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Information for Authors

Open Access Option for Authors

Online submission
Once you have prepared your manuscript according to the instructions below please visit the online submission web site online submission web site. Instructions on submitting your manuscript online can be viewed here or via the online submission web site. Please check for an existing account before creating a new one.

If you have any queries relating to the submission site or a manuscript, please contact the editorial office. For all content or reviewing related questions please contact one of the editors.

Articles will not proceed to publication unless they adhere to the journal’s house-style. Authors whose work is accepted will be asked to confirm the article’s originality and, if appropriate, adherence to ethical considerations such as assurance of interviewees’ confidentiality. Authors are requested not to submit typescripts that are under consideration for publication elsewhere and to send final drafts rather than earlier versions designed to elicit editors’ judgement on the potential suitability of the MS for publication in Social History of Medicine (SHM).

The journal seeks clear and accessible contributions. Simple phrasing is preferred. Please do not include numbered lists in your article. Please use UK English spelling (including -ise/-ising rather than -ize/-izing) and double-check all non-English words. All articles should be in Arial font, 12 point and double-spaced, in Word format. The article should be paginated throughout. Graphs and figures can be inserted in the main text. Please include a short abstract of no more than 150 words and up to 5 keywords. A statement of the author’s present position, a short bio note (50–70 words), postal address, email address, telephone and fax numbers should be provided in a separate document – Title page (in Word format).

SHM conducts double-blinded peer reviews. When uploading your manuscript it should include no identifying author information (designate as Main Document). A separate title page (designate as Title Page) should be uploaded with author details, any acknowledgements, and an address for correspondence with readers. 'Supplementary' files are for online publication only.

After peer review, when submitting a final, revised version of your paper, please submit both a clean copy of the revision and a copy with track changes, clearly labelling both versions.

1. Word limit. Original articles should not exceed 12,000 words (including footnotes and text in tables). Second Opinions should not exceed 6,000 words.

2. References. SHM uses footnotes (not endnotes) for referencing material. Manuscripts should not contain a separate bibliography or list of references. The first citation in footnotes must include the full details of the primary or secondary sources. Footnotes should be double-spaced. Use consecutive superior numbers placed after the end-mark of punctuation for footnote references. A second citation of the same source, if immediately following, is Ibid.; if other footnotes intervene, use the author's last name, short title, and (for quotations) page number. Use inclusive page numbers for journal articles and book chapters: 3–17, 23–26, 100–103, 104–7, 124–28, 1115–20. Provide complete bibliographic information as outlined below at first citation; for all subsequent citations, give author and short title. Authors are solely responsible for the accuracy of citations. Follow the examples below for footnote format.

1. J. S. Haldane, Organism and Environment as Illustrated by the Physiology of Breathing (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1917), 99.

NB: Provide full author name if available; if only initials available one space after full stop for each initial. Italicise title. Capitalise proper words for English-language titles; otherwise follow rule appropriate to title’s language. Publication details in brackets in following order – Location: Publisher, Year. Page number(s) outside brackets if appropriate. References to multiple articles/books separated by a semi-colon.

2. Ibid. , 105.

3. Harvey Cushing, The Life of Sir William Osler, 2 vols (London: Oxford University Press, 1925), II, 865.

NB: Example of format for multiple volume publication.

4. B. Lang and J. Srdar, ‘Therapeutic Communities and Aftercare Clubs in Yugoslavia’, in H. Klingermann, J. Takala and G. Hunt, eds, Cure, Care or Control: Alcoholism Treatment in Sixteen Countries (Albany: SUNY Press, 1992), 53–63.

NB: If title has more than three authors/editors, use first name followed by et al.

5. Haldane, Organism and Environment, 99–102.

NB: Format for non-continuous repeat citation.

6. Cushing, Osler, II, 542–49.

7. Christopher Hamlin, ‘Predisposing Causes and Public Health in Early Nineteenth-Century Medical Thought’, Social History of Medicine, 1992, 5, 43–70, 68.

NB: Article title in single quotes, journal title in italics. Comma outside quotes. Full journal title, date, volume number (no issue number required), all separated by commas.

8. Leila Jackson and J. J. Moore, ‘Studies on Experimental Scurvy in Guinea Pigs’, Journal of Infectious Diseases, 1916, 19, 478–510, 485.

9. H. E. Ross, ‘The Cell Content of Milk’, J. Infect. Dis., 1912, 10, 7–16, 14.

NB: In cases in which a journal is appears in numerous notes, an abbreviation may be used following the first full citation.

10. C. M. Jackson to G. S. Ford, 8 November 1917, folder 32, Guy Stanton Ford Correspondence, University of Minnesota Archives, Minneapolis, Minnesota (henceforth Ford Correspondence).

