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OJOT Author Guidelines
The Open Journal of Occupational Therapy is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal with a mission to publish high quality articles that focus on applied research, practice, and education related to the profession of occupational therapy. Specifically, the categories of manuscripts accepted for publication include Applied Research (quantitative and qualitative), Guidelines for Practice and Technological Guidelines, Opinions in the Profession, Topics in Education, and Letters to the Editor.
- General Submission Contents
- Review Process
- Categories of Manuscripts
- Category Descriptions
All manuscripts should be submitted to OJOT.org at this link. It is the responsibility of the author to produce an electronic version of the article as a Microsoft Word or RTF file that can be converted to a high quality PDF (Adobe's Portable Document Format) for publication.
Article Submission Agreement
All author(s) must agree with the Article Submission Agreement upon manuscript submission. The Article Submission Agreement includes author(s) approval, author(s) contribution verification(s), author(s) agreement of submission, acceptance of responsibility for article content, conflict of interest, and financial disclosure. The submission of the manuscript must be exclusive. It should not be published or submitted for publication to any other source until a decision regarding publication in OJOT has been made. It must be the author(s) original work and must not contain any plagiarism or any libelous or unlawful statements or infringe on the rights or privacy of others. By accepting the Article Submission Agreement, all authors agree that the terms are true.
Steps for Submission
Before submitting an article, read the Author Guidelines for formatting requirements. To submit an article, visit the Submit Article page. The submission process consists of the following steps:
- Read and accept the Article Submission Agreement
- Provide information about yourself
- Provide information about any authors
- Upload your article and related items
Before you begin, please be sure you have the following items:
- Article Title
- An abstract (separate from the article body)
- Keywords for your article (optional)
Article in one of the following formats: Microsoft Word, or RTF.
Articles must be submitted without a title page, abstract, or page numbers. These will be provided by the system. To preserve the double-blind peer review process, DO NOT include ANY information in the manuscript that will identify the author(s) or institution(s). If the article is accepted for publication, this information can be added back after the review process.
Shortly afterward, you will receive an email confirming your submission
All manuscripts, regardless of category, should adhere to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) 7 th edition for both text and references. Tables and graphs must be editable in Word (not inserted as images). Figures should be submitted with clear graphics. Illustrations must be supplied as high-resolution (at least 300 d.p.i.) files, saved as .eps or .tif. Digital images supplied only as low-resolution files cannot be used. A 12 point Times New Roman font should be used throughout. Double-space all text and references. Use .75” margins on all four sides. Use the continuous line numbers feature in Microsoft Word. Do not include a header or page numbers, as these will be provided by the system. However, be prepared to enter a shortened version of your article's title upon submission, which will be used in the header of the final published article. Authors are responsible for providing manuscripts that are clearly written and that contain correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Spelling should conform to standard American English as exemplified in Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. Authors are also responsible for providing accurate references using the APA 7 th edition format. Abbreviations should be used sparingly. The first time an abbreviation is used it should appear in parentheses following the full-text of the abbreviated words. Again, to preserve the double-blind peer review process, DO NOT include ANY information in the manuscript that will identify the author(s) or institution(s). This includes the name of the institutional review board, if applicable. If the article is accepted for publication, this information can be added back after the review process. Use placeholders like “XXXXX” or “IDENTIFYING INFORMATION REMOVED FOR PEER REVIEW.”
No copyright agreement form needs to be completed. OJOT is an open journal and therefore all authors retain the copyright of their manuscripts even after they have been published. Authors must, however, provide copyright permission for any copyrighted tables, figures, illustrations, appendices or lengthy quotations that are used in the manuscript.
There is no cost to submit an article to OJOT for review. Once a manuscript has been accepted for publication, each author must pay a processing fee. Please visit the Policies page and review the publication fee policy.
