A quick A-Z guide of publishing definitions

Our quick A-Z glossary provides you with the definitions of key publishing terms you’re likely to come across while you move through each step of your research publishing journey.

Understanding these key definitions will help you make important decisions about your publication. You’ll also be able to gain further understanding about the wider academic publishing landscape.


An abstract is a brief summary of a research article, thesis, review, conference proceeding, or any in-depth analysis of a particular subject and is often used to help the reader quickly ascertain the article’s purpose.

See also: Video abstract

A journal’s acceptance rate is the number of articles accepted by the journal for publication as a percentage of all papers that received a decision in the same period.

Read more about journal metrics.

Academic impact is the effect research makes in academia. For example, advancing and developing understanding, methods, and theory within the field or across disciplines.

Read more about research impact.

A journal’s aims and scope statement lays out the objective or purpose that the journal is trying to accomplish and how it will achieve this.

Read more about how to use the aims and scope to find the right fit for your research.

An accepted manuscript is a paper that has been peer reviewed, accepted by the journal editor, and can be shared on social media or, in the case of green open access, uploaded to a repository.

Read more about sharing versions of your work.

The Altmetric Attention Score is a weighted count of all of the online attention Altmetric have found for an individual research output. This includes mentions in public policy documents and references in Wikipedia, the mainstream news, social networks, blogs and more.

Read more about article metrics.

An article publishing charge (APC) is a charge associated with publishing gold open access.

Our open access cost finder can tell you the standard APC charge for all Taylor & Francis journals.

Article publishing charge (APC) waivers and discounts are available to authors with primary affiliations in countries defined by the World Bank as Low-Income and Lower-Middle-Income Economies, who wish to to publish in full open access journals.

Read more about APC waivers and discounts.

Article transfer is when a publisher offers you the option to ‘transfer’ your article submission to another of their journals. This usually occurs when your manuscript isn’t the right fit for the journal you originally submitted to.

Read more about the article transfer process.

Journals often provide article templates (for example in Word or LaTeX) to help you submit your article in the right format.

View our full list of journal article templates.

The Attribution license permits others to distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation.

Read more about copyright and licensing for authors.

The Attribution-Noncommercial license permits others to remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, they don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms.

Read more about copyright and licensing for authors.

Authorship refers to defining the named authors on your article.

The authorship list and order on your article must be agreed between all listed authors before submission, including who will take on the role of the corresponding author.

Read more about defining authorship in your research paper.

The author’s original manuscript is the version of an article before you have submitted it to a journal for peer review.

Under the green open access route, you can share your AOM on social media and scholarly collaboration networks, or by uploading it to a non-commercial preprint server.

Read more about sharing versions of your work.

‘Authorship for sale’ is an unethical practice where authors have ‘sold’ an author spot on a paper, or where a researcher has ‘bought’ an authorship spot on a paper. This is considered to be a form of misconduct.

Read the Taylor & Francis Misconduct Policy.


Often, a journal will promote a particular theme or topic by putting out a call for papers. This is a specific ask for submissions related to the chosen theme.

Search for current calls for papers in your subject area.

The Central Article Tracking System (CATS) is a Taylor & Francis database used to track and progress manuscripts through the production process.

Read more about the production process.

A citation is a quote from or reference to a book, paper, or author, especially in a scholarly work.

Read our editorial policy on citations.

Citation manipulation is an excessive and inappropriate self-citation or pre-arrangements among author groups to inappropriately cite each other’s work. This is considered a form of misconduct.

Read the Taylor & Francis Misconduct Policy.

Citation metrics aim to assess the academic impact of a journal by measuring how often its articles are included in the reference lists of other publications.

Read more about journal metrics.

CiteScore is the average number of citations received by articles recently published in a journal. CiteScore is available for journals and book series indexed in Scopus.

Read more about journal metrics.

A competing interest, also known as a ‘conflict of interest’, can occur when you (or your employer or sponsor) have a financial, commercial, legal, or professional relationship with other organizations, or with the people working with them, that could influence your research.

Read more about competing interests.

Copy editing is the process of revising written material to improve readability and fitness for its purpose, as well as checking the text is free of grammatical and factual errors.

Read more about research paper editing.

Copyright permission must be granted by the copyright owner for any third-party materials you have used in your article.

Read more about using third-party material in your article.

The open access cost finder tool allows you to check the current article publishing charge (APC) and open access (OA) options across all Taylor & Francis, Routledge, and Dove Press journals.

Use the open access cost finder.

