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Instructions for Authors

For guidelines on policy and submission across our journals, please click on the links below:
Manuscript preparation
Editorial policies
Patient consent forms
Licence forms
Peer review
Submission and production processes

Editorial policy

The Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry publishes original articles, short reports, editorials, commentaries and more, covering the whole field of clinical neurological practice, neurosurgery and neuropsychiatry. Emphasis is given to common disorders such as cerebrovascular disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, peripheral neuropathy, epilepsy, and subarachnoid haemorrhage.

Articles should be of direct relevance to clinical practise. Thus we do not generally publish research based on animal experiments nor studies of normal nervous system function. We do publish papers on cognitive neuropsychology if they are of clinical, as opposed to purely theoretical interest. Paediatric papers will be considered if of general interest and relevant to adult neurology. Novel mutations in known disease related genes are unlikely to be published unless they relate to a new phenotype or provide new pathophysiological information.

The JNNP publishes a small number of quality of life and health economic papers where these are of general interest, thus it is unlikely we would publish a health economic paper that was limited to only one health system or economy.

We aim to make an early decision of suitability for the journal with the result that around 50% of papers are rejected without going out to review following in house discussion. This decision would normally be made within a week of submission. Following review the decision to accept the paper for publication or to invite revision is made at a weekly editorial committee meeting.

Open Access

Authors can choose to have their article published Open Access for a fee of £1,950 (plus applicable VAT).

Colour figure charges

During submission you will be asked whether or not you agree to pay for the colour print publication of your colour images. This service is available to any author publishing within this journal for a fee of £250 per article. Authors can elect to publish online in colour and black and white in print, in which case the appropriate selection should be made upon submission.

Article types and word counts

The word count excludes the title page, abstract, tables, acknowledgements and contributions and the references. If you are not a native English speaker and would like assistance with your article there is a professional editing service available.

BMJ's pre-submission checklist

When a paper has been submitted from the Editor or Associate Editors' departments, they have no role in the reviewing or decision making process. This also applies to any Associate Editors who are authors, in which instance the reviewing process is handled by the Editor in Chief. The Editor in Chief does not submit any articles to the JNNP.

Papers

Full papers must present important and substantial new material. Articles should be of direct relevance to clinical practise. Thus we do not generally publish research based on animal experiments nor studies of normal nervous system function.

Word count: 3500 words maximum
Abstract: 250 words
Tables/Illustrations: should not normally exceed 8
References: 40.

Short reports

Topics suitable for presentation for short reports include single case reports which illustrate important new phenomena, or reports of short, original research studies.

Word count: no more than 1500 words
Abstract: structured, 200 words
Tables/Illustrations: up to one of each
References: should not normally exceed 15.

Reviews

Reviews will be solicited by the Editor and are subjected to a review process. Authors wishing to submit a review should seek the advice of the Editor in advance. Authors should bear in mind that the journal is also available online and the inclusion of additional material, eg video clips and sound files, and links to useful websites is strongly encouraged.

Word count: 5000 words maximum - bullet points encouraged
Tables/Illustrations: should not normally exceed 5
References: should not normally exceed 40.

Editorials

Editorials will be solicited by the Editor and are subjected to a review process. Authors wishing to submit an editorial should seek the advice of the Editor in advance.

Word count: 1500 words
Tables/Illustrations: 1 table or figure
References: should not normally exceed 25.

Letters

Letters in response to articles published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry are welcome and should be submitted electronically via the website. Contributors should go to the abstract or full text of the article in question. At the top right corner of each article is a "contents box". Click on the "eLetters: Submit a response to this article" link. Letters in response to an article may be published in the print version of the journal in exceptional circumstances.

Letters containing original research should be submitted via ScholarOne and must be typed in double line spacing. Letters may be published in a shortened form at the discretion of the editor. Proofs will not be sent to the authors.

Word count: 1000 words
Tables/Illustrations: 1 table or figure
References: 5.

Neurological pictures

Neurological pictures are very brief case reports or historical vignettes. Submissions will now primarily be web based, extraordinary submissions will be published in the journal rarely.

Word count: 500 words maximum, up to 5 references
No more than 4 authors
Images must be supplied in JPEG or GIF format with maximum dimensions of 500 x 500 pixels, minimum resolution of 300 DPI.

