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Submissions Details

Submission Process

All manuscripts are to be submitted electronically via the ScholarOne Manuscripts website:

Step 1. Type, Title, & Abstract

Authors must designate the type of manuscript being submitted: Original Research, Brief Report, Review Article, Letter to the Editor, or Case Study. Titles have a limit of 50 words, and abstracts are limited to 300 words. Abstracts are pasted directly into a free text box. Please refer to the Manuscript Types section to determine if your abstract requires section headings. A copy of the abstract should also be provided as part of the main document in Step 6.

Step 2. Keywords

Authors are required to provide a minimum of three keywords describing their submission. The Journal encourages the use of MeSH terms.

Step 3. Authors & Institutions

The details for the submitting author are populated with the information stored in his/her ScholarOne Manuscripts account. Co-authors may be added by searching for an existing account using an email address or by direct entry of information. The corresponding author must also be selected at this stage. The corresponding author acts on behalf of any co-authors, but all co-authors are responsible for the content of the research article.

Step 4. Details & Comments

This section provides an opportunity for the submitting author to include a cover letter by entering it directly or by uploading the letter in Microsoft Word or Portable Document Format (PDF) file formats. Please use the cover letter as an opportunity to discuss the relevance of your article to the aims and scope of the journal or its affiliates and to highlight the novel elements of your submission. Cover letters are strongly encouraged but not required.

Cover letters should be addressed to the Editor-in-Chief:
Editor-in-Chief, Substance Abuse
University Drive C (151C)
Pittsburgh, PA 15240

Step 5. File Upload

Files may be uploaded in this section with the following file designations: Title Page, Main Document, Figure, Table, and Supplemental File.

Title Page

Required File Format: Microsoft Word document.

The title page is a separate document from the main manuscript. The identifying information provided on the title page will not be shared with reviewers. A template for the title page is provided on the ScholarOne Manuscripts website under Step 6. The title page needs to include the following:

  • Manuscript title
  • Full names, degrees, and institutional affiliations for all authors
  • Complete contact information for the corresponding author, which should include institutional mailing address, telephone and fax numbers, and email address
  • Acknowledgements: Recognize people who contributed meaningfully to the article but did not qualify as co-authors.
  • Funding: Funding sources for the research process and for manuscript preparation must be listed. Please provide the grant number, if applicable. Authors should also specify the degree to which the funding agency was involved in the work reported in the manuscript or in the composition of the submission.
  • Author contributions: Provide the contributions of each co-author in paragraph form. See Authorship subsection under Editorial Policies.

Main Document

Required File Format: Microsoft Word document or LaTex file.

The main document should contain all of the required sections listed in the Manuscript Types section. Do not include figures and tables in your main document. However, the text should contain a placeholder indicating the preferred location for each table and figure, e.g., [TABLE 1 HERE]. Captions for figures should also be included in the main document. A template for the main document (manuscript type: original research) is available on our ScholarOne manuscripts website under Step 6.

Authors should take care to blind all potentially identifying information within the body of the article. Commonly overlooked identifying information includes: the description of the setting/study site, IRB affiliation, and references to “our” prior research. Authors may consider blinding their reference list as it applies to their prior work. All identifying information should be included in the title page (see above), which will not be shared with reviewers.

References and citations should be prepared in accordance with the American Medical Association Manual of Style, 10th edition. References should be cited consecutively within the text using superscript arabic numerals. The names of all journals should be in italics and be abbreviated according to the NLM title abbreviation, which can be found using the NLM catalog

Tables and Figures

Required File Formats:
Tables: Microsoft Word or Excel.
Figures:(TIFF preferred; minimum resolution of 300 DPI) or Microsoft PowerPoint.

Tables and figures are to be uploaded separately from the main document, with the appropriate file type designated. Figures should be sized to fit on a journal page and 300 DPI or higher.

Color art will be reproduced in the online production at no additional cost to the author. Color illustrations will also be considered for the print publication; however, the author will bear the full cost involved in color art reproduction. Contact the Managing Editor with questions.

Supplemental Information

Required File Format: Text, MSWord, MS Excel, MS PowerPoint, Zip Archive, RealVideo, PDF, HTML, QuickTime, MPEG Video, Image, VRML, GIF Image, WAV Audio, AIFF, PDB, AVI Video, or Windows Media/Video.

Substance Abuse journal offers the opportunity to upload relevant supplemental material that enhances the work described in the manuscript. Supplemental information will only be published online. Supplemental information will be published “as is”, i.e., the material will not be typeset or modified by the publisher, and authors will not be sent proofs for supplemental material. Authors should make sure that they have permission to publish their supplemental material in an online format. Publication of online supporting material is at the discretion of the Editorial Board.

Step 7. Review & Submit

Authors will not be able to submit a manuscript until all required elements have been completed. Missing items will be denoted in red. Authors must also review their manuscript in PDF format prior to submission.