11. Jackson and Moore, ‘Experimental Scurvy’, 486.

12. Jackson to Ford, 8 November 1917. Ford Correspondence.

13. Matthieu Orfila, Directions for the Treatment of Persons who have Taken Poison, R.H. Black (trans), 2nd edn (Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, & Brown, 1820). 15.

NB: Format for translated, multi-edition work.

14. Michael Worboys, ‘Science and British Colonial Imperialism, 1895–1940’ (unpublished PhD thesis, Sussex University, 1979).

The most recent edition of the Chicago Manual of Style published by the University of Chicago Press should be consulted for materials not covered here.

3. Quotations. Quotations of up to two sentences in length should be included in the main text, enclosed within ‘single quotation marks’. Quotations within quotations should be in “double quotation marks”. Quotations over this length should be given a separate paragraph. This paragraph should not be italicised, and should be indented with wider margins than the main body of the text. The paragraph should be separated from the main text by a one-line space above and below the quotation. The indented paragraph should not be in quotation marks. Quotations within an indented quotation should be in ‘single quotes’. Full stops and commas at the end of quotes should fall inside the quotation marks if they form part of the original quotation. Otherwise, punctuation should fall outside quotation marks.

4. Ellipses. When words are omitted, there is a space, three dots, followed by a space. If the words omitted go over the end of a sentence, the following word must be capitalised to point out that a new sentence has started. If that word is not the one that started the new sentence in the original, a capital must be provided in square brackets. In instances of this kind, an extra dot must be added.

5. Dates and figures. Dates should be written as follows: 6 September 1972; 1972–73; 1972–2002; twentieth century, or twentieth-century when used as an adjective. Numbers from one to nine (and first to ninth) should be spelt out. Figures 10 to 999,999 should be written in numerical form. Thereafter 1 million, 2.7 million etc. are preferred. For percentages use figures and (two words) per cent, e.g. 8 per cent. For a large number of percentages, it is permissible to use the % sign.

6. Punctuation. When an abbreviated word comes at the end of a sentence, there is only one full stop.

E.g. ... in the European countries, France, Italy, etc.

Not ... France, Italy, etc..

7. Capitalisation. Capital letters should generally be avoided with nouns unless they are derived from proper names (Maoism, Galenism) or refer to titles (International Association for the Study of Traditional Asian Medicine, the Medical Research Council).

8. Acronyms. Acronyms should be capitalised but should not be separated by dots (unless they appear in this form in a citation), for example: WHO, USA, PRC.

9. Tables, Graphs, Maps, and Illustrations. Sources for tables should be given in full detail. Copyright permission for the online and print use of tables, figures and illustrations must be obtained.

Authors proposing to use illustrative material or reprographics are asked to consult the editors at an early stage and to liaise closely with the editorial assistant throughout the publication process.

- Please state clearly in the text where you want the tables to appear
- Ensure in the text that the reader is directed to a specific table. For example:

‘Table 1 shows that infant mortality rates were very high …’; or
‘ … infant mortality rates were very high in this period (Table 1).’

- As far as possible, the topic and content of tables should stand alone and be comprehensible without reference to the text in the article.
- Tables should be numbered consecutively in arabic numerals.
- Titles should be concise. Include a place and date range, if applicable.
- Use % not ‘per cent’.
- The number of decimal places should be consistent throughout (that is, not a mix of one- and two-decimal places).
- Authors are requested to check and recheck carefully the sum of column and row totals where applicable. If % columns do not add up to 100%, explanation should be given in the notes.
- Table note references are symbols (not arabic numerals) and should be listed at the bottom of the table, before Sources.
- Sources should be provided in all cases. Where applicable, the house style for notes is acceptable. Please ensure that primary and secondary sources for tables are provided in full.
- It is the responsibility of the author to provide copyright permissions for online and print usage where necessary.

- State clearly in the text where you want the figures to appear
- Ensure in the text that the reader is directed to a specific figure. For example:

‘Figure 1 shows that infant mortality rates were very high …’; or
‘ … infant mortality rates were very high in this period (Figure 1).’

- As far as possible, the topic and content of figures should stand alone and be comprehensible without reference to the text in the article.
- Figures should be numbered consecutively in arabic numerals.
- Titles should be concise. Include a place and date range, if applicable.
- Both axes should be labelled.
- Use % not ‘per cent’.
- Sources should be provided in all cases, and should follow house referencing style as outlined above.

In order to reproduce any third party material, including figures or tables, in an article authors must obtain permission from the copyright holder and be compliant with any requirements the copyright holder may have pertaining to this reuse.

When seeking to reproduce any kind of third party material authors should request the following:

(i) non-exclusive rights to reproduce the material in the specified article and journal;
(ii) electronic rights, preferably for use in any form or medium;
(iii) the right to use the material for the life of the work; and
(iv) world-wide English-language rights.

