How to submit your manuscript format-free

Save more time for your research

Over 350 of our journals now accept manuscript submissions using any consistent text and citation format, with no need to follow formatting rules.

This can save you time when preparing your article for submission and allows you to focus on your priority: the research.

You do the research. We format the text.

The format used for academic articles, such as their referencing style, layout, and whether they use American or British English, varies from journal to journal. Choosing the journal you’re going to submit to before you begin writing means you can use the correct formatting from the start.

Ready to submit?

There are a lot of things you’ll need to have checked, understood, and incorporated into your article.

But what happens if you change your mind about which journal to submit to after you’ve finished writing? Or what if the journal unfortunately decides to reject your article? You may then have the time-consuming job of reformatting it to meet the requirements of a different journal.

At Taylor & Francis we understand that this can be a lot of extra work on top of the other demands of a busy research career. That’s why we’ve introduced format-free submission.

What is format-free submission?

Format-free submission means that, provided you include everything necessary for review and use a consistent citation format, you can submit your paper without needing to worry about formatting your manuscript to meet that journal’s requirements.

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The instructions for authors for your chosen journal will tell you whether it offers format-free submission. You’ll find these on the journal homepage on Taylor & Francis Online.

If you need further help narrowing down your shortlist of journals and identifying the best fit for your research, here are 3 great tools to help you choose a journal.

Taylor & Francis journals

Read the instructions for authors of your target Taylor & Francis journal to know if it offers format-free submission.

Taylor & Francis journal with format-free submission

If your chosen journal is accepting format-free submissions, you don’t need to format your manuscript to meet any special requirements.

All you need to do is follow the simple steps outlined below, when submitting your manuscript.

Make sure you are confident enough to submit your manuscript to your target journal.

Guide to submitting format-free to a Taylor & Francis journal

Use consistent citations
Your references can be in any scholarly citation format, so long as you use the same approach throughout the article. It is essential that you include:

  • Author name(s)

  • Journal or book title

  • Article or chapter title

  • Year of publication

  • Volume and issue (where appropriate)

  • Page numbers

We recommend that you include DOI (Digital Object Identifier) numbers but they are not mandatory.

Include everything needed for peer review
There are still some minimum requirements that are essential for evaluating an article. These will usually include:

  • An abstract

  • Author affiliation

  • Figures

  • Research-funder information

  • References

  • Conflict of interest disclosures and other ethics statements

Completing your submission
When you make your submission, upload your manuscript as a single file including text, figures, and tables.

  • Your manuscript should be formatted so that it is easy to read and comment on, with double spacing and line numbers.

  • If your article is accepted for publication, in most cases we’ll now do all the work of reformatting it to the journal’s style. It’s at this point where we may ask you to send us any extra items required for publication. These could include keywords, a public interest statement, author biography, and editable source files.

  • Occasionally you may be asked to complete some formatting on your paper, either at the point of acceptance or if you are invited to make revisions. There are various reasons why this might be needed, including formatting references to fit the journal style, or if the editor has specifically requested a formatted version following revisions but before acceptance. If this is the case, you’ll be guided through exactly what’s needed.

Which journals have a format-free submission policy?

Format-free submission is already available for over 350 Taylor & Francis and Routledge titles, with more to be added soon. Check the instructions for authors page of your chosen journal to find out whether it’s part of this program.

Don’t worry if your chosen journal doesn’t offer format-free submission yet. There’s plenty of advice and guidance on formatting, and downloadable templates available to help you with your journal submission. You can also seek the help of expert formatters to make sure your article meets your target journal’s requirements.

To know what you can do to avoid obstacles and complete a seamless submission, read this guide to improve your submission experience.

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