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Author Guidelines

Before you submit: Please check carefully whether your paper fits the thematic scope and meets the quality standards of the JSSE. Last year more than 70 % of all papers submitted to the JSSE had to be rejected. We would like to change this situation, which is not in the interest of both the authors as well as the journal. 

Original articles: The Journal of Social Sciences Education only publishes original articles that have not been published previously. By sending in the manuscript the author definitely declares the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder. Authors submitting manuscripts to JSSE are expected to adhere to the author guidelines and to the general standards of the journal. Authors should be aware of articles previously published in JSSE on the topic of their manuscript. Submitted manuscripts should reflect such awareness through appropriate citations.

Peer Review: All the manuscripts pass through a double blind peer review according to the international standards (compare further information at The publishers base their decision on accepting the manuscripts mainly on the experts' suggestions without being bound to them.

Book reviews: Book reviews submitted without prior request from the JSSE will not be published. The editors gladly accept proposals for books to be reviewed.

Charges and fees:The JSSE is financially supported by the University of Bielefeld and the sowi-online e.V., Bielefeld. No publication and processing fees are demanded. 

The JSSE adopts the COPE Guidelines on publication ethics.

Please make sure your manuscript conforms to the following guidelines. Manuscripts that do not conform to these requirements will not be processed.

1 Manuscript

1) For the initial submission we ask for the uploading of an anonymized manuscript file and a title page (see below). In the anonymized version, please replace publications by the author by a wild-card in the reference list. 

2) The JSSE uses the APA style or referencing. The remarks are intended to help you to prepare your manuscript for publication in the JSSE. It covers details of presentation which will be checked in editing if your manuscript is accepted for publication:

3) Article-submissions should have a total size of no more than 10.000 words, including bibliography, notes etc. Country reports should not exceed 6.000 words, references excluded. Papers of more than 12.000 words will not be accepted for review.

4) Please use the commonly accepted word processing programs (at best, doc or rtf format).

5) Use only minimal formatting in your manuscript.

2 Highlights, abstract, and keywords

1) Please start your text with up to five highlights and a structured abstract of no more than 200 words.

2) Highlights consist of a short collection of bullet points that convey the core findings of the article (maximum 95 characters, including spaces, per bullet point).

3) A structured abstract is an abstract with distinct, labeled sections. Structure your abstract into the following sections:

4) Purpose: What are the reason(s) for writing the paper or the aims of the research?

6) Design/methodology/approach: How are the objectives achieved? Include the main method(s) used for the research. What is the approach to the topic and what is the theoretical or subject scope of the paper?

7) Findings: What was found in the course of the work? This will refer to analysis, discussion, or results.

8) Research limitations/implications (if applicable): If research is reported on in the paper this section must be completed and should include suggestions for future research and any identified limitations in the research process.

9) Practical implications (if applicable): What outcomes and implications for practice, applications and consequences are identified?

10) Please list keywords and expressions which are characteristic of your contribution at the beginning of the text after the abstract (nominative, singular, separated by commas).

3 Potential referees

Please submit with the manuscript the names, addresses and e-mail addresses of three potential referees. The referees should be people who are experts in the relevant area and can be objective evaluators of the paper. Do not include your advisors, students, co-authors over the last five years, people who are or were at the same institution as you over the last five years, etc. Note that the editors retain the right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used. Please include your referee-suggestions into your title page (see next point).

4 Title page

Your submission must include a title page, including, along with your referee-suggestions, a word count (including bibliography, notes etc.), a list of all authors with a short biographical statement, at least their respective degrees and affiliations and their postal and email addresses. Please upload your title page as a supplementary file.

5 Text

5.1 Manuscript format

1) Please do not use any formatting (exception see (5.4)).

2) Please write your text using automatic word wrapping. Only use the return key at the end of paragraphs, but not to produce a word-wrap.

3) The text should not be in grouped-style.

4) Do not use manual word-division. Please switch off auto-hyphenation.

5) Emphasizes in the text should be italicized, never in bold.

6) Letters with diacritics should be used.

7) Paragraphs never have indentations (no hanging paragraphs).

8) Please use standardized structuring elements (levels of titles, listing etc.) A numerical structure is desirable (e.g. 1.1; 1.2 ...).

9) When you use enumerations or hyphens, please use an average hyphen, e.g. – (Strg + Num – )

10) Please do not use footnotes but endnotes and these very sparsely and exclusively for textual explanations, not for references or further bibliographical notes (cf. 5).

11) Quotations which are longer than three lines are indented.

12) Quotations can either be referred to with the name of the author in the sentence: „Robert Heilbroner (1998) examined...“ or without the author’s name in the sentence, e.g. “The study (Heilbroner, 1998) shows“

5.2 Blank space and further details

1) Please do not put a blank before punctuation marks (commas, full stop, exclamation mark, semicolon, ...), before or after a dash, (ex.: blue-yellow), between opening bracket and following word or closing bracket and preceding word or after an inverted comma.