A cover letter is often needed when you submit your article to a journal. The cover letter should explain why your work is a good fit for the journal and why it will be of interest to the journal’s readers.

Read more about writing a cover letter for your submission.

A Creative Commons license is applied when you publish your research open access. You can choose which license you’d like to apply and what you’re happy to allow other people to do with your article once it’s published.

Read more about copyright and licensing for authors.

Cultural or societal impact is the effect of published research on people, culture, and society.

Read more about research impact.


A data availability statement (also sometimes called a ‘data access statement’) tells the reader where the research data associated with a paper is available, and under what conditions the data can be accessed. They also include links (where applicable) to the data set.

Read more about data availability statements.

A data note is a short peer-reviewed article type that concisely describes research data stored in a repository.

Read more about data notes.

A data repository is a storage space for researchers to deposit data sets associated with their research.

Read more about data repositories.

A data sharing policy states how your research data should be shared. It may be a requirement of your funder and/or the journal you’re submitting to.

Read more about data sharing policies.

Datasets are sets or collections of raw data gathered during the research process. It is becoming increasingly common for researchers to make their underlying datasets available in a repository.

Read more about sharing and citing data.

A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) is a unique string of numbers, letters and symbols used to permanently identify an article or document published online.

The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is a community-curated online directory that indexes and provides access to open access, peer-reviewed journals in over 300 subject areas.

Visit the DOAJ website.

Double-anonymous peer review is when the reviewers don’t know who the author of the article is, and the author doesn’t know who the reviewers are either.

Read more about the different types of peer review.


Economic impact is when published research impacts on businesses and economic growth or development.

Read more about research impact.

Taylor & Francis Editing Services can be purchased by researchers to help them refine and edit their research manuscript to get it ready for publication.

The editorial board of a journal (sometimes known as an advisory board) typically consists of a group of prominent people in the journal’s field. Their day-to-day role with the journal may vary, but the board will usually dictate the tone and direction the publication’s editorial policy will take. They will also regularly review manuscripts submitted to the journal.

Every journal has its own set of policies and procedures. These can cover everything from how they conduct peer review, the process for submitting your article, to the ethical standards required of any research submitted.

In addition to the journal’s own policies, the journal may also be subject to the editorial policies of the publishing group.

Read the Taylor & Francis Editorial Policies.

The embargo period is the time period that must pass after publication before a researcher can make the accepted version of their article openly available in a repository, in the green open access model.

The embargo period for each Taylor & Francis journal is listed in the open access cost finder.

Environmental impact describes the effect of research on the environment – for example, research on climate change.

Read more about research impact.

An eprint is a free online link to an article. All named authors who publish in a subscription-based Taylor & Francis or Routledge journal will be sent an eprint link, each of which can be used 50 times to give others access to their article.

Read more about sharing your article.

“Ethics dumping” is a form of misconduct where researchers leading a study deliberately set up collaborations in regions where participant recruitment and process for ethical approval are designed with the intention of circumventing international standards of research ethics.

Read the Taylor & Francis Misconduct Policy.


F1000Research is an open research publishing platform for scientists, scholars, and clinicians offering rapid publication of articles and other research outputs without editorial bias. F1000 is part of the Taylor & Francis publishing group.

Visit the F1000Research website.

Format-free submission allows authors to submit their work without spending time on formatting it for a specific journal. The only requirements are that a consistent citation format is used and everything necessary for review is included.

Read more about format-free submission.

A funder mandate (or requirement) is a policy from a research funder relating to how the associated research output is published. A growing number of research funders now have policies requiring you to make your published work and associated data available through an open access route.

Read more about funder open access policies.

A free access article is an article in a subscription journal which is available for non-subscribers to read. Unlike open access articles, which are permanently available, a free access article may only be freely available for a set period of time.

A full open access journal is one where every article in the journal is published via gold open access. This means that anyone, anywhere can read the article for free.

Review the list of full open access Taylor & Francis journals.


Ghost authorship is when an author(s) has substantially contributed to the work but has not been given credit. It is considered a form of misconduct.

Read the Taylor & Francis Misconduct Policy.

Gift authorship is where a listed author(s) has not contributed substantially, or at all, to the published work. It is considered a form of misconduct.

Read the Taylor & Francis Misconduct Policy.

Gold open access (OA) is a publishing route where the final published version of an article is freely and permanently available online for anyone, anywhere to read.

With gold OA, authors retain the copyright to the work. You will usually need to pay an article publishing charge (APC) to publish gold OA.

Read more about open access publishing options.

Green open access, also known as self-archiving, is when you post an earlier version of your manuscript in repositories and online (usually after an embargo period).

