School Psychology Forum Author Guidelines

SPF_V9N1_coverSelection of Manuscripts

SPF applies research to advance the knowledge base and practice of professional school psychology. Although methodological rigor and scholarship are the top considerations for our publication, editorial priorities are also considered. Simple description literature reviews, commentaries, or basic evaluations of programs are unlikely to be accepted for publication.

Manuscripts are selected based on the importance of the topic, relevance to the readership, contribution to the literature, methodological rigor, implications for research and practice, and clarity of presentation. Although all manuscripts undergo masked peer review and the comments of reviewers are considered in reaching a publication decision, the determination made by the Editor or Associate Editors is final.

  • Authors of manuscripts accepted for publication may be requested to provide additional information that can be posted on the NASP website.
  • Authors who submit unsolicited manuscripts to SPF are protected by the general legal principles related to right to privacy. The status of an author's manuscript, including the fact that it has been submitted and the final publication decision, can be released only to the authors.
  • Authors should who wish to appeal a publication decision should contact the Editor.

Submission and Publication Guidelines

  • Manuscripts must conform to the style and requirements of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.)
  • Authors should use APA publication guidelines to reduce bias in writing.
  • All manuscripts must be double-spaced, accompanied by an abstract of under 150 words.
  • Quotes of 500 words or reproductions of figures and tables must be accompanied by a letter of permission from the copyright holder (usually the publisher and sometimes the original author).
  • Initial submissions must be submitted in MS Word or RTF format. Body text should be typeset in Times New Roman, tables and figures should be typeset in Arial.
  • Tables should be positioned in the intended location within the manuscript file. They should not be positioned at the end of the manuscript.
  • Graphics must be in TIFF, EPS, JPEG, or high-resolution PDF format.
  • Figures must be submitted as separate files not embedded into the manuscript file. Figures should be typeset using Arial. Include the title and caption for the figure in position within the manuscript file and at the top of the Figure file.
  • Subsequent submissions must meet NASP Digital Art Guidelines with images submitted at 300 dpi and line art (figures) at 1200 dpi. PDF format is acceptable for the initial submission, but the high resolution formats are required for final publication.
  • Submit manuscripts online at

General Article Guidelines

  1. Each manuscript should be less than 25 double-spaced pages, inclusive of references, figures, and tables. Longer articles may be accepted as space permits. Brief reviews of evidence-based practices and practice commentary articles should be less than 15 pages (no more than 3,750 words).

  2. SPF requires two features of each manuscript that differ from most scholarly journals.

    First, there must be a heading and section that explicitly describes how the current manuscript can be applied to the practice of school psychology. This can include practice guidelines, cautions for school-based practice, suggestions for policy development, improvement on current best practices, or other approaches to advancing school psychology practice.

    Second, there must be information included regarding where readers can find additional resources on the topic. Where applicable and feasible, authors will provide resources for readers that would enhance practice. These could include tips for parents or teachers, guidelines for administrators, worksheets, websites, or books.

  3. Each article will be subjected to blind peer review by at least two reviewers. The reviewers are members of the SPF Editorial Advisory Board, which includes both university-based scholars and practicing school psychologists. In some cases, ad hoc reviewers may be solicited who have expertise in a particular area.

  4. With each article submitted, the author(s) should include a short description of current affiliation and credentials (e.g., Oscar Smith, PhD, NCSP, is a school psychologist with the ABC School District in Inner City, PA. He specializes in working with children with emotional and behavioral difficulties). Additionally, contact information for the lead author should be provided, including preferred mailing address, telephone, and e-mail address.

Conditions of Submission

Manuscripts submitted for review and possible inclusion in SPF:

  • may not have been submitted for concurrent review to another journal
  • must follow NASP ethical guidelines and procedures in the data collection, preparation, and presentation of information
  • may not have been published in total or the findings published in substantial part elsewhere
  • must be accompanied by written reprint permissions for any previously published figures, tables, or material of 500 words or more
  • assume author responsibility for the accuracy of all statements and findings
  • assign all rights for the publication of the manuscript to SPF. Complete the copyright reassignment form upon submission. The copyright reassignment form should be signed by all authors and included with the initial manuscript submission. Should the article not be published in SPF, then the copyright reassignment is rendered moot and void.
  • permit the editor to edit the manuscript as necessary for publication (such that the content is not substantively changed)

Supplemental Materials

As an online journal, SPF presents a variety of opportunities for innovative formats and presentation of materials.

  • Interview. Usually conducted over the phone and posted on the SPF website, interviews present authors with the opportunity to elaborate on the specific paper and other aspects of their research. 
  • Other Materials. Photographs, video, raw data, PowerPoint presentations, computer software, and other information can be posted to illustrate articles for consumers. Contact the editor for more information on posting specific supplemental materials.
  • Related Links. Links to NASP materials related to the article will be posted for the benefit of readers.
  • NASP Communities. All articles have an area for commentary on the NASP Communities. Commentaries will be invited and published for each article. Unsolicited commentary and questions concerning articles are welcome and will be considered for publication. Authors of the primary articles provide responses to questions or comments raised by readers, practitioners, and scholars.
  • Continuing Professional Development. Some articles in SPF may be selected for a webinar that will be made available to NASP members through the Online Learning Center.

Manuscript Submissions

Submit manuscripts online at Submissions should include:

  • Manuscript – double spaced in MS-Word or RTF format, 25 pages or less (including references, tables, and figures)
  • Graphics – must be in TIFF, EPS, JPEG, or PDF format
  • Abstract – 100–150 words
  • Title page – without authors' names or institutional affiliations
  • Cover letter

Questions about the manuscript submission process, proposals for special issues, and other queries should be directed to Oliver Edwards.

Publication decisions are typically rendered six weeks from the date of receipt.

Related Resources

School Psychology Review Guidelines
Manuscripts that communicate scholarly advances in research, training, and practice related to psychology and education are perfect for submission to our journal School Psychology Review (SPR).

Communiqué Guidelines
Learn more about submitting articles to our newspaper Communiqué, which is the permiere source of news and information relevant to daily practice, trends, and innovations in the field.

Copyright Permission Form
Get permission to reprint or adapt material from any NASP publication (including figures and tables) for use in another publication.