2) Please put a blank after a punctuation mark (full stop, comma, semicolon, ...), between a number and percent, opening or closing brackets, before and after inverted commas, after giving a page, e.g. p. 55

3) When you give numbers or you enumerate please use a small hyphen without using the space-bar, e.g. pp. 12-15

4) Numbers up to twelve are written out in full.

5) Please avoid abbreviations. Use them only if they are self-explanatory. Names and institutions have to be written out when first mentioned. The abbreviations are added in brackets.

6) For the production of spacing between textual or graphic elements please use the tabulator or indentation but never (a series of) blanks.

5.3 Tables, illustrations

1) Tables should preferably be inserted in the consecutive text. If this is impossible, they should be saved separately and referred to in the text, e.g. Ex.: "Table 1 here”

2) Tables get a heading which is on top of the table. All references to them are similar throughout the paper.

3) We would like to get figure files (e.g. scanned pictures or graphs) as a separate file (preferred: tif files with high resolution).

5.4 Referencing

The JSSE's standard reference style is APA. For detailed information, please see the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, and


In the Text

1) Books, with page references: ... showed (Heilbroner, 1998, p. 26)

2) Two authors: Smith and Jones (2012) or (Smith & Jones, 2012)

3) Three to five authors: (At first mention:) Smith, Jones, Khan, Patel, and Chen (2012) or (Smith, Jones, Khan, Patel, & Chen, 2012); (At subsequent mentions:) Smith et al. (2012) or (Smith et al., 2012)
In cases where two or more references would shorten to the same form, retain all three names.

4) Six or more authors: Smith et al. (2012) or (Smith et al., 2012)

5) Author with more than one work in the same year: Put a, b, c after the year (Chen, 2011a, 2011b, in press-a)

Bibliography (at the end of the text)

6) One author: Author, A. A. (2012). This is a book title: And subtitle. Abingdon: Routledge.

7) Two authors:  Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (2012). This is a book title: And subtitle. Abingdon: Routledge.

8) Three authors: Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (2012). This is a book title: And subtitle. Abingdon: Routledge.
More authors Include all names up to seven. If there are more than seven authors, list the first six with an ellipsis before the last.

9) No author: Merriam Webster’s collegiate dictionary (10th ed.). (1993). Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster.

10) Chapter in edited works: Author, A. A. (2012). This is a chapter. In J. J. Editor (Ed.), Book title: And subtitle (pp. 300−316). Abingdon: Routledge.

11) Editor: J. J. (Ed.). (2012). Book title: And subtitle. Abingdon: Routledge.

12) Not in English: Piaget, J., & Inhelder, B. (1951). La genèse de l’idée de hasard chez l’enfant [The origin of the idea of chance in the child]. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.

13) Place of publication:
New York, NY: McGraw-Hill
Newbury Park, CA: Sage
Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press
Abingdon: Routledge

14) Journal-articles, one author: Author, A. A. (2011). Title of article. Title of Journal, 22, 123–231. doi:xx.xxxxxxxxxx

15) If there is no doi: Author, A. A. (2011). Title of article. Title of Journal, 22, 123–231. Retrieved from http://www.xxxxx

16) Two authors Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (2004). Title of article. Title of Journal, 22, 123–231. doi:xx.xxxxxxxxxx

17) Not in English: Author, M. (2000). Title in German: Subtitle of Article [Title in English: Subtitle of article]. Journal in German, 21, 208–217. doi:xx.xxxxxxxxxx

18) Website, citing an entire website: The BBC (

5.5 Revising your Submission

1) In case the paper is not rated “accept” a commented version of the revised paper must be made available in the OJS.

2) To minimize the risk of confusion the submission of revised papers happens exclusively via the online submission system ( Papers send to the editorial office directly (i.e.: via email) will not be processed.


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. Prepare your manuscript as a Microsoft Word file, use a standard font sized at 12 points, double-space all text, and use two-centimeters or one-inch margins. Please do not use any formatting (exception: see point 5.4 of our author guidelines). If possible, tables should be inserted in the consecutive text.

  2. Make sure that your manuscript is in the format of the Style Manual of the American Psychological Association and includes up to five highlights, up to five keywords, and an abstract that is structured into at least three sections (purpose, method, etc.) (for further instructions see our author guidelines).
  3. Your submission must include a title page, including, along with your referee-suggestions, a word count (including bibliography, notes etc.), a list of all authors with a short biographical statement, at least their respective degrees and affiliations and their postal and email addresses. Please upload your title page as a supplementary file (for further instructions see our author guidelines).
  4. Indicate that you noticed that submissions that do not come up to these requirements will not be considered for review.



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