Under green open access, authors typically assign copyright to the publisher and do not need to pay an article publishing charge.

Read more about open access publishing options.


HSS is an abbreviation of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Health and well-being impact is the effect of research on the health sector, such as in the development of new drugs or influencing change in medical practice.

Read more about research impact.

Hybrid journals publish both open access articles that are always accessible to everybody, and articles that are usually only available to subscribers. Taylor & Francis hybrid journals are called ‘Open Select’.

Review the list of Open Select journals.


The Impact Factor is one of the metrics used to assess a journal. Released annually based on Web of Science Journal Citation Reports®, only journals in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE) and Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI) can have an Impact Factor.

Read more about journal metrics.

Indexing is the process of ensuring journals and their contents are listed in online databases like Google Scholar, PubMed, etc. This ensures that the research published in the journal is easily discoverable.

The instructions for authors are an individual set of requirements for a journal They include all the information authors will need to complete their submission.

Read more about the instructions for authors.

The digital platform an institution uses to host and preserve scholarly outputs, such as articles, books, or reports. If you’re based at a research institution, you may be required to deposit a version of your article in their repository. This is known as green open access.

Read more about open access publishing options.


Journal metrics are used to measure the performance and impact of a journal.

Read more about journal metrics.

A journal suggester is a tool to help you narrow down your options when choosing a journal to submit to. The Taylor & Francis Journal Suggester reviews your abstract and matches it with suitable titles. A journal suggester can also be referred to as a journal selector.

Try the Taylor & Francis Journal Suggester.

A journal’s usage is the number of times articles are viewed or downloaded. It gives a quick impression of the journal’s size and reach.

Read more about journal metrics.


Keywords are ideas and topics that define what your content is about. These are the words and phrases that people enter into search engines to find the content they’re looking for.

Read more about using keywords effectively in your article.


A literature review (sometimes called a review article) is a scholarly paper that presents the current knowledge on a topic. A literature review can also be a section of a longer research paper.

Read more about review articles.


Mega journals publish a broad variety of research without judging the perceived importance of it. Instead, they look purely at the soundness of the research. Well-known mega journals include PLOS ONE, Scientific Reports, and PeerJ.

Mosaic plagiarism is when text is lifted from a few different sources (which may include the author’s previous work) and put into a manuscript to create the impression of new text.

Read the Taylor & Francis Plagiarism Policy.


Open access (OA) is a publishing option to make your work freely and permanently available online. With this option, anyone anywhere can read and build upon it. There is usually an article publishing charge associated with this publishing route.

Read more about publishing open access.

An open access agreement is a prepaid fund set up with Taylor & Francis to help researchers at an institution publish their journal article gold open access. See also: Transformative agreement.

View a list of open access agreements available to authors publishing with Taylor & Francis.

An open access article is freely and permanently available online, so anyone, anywhere can read it.

An open access membership is a prepaid fund set up with Taylor & Francis to help researchers at an institution publish their journal article gold open access.

View a list of open access memberships available to authors publishing with Taylor & Francis.

Open data is data that have been deposited in a public repository under a CC BY, CC0 or equivalent license. These data are freely available for anyone to access and reuse for any lawful purpose.

Read more about open data.

Many Taylor & Francis journals have policies on data sharing which state how data associated with your article should be shared.

Read more about open data sharing policies.

Open peer review means the reviewers are provided the identity of the author and the author will learn who the reviewers are at some point during the review or publication process.

Read more about the different types of peer review.

Open research is sometimes called ‘open scholarship’ or ‘open science’. This is the movement to make all the outputs of scholarly activity available for others to read and build upon.

Read more about Taylor & Francis’ commitment to open research.

Open Select is the term we use at Taylor & Francis for our hybrid journals. Open Select titles publish both open access articles that are always accessible to everybody, and articles that are usually only available to subscribers.

Read more about publishing in an Open Select title.

An initiative created by the Center for Open Science (COS) which gives a digital award to articles that meet open science practice requirements.

Read more about Open Science Badges.

An ORCiD is a digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher. It ensures you and your research activities can easily be identified, meaning you get the credit for all the work you do.

Read more about including your ORCiD when you submit.


Peer review is the evaluation of research by one or more experts in the field of the research. The peer review system exists to validate academic work, evaluate the quality of a paper, and check its suitability for publication.

Read more about peer review.

The peer review policy/model will often vary between journals, even those from the same publisher. It’s important to make sure you understand and agree with the peer review model used by a journal before you submit.

Read more about peer review.

