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STS policy on representing publication status on applications

The purpose of a CV is to present - accurately and precisely - a record of qualifications and accomplishments. This should include projects and publications that are complete, or nearing completion but are yet to formally appear. It should not include projects just started or not yet begun. This page provides assistance on terms to use for publications yet to appear.

When representing accomplishments, applicants must note that STS adopts specific criteria for demonstration. Upward misrepresentation (presenting accomplishments as farther advanced than is demonstrable) can lead to an applicant's disqualification. STS policy is simple: let the quality of your work speak for itself, no matter where it is in the publishing pipeline. As publishing scholars ourselves, we fully understand the process and can interpret submitted materials appropriately.

How should you list the status of publications not yet openly available?

"published" - means the item is available for purchase or distribution as a final product. Published journal items should identify the DOI. Published books and other materials should be available for purchase and viewing in a publisher's catalogues or through standard online ordering mechanisms; you should provide an ISBN or links to Web information. If you list an item as published, you must be able to provide a finished copy on request.

"forthcoming" - means the proofs have been approved by all parties, and the item is in the queue for printing and distribution. No further changes are possible to the manuscript, and printing/distribution now is only a mechanical and administrative matter. If you list an item as forthcoming, you must be able to produce the approved page proofs on request. You should be able to produce a letter from the editor or publisher to confirm this status. It is common practice to list the expected date of publication of forthcoming works, if known. For instance "Cain (forthcoming 2015)" indicates a publication that is in a publisher's queue for printing, and Cain can produce evidence from the publisher to show they expect it to appear in 2015.

"accepted" - means a manuscript has been accepted for publication, and it is in production with the publisher (copy-editing, proof-setting, artwork, indexing, etc.). If you list an item as accepted, you must be able to provide evidence of acceptance from an editor and the accepted manuscript, on request. 

"submitted" - some people use the synonym "under review" - means a manuscript is complete and has been submitted to an editor or publisher. You await news as to its acceptability. If you list an item as submitted, you must be able to provide evidence of submission, such as an uploading receipt or a confirmation of receipt, and the submission itself, on request.

"draft" - means a manuscript is being drafted and is not yet ready for submission to review as a completed piece of work. However, the implication is that the work is substantially complete, perhaps in circulation privately for comment or set aside awaiting further reflection. If you list an item as a draft, you must be prepared to make that draft available for reading, on request. You must not claim a manuscript is in "draft" if you can only provide an insubstantial or significantly incomplete text, notes alone, or only an outline. 

Terms and items to avoid

If you "plan" to create something, but have not yet drafted it, you should not list it on your CV. The same is true for "proposals," items you wish to draft in the future but have yet to substantially begin. 

"in press" - this is vague and must be avoided. An item listed as "in press" on a CV submitted to STS will be understood to be a "plan" unless evidence is provided for another interpretation.

"under contract" - this is vague and must be avoided. It is common practice for publishers to agree to consider publishing projects based on review of a prospectus and writing sample. These can be a long way from an accepted, complete accomplishment. For this reason, an item listed as "under contract" on a CV submitted to STS will be understood to be a "plan" unless evidence is provided for another interpretation.

"accepted pending revisions" - this is vague and must be avoided. It is common practice for editors to return manuscripts to authors after peer review with the offer of publication pending satisfactory response to reviews. Because this could also require significant work or revision, and because these offers do not constitute an final agreement to publish, STS considers "accepted pending revisions" to be equivalent to "submitted" unless evidence is provided for another interpretation. Such work should not be represented as "accepted," as that implies completion.

Page last modified on 09 apr 13 15:44 by Joe Cain

UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS)
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