General Submission Contents
All manuscripts should be submitted with the text, references, tables and figures. Tables, figures, and/or illustrations should be embedded near the text to which they refer (do not upload supplemental content). If there are appendices, they should be submitted after the references. Upon submission at the OJOT.org site, the system will allow the author to attach or paste a cover letter to the web page. Additionally, the submission page contains fields for the article title and authors and the system will generate a title page. The author will also be prompted to enter an abstract, key words, footnote/acknowledgments, and an indication of the academic discipline(s) that best describes the submission. Therefore, articles must be submitted separate from a cover letter, title page, abstract, key words, acknowledgements, or page numbers. These will be provided by the system. This also helps preserve the double-blind peer review process.
The cover letter should provide the editors with an overview of the contents of the manuscript, as well as the contribution the manuscript makes to the profession of occupational therapy. A statement of exclusive submission should be included in the cover letter. Also include the credentials, addresses - including country, and affiliations of each author. Reviewers do not have access to this.
Title and Authors:
The title should be succinct with no more than 16 words and it should include the population, main purpose, and method (when appropriate) of the manuscript. Also enter a shortened version of the article’s title (65 characters or less), that is not capitalized. This will be used in the header of the final published article. All authors should be listed for inclusion and the order of authors should adhere to the APA 7 th edition guidelines in which the principal author is listed first with subsequent authors listed in order of decreasing contribution. Each author should have made a contribution to the text of the manuscript in order to be listed as an author. Include the full name, email address, and affiliation of each author during steps two (if only one author) and three (if additional authors) of the submission process, for inclusion on the title page. During step 4, in the Credentials Display field, include each author's name and credentials (such as OTR/L), as well as the country the author is from (in the same order as previously entered). The country is mandatory. Credentials and a short biography (100 words or less/author) are optional.
A brief acknowledgement should include financial and research support. Financial support may include grants or other funding sources. Research support in terms of people who have made contributions to the project (e.g. statistical, data collection, and reviews), but who are not authors should be acknowledged. Any links to companies involved in the manufacturing or distribution of the products or assessments being used should be disclosed. Other forms of dissemination of the manuscript (e.g. presentations at conferences) should also be acknowledged. If the manuscript is subject to clinical trial registration requirements (see below), the trial registration website address and trial registration number most be included here. Again, do not include any of this information in the body of the manuscript.
An abstract with a maximum of 200 words should be provided for Applied Research, Guidelines for Practice and Technological Guidelines, and Topics in Education manuscripts. The abstracts for Applied Research manuscripts should be structured to include background, method, results, and conclusion subheadings. Remember, the body of the manuscript must be submitted without an abstract, as it will be provided by the system. The author provides the abstract during the submission process, separate from the body of the article.
Provide 3 to 6 key words in alphabetical order to be used for indexing purposes. The key words should reflect the main topics of your manuscript and should not repeat terms already used in the title.
Authors should follow the page limit and structure guidelines provided in the Manuscript Category Description section for the text section of the manuscript. Any manuscripts with reports of research findings involving human-subjects must include a statement in the methods section of the text, verifying that the study was approved by an independent, named human subjects/ethics committee and that all subjects/participants provided informed consent.
The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) 7th edition should be used for all citations in the text and in the reference list. References should be limited to 30 for Applied Research and Guidelines for Practice and Technological Guideline manuscripts, 20 for Opinions in the Profession, 25 for Topics in Education and 5 for Letters to the Editor. Authors are responsible for the accuracy of references in both the text and the reference list. Articles published in OJOT receive Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) from the CrossRef organization to ensure they can always be found. Therefore, each reference in a manuscript should include the DOI if one is assigned. Please use actionable links rather than the original alphanumeric string when possible. Refer to your APA 7 th edition manual for more information.
Tables, Figures, and Illustrations:
Tables, figures, and illustrations should be limited to 6 for Applied Research, Guidelines for Practice, Technological Guidelines, and Topics in Education manuscripts. Opinions in the Profession manuscripts should be limited to 3 tables, figures and illustrations. These tables, figures, and illustrations should be used to enhance the clarity of the information in the text, without duplication of the text. They should be embedded in the manuscript, not uploaded as supplemental content.
Authors are responsible for providing written permission to use any materials that have been copyrighted. If a photograph of a person is used, a letter of consent that is approved by a Human Subject Institutional Review Board must be provided. A photograph in which the person's eyes are covered or the face is blurred still requires written consent.
