Guidelines for Original Research Submissions

Manuscript Formatting

  • Manuscripts must be at least 6 pages single-spaced, including all figures/tables, references, and supplementary materials. If additional space is needed, please prepare a Supplementary Materials document containing additional accompanying text, figures, and tables.
  • Text should be 12 point font and 1 inch margins.
  • The work should be submitted in .docx and .pdf format.
  • Lines should be numbered. In Word, this can be done by Layout → Line numbers
  • Pages should be numbered at the top right.
  • Writing should be clear, logical, and free from typographical or grammatical errors.
  • Include a 150-200-word, non-technical summary of the manuscript as well as an abstract.
  • The summary should be different from the abstract. The summary should outline the main points of your manuscript in an engaging manner that can be easily read and understood by a non-expert. A summary should focus on the conclusions of your research, while the abstract often also briefly describes the methods and details of the manuscript.

  • Manuscript Content


  • From the abstract, readers must get the essence of what your manuscript is about, usually in about 200 words. Most informative abstracts also have the following key components in common: background of the research topic, aim or purpose of research, methods used, significant results, and importance of the findings. Each of these components may be summarized in 1–2 sentences.
  • Introduction

  • The introduction should discuss previous research relevant to the field and the research project being presented in the manuscript. Emphasis should also be placed on the reasoning and significance of this research.
  • Make sure to introduce concepts and terminology used in the body of the manuscript.
  • Figures and Tables

  • Figures may be incorporated into the body of the text for readability, at the end of the work, or in a supplementary folder. Submitting an additional folder of high-resolution figure files is much appreciated and will make your work look better in the publication!
  • Tables should be submitted in text format.
  • For plots and graphs, axes should be clearly marked and legible. Figures should be clearly labeled if applicable.
  • All figures and tables require legends that fully explain the subfigures or specifics of the figure. It should not be necessary to read the results section to be able to understand the figure.
  • References

  • Citations should be parenthetical (Author, Year) and embedded within the main text.
  • References should be formatted as follows: Authors (Year). Title. Journal/Book. Volume, Page Numbers.
  • Example: Noctor, S.C., Martinez-Cerdeno, V., Ivic, L., and Kriegstein, A.R. (2004). Cortical neurons arise in symmetric and asymmetric division zones and migrate through specific phases. Nature Neuroscience 7, 136–144.

  • *Adopted from the Harvard Undergraduate Research Journal