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Publications Frequently Asked Questions

For Authors

Q. How do I submit a manuscript?

You may submit a manuscript for one of our publications using the manuscript submission system, ScholarOne Manuscripts™. For more information, visit the Submit a Manuscript page or submit directly, via the ScholarOne system.

Q. What is the difference between the 10-page limit and the 13-page limit for submitted papers?

  • The 10-page limit refers to the number of pages in double-column format that are published with no expense to the author; any paper that is published in excess of 10 pages will incur overlength fees, which are charged at $220/page. For example: if your paper is accepted with a final manuscript of 12 double-column pages, you will be charged for 2 overlength pages, or $440 total. This is stated at the submission stage as a point of reference, not a page-length limitation.
  • The 13-page limit refers to the maximum length we allow for new or resubmitted regular papers in double-column format when first going into review. Your paper is allowed to grow up to 16 pages (double-column) in the revision stages of review, but when it is first submitted, we will not send it to review if it exceeds 13 pages in length.

    Please Note:

  • Overlength fees will only be applied once a paper is accepted for publication, and will be based on the final version after IEEE editing (which, due to formatting edits, is not always the exact length of the author’s final submitted version).
  • Papers that are resubmitted after receiving a rejection decision must follow the same submission standards as a new paper.

Q. What if my paper does not fall under any of the provided EDICS categories?

Your paper must be assigned an appropriate EDICS category in order to go to peer review. The editor-in-chief (EiC) uses EDICS categories in order to assign your paper to a qualified associate editor. If your paper does not fall appropriately with any of the provided EDICS categories, please make sure that your paper fits within the scope of the journal, or research the scopes of the other SPS journals to find the best fit.

Q. Do I have to submit a copyright form when I first submit my paper for review?

Should your paper be accepted for publication, you will be given the opportunity to sign and submit the copyright form after the submission of your final files. Further, if you do not submit the copyright form immediately after submission of final files, a link to "transfer copyright" will remain open in the submitting author's Author Center under the copyright is submitted. Your paper will not publish until the copyright form is signed and submitted.

Q. I noticed that there was a mistake I forgot to fix before I submitted my paper. What should I do?

Please contact the journal’s administrator for assistance. If your paper has not yet gone to reviewers, it can be sent back to your author center for edits. If the paper has gone to reviewers, your corrections will have to be made in the revision phase, after a decision is posted. Please note that you are given the opportunity to carefully proofread all your materials before submission and therefore should only contact the journal’s administrator if the modifications are crucial and would significantly affect the content of your paper.

Q. How do I submit an overview article?

Authors interested in submitting overview articles are required to consult first with the editor-in-chief of their Transactions of choice before submitting a white paper proposal. White papers are limited to 2-pages and should motivate the topic, justify the proposal, and include a list of relevant bibliography materials including any available tutorial or overview articles related to the subject matter. The authors should also attach IEEE-style bios. White paper proposals should be submitted directly to the EiC. From there, the proposal will go through several approval stages (at the Editorial Board and Publication Board levels) before the author is informed whether or not the overview article proposal was accepted.

Please Note:

  • Overview articles can be up to double the length of a regular paper and are not subject to overlength fees.
  • J-STSP overview articles are invite-only and do not follow the process outlined above.

Q. My paper received an AQ decision, but the status for my revision says "In Peer Review." Doesn’t AQ mean it didn’t need to go through another round of reviews?

Yes, but as soon as a paper (either new or in any stage of revision) is assigned to the Associate Editor, the status changes from “Submitted” to "In Peer Review." The status simply means that your paper is now with the Associate Editor for processing, regardless of what the next steps may be.

Q. What’s the difference between a revision and a resubmission? Why does this matter?

  • In ScholarOne, a paper is referred to as a revision or a revised manuscript when the previous version has received an RQ or AQ decision, and has been submitted under the same manuscript ID with an .R1 or .R2 added to the end of it (e.g. if your manuscript T-IFS-99999-2014 has been given an RQ decision, the next version is considered a revision and the ID would be T-IFS-99999-2014.R1).
  • In ScholarOne, a paper is considered a resubmission when the previous version has received an R (Reject) decision. A resubmission is treated by submission standards as a new paper (i.e. it must adhere to the 13-page limit), but must still be identified as a resubmission by the authors when it is submitted with both a cover letter and a response-to-reviewers letter.

