Instructions for Authors


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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. You DO NOT have to be an honors student to submit. However, students who have received a Bumpers College Undergraduate Research and Creative Project Grant are expected to submit a paper based on their project. This must NOT be your unedited honors thesis. The paper must be revised according to Discovery guidelines.

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 http://scholarworks.uark.edu/discoverymag/all_issues.html

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.


  • For honors students, please do not turn in an unedited honors thesis. Work with your advisor to meet Discovery requirements, which likely includes shortening total length, revising materials and methods, reducing the number of figures and tables, etc.

  • Articles should be formatted in Word, 12-point text, double-spaced, in a single column, with pages numbered, and continuous line numbering turned on so that reviewers can easily refer to comments. Length should be limited to about 2000 words, but no minimum or maximum length is required.

  • PLEASE put TABLES and FIGURES one to a page at the end of the document. DO NOT embed them in the text. They will also need to be loaded separately as supplemental files when you submit through ScholarWorks@UARK.

  • There is no need to mimic the format of the finished journal. The Managing Editor will import your document into InDesign and format in two columns and place tables and figures, etc.

    • 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 web-only so color figures and tables are encouraged. Each figure must be submitted as a color 300 DPI resolution JPG or PNG file 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. Make sure that all text labels within the figure and x- and y-axis labels will be readable at the final publication size. Please use 11 point Calibri (a sans-serif font) for all figure text. Make sure all text used in figures and tables is in black not gray (which is the new Microsoft default).

    • 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. Please use 11 point Calibri (a sans-serif font) for all table text with title only in bold and centered above table; look at prior Discovery journals for capitalization style, table width, and horizontal (0.05 width) rule styles. Please do not put vertical ruling lines in the tables.

    • View helpful tips for creating tables at: https://aaes.uark.edu/files/2019/09/Table-guidelines.pdf

    • Center figure captions below figure in a 11 pt. sans-serif font such as Calibri.

    • 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; and identify faculty sponsor or mentor.

      Meet the Student-Author(s) and Project Highlights

      The Meet the Student-Author(s) section consists of a professional headshot (taken by Paden Johnson, padenj@uark.edu) of student author(s) as well as a short biography (240 words; 1400 characters with spaces) that tells readers about student author(s): (high school attended, activities and awards while at the university, etc.). Please see past issues for examples. This is the place to thank professors and advisors. For Project Highlights, we will need 3 brief bullet points (each 100 character maximum, not including spaces) that clearly and succinctly explain the main takeaways of the research (i.e., overall what was done, significance, and practical applications of findings) for a broad-based, non-technical audience. Please avoid using jargon and technical terms. We will need a photo of the student alongside these bullet points showing student-author(s) at work in the lab, field, traveling abroad, presenting a poster, receiving an award, etc. These photos will be loaded as supplemental files when submitting through the Discovery Journal location on ScholarWorks@UARK.


      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 in 500 words or less.

      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 the 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 (undergraduate research grants, etc.) and other assistance. Note support by any 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.

      Please note: for the first author, the initials come after the surname. For subsequent authors, the initials come before the surname.

      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: http:www.sciweb.com

      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 http://scholarworks.uark.edu/discoverymag/
    • Click on Submit button
    • Follow prompts to upload paper, tables, figures and all other supplemental information

    Do not submit through the thesis part of ScholarWorks@UARK. You must submit from within the Discovery site.

    Also submit a personal biography (refer to past issues of Discovery for style and length) and email the Managing Editor at ghalleck@uark.edu 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,

    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 below and under Helpful Links and include with your submission.

    Supplemental Information Checklist

  • An abstract (you will copy and paste into a separate window, but abstract must still remain in your Word document as well).
  • 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) and Project Highlights bullet points.
  • Professional quality head shots of all student authors to accompany biographies. if you have not already had a photo taken by Paden Johnson of Division of Agriculture Communications, contact them to make an appointment
  • Photos (at least 300 DPI) of you performing your research in the field or lab; participating in internships; studying abroad; presenting at conferences, etc. for inclusion in our Meet the Student-Author portion of each paper.
  • Review Procedures

    Papers will be reviewed by a reviewer, and decisions registered as follows:

  • Publish with minor revision
  • Publish with acceptable major revision
  • Reject
  • Written comments of reviewers will be provided to the author usually via track changes through Word. 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,” a revised manuscript will need to be submitted through ScholarWorks@UARK and the managing editor will approve a final draft for publication.

    Download a PDF copy of Discovery's  Instructions for Authors