Manuscript Policy

Manuscripts Submission: Proposed manuscripts should be emailed to Bob McKinney at Within five  days, the first author will receive a receipt acknowledgement. If the author does not receive a receipt acknowledgement assume that the manuscript never arrived and resend. Manuscripts must follow our manuscript APA format guidelines with the exceptions listed below. Anonymous reviewers will assess manuscript on the basis of the Manuscript Review Form which is available within the hot link and we encourage authors to exam it prior to submitting.  

Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the research process: This editorial policy outlines the guidelines and principles governing the use of generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the research process, including in manuscript preparation and submission. This policy aims to promote transparency, reproducibility, and fairness while encouraging innovation and the adoption of AI techniques in the research and publication process. Authors are accountable for the accuracy, integrity, and originality of their research papers, including for any use of AI. 

  1. Transparency and Documentation: Authors utilizing generative AI content in their research must provide clear and comprehensive descriptions of the AI models and algorithms employed, including the specific configurations, parameters, and any preprocessing steps taken. Sufficient details should be provided to allow other researchers to reproduce the results and validate the findings. This documentation should be made available as part of the supplementary material accompanying the manuscript. 

If generative AI software has been used to help generate any part of the work, it must be noted in the methods section (or acknowledgments, if no methods section is available) when submitting. The software cannot be listed as an author because it does not meet the criteria for authorship and cannot share responsibility for the paper or be held accountable for the integrity of the data reported. 

  1. Data Acquisition and Preprocessing: Authors must ensure that the data used for training AI models are acquired and preprocessed in a manner consistent with ethical considerations and data protection regulations. The sources and methods of data collection should be explicitly mentioned, along with any necessary permissions or consent obtained. Any data preprocessing steps, such as data cleaning, filtering, or augmentation, should be adequately described to ensure transparency. 
  1. Ethical Considerations: Researchers utilizing generative AI techniques should be mindful of potential ethical implications and societal impact. Authors must adhere to relevant ethical guidelines, especially ethical standards recognized in social work, and ensure that their research respects privacy, confidentiality, and human rights. If the research involves human subjects, appropriate informed consent procedures should be followed. Ethical approval from relevant institutional review boards should be obtained when necessary.  Institutional review materials must clearly identify the ways in which generative AI is used in the research process.  

Any use of generative AI must not breach accepted plagiarism standards. Scholarly works must be the author’s own, and authors should not present others’ ideas, data, words or other material without adequate citation and transparent referencing. 

  1. Fairness and Bias: Authors should be cautious of bias in generative AI models that violates social work ethics standards and take steps to mitigate it. Any known biases or limitations in the AI models should be openly acknowledged, and efforts to address them should be discussed. Use of person-first and bias-free language is critical and must be used. 
  1. Reproducibility and Availability: Authors should make every effort to ensure the reproducibility of their research by providing access to the AI models, algorithms, and datasets used. This includes sharing code, scripts, and instructions necessary for replicating the experiments. Openly sharing resources and data allows for verification of the research findings and encourages collaboration and advancement in the field. 
  1. Peer Review and Evaluation: Manuscripts utilizing generative AI content will undergo a rigorous peer review process that includes evaluation of the methodologies employed. Reviewers will assess the transparency, validity, and ethical considerations. Authors may be required to provide additional documentation, clarify details, or address concerns raised by reviewers before acceptance.  

Manuscripts with Human Subjects: For manuscripts based on research involving humans or animals, the authors should submit evidence of compliance with the ethical and legal standards that govern the country(ies), state(s), or province(s) in which the research was conducted. This evidence may include a statement of which body(ies) approved the research and the file number ascribed by this body (e.g., a research ethics review board or an institutional review board). If the research (involving human subjects or animals) was conducted in a jurisdiction or organization that does not have a research ethics review board, then authors of the manuscript must submit an explanation of how they fulfilled social work research ethics regarding the principles: 

  • informed consent 
  • confidentiality 
  • social justice (including equitable selection of research participants and potential impacts of the research on particular diversity groups) 
  • honesty and integrity 
  • respect for the dignity and worth of potential and enrolled research participants 
  • protection of participants from unwarranted physical or mental distress, harm, or deprivation 
  • potential benefits of the research outweigh the risks 

Content: The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics accepts manuscripts on topics that relate to its mission. (Please click on “Mission Statement” for details.) 

Length: Since The International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics is an online journal, length is not an issue. Manuscripts should be clearly and concisely written. Typically, manuscripts are between 12 and 20 double-spaced pages (not including references and tables). Manuscripts longer than 20 word-processed pages should clearly warrant the additional writing. 

Title, Abstract, and Keywords: All manuscripts must include a title, an abstract of no greater than 250 words, and a list of five keywords that can be used by readers/researchers to find the published material. 

Copyright: All submitted documents and manuscripts must be original and may not be published elsewhere. Upon publication, the International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) becomes the owner of the copyright. Author(s) sign a form to transfer ownership of the manuscript. All accepted manuscripts will be published online. The publisher may, on occasion, also publish a collection of some articles in print form. 

Format: Manuscripts must be submitted in Word (or compatible) files, according to the Journal’s manuscript format guidelines. See our manuscript format guidelines for font sizes and instructions about attaching illustrations. If volunteers on the editorial staff must convert a file or make corrections to the formatting, publication will be delayed. Thus, follow these guidelines: 

  • Do not include page numbers 
  • Do not include headers 
  • Include figures and tables where you would like them to appear in the document 

If you have questions about formatting, e-mail

Style: All citations must be in APA style.  Please check your manuscript, including references, for correct APA style and completeness. Please check the APA Publication Manual for correct spacing, punctuation, and other aspects of APA style. 

With the delivery of each manuscript, the first author is required to complete the Manuscript Certification form and submit it with the manuscript. 

If volunteers on the editorial staff must make APA style corrections, publication will be delayed or rejected. Purdue University’s OWL website offers guidance on citing in APA style. 

Tables, figures, and illustrations: All material included within the proposed manuscript must be compatible with an online presentation in HTML. Tables, figures, and illustrations should be submitted in separate graphics files (JPG preferred) no more than 500 pixels in width. Since articles are published online, authors are responsible for specifically identifying the location of where such material is placed. 

Review time: Every effort will be made to have articles reviewed within three months of the time they are received. Articles will be evaluated by at least two editorial board members. Three reviewers are used when there is a difference in assessment between two reviewers. To assure the fastest turnaround time review the assessment form that is used by the editors. 

Flow chart: We have created a flow chart to illustrate the review process for submitted manuscripts. Download the flow chart here