The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) defines plagiarism as: “When somebody presents the work of others (data, words or theories) as if they were his/her own and without proper acknowledgment.”

Read the Taylor & Francis Plagiarism Policy.

Policy impact is the effect of research on policy formulation, for example using research as evidence to influence government decisions.

Read more about research impact.

Predatory publishing also known as deceptive publishing is an exploitative publishing opportunity to intentionally and fraudulently take advantage of the academic need to publish.

Read more about Think. Check. Submit., an initiative designed to help researchers identify and avoid predatory journals.

In post-publication peer review, your paper will be published and then invited reviewers, or even readers, will add their own comments or reviews. Another form of peer review may happen before publication.

Read more about the different types of peer review.

A press release is an official statement delivered to members of the news media for the purpose of providing information, an official statement, or making an announcement.

Read more about working with the media.

A preprint servicer is a repository which enables you to post an early version of your research paper (your author’s original manuscript) online before it is peer reviewed and published in a journal.

Read more about preprints and preprint servers.


The registered reports process splits peer review into two parts. The first round of peer review takes place after you’ve designed your study but before you’ve collected or analyzed any data. The second round takes place once the study is complete.

Read more about registered reports.

A review article (sometimes called a literature review) is a scholarly paper that presents the current knowledge on a topic.

Read more about review articles.


The Scimago Journal Rank aims to capture the effect of subject field, quality, and reputation of a journal on citations. It calculates the prestige of a journal by considering the value of the sources that cite it, rather than counting all citations equally.

Read more about journal metrics.

Self-archiving is when an author deposits an earlier version of their article in a repository or online. It is also referred to as green open access.

Read more about open access publishing options.

Self-plagiarism or text-recycling is the redundant reuse of your own work (e.g., text, data, and images), including text translated from another language, usually without proper citation.

Read the Taylor & Francis Plagiarism Policy.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing a piece of web content so that it can easily be found on search engines. For research articles, it’s important to apply SEO so that they appear for relevant searches on search engines like Google or Google Scholar.

Read more about SEO for academic articles.

In single-anonymous peer review, the reviewers know the identities of the author of the article, but the author don’t know the identities of the reviewers.

Read more about the different types of peer review.

SNIP measures citations received by articles in the journal against citations expected for the subject field, using Scopus data. SNIP is published twice a year and looks at a three-year period.

Read more about journal metrics.

Standards of reporting encourage researchers to provide comprehensive descriptions of their research rationale, protocol, methodology, and analysis. This means research is communicated in a way that supports verification and reproducibility.

Read the Taylor & Francis Standards of Reporting Policy.

Special Terms for Authors & Researchers (STAR) supports researchers in the Global South who don’t have access to the resources of a university or research institution, by giving them free access to journal articles. STAR users include independent researchers, retired academics, and professionals working for NGOs.

Read more about the STAR programme.

STEM is an abbreviation of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.

A digital platform in a particular subject area used to host and preserve open scholarly outputs, such as articles, books, or reports.

Read more about sharing your article.

Academic journals generally use an online submission system that delivers your article quickly to the journal editor.

Read more about making your submission.

A publishing route by which your article is available to readers who have access to a subscription for the journal or have paid to access the article individually.

There are no article publishing charges associated with this publishing option (except in some cases where small charges may be made for reproducing figures or images in color, in the print version of a journal).

Supplementary material is relevant material that is submitted in addition to the main article. It can be anything from tables to presentations, to video and audio files.

Read more about supplementary material.


Think. Check. Submit. is an initiative that helps researchers identify and avoid predatory journals. Its tools help to make the process of choosing the right journal for your work simpler.

Read more about Think. Check. Submit.

Third-party material refers to anything included in your article which is owned and held in copyright by a third party. You must get written permission to use third-party material.

Read more about third-party material.

Transformative agreements (sometimes called ‘read & publish’ agreements) are made between libraries or consortia, and publishers. The agreements include the prepayment of article publishing charges alongside subscriptions to journal titles or collections. They allow affiliated authors to make the final version of their article gold open access as well as providing access to subscription content for the library users.

View a list of transformative agreements available to authors publishing with Taylor & Francis.

Typesetting is the process of arranging the text and images in an article, in order to prepare them for printing.

Read more about moving through production.


The version of record is the final, definitive, citable version of your paper, which has been copyedited, typeset, had metadata applied, and has been allocated a Digital Object Identifier (DOI).

Read more about sharing your article.

A video abstract is a short recorded video in which you can introduce researchers to your article in your own words. Video abstracts are an increasingly popular way of getting readers to engage with your research.

Read more about video abstracts.

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