Journal Author Guidelines
Professional School Counseling journal welcomes original manuscripts on school counseling research, practice, theory and contemporary issues in the field. The journal accepts three types of articles, including Featured Research, Conceptual, and Practitioner.
Featured Research: These well-designed research manuscripts may include qualitative and quantitative studies, including meta-analyses. Manuscripts must inform and advance the school counseling profession. Featured Research manuscripts include appropriate sampling procedures and response rate, data-collection methods, data analyses and interpretations. Featured Research manuscripts must include (a) a well-focused literature review that synthesizes the study's foundational research and theory; (b) rationale for and purpose of the study; (c) clearly articulated research question(s) and, when appropriate, hypotheses; (d) comprehensive method section including participants, instruments, variables and procedures; and (e) results and discussion sections. With quantitative findings, appropriate effect sizes should be included. The discussion should summarize the findings in light of previous research and theory, as well as include research limitations, implications and recommendations for school counseling practice and future investigations. Manuscripts submitted in this category should not exceed 25 pages, not including references. Longer manuscripts will be considered if the methodology warrants. Typically, no more than five tables/figures will be published.
Examples of Featured Research articles include:
- Warren, J. M., & Mauk, G. W. (2019). Implementation Science: A Path Toward Strengthening School Counselor Practice. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X19878120
- Merlin-Knoblich, C., Moss, L., Cholewa, B., & Springer, S. I. (2019). A Consensual Qualitative Research Exploration of School Counselor Multicultural Education Behaviors. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X20940637
Conceptual: Conceptual manuscripts provide readers with new and innovative perspectives on timely and relevant topics for school counselors and school counselor educators. This manuscript category includes both philosophical and conceptual works and includes comprehensive literature reviews. Relevance of the topic and of the proposed ideas to school counseling must be clearly evident. Support for the ideas must be provided via related literature, and implications for school counseling research and practice must be addressed. Conceptual manuscripts should not exceed 20 pages, not including references.
Examples of Conceptual articles include:
- Foxx, S. P., & Anderson, K. (2019). Starting the Conversation About Interdisciplinary Counselor and Teacher Training. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X20940646
- Martinez, R. R., Gavin Williams, R., & Green, J. (2019). The Role of School Counselors Delivering a Trauma-Informed Care Approach to Supporting Youth in Foster Care. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X20947747
Practitioner Research: These manuscripts, typically written by practicing school counselors, provide evidence of effective school counseling practices. Practitioner Research manuscripts answer the question, "What works?" (or, "What doesn't work?") and can include outcome studies, case studies, action research and other small studies evaluating an intervention or program. Ideally, Practitioner Research manuscripts provide accountability or effectiveness data. These manuscripts are shorter than Featured Research manuscripts, with less emphasis on an extensive literature review and a rigorous research design and more emphasis on describing the methodology and procedures used and on the results (i.e., what you did and what you found). These manuscripts need not adhere to the rigorous research design standards expected of Featured Research manuscripts, but authors must describe their methods in enough detail that their programs or interventions can be replicated. These studies are not meant to be generalizable, but implications for school counseling research and practice must be addressed. Practitioner Research manuscripts should not exceed 14 pages, not including abstract, references and appendices.
To increase the publication of practitioner-focused manuscripts, ASCA offers support for practicing school counselor authors. Practitioners may submit a proposal to Carol Kaffenberger, associate editor for practitioner research. If the proposal is accepted, a writing mentor will be offered. See practitioner-focused guidelines for details about this process.
Examples of Practitioner Research articles include:
- Beasley, J. J. (2019). Girls’ Relational Aggression: A Small Group Intervention. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X20902099
- Bleasdale, J. E., Peterson, M. C., & Nidich, S. (2019). Effect of Meditation on Social/Emotional Well-Being in a High-Performing High School. Professional School Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156759X20940639
How to Submit a Manuscript
Manuscripts submitted to Professional School Counseling must be original works that are not under consideration by another periodical. Manuscripts must conform to the guidelines of the American Psychological Association (APA) Publication Manual (7th ed.). The manual is in most libraries and major bookstores and available online. Refer to the APA guidelines to eliminate bias based on gender, sexual orientation, racial or ethnic group, disability or age.
