Author Guidelines

Revised 6 January 2020

The Ohio Journal of Science (OJS) has published peer-reviewed, original contributions to science, education, engineering, and technology since 1900. Authors include academic, government and industry professionals, undergraduate and graduate students, and high-achieving high school students. The OJS encourages submission of manuscripts relevant to Ohio, but readily considers all submissions that advance the mission of The Ohio Academy of Science to foster curiosity, discovery and innovation to benefit society. Because the OJS is an international multidisciplinary journal, authors should write clearly, concisely, and avoid excessive jargon to assure broad understanding of their work by readers in diverse fields. Direct questions to the Editor

Categories of Submissions

  • Unsolicited manuscripts that present quantitative or qualitative data:
    • Brief notes, such as field notes, of fewer than 2000 words with a single figure or table
    • Research reports of approximately 7000 words that may have multiple figures and tables
  • Solicited manuscripts:
    • Book reviews of approximately 1000 words
    • Research reviews in the form of extensive literature reviews of approximately 5000 words


Use Scientific Style and Format: The CSE Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers, 8th Ed. Linked here is a free 30-day trial: Manuscripts must adhere to the following format:

  • Use Microsoft® Word.
  • Type within 1-inch margins all around on 8.5 x 11-inch paper.
  • Left-justify text using 12 point type.
  • Double space text including the title, author information, abstract, text and references.
  • Use Arabic numerals rather than words when the number designates anything that can be counted or measured (7 samples, 43 species) with 2 exceptions:
    • To begin a sentence (Twenty-one species were found in…)
    • When 2 numeric expressions are adjacent in a sentence, spell out the number easiest to express in words and leave the other in numeric form (e.g., The sections were divided into eight 4-acre plots.)
  • Measurements and physical symbols or units shall follow the International System of Units (SI Le Système international d’unités) with metric units stated first, optionally but ideally followed by United States units in parentheses (e.g., xx grams (xx ounces)).
  • Avoid personal pronouns.
  • Use active voice.
  • Embed all Tables and Figures in the manuscript and supply separate files for each figure in jpeg or tiff format. Name separate figure files as Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.

Tables. Type tables double spaced, one table to a page, numbered consecutively, and insert in the manuscript at the appropriate place.  Because tables must be individually typeset, consolidation of data into the smallest number of tables is encouraged. A horizontal double underline should be made beneath the title of the table, and single underlines should be made the width of the table below the column headings and at the bottom of the table. Do not use vertical lines, and do not place horizontal lines in the interior of the table. Use footnotes to clarify possible questions within the table, noted by asterisks, daggers, or other symbols to avoid confusion with numerical data. Tables should be referred to parenthetically in the text. For example: (Table 1).

Figures. The Journal publishes full-color figures online. Prepare B&W graphs with contrasting line weights or symbols to assure data clarity. Figures may be photographs, computer-generated drawings, or graphs and should be placed in the manuscript at the appropriate place. All illustrations are referred to as "Figures" and must be numbered consecutively. Illustrations other than those generated by the author(s) must include permission for use and credit to the originator in the caption. The size and proportion of each illustration should be suitable for reduction to a single column. Avoid excessive white space. The designer will reduce most illustrations to one column width (85.5 mm (3 and 3/8 inches)) or two column widths (177.8 mm (7 inches)). Font size must ensure readability after reduction. Incorporate a dimensional scale and a North compass point on maps and add scale to maps or other illustrations to assure accuracy if reduced in final print. Each figure must have a complete caption that is typed, double-spaced, below the figures in the manuscript. Figures should be referred to parenthetically in the text. For example: (Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.).

Footnotes. Text footnotes shall not be used, with 2 exceptions:

  • A footnote to name(s) of author(s) to indicate present address different from that at which the research was done, or to indicate the author to whom inquiries should be directed
  • Footnotes to tables to promote clarity


Compose the manuscript in the following order:

Title. A title should be as descriptive as possible, especially for field studies.

Author names. Include author names and affiliations, and designate corresponding author with complete mailing information, phone number and email address.

Abstract. Abstracts shall be informative and not indicative. Within 250 or fewer words, using simple, declarative sentences, state the contents of the paper including the study’s purpose, question or hypothesis, methods, results, and conclusions or significant new understandings.

