Submission Guidelines for Authors

 

Introduction

The general and specific sets of rules that regulate the submission, review and publication of submitted articles in the Journal of Undergraduate Medical Research (hereafter referred to as JUMR) are described below. Any and all submissions to the JUMR must be adherent to these guidelines to be accepted for publication. Author(s) are also advised to prepare their manuscripts in accordance with the “Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals,” published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. They should check for the latest instructions before submitting their manuscripts. Author(s) are also advised not to send their articles to JUMR if the same articles are already published, accepted for publication or submitted and under review elsewhere.

Types of Allowed Manuscripts and Word Limit

A number of different types of articles are accepted by the JUMR for consideration for publication. Since the journal is specifically targeted to increase interest in research among undergraduate medical students, all categories of articles except review articles must mandatorily have undergraduate medical students as the first authors. For review articles, there is no such bar and may be submitted by medical students, faculty members in medical colleges and physicians especially employed in the health services. Author(s) are encouraged to contribute articles on topics that are of interest to medical students.

Original Articles

Randomized control trials, observational studies, studies of screening and diagnostic tests, cost effectiveness analyses, case-control series, and surveys can be submitted for consideration as Original Articles.
  1. Preparation of Manuscript

    • Observational and Experimental articles should be divided into the following: Introduction, Objectives, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion, Conclusions, Limitations, Conflict of interest, Funding, Acknowledgement and References.
    • The font of the entire article must be Times New Roman with a font size of 12 fonts (including headings).
    • The entire article must have 1.5 line spacing.
    • The language of submission should be English (United Kingdom).

  2. Title Page

  3. The title page for an article must contain the Project title and must not exceed 50 words (excluding the author names). The author(s) should be named below the title, with mentioning MBBS batch for students and designation for faculty members along with institutional affiliations of each author being mentioned in a footnote using superscripts. For original articles, the senior faculty, under whose guidance the research is undertaken will act as the corresponding author and his/her designation and contact details should be mentioned.
  4. Abstract Page

  5. The second page of the submitted article should contain the complete title of the manuscript along with an abstract. The abstract may be structured based on the type of the article for publication.
  6. Keywords

  7. Three (3) to five (5) keywords (MeSH terms) should be provided below the abstract.
  8. The Body proper of the article

  9. The body proper of the original research paper should begin from the third page and must contain the following:

    • Introduction: Introduction should state the purpose of the article and summarise the rationale for the study or observation and included the objectives of the study. No separate section for objectives needs to be added.
    • Materials and Methods: In this section, the author(s) should describe the tools used and the methodology of the study under the following sub-heading. The journal gives primary importance to this section and the chances of selection for publication in the journal would depend to a large extent on the quality of this section.

      • Study Type and Design: Describe the type of study like descriptive or observational and the design like case control, cohort etc.
      • Study Setting: Describe where the study is being undertaken. The journal encourages community based studies. However, quality researches in hospital settings are also welcome.
      • Study Period: The time during which the study was undertaken will need to be mentioned clearly.
      • Study population including exlusion criteria: The study population must be described with regards to which characteristics are being considered for the study and why. The researcher(s) also need to mention the reasons for which specific groups of the population were excluded as subjects (exclusion criteria).
      • Sample Size and sampling technique: The journal encourages the authors to provide the sample size calculation formulae with the details of assumptions on which the sample size calculations are based. The sampling technique that has been used to obtain the sample needs to be clarified.
      • Study tools and technique: Any and all tools and techniques including questionnaires, schedules etc. must be mentioned in this section of the methodology. In case of a review article, the tools and techniques of systematic as well as meta-analyses that were used to reach to the conclusion must be mentioned here.
      • Data Analysis: In this section the author (s) must mention the methods of data analysis including the names of the statistical tools used (if any) in the study.

    • Word Count: up to 3,500 excluding abstract and references.
    • Abstract: up to 350 words; Structured under the following headings: Introduction, Objectives, Methods, Results, Conclusions.
    • Tables/Illustration: : up to 6.
    • References: up to 30.