- Avoid using passive voice.
- ASCA style does not allow footnotes (except in tables and figures) or bibliographies. For reference, endnote and in-text citations, follow APA style.
- Keep article titles and headings within the article as short as possible.
- For the reviewers' benefit, double space all material, including references and quotations, and allow wide margins.
- Before submitting your manuscript for review, review this checklist to ensure your manuscript has the best opportunity for publication. [For practitioner research manuscripts, review this checklist.]
Professional School Counseling only accepts manuscript submissions electronically using Manuscript Central. First-time users must first create an account. Select “Author Center” and follow the instructions below:
- After you have logged in, click Author in the menu bar.
- Select Start a New Submission on the left navigation.
- Choose Begin Submission and follow prompts.
Note: When uploading files, please ensure that your Main Document file does NOT include your name or any other identifying information. Do NOT submit an additional copy of your manuscript with identifying information on it. Review the checklist to ensure you have complied with guidelines.
You may stop a submission at any phase and save it to submit later. After submission, you will receive a confirmation via e-mail. You can also log-on to Manuscript Central any time to check the status of your manuscript. The editors will inform you via e-mail once a decision has been made.
Copyright: ASCA maintains the copyright on all articles it publishes in the journal. If your article is accepted, you will be asked to fill out a copyright transfer form before your article can be published.
This Journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics.
Professional School Counseling journal and SAGE Publishing disseminate high-quality research and engaged scholarship globally, and we are committed to diversity and inclusion in publishing. We encourage submissions from a diverse range of authors from across all countries and backgrounds.
Professional School Counseling is committed to upholding the integrity of the academic record. We encourage authors to refer to the Committee on Publication Ethics’ International Standards for Authors and view the Publication Ethics page on the SAGE Author Gateway.
Plagiarism: Professional School Counseling and SAGE take issues of copyright infringement, plagiarism or other breaches of best practice in publication very seriously. We seek to protect the rights of our authors and we always investigate claims of plagiarism or misuse of published articles. Equally, we seek to protect the reputation of the journal against malpractice. Submitted articles may be checked with duplication-checking software. Where an article, for example, is found to have plagiarized other work or included third-party copyright material without permission or with insufficient acknowledgement, or where the authorship of the article is contested, we reserve the right to take action including, but not limited to: publishing an erratum or corrigendum (correction); retracting the article; taking up the matter with the head of department or dean of the author's institution and/or relevant academic bodies or societies; or taking appropriate legal action.
Prior publication: If material has been previously published, it is not generally acceptable for publication in a SAGE journal. However, there are certain circumstances where previously published material can be considered for publication. Please refer to the guidance on the SAGE Author Gateway or if in doubt, contact the managing editor at email@example.com..
Conflict of interest: It is the policy of Professional School Counseling to require a declaration of conflicting interests from all authors enabling a statement to be carried within the paginated pages of all published articles.
Please ensure that a Declaration of Conflicting Interests statement is included at the end of your manuscript, after any acknowledgements and prior to the references. If no conflict exists, please state that "The Author(s) declare(s) that there is no conflict of interest." For guidance on conflict of interest statements, please see the ICMJE recommendations here.
Funding acknowledgement: Professional School Counseling requires all authors to acknowledge their funding in a consistent fashion under a separate heading. Please visit the Funding Acknowledgements page on the SAGE Journal Author Gateway to confirm the format of the acknowledgment text in the event of funding, or state that: "This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors."
Informed consent: For research articles, authors are also required to state in the methods section whether participants provided informed consent and whether the consent was written or verbal. Information on informed consent to report individual cases or case series should be included in the manuscript text. A statement is required regarding whether written informed consent for subject information and images to be published was provided by the subject(s) or a legally authorized representative. Please do not submit the subject’s actual written informed consent with your article, as this in itself breaches the subject's confidentiality. The journal requests that you confirm to us, in writing, that you have obtained written informed consent but the written consent itself should be held by the authors/investigators themselves. The confirmatory letter may be uploaded with your submission as a separate file.
Please also refer to the ICMJE Recommendations for the Protection of Research Participants.
Contact managing editor Angie Hickman if you have any questions.