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Instructions for contributors


Associate Professor Ross G. Menzies

School of Behavioural and Community Health Sciences

Faculty of Health Sciences University of Sydney

Sydney NSW 2141, Australia


NOTE: Behaviour Change now provides the option of Open Access publication. Please see the section below for more details.


To be reviewed for possible publication in Behaviour Change all authors must follow the instructions below and submit their manuscript via the submission system at:

All articles are refereed. Papers submitted to the journal must not previously have been published nor submitted for publication to any other journal.


Papers should be submitted via e-mail in Word or RTF format. Authors who wish to submit their paper in hard copy format may do so by arrangement with the editor.


Contributions should follow the format and style described in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.). Spelling and punctuation should conform to The Macquarie Dictionary (4th ed.). For matters of style not covered in these two publications the Style Manual for Authors, Editors and Printers (6th ed.) should be consulted.

Documents should be double-spaced with minimum margins of 20 mm on the left and 35 mm on the right. Uncommon abbreviations and acronyms should be explained. Do not use underlining except to indicate italics. Full stops should not be used in abbreviations or acronyms (e.g., NSW).

Use single quotation marks to introduce a word or phrase used as an ironic comment, as slang, or which has been coined. Use quotation marks the first time the word or phrase is used; do not use them again. Do not use quotation marks to introduce a technical or key term. Instead, italicise the term.

Front page: under the title of the article only the names and affiliations of the authors appear. Qualifications, present appointments, and postal and e-mail addresses should be given in a separate section on the front page labelled ‘Address for correspondence’. A word count and suggested running head of no more than 50 characters including spaces should also be provided.

Do not use any footnotes. Endnotes should be kept to a minimum and listed at the end of the text under the centred heading ‘Endnotes’. Acknowledgments should be placed at the end of the article with a separate heading.

Tables should be at the end of the manuscript, not in the main text. Their approximate positions in the text should be indicated by the words, ‘Insert Table X here’. Horizontal and vertical lines should be used sparingly.

To ensure optimum quality, please follow these guidelines when submitting artwork via e-mail or disk:

Photographs, graphs and figures should be prepared to the correct size (max. width up to 120 mm) and each one supplied as an individual file, separate to the manuscript Word file. Include placement instructions in the Word document, such as ‘Insert Figure 1 here’.

  • Figures created in Microsoft Word or Powerpoint need to be saved as PDFs.
  • Figures created in a drawing program such as Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, Freehand, Microsoft Publisher or similar should be saved as EPS (encapsulated postscript) files.
  • Figures created in Photoshop or with other photographic software should be saved as line art (artwork that has only text and lines, no shades of grey or blocks of colour) with a minimum resolution of 600 dpi and in TIF format. Minimum resolution for scanned graphics is 300 dpi for halftone work (e.g. photographs) and 600 dpi for line art, and these should also be in TIF format.
  • If you request colour figures in the printed version, you will be contacted by CCC-Rightslink who are acting on our behalf to collect Author Charges. Please follow their instructions in order to avoid any delay in the publication of your article.
  • Manuscripts that contain equations created with LaTeX or similar specialist software need to be supplied as a PDF file as well as a Microsoft Word document.
  • Prior to sending artwork, the separate files of figures, graphs, illustrations, etc. should be printed by the author to test that the fonts have been embedded correctly and there is no distortion in the artwork (e.g., lines and fonts reproduce cleanly with no jagged lines or fuzzy edges), as any such faults cannot be corrected by the publisher.
  • Preferred media for delivery: e-mail as attachments, Macintosh or PC floppy disk, Macintosh or PC Zip disk, CD-ROM. If your artwork does not meet these guidelines, it may be returned to you.

References and citations should follow the format and style described in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.).

Examples of citations are:

The theory was first propounded in 1970 (Larsen, 1971). Larsen (1971) was the first to propound the theory.

Examples of references are:

Fisse, B. (1989). The proceeds of crime act: The rise of money laundering, offences and the fall of principle. Criminal Law Journal, 13, 5–23.

Zelinski, E.M., & Gilewski, M.J. (1988). Memory for prose and aging: A meta- analysis. In M.L. Howe & C.J. Brainerd (Eds.), Cognitive development in adulthood (pp. 133–158). New York: Springer- Verlag.

Authors are expected to check the accuracy of all references and citations in the manuscript before submission.


Please list sources of financial support (including grant numbers) for all authors, credits for permission given for reproduction of third-party material, and any other acknowledgements. Multiple grant numbers should be separated by a comma and a space. Where research was funded by more than one agency, the different agencies should be separated by a semi-colon, with ‘and’ before the final funder. Grants held by different authors should be identified as belonging to individual authors by the authors’ initials. For example, ‘This work was supported by the Wellcome Trust (A.B., grant numbers XXXX, YYYY), (C.D., grant number ZZZZ); the Natural Environment Research Council (E.F., grant number FFFF); and the National Institutes of Health (A.B., grant number GGGG), (E.F., grant number HHHH).’ Where no specific funding has been provided for research, please provide the following statement ‘This research received no specific grant from any funding agency, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.’

Declaration of Interest

Report any potential conflicts of interest. Conflict of interest exists when an author has interests that might inappropriately influence his or her judgement, even if that judgement is not influenced. Authors must disclose potentially conflicting interests so that others can make judgements about such effects. Such disclosure will not preclude publication, but it is necessary because of the potential of negative or positive bias. At the time of submission, authors should disclose any arrangements or connections they may have that are pertinent to the manuscript (financial or non- financial) and that may be perceived as potentially biasing their paper. Conflicts may include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, funding sources for the reported study, personal or family financial interest in a method/product or a competing method/product. This list of potential conflicts is not all inclusive, and it is the responsibility of each author to ensure that all of their ‘potential conflicts’ are reported. It is the corresponding author’s ethical responsibility to explicitly check with each of his/her co-authors to ensure that any real or apparent conflict of interest is appropriately disclosed. Authors should err on the side of full disclosure and if, authors are uncertain about what constitutes a relevant conflict, they should contact the Editor. If there are no conflicts of interest, the section heading should be entered followed by ‘None’.

Ethical Standards

Where research involves human and/or animal experimentation, the following statements should be included (as applicable): “The authors assert that all procedures contributing to this work comply with the ethical standards of the relevant national and institutional committees on human experimentation and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2008.” and/or “The authors assert that all procedures contributing to this work comply with the ethical standards of the relevant national and institutional guides on the care and use of laboratory animals.”

Open Access

Authors in Behaviour Change have the option to publish their paper under a fully Open Access agreement, upon payment of a one-off Article Processing Charge. In this case, the final published Version of Record will be made freely available to all in perpetuity under a Creative Commons license, enabling its re-use and re-distribution. This Open Access option is only offered to authors upon acceptance of an article for publication, and as such has no influence on the peer review or acceptance procedure.

Authors choosing the Open Access option are required to complete the Open Access License to Publish form, available here.

More information about Open Access in Behaviour Change, including the current Article Processing Charge, can be found on the Cambridge Core website here.

Cambridge Language Editing Service

We suggest that authors whose first language is not English have their manuscripts checked by a native English speaker before submission. This is optional, but will help to ensure that any submissions that reach peer review can be judged exclusively on academic merit. We offer a Cambridge service which you can find out more about here. Please note that use of language editing services is voluntary, and at the author’s own expense. Use of these services does not guarantee that the manuscript will be accepted for publication, nor does it restrict the author to submitting to a Cambridge-published journal.

Last updated: 30/03/2017