Review Articles

Scientific, impartial and critical appraisal or meta-analysis of existing literature and data can be submitted as review articles.
  • Word Count: up to 4,500 excluding abstract and references.
  • Abstract: : up to 350; unstructured.
  • Tables/Illustration: : up to 6.
  • References: up to 40.

Case Study/Case Series Reports

Novel/interesting/extremely rare cases; or rare presentations and manifestations of common diseases can be submitted as case reports. Cases with clinical significance or implications to medical science will be given priority.
  • Word Count: up to 3,500 excluding abstract and references.
  • Abstract: : up to 300; unstructured.
  • Tables/Illustration: : up to 6.
  • References: up to 10.

Editorial

Editorials for the journal will be invited from time to time. For uninvited submissions of editorials, please contact the managing editors at jumr.nbmc@gmail.com. Content should be of interest and importance to medical students.

Letters to Editor

Each letter to the editors’ submission should be short, decisive observations related to a particular topic of interest related to biomedical or clinical medicine.
  • Word Count: up to 500.
  • Tables/Illustration: up to 1.

Invited Articles

The editors may invite submissions in the following formats: essays, commentaries or Teaching Series. All articles are subject to review. Details regarding each type of submission are given below.
  1. Commentaries/Essays:Commentaries/ Essays on topics of relevance/ interest for medical students including description of recent advances in medical and biomedical sciences.
    • Word Count: up to 1,500
    • References: up to 10.

  2. Teaching Series:At least 3 lessons on a specific topic of interest to undergraduate medical students e.g. how to interpret the ECG series, How to read an MRI scan etc.
    • Word Count: up to 2,500 for each part.
    • References: up to 15 for each part.

Special Articles

Special articles will highlight any special achievement of students in medical conference(s) or research competitions.
  • Word Count: up to 300
  • References: up to 2.

Authorship Criteria

To ensure authorship for the submitted manuscript, all of the contributors must meet the following conditions:
  • He/ She must have substantial contribution to the conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of the acquired data for the submitted article.
  • He/ She must have been substantially involved in the drafting of the article or must have revised it critically for important intellectual content.

  • The corresponding author should give the final approval of the version of the article to be published and will be responsible for the article.

Naming Order of Authors

The order of naming the authors must be based on the relative contribution of the author towards the study as well as writing of the manuscript. Once submitted, the order cannot be changed without the written consent of all the contributors. In cases of equal contribution towards the submitted research, the authors must be named in an alphabetical order.

For original articles, the senior faculty, under whose guidance the research is undertaken should be named at the end of the list. No addition(s) and/or subtraction(s) of author(s) will be entertained post submission. Exception to this will be made only with the proper justification supported by the institution/university head.

Number of Contributors

The number of authors should not exceed twenty (20). This is in consideration of the fact that the JUMR being a students’ journal, larger teams of researchers are expected to work on each submitted project. For case reports, letters to the editor, and review articles, the number of contributors must not exceed five. There should be a written justification signed by the corresponding author if the number of contributors exceeds the maximum numbers as stated above. If JUMR feels necessary, it may ask for the description of the contribution each author made towards the manuscript.

Declaration of Conflicts of Interest

All manuscripts for articles, original research reports, editorials, reviews, invited articles, and letters to the editor(s) that are submitted to the JUMR must be accompanied by a conflict of interest disclosure statement or a statement by the authors that they do not have any conflicts of interest to declare in accordance with the guidelines on Good Publication Practice (2003) by the Committee on Publication Ethics.

Statement of Human and Animal Rights

While reporting scientific project involving human subjects or experimental animals, authors should indicate whether the procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional or national) or regulations for laboratory animals. The statement has to be mentioned in the “Materials and Methods” section, right after the presentation of the study groups. The JUMR believes that animal experimentation should be avoided whenever possible in favor of alternative research strategies.

