University of California, Riverside

Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity



Paper Guidelines


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Journal Formatting Requirements:

  • Articles must be submitted as a Word document (.doc or .docx format)
  • Document size cannot exceed 5 MB.
  • The maximum length of a submission cannot exceed 12 pages; this includes all figures, tables, illustrations, footnotes, cites, and references. It does not include the abstract or author information.
  • Font must be 12-point Times New Roman throughout the paper.
  • Margins must be 1-inch on all sides.
  • Text must be double spaced.
  • All pages must be numbered.  Place number in the center of the page at the bottom.
  • References:  Follow the citation styles of your discipline. Some examples are MLA, APA or Chicago. Please work with your faculty mentors to determine which should be used.
  • Single space the abstract, block quotations, notes and references.

You are encouraged to review articles submitted in the most current Journal to see examples.

Recommended Structure of Submitted Paper:

The ideal structure of any article will depend on the discipline. For your convenience, below is an outline of a very common paper structure, especially for STEM fields. Consult with your faculty mentor to determine the paper structure that is most appropriate for your submission.

  • Title -- Place the title of your article at the top of each page, followed by the names of the student author(s) and the faculty mentor(s).
    • Authorship is very specific. It is an explicit way of assigning responsibility and giving credit for intellectual work. In order to properly assign authorship credit, please follow these guidelines.

      • One author should take primary responsibility for the work as a whole. This person in the Primary Author role should be the one completing the submission process.
      • Everyone who is listed as an author must have made a substantial, direct, intellectual contribution to the work. For example, they should have contributed to the conception, design, analysis and/or interpretation of data, as well as to the actual writing of the article. 
      • Please list authors in order of contribution. You are encouraged to discuss this with the team members prior to submission. The order that you provide in this submission is the order the authors will be listed.
      • All authors should participate in the editing process by reviewing drafts and approving the final version before publication.
  • Abstract -- After the title comes the abstract, a single paragraph no more than 250 words long. An abstract briefly defines the problem, purpose, or specific topic addressed by the research or of the creative project. It indicates the methods and/or approach taken in the inquiry and summarizes results or conclusions. It should be written in grammatically correct, logically connected sentences, and it should be understandable by any audience with a reasonable knowledge of its field. An abstract should not include charts, tables, figures, or spreadsheets.
  • Keywords -- 6-8 keywords relevant to paper topic
  • Introduction
  • Background/Conceptual Development/Conceptual Framework
  • Methods/Methodology
  • Results/Findings
  • Discussion
  • Acknowledgments
  • Works Cited / References

PLEASE NOTE:  If your paper is accepted and you have photos/ graphs/images, we will ask that you submit the images in high resolution (300 DPI) for publication.

For more information on each of these paper sections, please watch the Publishing in the Journal Workshop Video and/or attend a live workshop.

Criteria to be used to review the articles:

  • Abstract
    • Is it well-written and accessible to non-specialists?
    • Does it summarize the work well?
    • Does it make clear what to expect from reading the article?
  • Major conceptual Points
    • Clarity of motivations or assumptions for research.
    • Completeness of cited related work.
    • Appropriateness of the methodology utilized.
    • Clarity of conclusions.
    • Significance of results.
  • Style Points
    • Grammar and spelling.
    • Clarity of presentation.
    • Proper formatting of text and figures.
    • Appropriate use of citations/references.

Bio Requirements for Authors:

  • All students submitting articles for consideration will also need to provide a brief bio. The student bio should be no more than 80 words. It should be written in third person, present tense and include the following:

    • Name

    • Year of Study

    • Major

    • Research and research mentor

    • Awards/recognition (ie funding, research, honor societies, leadership roles)

    • Future goals

It is important that care be taken with grammar and spelling in your bio, as it is considered part of your submission in the review process.

  • Bio Example:
    • Author: Connor Richards, Department of Physics and Astronomy

    • Connor Richards is a third year Physics major. He studies physics beyond the standard model at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). With funding from the Goldwater Scholarship, University of California Regents’ Scholarship, UC LEADS Fellowship, and Chancellor’s Research Fellowship, he has participated in research and outreach at the European Council for Nuclear Research (CERN) for two years under the guidance of Dr. Owen Long. Currently Vice President of CNAS Science Ambassadors, Richards’ passions are research, science outreach, and STEM education. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. in High-Energy Physics and a faculty position.

More Information

General Campus Information

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Tel: (951) 827-1012

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Office of Undergraduate Education
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Tel: (951) 827-2612
E-mail: ugrj@ucr.edu (Journal)
E-mail: ugrs@ucr.edu (Symposium)
E-mail: ugr@ucr.edu (Research)

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