The Journal of Child Nutrition & Management contains research articles focusing on many aspects of school foodservice programs and operations including food quality and production, operations management, program evaluation, nutrition standards and nutrition education. With the exception of works developed as a result of projects funded by the U.S. government, manuscripts must be original, unpublished, and not submitted for publication elsewhere. School Nutrition Association membership is not a prerequisite for submitting manuscripts.
The primary audience of Journal of Child Nutrition & Management is school foodservice/child nutrition professionals at the district and state director levels. Other readers include those involved in nutrition public policy, students, school administrators, college faculty, researchers, and industry R&D and marketing staff.
The Journal of Child Nutrition & Management accepts manuscripts in four categories: Commentary, Current Issues, Research in Action, and Practical Solutions. Each manuscript is evaluated through a blind peer review process, considering many factors, including, but not limited to: content, originality, article readability, active style of writing, results and discussion, conclusions, quality and use of tables and figures, applications for school foodservice operators, proper term definition, referencing of statements of fact, and methodology. Manuscripts will be rejected if they are deemed inappropriate for The Journal of Child Nutrition & Management, or if they do not conform to the following guidelines.
- Commentary: Should be a brief opinion piece on a timely subject that stimulates thought, challenges the status quo, and provides suggestions for action or areas for research. Charts/tables/figures/illustrations should not be submitted in this category. Article Length: up to 1,500 words.
- Current Issues: May be a review of literature or a discussion of a subject of current interest or controversy. The article may include references and charts/tables, but should not discuss methodology or data collection in detail. Papers should include an Abstract (see below). No more than three charts/tables/figures/illustrations should be submitted in this category. Article Length: up to 2,500 words.
- Research in Action: Papers should report original research and include all of the following sections clearly labeled and in the order listed below. No more than four charts/tables/figures/illustrations should be submitted in this category. Papers should include an Abstract (see below). Article Length: up to 4,000 words.
- Introduction-State the purpose of the study and provide a brief discussion of relevant literature. Percentage of article: 15%-not to exceed 675 words.
- Methodology-Briefly describe the research sample, the research instruments used, and how data were collected and analyzed. Submit (for review only) any questionnaires or other test instruments used in the research to allow reviewers to assure the validity of the methods used. Percentage of article: 15%-not to exceed 675 words.
- Results and Discussion-Present findings of the research, discuss their significance, and if possible, relate the new information to previous knowledge of the topic area. Percentage of article: 30%-not to exceed 1,350 words (not including charts, tables, and illustrations).
- Conclusions and Application-Suggest how readers can apply the research results to their school-based child nutrition operations and discuss, when appropriate, possible implications for future research. Percentage of article: 30%-not to exceed 1,350 words.
- Practical Solutions: Papers should describe a problem or challenge faced by a school foodservice operation, and discuss how a partnership between the operation and the academic community solved the problem and led to enhanced operational effectiveness and efficiency. The paper also may offer suggestions for possible future research. Papers should include an Abstract (see below). No more than three charts/tables/figures/illustrations should be submitted in this category. Article Length: up to 2,500 words, including Abstract and References.
An abstract, not to exceed 150 words, will provide a summary of the purpose and recommendations for the subject addressed in "Commentary" and "Current Issues" manuscripts.
A structured abstract is required for the "Research in Action" and "Practical Solutions" manuscript categories. The abstract, not to exceed 300 words, should have the following headings:
- Purpose/Objectives-Describe the purpose and objectives of the research.
- Methods-Describe the sample, research design, data collections, and data analysis.
- Results-Present the major results of the study.
- Applications to Child Nutrition Professionals-Provide applications of the results for the field.
Style of Manuscripts
In addition to meeting the criteria of the above manuscript categories, all manuscripts should be written in a direct, active voice and an easy-to-understand manner that makes both the research and results understandable. Avoid heavily academic, technical language, and explain technical terms. Before submitting a manuscript for publishing consideration, authors in the academic community may wish to have a practitioner in their local area review the paper for clarity and practical application.
Prepare two files, one for the title page and one for the manuscript. Use 12 point font and one inch margins. Number each page clearly. As an aid to reviewers, please number each line of manuscript copy down the left margin, beginning each page with line 1.Submit as a Word document(.doc) attachment to the Editor.Assemble your document for submission in the order described below:
- Title Page: The title page should be in a seperate file and should include the title of the article; category for which the manuscript is being submitted; word count for the total manuscript, as well as each individual section; the name, professional suffixes, job title, place of employment, and addresses of all authors; and the phone number and mailing address of the person who should receive the galley proof (corresponding author). Identify authors on the title page only, so the manuscript can be reviewed confidentially.
- Abstract: On a separate sheet of paper, include the title of the article and the abstract (see Abstract above).
- Text: Write in active voice and according to requirements of the appropriate article category described above.
- Acknowledgements:These may include acknowledgement of technical assistance, sources of financial support, or identification of a thesis, dissertation, presentation, or preliminary report from which data were taken.
- References: Use only references cited in the text. Type double-spaced on a separate sheet and in alphabetical order. Follow the American Psychological Association (APA) style for references.
- Tables: Type each table double-spaced on a separate sheet and number sequentially and identify each with a short title. Preferably, tables should be formatted in a recognized software program (e.g. Microsoft Excel or Word). Limit tables to those essential for clarification.
- Illustrations, Figures, and Charts: These should be on a computer.
The Review Process
Authors will receive written acknowledgement of the initial receipt of their manuscript. All submitted manuscripts are then sent to peer reviewers who are experts in their fields. After peer review (usually 10 to 12 weeks after the date of the initial acknowledgement letter), the editor will notify the corresponding author whether the manuscript has been accepted as is, with revision, or rejected. In the case of required revisions, the reviewers’ evaluation will be returned.
School Nutrition Association holds the copyright on all material published in the Journal. Therefore, upon submission, the corresponding author must sign and date a statement that transfers their article’s copyright to School Nutrition Association. Manuscripts submitted by authors who were employees of the U.S. federal government at the time their work was investigated and written are not subject to the Copyright Act; therefore, these authors will not be required to submit the statement of copyright transfer but must inform the Editor of their status as federal employees.
Before submitting a manuscript for review, please consult the following checklist of requirements to ensure the paper meets The Journal’s standards for publication. The Editor can and will reject manuscripts that do not meet the specified criteria.
- Have you prepared the title page file and manuscript file according to the guidelines?
- Have you attached a complete Title Page?
- Have you included an Abstract page, with the title and abstract only?
- Have you provided author biographical information?
- Have you included Acknowledgements (if applicable)?
- Have you included and properly formatted any References?
- Have you met the guidelines regarding tables/charts/figures/illustrations?
- Have you indicated a manuscript category?
- Is the text written in an active voice, and is it easily understood by practitioners?
- Have you numbered the lines of the manuscript?
For more information, contact:
The Journal of Child Nutrition & Management
Marilyn Briggs, PhD, RD, SNS, Editor
Co-Director, Center for Nutrtition in Schools
Department of Nutrition
University of California, Davis