Each table, figure, and illustration should be embedded near the text to which they refer and have a succinct title and number according to the citation. Cite tables, figures, and illustrations separately in the text, using a series of numbers according to the order in which they appear in the text (e.g. Figure 1). If abbreviations are used in the tables or figures, each one must be clearly spelled out in a footnote. The symbols *, **, and *** should be used only for P values.
Tables and graphs must be editable in Word (not inserted as images) for copyediting and final formatting purposes.
Please note that because we are an online publication, authors are encouraged to provide figures in color and link to external resources, such as videos, if they will increase the reader's understanding and use of the material.
Submit any appendices at the end of the manuscript in the order they are referred to in the text. Appendices should be identified in order using capital letters (e.g. Appendix A). Provide a title below the appendix identification with the author/s of each appendix listed below the title. Follow APA 7 th edition guidelines.
The Editor-in-Chief reviews all manuscripts submitted to OJOT. Manuscripts that correspond with the mission and categories of publication for OJOT will be confidentially peer-reviewed by 2-3 members of the Editorial Review Board. The identity of the author(s) and reviewers are not revealed during the review process. This is why it is important that the body your manuscript (Word document or RTF) does not include any identifying information. Acceptance for publication is based on the quality of the writing and research that is presented, as well as the contribution the manuscript makes to the occupational therapy profession. Please see the Confidentiality statement on the Policies page for information regarding protection of authors’ manuscripts during the review process.
Reviews will result in the manuscript being placed in one of 4 categories. These categories include accept without changes, accept with minor changes, major revisions required for acceptance, or reject. If the reviewers recommend revisions, the manuscript will be returned to the author(s) to be rewritten. The revised manuscript will then be subjected to further review by the original reviewers or new reviewers, if needed. The Editor-in-Chief and the Editorial Review Board make the final determination of publication of manuscripts and reserve the right to refuse manuscripts for publication. Author(s) can appeal the decision in writing first to the Editor-in-Chief at , then to the Editorial Board, and finally to the Advisory Board if necessary. All accepted manuscripts are subject to copyediting. During the copyediting process, the manuscript is actively screened for any potentially libelous and plagiarized content by thorough review of all citations and references. If such content is suspected, resolution is made at the discretion of the editors.
You can read this Letter from the Editor to learn more about the OJOT publication process.
Initial and subsequent review takes approximately 3 months. If the manuscript requires revision, the author(s) have 90 days to complete those changes. If the changes have not been submitted within 90 days, the manuscript file will be closed. An extension of the deadline may be requested.
Please contact with questions regarding submission or guidelines.
Categories of Manuscripts
- Applied Research- all types
- Guidelines for Practice and Technological Guidelines
- Opinions in the Profession
- Topics in Education
- Letters to the Editor
||| Type of Manuscript |||| Page Limit |||| References |||| Tables and Figures |||| Abstract Word Limit |||
|Topics in Education||10-20||15-25||1-6||200|
|Letters to the Editor||1-2||1-5||N/A||N/A|
Manuscript Category Descriptions
Applied Research - Quantitative and Qualitative:
Applied research manuscripts are reports of research findings that address specific clinical problems that are important for the practice of occupational therapy. The research questions addressed should be aimed at gaining quantitative or qualitative information about the safety, effectiveness, efficiency, demographics or value of specific treatments that address problems within the occupational therapy profession's domain. Some examples of desired manuscripts in this category include studies testing the effectiveness of guidelines for practice or technological guidelines that are currently used, or have the potential to be used, by occupational therapists.
Papers submitted in this category should be 20-25 pages in length, have adequate references (20-30), and include (1-6) tables and figures as needed to clarify data. An abstract with a maximum of 200 words should be provided, including the subheadings of background, method, results and conclusion.
The following structure and guidelines should be used for applied research manuscripts:
Background/Literature Review: A background of the problem with definitions of terms should be given, followed by a review of relevant, recent research that addresses the problem. The review of literature should build a foundation for the hypotheses or research questions that should be clearly presented at the end of this section.
Method: This section should provide a detailed description of the design, participants, procedures, instruments, and data analyses used for the study. Include informed consent information here.