Q. My paper got rejected twice from the same journal. Can I submit it again to the same journal? Can I submit it again to another SPS journal?

SPS policy states that you can only resubmit a manuscript once to the same journal, but if it has been rejected twice in that journal, you may try again in a different SPS journal. Please note, however, that we hold the same high standards for publication across all SPS journals, so aggressively revising your paper according to the comments of the reviewers before submitting elsewhere is likely to be more beneficial than submitting your manuscript without revising.

Q. How long can my final manuscript be?

The maximum manuscript length we will publish is 16 pages in double-column, single-spaced format, including all references, figures, and author bios. If you submit your final paper at greater than 16 pages, we will not publish it until it has been reduced in length (exceptions are granted only by the editor-in-chief and on a case-to-case basis).
Please Note: overview articles can be up to double the length of a regular paper and are not subject to overlength fees.

Q. How do I pay my overlength fees?

The IEEE Reprints Department is responsible for issuing invoices to authors who incur overlength page charges. If you have yet to receive an invoice, please request one by emailing IEEE Reprints. Detailed payment instructions will appear on your invoice.

Overlength charges can be paid by credit card via fax to +1 732-981-8062, by check or money order via mail, or by wire transfer. For security reasons, IEEE does not accept credit card payments via e-mail.

Please Note:

  • For all SPS journals (excluding T-MM), overlength fees will be applied starting at the 11th published page, at a rate of $220/page. For example, if your manuscript is accepted and published at 14 pages, you will incur 3 pages worth of overlength charges and your payment due will be $660.
  • For T-MM, overlength fees will be applied starting at the 9th published page, at a rate of $220/page.
  • Overview articles are not subject to overlength fees.

Q. How many times a year do SPS journals publish?

All SPS publications are volume-only on Xplore now except for Signal Processing Magazine (which publishes 6 times per year) and the Journal of Selected Topics in Signal Processing (which also publishes 6 times per year).

Q. When can I expect to see my paper on Xplore? When can I expect to see it in print?

  • Your accepted manuscript will be made available on IEEE Xplore as a forthcoming article within 3 weeks after your final files are exported to production. This will be a preprinted version that will be later replaced by the fully edited version after you have submitted the revised proofs.
  • Once your final files have been sent to production, you will receive a confirmation letter that will notify you of your targeted month of publication. You may also contact the either journal’s administrator, or the production editor handling your proofs, for this information. 

Q. Where can I find the DOI (Digital Object Identifier) for my paper?

You will have access to the DOI once you receive your galley proofs. It will be in the email you receive, as well as on the Author Gateway. You can also locate your DOI on the bottom left-hand corner of the first page of the proof.

Q. I was looking at my paper on Xplore and I found a mistake. What do I do?

Please go to Author Correction or Suppression Request Form page on IEEE website and fill out the Author Correction/Suppression Request Form to detail the circumstances for the error. Your request will then be processed by Discovery Services.

Q. If I submit a paper to a conference, but then I expand upon it, may I submit it to a journal?

Authors may only submit original work that has not appeared elsewhere in a journal publication, nor is under review for another journal publication. Limited overlap with prior journal publications with a common author is allowed only if it is necessary for the readability of the paper and the paper is cited. It is acceptable for conference papers to be used as the basis for a more fully developed journal submission. Still, authors are required to cite related prior work; the papers cannot be identical; and the journal publication must include novel aspects. The question of whether there is sufficient novelty should be determined by the review process and not by a simple measurement of overlap determined by word count. Overlap with an unreviewed technical report or student thesis with the same authors is allowed if the original work is cited.

For Reviewers

Q. How do I become a reviewer?

Please send your affiliation information, resume, and contact information to the editor-in-chief of the journal for which you’d like to perform reviews. Please copy the journal’s administrator in the message so he/she can make sure you are set up with the correct account.

Q. What if I’ve forgotten my password, or am having trouble logging in?

This can happen due to editors creating on-the-fly accounts for reviewers to add them to papers, not knowing that a reviewer may already have an account in the system. Please contact the journal’s administrator for account/password help.

