an Article

Academic articles are required to have headings to show the organization of the research. These headings can be numbered or they can remain in the article without numbering. Below you will see how the headings in an academic article should appear in the writing, both with and without numbering.

TopSubhead One

The Subhead One Heading is usually used as an overarching heading for the organization of the research in the article. These headings typically consist of an overview of the issues, controversies and problems as they relate to the main topic of the article.

TopSubhead Two

The Subhead Two Heading is typically used as a section to provide more specific explanations within an overarching section. This is where the issues, controversies and problems will be explained from Subhead One.

TopSubhead Three

The Subhead Three Heading is used if there are more branches from Subhead Two that need to be explained more specifically.

TopSubhead Four

The Subhead Four Heading is used if there are even more branches that occur from Subhead Three that need to be explained more specifically.

TopSubhead Five

The Subhead Five Heading is used if there are even more branches that occur from Subhead Four that need to be explained more specifically.


Every table that is created and included in an article manuscript must have a caption placed above the table and a call out for the table included in the body of the text. Tables are not required to be uploaded on the figures page in the submission system and can instead remain in the document when it is submitted. The captions of the tables should be numbered sequentially throughout the article manuscript starting with "Table 1". The numbering of the table captions should be followed by a period before the caption begins.

Example of a Table Caption:

Table 1.


NOTE: If the table is adapted from elsewhere and was not created by the authors, a noted source is mandatory. Where the authors adapted the table from must also be included in the references list.

Tables should not include cell shading. IGI Global journal articles are printed in black and white. The impact of the cell shading will be lost when the table is printed in black and white.


Figures must be converted to .tif/.tiff format in order to be uploaded into the submission system along with the article for consideration. Figures must have a caption above the figure and a source that notes where the figure was adapted from below it. Figures are expected to have call outs in the body of the text as well that direct readers to look at the information being presented.

The figure callout can be in parentheses at the end of a sentence or within a sentence where the data of the figure is being referenced. Figure callouts can also be part of the sentence, i.e. "Figure 1 shows..."

Figures should be numbered sequentially in the article, starting at "Figure 1".

Please note that all figures are published in black and white. Please ensure that you as the author take the necessary steps to be sure that the figures are legible in black and white. IGI Global's eEditorial Discovery Submission System has a feature in Step 4 to allow for the authors to see what the article figures will look like when converted to black and white.

Quality of the figure is also important. In order for figures to be published in an article in a capacity that readers can see and understand, figures should be at least 300 DPI (Dots Per Inch). Figures are meant to aid with the explanation of your research. If the readers cannot see how the figure relates to the research, then that directly decreases the impact of the usage of the figure in the article.

Figures included in the appendix of an article manuscript should retain the same sequential numbering and should not be numbered differently than the rest of the figures in the article manuscript.

For more information on the formatting of figures in a journal article, please see IGI Global's Image Guide.

Example of a Figure Caption:

Figure 1.


TopFigure Permissions

Authors seeking to include images within their article manuscript that have been previously published elsewhere are required to obtain permission from the original copyright owners of the image. If authors are interested in including photograph images in their article manuscript, they are also required to obtain consent from the individual in the photograph. If the consent is not obtained, the face within the photograph will be anonymized before publication.


Any equations that are included in the author's article should be in one of the two equation types below:

  1. Microsoft Equation Editor
  2. MathType

Should the equations in an article be anything other than the two above equation types, there is a strong possibility that they will be lost if the article is moving to be published. Journal Development will always check the equations before they move forward and if any adjustments need to be made, they will communicate with the authors.

TopNumbered Lists
  1. Key Term (KT): This is a numbered term.
    1. List level 2.
      1. List level 3.
      2. List level 3.
    2. List level 2.
  2. List level 1.

There should be no more than three levels of lists. The above format must be formally followed.

TopBulleted Lists
  • Key Term (KT): This is a bulleted term.
    • List level 2.
      • List level 3.
      • List level 3.
    • List level 2.
  • List level 1.

There should be no more than three levels of lists. The above format must be formally followed.

TopNon-Numbered Lists
TopLists with Steps
Step 1: Ask a question
Step 2: Do background research
Step 3: Construct a hypothesis
Step 4: Test your hypothesis by doing an experiment
Step 5: Analyze your data and draw a conclusion
Step 6: Communicate your results

TopLists with Phases

Phase One: Typification of dairy systems
Phase Two: Characterization of a specific dairy system
Phase Three: Seeking ways to enhance the development of specific dairy systems
Phase Four: Cross-site synthesis

TopLists with Hypotheses

Hypothesis One: Research results in conclusion.
Hypothesis Two: Conclusion leads to breakthrough.