Please include at least one multiple choice question with background information/ clinical history, along with a list of possible answers, including an indication and explanation of the correct answer (with references).

A sample format can be viewed here.

Supplements

The BMJ Publishing Group journals are willing to consider publishing supplements to regular issues. Supplement proposals may be made at the request of:

  1. The journal editor, an editorial board member or a learned society may wish to organise a meeting, sponsorship may be sought and the proceedings published as a supplement.
  2. The journal editor, editorial board member or learned society may wish to commission a supplement on a particular theme or topic. Again, sponsorship may be sought.
  3. The BMJPG itself may have proposals for supplements where sponsorship may be necessary.
  4. A sponsoring organisation, often a pharmaceutical company or a charitable foundation, that wishes to arrange a meeting, the proceedings of which will be published as a supplement.

In all cases, it is vital that the journal's integrity, independence and academic reputation is not compromised in any way.

When contacting us regarding a potential supplement, please include as much of the information below as possible:

  • Journal in which you would like the supplement published
  • Title of supplement and/or meeting on which it is based
  • Date of meeting on which it is based
  • Proposed table of contents with provisional article titles and proposed authors
  • An indication of whether authors have agreed to participate
  • Sponsor information including any relevant deadlines
  • An indication of the expected length of each paper Guest Editor proposals if appropriate.

For further information on criteria that must be fulfilled, download the supplements guidelines (PDF).

Video Abstracts

We welcome video abstracts to accompany accepted research articles. These allow authors to personally talk through their work beyond the restrictions of a formal article to improve the user’s understanding.

Note that we will not ask you to consider submitting a video abstract until your paper has been accepted. Please do not try to upload a video abstract upon initial submission of your manuscript.

There are many tutorials online which can guide the production of a video abstract, using widely and often freely available software. Windows Movie Maker and Apple iMovie are the most common examples. Examples of video abstracts are available from The BMJ. Below are a few guidelines for making a video abstract. Authors may also want to ask their institution’s press/media office for assistance.

  • Video abstracts should not last longer than 4 minutes.
  • The content and focus of the video must relate directly to the study that has been accepted for publication, and should not stray beyond the data. We recommend that you follow the same structure as the paper itself i.e. briefly outline the background/context of the study, present your research objective, outline the methods used, present the key results and then discuss the implications of the outcomes.
  • The presentation and content of the video should be in a style and in terms that will be understandable and accessible to a general medical audience. The main language should be English, but we welcome subtitles in another language. Please avoid jargon that will not be familiar to a wide medical audience, and do not use abbreviations.
  • Authors usually talk directly into the camera and/or present a slideshow, but we encourage the use of other relevant visual and audio material (such as animations, video clips, still photographs, figures, infographics). If you wish to use material from previously published work or from other sources, please obtain the appropriate permissions from the relevant publisher or copyright owner.
  • If the video shows any identifiable living patients and/or identifiable personal details, authors need to demonstrate that consent has been obtained. If a patient consent form was provided for the related article, there is no need to provide this again for the video.
  • Please use the compression parameters that video sharing sites use. Often these are standard options from your editing software. A comprehensive guide is available from the vimeo website.

Videos are too large to email so will need to be uploaded to BMJ’s account on the Hightail website. Please include the journal’s name and your manuscript ID number in the message field – this will enable us to match your video to your paper. Your video needs to be received by the time that you return the corrections for your article proof, at the very latest. Please note that if you do not correctly label your video or if you miss the deadline, this may cause delays in publication of both your article and the video.

All video abstracts will be assessed for suitability by the editorial team and publication is not guaranteed. In some cases editors may request edits to the video.

Video abstracts are embedded within the research article online and also published separately on the journal’s YouTube channel. They are published under the same copyright terms as the associated article.

Plagiarism detection

BMJ is a member of CrossCheck by CrossRef and iThenticate. iThenticate is a plagiarism screening service that verifies the originality of content submitted before publication. iThenticate checks submissions against millions of published research papers, and billions of web content. Authors, researchers and freelancers can also use iThenticate to screen their work before submission by visiting www.ithenticate.com.

Podcasts
Visit the full archive of podcasts for JNNP here >>

Free sample
This recent issue is free to all users to allow everyone the opportunity to see the full scope and typical content of JNNP.
View free sample issue >>

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