Submission of Manuscripts

  • Ethics
    • While reporting experiments on human subjects, the authors should indicate whether the procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional or regional) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975 that was revised in 2000.
    • The authors should not use names or initials of patients or hospitals and/or hospitals telephone numbers especially in illustrative material.
    • While reporting experiments on animals, the authors should indicate whether they’ve adhered to the guidelines of an institution or national research council governing the care and use of laboratory animals.
  • Statistics
    • Wherever possible, the authors should quantify the findings and present them with appropriate indicators of measurement error or uncertainty.
    • The authors should report losses to observation during the course of the study.
    • The authors should avoid non-technical uses of technical terms in statistics. They should also define statistical terms, abbreviations and symbols.
    • The authors must provide the names of the statistical software used in the study e.g. SPSS, Epi-Info etc.
  • Results
  • The results should be presented in a logical sequence in the text, tables and illustrations. Emphasis should be given only on summarizing the important observations rather than repeating the data in the tables in text. Results from observational studies (cohort, case-control, or cross-sectional designs) should be reported following the STROBE guidelines. The results of randomised trials should be reported following the CONSORT guidelines, and systematic reviews and meta-analyses should follow the PRISMA (references) guidelines.
  • Tables and figures
    • All tables and figures must be numbered in Arabic numerals consecutively in the order of their first citation in the text.
    • Tables should be self-explanatory.
    • Explanatory materials in the tables and figures should be placed as footnotes.
    • All non-standard abbreviations that are used in each table must be explained in footnotes.
    • Valid permissions must be obtained for all borrowed, adapted and modified tables and due credits for these should be provided in a footnote.
    • When graphs, scatter-grams or histograms are submitted, the numerical data on which they are based on should also be supplied.
    • If photographs of people are used, either the subjects must not be identifiable or their pictures must be accompanied by a written permission to use the photograph.
    • If a figure has been published, acknowledgement of the original source and written permission from the copyright holder to reproduce the materials must be provided.
    • The JUMR reserves the right to crop, rotate, reduce or enlarge the photographs to the desired sizes.
  • Discussion
  • In this section, the author(s) should:-
    • Emphasize the new and important aspects of the study and the conclusions that result from them.
    • Not repeat in detail the data or other material provided in the Introduction or Results sections.
    • Include the implications of the findings for the present and for future research.
    • Avoid claiming priority and alluding to work that has not been completed.
  • Acknowledgements
  • As an appendix to the main text, one or more statements should specify:
    • The contributions to the research that should be acknowledged but do not justify an authorship.
    • Acknowledgement of technical help.
    • Acknowledgement of financial and material support, specifying the nature of the support.
  • References
    • The citations should be in superscript and the references in Vancouver style of referencing.
    • References should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they are first mentioned in the text (not in alphabetic order).
    • Tables and figures should be numbered separately and consecutively in the text.
    • In case of non-indexed journals, the author(s) should use the complete name of the journal.
    • Information from manuscripts submitted but not accepted should be cited in the text as “unpublished observations” with written permissions from the source.
    • For scientific research articles, contributors and authors should obtain written permission and conformation of accuracy from the source of a personal communication.

Case Reports

For case reports, the body of the article should be divided into: Introduction, Presentation of the Case, Case History, Follow up and Outcome, and Discussion. In the section of Presentation of the Case the author(s) should describe the manner that the patient first presented himself/herself to the researcher(s).

Protection of Patients' right to privacy

Identifying information should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, sonograms, CT scans, etc. unless the information is essential for scientific purposes. The patient, parent, or guardian must provide a written consent for the publication. After the consent has been obtained, it should be indicated in the article. A copy of the consent should be attached to the cover letter at the time of submission.

Submission of Articles

  • Articles should be submitted online to jumr.nbmc@gmail.com. All other correspondence, such as suggestions for review and perspectives articles, should be sent directly to the Editorial Office at North Bengal Medical College. Simultaneous submission of a manuscript to more than one journal will automatically result in rejection by the JUMR.
  • Each manuscript will be reviewed by 2 reviewers and one referee. Notification of acceptance or rejection will be sent within 2 months from date of submission. If a revised version is requested, it should be returned to the editor no within 2 months after the decision. A delay in revision will be treated as a new submission. The Editor reserves the right to make editorial and literary corrections. Any opinions expressed or policies advocated will be the sole responsibility of the authors and not the journal.

Publication Fees

The journal does not charge for publication/processing fee of articles at the time of submission/publication. On acceptance the authors can request for printed color pages, for which a sum of INR 5000 will be charged per page will be charged. Black and white printed pages are not charged.