Block Quotes

Block quotes should be indented .5” throughout and contain no beginning or ending quotations marks. (IGI, 2014)


Algorithms follow a similar format to how computer code is to be formatted in an article manuscript. Please ensure that any algorithms that are included in an article manuscript are in the following format:

  1. The text of an algorithm needs to be in Courier New font to differentiate them from the surrounding text.
  2. Algorithms should be included directly in the text. They should not be enclosed in tables
  3. When indenting, please use tabs
Computer Code

Computer code should be indicated by using “Courier New” new font.

Any proper indentations

should be made clear

and checked during final proofing.


Any acknowledgment to fellow researchers, funding grants, and competing interests should be placed within this section. Funding and competing interest statements are now required in all journal article submissions based on information we have received from the indices.

TopCompeting Interest Statements

Competing interests occur when the interpretation or presentation of data is influenced either consciously or unconsciously by the author's personal or financial relationships. It is important that authors declare all competing interests relevant to the work under consideration. These competing interests may include any relationships or roles, both financial and personal, that might interfere with the interpretation of the work to avoid the potential for bias.

A declaration of any competing interest should be provided along with the article manuscript upon submission.

Examples of Competing Interests

Financial Competing Interests

  • Funding or grants to the author(s) of the article from a company or organization that could gain or lose financially from the publicatoin of the article (either at the time of publication or in the future after publication)
  • Employment and/or voluntary involvement
  • Collaborations with groups related to the research
  • Personal fees
  • Consulting fee receipts from companies manufacturing/providing equipment or materials for the research
  • Intellectual Property
    • Patents
    • Copyrights
    • Royalties
    • etc.
  • Benefits from the development of products from the research
  • Holding stocks/shares in a company or organization that could gain or lose financially from the publication of the article (either at the time of publication or in the future after publication)

Non-Financial Competing Interests

Non-financial competing interests can occur (but are not limited to) the following:
  • Religious
  • Personal
  • Academic
  • Intellectual
  • Political
  • Ideological

How Should the Competing Interest Statement be Written?

1. If all or some of the authors have a competing interest, each author should provide their statement in this section.


Competing Interests

John Doe declares there are competing interests. Jane Doe received a research grant from XX University. Mike Smith is a reviewer on XX Journal and holds stocks in Company X.

2. If none of the authors have competing interests, the statement can simply say, “The authors of this publication declare there are no competing interests.”


Competing Interests

All authors of this article declare there are no competing interest.

Where Should the Competing Interest Statement be Placed?

The competing interest declaration should be placed after an acknowledgement and before the funding information. Competing interest statements should state whether all, some, or none of the authors have conflicting ideas, research, beliefs, etc.


All journal articles are now required to have funding information at the end of their articles. Articles that are being published under the traditional, subscription-based model in Hybrid Open Access journals can provide funding information if an outside source funded their ability to do their research but did not fund open access publishing. If the authors have received no funding for their article, please see below under the “No Funding Information” heading.

Open access articles need to have full funding information written out and also include the grant number which can be included in brackets. The funding agency needs to be listing in the “Organization Name.”

If there is only one funding agency:

This research was supported by the Organization Name [grant number xxxxxx].

If there are multiple agencies and/or grant numbers then it should be formatted as such:

This research was supported by the Organization Name [grant numbers xxxxxx]; the Organization Name [grant number xxxxxx]; and the Organization Name [grant number xxxxxx].

If there is no funding information they should simply state:

This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors. Funding for this research was covered by the author(s) of the article.

If an organization provided support that wasn’t monetary (maybe they provided facilities, survey samples, etc.), please mention that the research was supported by that organization.

Note: If you have any concern that this information will compromise your anonymity on your manuscript during the peer review phase, you may withhold this information until final manuscript submission.


Appendices are at the end of the manuscript and, if more than one, numbered with Arabic numerals. Any Figures or Tables included in the appendix continue the numbering from the body of the article. Figures and tables in the appendix are also required to have captions. The format of figures and tables in the appendix are to follow the same format as the figures and tables in the body of the text.

Figures and tables in the appendices are to be called out and/or explained within the body of the text.


Please use only endnotes if needed. If you include endnotes, they will be placed after the references at the end of your article. Footnotes at the bottom of a page are not acceptable.

URLs used as sources must be cited and included as references, not as Endnotes.

Last Updated October 20, 2022