Editorial Policy and Submission Guidelines


  1. Editorial Policy
  2. Submission Guidelines

Editorial Policy


Journal of Contemporary Archival Studies (JCAS) publishes research articles, case studies, literature reviews (book, web-based, multimedia), work-in-progress articles, and conference reports that emphasize unique intellectual and technological developments in the archival profession.

Editing Procedures

All submissions to JCAS are subject to a double-blind peer review process. Peer reviewers are appointed for a two year repeatable term by the managing editor. Peer reviewers read and evaluate content for accuracy and professional or historical significance and make recommendations to the Editorial Board on the efficacy of articles as part of the final approval or rejection process.

After a manuscript is submitted, the managing editor assigns an editor-at-large to oversee the editorial process. The assigned editor contacts a minimum of three peer reviewers to evaluate the manuscript under a 21 day deadline. After the peer reviewers have read and evaluated the manuscript, they submit their report to the editor along with one of the following three recommendations for publication:

  • Accept the manuscript for publication with minor revisions.
  • Accept the manuscript for publication with major revisions.
  • Reject the manuscript for publication.

After the editor receives the peer reviewers’ recommendations, they are forwarded to the author, who will then perform the necessary revisions and submit a new draft within a time frame determined by the editor. The editor then reviews the final draft to determine whether the manuscript is ready for publication, or if it requires further peer review. Once a manuscript is ready for publication, it is forwarded to the copy editor who will review the manuscript to correct spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors, and to ensure that the text adheres to JCAS’s formatting and style guidelines. Once the copy editor’s work is done, the managing editor performs a final review of the manuscript and publishes it.

Authors who publish in the Journal of Contemporary Archival Studies agree to the following terms:

Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License, which allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work’s authorship and initial publication in this journal.

Submission Guidelines

Article Length and Content

The minimum and maximum length of articles varies by content type as follows:

  • Research articles and case studies should be no longer than 15 to 20 pages
  • Review essays should be no longer than 5 to 10 pages
  • Work-in-progress articles should be no longer than 5 to 10 pages
  • Conference reports should be no longer than 1 to 5 pages

Formatting Guidelines

Basic formatting guidelines are organized by manuscript component. For additional formatting questions, refer to the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.

Main Body

  • Single space your text.
  • Use a single column layout.
  • All margins (left, right, top, and bottom) should be 1 inch (2.5 cm), including your tables and figures.
  • Use 12 pt. Times New Roman font for the main body of your text.
  • Set off long quotations, theorems, propositions, special remarks, etc. from the surrounding text by additional space above and below.
  • Do not include a title page or abstract.
  • Do not indent the first line of paragraphs.
  • Do not include page numbers, headers, or footers.
  • Do not include endnotes.
  • Ensure that there are no colored mark-ups or comments in the final version, unless they are meant to be part of the final text (i.e., you may need to “accept all changes” in track changes or set your document to “normal” in final markup).


  • Distinguish headings and subheadings from the main body text with spacing above and below.

Tables and Figures

  • To the extent possible, position tables and figures near where they are referenced in the text.
  • Put large tables or figures on pages by themselves.
  • Avoid the use of overly small type in tables.
  • All tables and figures must fit within 1-inch margins on all sides (left, right, top, and bottom) in both portrait and landscape view.
  • In no case should tables or figures be in a separate document or file.
  • Refer to the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style on “Illustrations and Tables” for additional guidance regarding placement, numbering, captions, credit lines, etc.


  • All references should be complete and formatted according to the note and bibliography system of source citation in the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.
  • For book reviews, citations from the book being reviewed should cite the page number in parentheses at the end of the sentence. Citations to any sources other than the book being reviewed should be formatted in footnotes according to the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.
  • Footnotes should appear at the bottom of the page on which they are referenced rather than at the end of the paper.
  • Note numbers should begin with “1” and follow consecutively throughout the text.
  • In the text, note numbers are superscripted.
  • Footnote numbers in the text must follow, rather than precede, punctuation.
  • Use 10 pt. Times New Roman font for footnotes.
  • Single space footnotes, and include a footnote separator rule (line).

Manuscript Submission Checklist

  • The submission is an original, unpublished work not under consideration for publication elsewhere.
  • The submission is written in English.
  • The submission is a single Microsoft Word file that includes tables, figures, appendices, etc.
  • The submission adheres to all formatting and stylistic requirements outlined in this guide.
  • The submission has complete references formatted in accordance with the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.
  • The submission is free of author identification for the peer review process. This includes the file name of your submission, which should not include the author's first or last name, or any other personally identifiable information.

Style Guidelines

The latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style is the authority for capitalization, punctuation, quotations, and all matters of bibliographical style for the JCAS. Writers should refrain from using contractions, passive language, first or second person viewpoints, incomplete sentences, imprecise terminology, and slang, as well as wordy phrases and excessive quotations. Authors must proofread and copyedit their work prior to submitting it to the journal.

Language and Grammar

  • Authors will submit works using standard American English grammar.
  • For grammatical guidance, refer to The Elements of Style (1999), fourth edition, by William Strunk, Jr., and E. B. White, as well as the “Grammar and Usage” section of the latest edition of The Chicago Manual of Style.
  • For guidance on the use of archival language, refer to A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology, published and maintained by the Society of American Archivists (SAA).

Emphasized Text

  • Use italics to emphasize text in submissions rather than underlining it or applying a color to the font.
  • Apply italics to non-English words and phrases.