Further guidelines on clearing permissions can be found at: http://www.oxfordjournals.org/access_purchase/permissions_guidelines.doc.

Authors should also include a statement indicating that permission has been obtained in the relevant legend/footnote and provide the Editorial Office with copies of any relevant paperwork.

A template permissions request letter can be found at the end of the above document.

10. Funding. Details of all funding sources for the work in question should be given in a separate section entitled 'Funding'. This should appear before the 'Acknowledgements' section.
The following rules should be followed.

  • The sentence should begin: ‘This work was supported by …
  • The full official funding agency name should be given, i.e. ‘the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health’ or simply ‘National Institutes of Health' not ‘NCI’ (one of the 27 subinstitutions) or ‘NCI at NIH’ (full RIN-approved list of UK funding agencies) Grant numbers should be given in brackets as follows: ‘[grant number xxxx]’
  • Multiple grant numbers should be separated by a comma as follows: ‘[grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]
  • Agencies should be separated by a semi-colon (plus ‘and’ before the last funding agency)
  • Where individuals need to be specified for certain sources of funding the following text should be added after the relevant agency or grant number 'to [author initials]'.

An example is given here: ‘This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health [AA123456 to C.S., BB765432 to M.H.]; and the Alcohol & Education Research Council [hfygr667789].’

Oxford Journals will deposit all NIH-funded articles in PubMed Central. See Depositing articles in repositories – information for authors for details. Authors must ensure that manuscripts are clearly indicated as NIH-funded using the guidelines above.

Crossref Funding Data Registry

In order to meet your funding requirements authors are required to name their funding sources, or state if there are none, during the submission process. For further information on this process or to find out more about the CHORUS initiative please click here.

11. Guidance for Book Review Authors
Reviewers of commissioned reviews are requested to submit their review within three months using the online submission system (see details above). Reviews of single-authored books should be 800 words long. Reviews of edited volumes, and specially commissioned Focus reviews, should be 1,000 words.

When writing your review, please use single quotation marks and fully reference, using footnotes, any other works cited in the course of your review. For details see the ‘Footnotes and references’ section above. At the end of your review, please state your full name and institutional affiliation e.g.
Vanessa Heggie
University of Birmingham

If you do not want your email address to be published, please inform the reviews editor when you submit your review.

12. Copyright/Offprints.
It is a condition of publication in the journal that authors grant an exclusive licence to Society for the Social History of Medicine. This ensures that requests from third parties to reproduce articles are handled efficiently and consistently and will also allow the article to be as widely disseminated as possible. Authors may use their own material in other publications provided that the journal is ackowledged as the original place of publication, and Oxford University Press is notified in writing and in advance.
Upon receipt of accepted manuscripts at Oxford Journals authors will be invited to complete an online copyright licence to publish form.

Please note that by submitting an article for publication you confirm that you are the corresponding/submitting author and that Oxford University Press ("OUP") may retain your email address for the purpose of communicating with you about the article. You agree to notify OUP immediately if your details change. If your article is accepted for publication OUP will contact you using the email address you have used in the registration process. Please note that OUP does not retain copies of rejected articles.

The publisher will supply the corresponding author with free online access to their paper (which can then be circulated to co-authors). The corresponding author is entitled to receive 25 printed offprints free of charge. These can be claimed using the Oxford Journals Author Services site.

Author Self-Archiving/Public Access Policy

For information about this journal's policy, please visit our Author Self-Archiving policy page.


Social History of Medicine authors have the option to publish their paper under the Oxford Open initiative; whereby, for a charge, their paper will be made freely available online immediately upon publication. After your manuscript is accepted the corresponding author will be required to accept a mandatory licence to publish agreement. As part of the licensing process you will be asked to indicate whether or not you wish to pay for open access. If you do not select the open access option, your paper will be published with standard subscription-based access and you will not be charged.

Oxford Open articles are published under Creative Commons licences. Authors publishing in Social History of Medicine can use the following Creative Commons licences for their articles:
• Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC-BY)
• Creative Commons Non-Commercial licence (CC-BY-NC)
• Creative Commons non-Commercial No Derivatives licence (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Please click here for more information about the Creative Commons licences.

Charges Information

You can pay Open Access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post. The open access charges applicable are:

Regular charge - £1750/ $2800 / €2275
List B Developing country charge* - £875 / $1400 / €1135
List A Developing country charge* - £0 /$0 / €0

*Visit our Developing Countries page for a list of qualifying countries

Language Editing
Language editing, particularly if English is not your first language, can be used to ensure that the academic content of your paper is fully understood by the journal editors and reviewers. Please note that edited manuscripts will still need to undergo peer-review by the journal.

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