University of Arkansas, Fayetteville Division of Agriculture

Instructions for Authors


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Download a PDF copy of  Discovery's  Instructions for Authors(pdf)

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accepted manuscripts will be on an open access site.
University of Arkansas Open Access Policy

Aim and Scope

Discovery is an avenue for Bumpers College to highlight and publish original research and independent creative projects conducted by Bumpers students in cooperation with a faculty mentor, or in other words Discovery is mainly an avenue to publish the Honors and research projects of students (or student teams) who undertake original, creative, and innovative independent research. Expectations are that the student(s) has gone above and beyond the requirements of literature reviews and is generating a new contribution to the field/discipline.


Submissions are invited from degree-seeking undergraduate students (or within one year post graduation) with a major or minor within Bumpers College who are conducting research in cooperation with a faculty mentor at the University of Arkansas. Students who have received a Bumpers College Undergraduate Research and Creative Project Grant are expected to submit a paper based on their project.

Articles submitted for publication in Discovery may not be submitted for publication in other university or college publications (with the exception of some departmental publications). Authors should decide on their preferred university/college publication and then submit to that publication only. If a manuscript is turned down from another university/college publication, then it can be considered for Discovery , but it may have to roll into the next year’s issue.

Style Guidelines

Discovery uses Scientific Style and Format: The Council of Science Editors Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers as its style manual. Refer to the latest available edition of the CSE manual for any questions not covered in these guidelines. For research in disciplines where professional journals use style guides that differ significantly from the CSE, please consult the Discovery managing editor for guidance. It is also very helpful to look at previously published articles for guidelines when preparing your papers for Discovery .

View archived issues at

Length should be limited to about 2000 words, but no minimum or maximum length is required. Writing style should be consistent with professional journals in the student’s discipline. However, articles will be reviewed and read by people with varied backgrounds. Therefore, authors should avoid scientific jargon and should use a style and vocabulary that can be understood by any educated reader. Define all abbreviations upon first use.


Report measurements in metric and other standard scientific units. Units or symbols that are likely to be unfamiliar to a general readership should be defined.

The journal is printed in black and white only; however, we can display color figures in the online version of the journal. So each figure must be submitted both as a grayscale 300 DPI (for images) or 600 DPI (for line art, charts, etc) resolution TIFF or PDF file for the printed version AND as a color 72 DPI resolution JPG or PNG file for the online version both at a standard figure width of at least 5 inches (select “constrain proportions” and height will default proportionally). The final size of figures will be adjusted by the editor to fit the page layout. PowerPoint images are not acceptable. Using vector-based software such as Adobe Illustrator to create figures will produce the highest quality drawings. Make sure that all text labels within the figure and x and y axis labels will be readable at final publication size. A minimum type size of 8 points (after reduction) should be used.

Create tables using the Table function in Microsoft Word. Do not use tabs, spaces, and hard returns. This will result in the tables needing to be reformatted which allows the introduction of errors and could delay publication of your manuscript. Use a sans-serif 9 pt. font (e.g., Helvetica, Calibri) with title only in bold and centered above table (superscripts/subscripts in footnotes and table text in Helvetica 8 pt); look at prior Discovery journals for capitalization style, table width, and horizontal (0.05 width) rule styles.

View helpful tips for creating tables at:

Center figure captions below figure in a 9 pt. sans-serif font such as Helvetica.

Also include one hard copy of each figure, printed black on white paper, with the original hardcopy manuscript submission. Microsoft Word is the preferred text format.

Indicate footnotes for tables using sequential superscript lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.) Place table footnotes below last horizontal rule of table. Footnotes used to clarify or annotate text should be placed at the bottom of the page in which the reference appears and indicated with sequential superscript numbers (1, 2, 3, etc.)

Use a comma before the word and in a series: The U.S. flag is red, white, and blue.

Parts of the Manuscript

The title page should include the following:
  • a concise, descriptive title
  • authors’ first names, middle initials (if any), and last names (faculty sponsor should be listed as a coauthor)
  • an abstract
  • a footnote identifying each author by classification and major for students; rank and department for faculty and staff
  • a footnote identifying faculty sponsor or mentor
  • Abstract

    The Abstract summarizes the purpose, procedures, and main findings in 250 words or less.