Key Words for Indexing. Provide 3 to 5 terms (metadata) for indexing the submission. Separate terms with semicolons (term1; term2; term3).

Running head. State 3 to 5 words, primarily from the first few words of the title, which will be used at the top of the printed page in the final layout.

Introduction. Describe the knowledge and cite the literature that gave rise to the project’s objective, goal, problem, question examined by, or the hypothesis posed for the research.

Methods and Materials. Describe the research design, the methods and materials used in the research (subjects, their selection, equipment, laboratory or field procedures), and how you analyzed the findings.

Results. The text of the results should be a descriptive narrative of the main findings. This section should not list tabulated data in text form. Parenthetically include references to figures and data tables. Indicate (n=x) the number of trials, samples tested, or subjects surveyed. Here or in the Discussion section, use the term "significant" only if you report the results of a statistical test.

Discussion. Compare and contrast the data collected with that previously reported in the literature. State the extent to which the results answer the research question or support the hypothesis. Include conclusions or significant new understandings. Briefly describe the limits of the study and suggest or describe additional research needed only if you can be exceedingly explicit.

Acknowledgments. Recognize colleagues or institutions that provided financial or other support for the research or preparation of the manuscript.

Literature Cited. Arrange references to scientific literature cited in the text alphabetically by last name of first author. There must be a 1:1 concordance between in-text (name-year) citations and the list of references.

Research Articles Format:

General form:

Name(s). Year. Article title. Abbreviated journal title. Volume (issue):inclusive pages. Endeavor to add the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) at end of each reference. The DOI must take this format:

You may find abbreviations for journal names here:

To comply with the terms of the publisher's Crossref membership, Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) must be included with references when they are available. To check for DOIs, use the free DOI Lookup form on the Crossref website (

In-text reference citation:

Traumatic life events and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are endemic among American civilians (Kessler et al. 1995). Each year... 

End reference:

Kessler RC, Sonnega A, Bromet E, Hughes M, Nelson CB. 1995. Posttraumatic stress disorder in the National Comorbidity Survey. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 52(12):1048–1060.

Multiple Works Published by the Same Author in the Same Year

In-text reference:

Cold hardiness in cereals (Andrews 1960a, 1960b) is affected by . . .

End references:

Andrews JE. 1960a. Cold hardiness of sprouting wheat as affected by duration of hardening and hardening temperature. Can J Plant Sci. 40(1):93–102.

Andrews JE. 1960b. Cold hardening and cold hardiness of young winter rye seedlings as affected by stage of development and temperature. Can J Bot. 38(3):353–363.

Multiple Works Published by the Same Author in Different Years

In-text reference:

Smith’s studies of arbovirus infections (Smith 1970, 1975) have shown that . . .

End references:

Smith CE. 1970. Studies on arbovirus epidemiology associated with established and developing rice culture. Introduction. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 64(4):481–482.

Smith CE. 1975. The significance of mosquito longevity and blood-feeding behaviour in the dynamics of arbovirus infections. Med Biol. 53(5):288–294.

Multiple Author Citation

List all authors up to 10. For greater than 10 authors, list the first 10 followed by "et al."


Author(s). Year. Title. Place of publication: publisher name. Number of pages.

End references:

Voet D, Voet JG.  1990.  Biochemistry. New York: J Wiley. 1223 p.

Electronic Sources

Include standard name-year format followed by accessed date and full URL in parentheses for weblinks and the DOI for publications having a DOI. Examples:


Jones CD. 2017. Analyses of Boron and Cadmium. J Chem. 113(2):1-23. (Accessed 13 Nov 2017

DOI example:

Resh VH, Brown AV, Covich AP, Gurtz ME, Li HW, Minshall GW, Reice SR, Sheldon AL, Wallace JB, Wissmar RC. 1988. The role of disturbance in stream ecology. J N Am Benthol Soc. 7:433–455.

Especially when citing books and lengthier journal articles, the author shall endeavor to cite a page number when referring to a specific piece of information in a referenced work. For example: (Horton 2015 p. 42).  This is preferable to placing a specific page reference in the end reference, as key end references are often referred to multiple times by the author.