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The University of Southampton
Working Papers in the Health Sciences


Working Papers in The Health Sciences is a peer-reviewed e journal primarily designed to help undergraduate and post graduate health care professionals publish early stage academic work of a high standard. The primary aim of the journal is to promote the development of health care knowledge and practice across the United Kingdom and beyond. The editor of WPHS, Professor Mandy Fader welcomes manuscripts on a wide range of relevant topics and in a variety of forms: original emerging research reports and proposals, service evaluations, critical reviews of the literature, evidence based reports of clinical developments, theoretical or philosophical debate, and pedagogical innovation. International contributions pertinent to health care are welcomed .

Word length

Most articles, including literature reviews, should be no more than 3000 words in length (excluding abstract and references). Full initial reports of original research studies may be up to 5000 words in length. Shorter reports of approximately 2500 words are appropriate for reporting interim results of studies and for discussions of topical issues. Shorter or longer submissions may be possible following discussion with the editor.

Instructions for authors

Manuscript submission

Papers should be submitted exclusively to WPHS via Alan Glasper (assistant editor) at as a Microsoft Word File and should not have been published elsewhere previously.

All parts of the article (including tables, drawings and photographs) must be available in electronic format.
The main text of the article must not contain any identifying details of the authors.

The paper should be prepared in A4, with margins of 2cm all round, pages numbered, and using Arial font size 11. The manuscript should be prepared double-spaced and in a Microsoft Word compatible format. Pictures should in the first instance be supplied as low resolution (72 dpi) GIF or JPEG files. High resolution files (300 dpi) will be requested if the article is accepted for publication.

Presentation of manuscripts

Title page

This should be provided as a separate file in the submission process. It should include the full title of the manuscript; full names of all authors, their job title, and their affiliation; and full contact details of the corresponding author (address, telephone, fax and email).


This should be about 300 words for full articles, and 200-250 words for shorter papers. The abstract should provide a concise summary of the main content, findings, and/or argument of the paper. It should be followed by between 3 and 6 key words designed to help readers to find the paper easily in electronic searches. Referral to the key words used in major databases (CINAHL, Medline, etc.) is advisable.

Structure of main article

The structure and format of the main part of the paper will depend upon its nature. Full research reports should follow the format appropriate to the design and approach. Traditional quantitative studies should be presented as introduction, background (literature review), methods (including details of sampling, data collection, data analysis, ethical issues, and limitations), results, discussion, conclusion. Other approaches (e.g. qualitative research) should be adequately structured and contain sufficient detail for the rigour of the study to be assessed. While the order and presentation may vary, similar aspects should be addressed. Theoretical discussions and policy analysis must show robust, logical design with clear differentiation between opinion, evidence and interpretation. Full details of the search strategy should be included for literature reviews.


Three levels of heading should be employed.  Major headings should be centred, underlined and in block capitals.  Intermediate headings should be left-adjusted and in lower case with a leading capital (“Sentence case”).  Minor headings should be left-adjusted, in bold italics.

Tables, illustrations and charts

All tables, figures, illustrations and charts should be numbered consecutively as they appear in the text and placed at the end of the article after the reference list. Each requires a descriptive title. They should be referred to explicitly in the text, and a note should be made in the text to indicate their approximate position.

Abbreviations and units

Abbreviations should be kept to the minimum and defined (ie presented in full) on the first use. SI units should be used except for blood pressure (mmHg) and haemoglobin (g/dl).

Permission to use other material

Authors must obtain permission to reproduce material from other published or unpublished sources, and evidence of the permission must be submitted with the manuscript.


All references should be presented in the Harvard system. (Articles using the Vancouver system will be returned directly to the author for amendment). References should preferably be submitted via a separate “EndNote” file.
In the text:
a) Use the name(s) and year:
As Battrick and Glasper (2004) have shown…
As already reported (Livesley, 2005; Coyne, 2006), children’s perspectives…
b) For three or more authors, print the first author’s name then add et al:
As Long et al (2005) have reported…
c) When several references are cited, the order in the text should be chronological.

In the reference list
a) List references alphabetically.
b) Print the names and initials for works with 6 or fewer authors.
Long T, Davis C, Johnson M, Murphy M, Race D, Shardlow S (2005)
For 7 or more authors print the first 3 then add et al:
Barera G, Bonfanti R, Viscardi M, et al (2002)
c) The format/layout for a standard journal article is:
Author(s) (year) Article title. Journal Volume(Issue number): first and last page numbers
The journal name should be abbreviated as it is in Medline
Barera G, Bonfanti R, Viscardi M, et al (2002) Occurrence of celiac disease after onset of type 1 diabetes: a 6-year prospective longitudinal study Pediatrics 109(5): 833-838
The layout for books is:
Long T (2004) Excessive Crying in Infancy. Whurr Publishing Ltd.
(Edited book)
Glasper EA, McEwing G, Richardson J, eds (2006) Oxford Handbook of Children's and Young People's Nursing. Oxford University Press
Fallon D, Long T (2006) Ethics approval, ethical research and delusions of efficacy In: Long T, Johnson M, eds, Research ethics in the real world: issues and solutions for health and social care professionals. Elsevier, Edinburgh: 139-156

Electronic sources
Department for Education and Skills (2004) Every child matters: change for children. Available: (last accessed 20th May 2011)

After Peer Review

Your paper will be returned to you with peer review comments and a clearance letter. If your paper is accepted for publication you must format the paper using Adobe InDesign. Adobe InDesign is hosted by most University's IT departments. The InDesign formatted paper must be returned with the signed clearance letter which will accompany the correspondence.

Individual authors who do not have access to the Adobe InDesign should contact Alan Glasper on, who will be able to give contact details of persons who can offer assistance.

For details on how to write papers for publication in WPHS access Glasper E.A. (2012) Writing a paper for publication in Working Papers in the Health Sciences. 

The Process of Submission

Articles should be submitted online to Alan Glasper at, taking care to provide all the information requested. Authors will be notified by email of receipt, and the article will then be sent for review. The review process may take up to 8 weeks. Authors will then be notified by email of the editor's decision.

Editorial assistant
Professor Alan Glasper

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