Results: The demographic, quantitative, and/or qualitative data should be presented in this section. This may include tables and figures that provide the reader with clarification of information that was obtained. No interpretation of the meaning of the data should be included in this section.
Discussion: This section should include an interpretation of the results in relation to the original hypotheses/research questions, a comparison to the research literature that was reviewed, the limitations of the study, and a discussion of the implications for the practice of occupational therapy or future research in the profession.
Clinical Trial Registration
Manuscripts describing clinical trials that started participant recruitment after January 1, 2016, must be registered in a clinical trial registration system [WHO ICTRP or ClinicalTrials.gov] and registration must occur prior to participant recruitment to be considered for publication. Trials whose participant enrollment began before January 1, 2016, must be registered retrospectively. OJOT follows the guidelines put forth by The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). The ICMJE defines a clinical trial as:
any research project that prospectively assigns people or a group of people to an intervention, with or without concurrent comparison or control groups, to study the cause-and-effect relationship between a health-related intervention and a health outcome. Health-related interventions are those used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome; examples include drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, educational programs, dietary interventions, quality improvement interventions, and process-of-care changes. Health outcomes are any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events. The ICMJE does not define the timing of first patient enrollment, but best practice dictates registration by the time of first patient consent.
Manuscripts that are submitted to OJOT must provide the trial registration website address and trial registration number during submission in the Cover Page Footnote field. The manuscript will not be published without receipt of this information. The following types of trials do not need to be registered: trials that evaluate the effects, efficacy, or effectiveness of educational methodologies and techniques for occupational therapists or for continuing education; and trials that do not have client health or behavioral factors as outcomes.
Please see http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/publishing-and-editorial-issues/clinical-trial-registration.html and http://www.icmje.org/news-and-editorials/data_sharing_june_2017.pdf for complete information from ICMJE.
Click here for an optional checklist for your submission preparation in the applied research category.
Guidelines for Practice and Technological Guidelines:
Manuscripts in this category should be original or present significantly modified guidelines for practice or technological guidelines that address clinical problems in the occupational therapy profession's domain. These manuscripts should provide therapists with guidelines for problem identification and amelioration based on the most current and valid theoretical information. Guidelines for practice should include background information and definitions for the problems addressed, a description of the theoretical base, and evaluation and treatment guidelines. Technological guidelines should provide directions for the fabrication of technological products. Papers submitted in this category should be 20-25 pages, have adequate references (20-30), and include (1-6) tables and figures as needed to clarify information. An abstract should be included with a maximum of 200 words.
Click here for an optional checklist for your submission preparation in the guidelines for practice category.
Opinions in the Profession:
Manuscripts in this category should present a relevant discussion of an issue that is important to the profession of occupational therapy. The discussion should be supported by a succinct review of the literature or other methods of research. A professional presentation of the opinion should lead to a productive suggestion of implications for the future of the profession. Papers submitted in this category should be 5-10 pages, have adequate references (10-20), and include (1-3) tables and figures as needed to clarify the discussion.
Click here for an optional checklist for your submission preparation in the opinions category.
Topics in Education:
Manuscripts in this category include research and opinion articles that examine issues of importance for the education of occupational therapists. The topics of these manuscripts may examine general curricular, specific course, or fieldwork issues. Papers submitted in this category should be 10-20 pages, have adequate references (15-25), and include (1-6) tables and figures as needed to clarify data or information presented. An abstract should be included with a maximum of 200 words. If a manuscript is submitted in this category that involves human-subjects research, then the author(s) must follow the same guidelines in the Applied Research category, pertaining to informed consent and approval by an independent, named human subjects/ethics committee. Additionally, if the manuscript describes clinical trials, it must be registered with a clinical website and the website address and registration number must be provided. See above.
Click here for an optional checklist for your submission preparation in the topics in education category.
Letters to the Editor:
Letters to the Editor should present a brief response to articles that have been published or to issues that have been addressed in OJOT. Papers submitted in this category should be 1-2 pages and have 1-5 references as needed.
Last update: November 2nd, 2022