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Undergraduate Journal of Public Health

Submission Procedures

●  All manuscripts should be submitted as a word document.​

●  Submission over 15 double space pages will not be accepted. (References are not included in page count)

●  Using ChatGPT is heavily discouraged. ChatGPT may be use for brainstorming, but under no circumstances can ChatGPT be used for writing. If ChatGPT was used in any form, authors must disclose that in order to be considered for submission.


Publication Eligibility:

●  Authors must be current undergraduate students at an accredited university.

●  Multiple authors may write one article together.

●  Work that was originally completed for a current or previous class is eligible for submission. However, we receive many strong original submissions, so it is recommend to revise your work accordingly to be competitive.

●  The manuscript has not been submitted, and will never be submitted, to another publication of any kind.

●  The manuscript is the original, sole work of the author(s).

●  The manuscript conforms to the University of Michigan’s academic integrity policies.


All papers published in the UJPH belong to one of the following four categories: independent research papers, literature reviews, perspectives, and field notes. Manuscripts must meet all of the criteria for one of the four categories. The specifics of each are described below.

1. Independent Research Paper Requirements:

  • Independent research submissions describe original academic research. The research must either have been conducted in the field of public health, or be directly and manifestly related to public health.

  • The author(s) of the submission must have either conducted or meaningfully contributed to the research.

  • If using research from a laboratory, authors must obtain permission to publish the paper from their principal investigator and/or their supervising postdoctoral/graduate students.

  • Independent articles resemble formal research papers in both form and tone.

  • All submissions include the following sections: abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion/conclusion, and references.

  • They use descriptive statistics to draw their conclusions, so they include tables, graphs, and figures when appropriate.

  • They employ a clinical, dispassionate tone.

  • Articles are at least six double-spaced pages in length.

What makes a good Independent Research article:

  • Independent research articles are hypothesis-driven investigations. They center around a single research question, your hypothesis regarding the question, the methods that you employed to answer it, and the results of your investigation.

  • Good articles clearly and convincingly answer the question of whether the results of your research confirm your initial hypothesis.

  • Independent research articles need not describe research conducted in a public health laboratory, under the supervision of a primary investigator.

  • Authors are encouraged to explore other means of analyzing data, such as using public databases to generate and test hypotheses.

2. Perspectives Requirements:

  • In these articles, authors present their views on a current public health issue.

  • The issue can be municipal, state-level, national, or international in scope

  • Perspectives articles are driven by a clear, concise, falsifiable thesis.

  • Every point that the author(s) makes should help to demonstrate their thesis.

  • Every factual claim must be backed up with peer-reviewed scientific evidence.

  • All articles must cite a minimum of five peer-reviewed sources.

  • Articles are at least four double-spaced pages in length.

What makes a good Perspectives article:

  • Articles should have a less formal tone than a traditional peer-reviewed research article.

  • It is not enough for Perspectives authors to describe a public health issue. They must also make value judgements about the issue. What caused it, and what can be done about it?

  • Good articles conclude by  discussing the policy implications of your thesis.

  • Good articles summarize and either qualify or refute a reasonable counter-argument to your thesis.

  • But, you are not obligated to concede that the counter-argument has its merits if you do not believe this.

  • Do not rely heavily on jargon: articles should be digestible by the general student body

3. Field Notes Requirements:

  • Field notes articles examine a public health issue found within a specific population by recounting your own experience with the issue.

  • They contain either an account of the author(s)’ firsthand field experience, field research conducted by the author(s), or both.

  • The author(s) makes a broader point about the state of public health within a certain place by drawing upon peer-reviewed research on this subject.

  • Articles cite a minimum of five peer-reviewed sources.

  • Articles are at least four double-spaced pages in length.

What makes a good Field Notes article:

  • The blog edition of the UJPH features a section called “Stories”, which, like Field Notes, consists of non-fictional personal narratives. The salient difference between the two is what comprises the bulk of both article types.

  • Field Notes articles convey the urgency of a current public health issue. As such, they describe the issue in impersonal terms, making generous use of data and peer-reviewed research findings.

  • Stories articles, well, tell an evocative, moving story about someone’s experience with a public health issue past or present. They mostly consist of anecdotes of the person/people whose experiences you are profiling.

  • Field Notes focus on the finer points of the issue itself, while Stories focus on the people whom it has affected.

  • Field Notes are clinical in tone, while Stories are expressive, even artful.

4. Literature Reviews Requirements:

  • Literature reviews analyze a specific public health topic by synthesizing the findings of numerous previously-published scientific works.

  • They establish a consensus answer to a specific research question.

  • They employ appropriate statistical techniques in order to achieve this.

  • If the data show that the research question cannot be sufficiently answered without further study, then say this!

  • Articles incorporate data from a minimum of ten sources; authors should incorporate as many studies as is possible.

  • Articles use sub-headers to organize content areas.

  • Articles are at least four double-spaced pages in length.

What makes a good Literature Reviews article:

  • Good articles explain why you chose to research your particular subject

  • They explain why you chose to include the studies that appear in your analysis.

  • If you decided to exclude any seemingly relevant studies, you should provide your rationale for doing this.

  • The scope of these articles is neither too broad or too narrow

    • For example, “Are we winning the fight against malaria?” is too broad, while “Has this particular small town succeeded in wiping out malaria?” is too narrow. “Did this particular country’s recent anti-malaria campaign achieve its objectives?” is an example of an appropriate scope.

  • Good literature reviews discuss the policy implications of your findings.

Editorial standards for all UJPH articles

  • Any fact that isn’t common knowledge must be cited in-text

    • “Smoking causes lung cancer” is an example of common knowledge.

    • 110,000 Americans died of Alzheimer’s disease in 2017 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2018), conversely, requires a citation.

  • You should make use of academic terminology when appropriate. This includes, for example, terms from the fields of public health, public policy, medicine, and statistics.

    • Some members of the general student body might encounter these terms for the first time when reading your article. As such, you should define any potentially unfamiliar terms when you first use them.

  • Articles obey the conventions of American English spelling and grammar.

  • As a rule of thumb, no sentence should exceed 40 words, and very few should exceed 30.

Manuscript Formatting

  • Manuscripts must be double-spaced, have 1” margins, and be written in 12 point, Times New Roman font.

  • Manuscripts must be submitted as Microsoft Word files (as either .doc and .docx).

  • The author(s)’ names must be completely absent from the manuscript.

  • All manuscripts must contain an abstract, which will not exceed 250 words.

  • In order to foster an efficient review process, we require you to add line numbers to the body of your article. This can be accomplished in Microsoft Word by clicking on Layout>Line numbers>Continuous.

Tables, Images, and Figures

  • All tables, images, and figures must be the original work of the submission author(s).

  • Tables, images, and figures can be integrated into the main body of the text, but they must also be included at the end of the manuscript. They must be present in the highest possible resolution.

  • All tables, images, and figures must be accompanied by a relevant caption. The caption contextualizes and explains its subject. Captions must be single spaced and written in a 10 point, Times New Roman font.

  • All graphs must have appropriately labeled axes.


  • The list of works cited, and all in-text citations, should conform to the American Psychological Association (APA) format.

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