    The Introduction states the purpose of the study, the hypothesis, and pertinent background information.

    Materials and Methods

    The Materials and Methods section describes the experimental design, materials used, statistical analysis (required), and any other details needed for another researcher to reproduce the study and to confirm the validity of findings and conclusions.

    Results and Discussion

    The Results and Discussion section presents appropriate data, but not all data, in text, tables, and figures and places the findings in context with other research in the field. The discussion emphasizes new and important aspects of the research and conclusions that follow from them. Include implications and impact of the findings. Relate your findings to observations of other studies. State new hypotheses when warranted, but avoid unqualified statements not supported by your data.


    The Conclusions section presents a brief (one paragraph) summation of the research project presented in the paper and the significance of the findings and practical applications. No references are necessary and please do not introduce new material not discussed previously in the paper.


    The Acknowledgment section recognizes financial support and other assistance. Note support by and companies or parties with a vested interest in the research results. Please thank your advisor, other professors, co-authors, and other individuals who helped with your research in the Meet the Student-Author section NOT in Acknowledgments.

    Literature Cited

    The Literature Cited section lists the complete references corresponding to those cited in the text. Within the text, references are indicated by (Last Name, Year); e.g., (Jones, 2000) (Smith and Jones, 2000) (Brown et al., 2000; Finn, 1998). List the complete citation alphabetically (by the first author’s last name). Multiple citations of the same author are listed chronologically or by order of reference in the text if dated the same year.

    It is required that references be written as follows: Author(s). Year. Title. Journal title. (month and date if appropriate); volume:pages. As below, no italics, (unless latin phrase or word, which requires italics): Jones, G.R., W.F. Smith, and T.Q. Brown. 1999. Seasonal nitrate content of tall fescue. Agron. J. 55(3):49-53.

    Book references are written as follows: Authors or editors. Year. Title. Publisher, Place of publication.As below, no italics, (unless latin phrase or word, which requires italics): Ryugo, K. 1998. Fruit Culture: Its Science and Art. John Wiley and Sons, London.

    Internet URL citations are written as follows: Limon, T.A., R.S. Benz. 2000. Grains of the world. Science on the Web. Prentice Hall. Accessed 17 April 2000. Available at:

    NOTE: Please be very meticulous about proper use of citations. All Discovery papers will be run through a check for plagiarism.

    Manuscript Submission

  • Go to
  • Click on Submit button
  • Follow prompts to upload paper, table, figures and all other supplemental information
  • Also submit a personal biography (refer to past issues of Discovery for style and length) and phone the Communications office at (479) 575-5647 to arrange an appointment to have your photo taken for the journal. Include a cover letter signed by a faculty sponsor or mentor and all authors. Unless otherwise indicated, the editor will correspond with the first author for revisions, approval of proofs, etc.

    For submission help, contact:
    Gail Halleck
    Division of Agriculture Communications, 110 AGRI
    University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701

    NOTE: First author (student) must include a current and a forwarding e-mail address (or phone number) for contact outside the school year. Please complete the Student Contact Information form that is available on our website under Important Links and include with your submission.

    Supplemental Information Checklist

  • Cover letter stating your intent to submit (title of paper) to the Discovery journal with signatures of ALL co-authors included.
  • Summer contact form (see above for website link).
  • Biographies for each student author (see past issues for example of what to include).
  • Professional quality head shots of all student authors to accompany biographies. if you have not already had a photo taken by Fred Miller, contact him to make an appointment
  • Photos (high resolution, at least 300 DPI, if possible) of you performing your research in the field or lab; participating in internships; studying abroad; presenting at conferences, etc. for inclusion in our extra photos section, “Bumpers College Students in Action.”
  • Review Procedures

    Papers will be reviewed by an editorial board, which will decide as follows:

  • Publish with minor revision
  • Publish with acceptable revision
  • Revise and resubmit
  • Reject
  • Written comments of reviewers will be provided to the author. Student authors are expected to make revisions as part of the publication process. Students will be required to submit a separate file stating how each comment was addressed in the revision. If the student author disagrees with a suggestion, the rationale for not making a suggested change should be provided.
    View an example of a response to reviewer document at: When a paper is accepted “with revisions,” the managing editor will approve a final draft for publication.

    Download a PDF copy of Discovery's  Instructions for Authors