Q. Why can’t I see the paper I agreed to review in my Reviewer Center?

  • First, please check to make sure that you are looking in your Reviewer Center, not your Author Center, as all accounts created in ScholarOne are granted both a Reviewer and Author Center.
  • If you still cannot see the paper, it is possible that the paper you agreed to review is in the Reviewer Center of another account under your name. Associate Editors can create accounts for reviewers “on the fly” using your name and email address, which can cause users to have multiple accounts of which they are not aware. You can contact the journal’s administrator at any time to combine multiple accounts and consolidate all papers that have been assigned to you.

Q. Where can I find the response-to-reviewers letter that I need to process this revision?

If the authors did not upload the response-to-reviewers file in the Manuscript Files section of their submission, it can be accessed by clicking the “Author’s Response” button at the top of the submission page under the “Manuscript Information” tab. This “Author’s Response” button is located at the far right of the toolbar that also contains the buttons for “HTML,” “PDF,” “Supplementary Files,” “Original Files,” “Abstract,” “Cover Letter,” and “External Searches.”

Q. How long do I have to complete the review? Is there a deadline? What if I’m running late?

Deadlines for reviews vary per journal. The editors will provide information on deadline expectations with the review request. If you feel the review will take you longer to complete than the timeline given, please contact the associate editor with the journal’s administrator in copy to arrange an extension. The AE may ask you to recommend an alternate reviewer instead.

As a general guideline, if you know you will not be able to complete a review within the timeframe requested, you should decline to review the paper.

Q. Can I request the input of my colleagues?

Papers sent to you for review are confidential. However, requesting the opinion of a single colleague may be appropriate in some circumstances. Please consult your associate editor if you’d like to the input of outside help for the review.


For Associate Editors

Q. Where can I find the response-to-reviewers letter that I need to process this revision?

If the authors did not upload the response-to-reviewers file in the Manuscript Files section of their submission, it can be accessed by clicking the “Author’s Response” button at the top of the submission page under the “Manuscript Information” tab. This “Author’s Response” button is located at the far right of the toolbar that also contains the buttons for “HTML,” “PDF,” “Supplementary Files,” “Original Files,” “Abstract,” “Cover Letter,” and “External Searches.”

Q. How do I know if a paper is a revision?

Papers that are submitted as revisions will always have a purple stripe running down the left side of the submission page. They will also have a .R1, .R2, et al added to the end of the manuscript ID, followed by a number that indicates how many rounds of review the paper has gone through. Often, the reviewers from the previous version will be auto-populated into the “Awaiting Reviewer Scores” tab of the revised version.

Q. How do I know if a paper is a resubmission?

If a paper is a resubmission, the coordinator for the journal will have linked the original version to resubmitted paper, under the section labeled “Companion Papers” on the “Manuscript Information” tab. The authors will have also included a cover letter indicating that their paper is a resubmission, as well as provided a response letter giving the reasons for resubmission (this may be a response-to-reviewers letter, or something more succinct if the previous version received an Immediate Reject decision).

Q. How do I find the previous version of a revised or resubmitted paper?

  • For revised papers, the previous version(s) of the paper will be located under the "Version History" section on the Manuscript Information tab.
  • For resubmitted papers, the previous version of the paper will be located under the "Companion Papers" section on the Manuscript Information tab. You can access the previous version by clicking the link that says "View Details."

Q. Why does the system say “No invitation sent” while also saying “Invited” next to the reviewer’s name for this revision? How do I invite the reviewers?

When a revised paper is assigned back to the original AE, the system pulls the reviewers from the first version and says that they are invited, but no email invitations have actually been sent. The AE must go in and manually click the button labeled “invite” or change the reviewer status to “agreed” (whichever is applicable) next to the reviewer’s name to send a notification to the reviewer that the revision has been submitted and is ready for its next round of review.

Q. If a reviewer sends me his/her comments through email, what should I do?

You should ask the reviewer to log into ScholarOne and upload the comments. If the review has already been posted, please ask the admin to rescind the review back to the reviewer so that he/she can upload the comments.

Q. I retired from my AE duties 2 months ago. Why is this revision or resubmission assigned to me?

SPS policy dictates that all associate editors are responsible for the full review of the manuscripts assigned to them, including the revision and resubmission phases, regardless of when their terms end. If there is a problem with your availability that will affect handling the last stages of the papers for which you are responsible, you may contact your editor-in-chief to work out a solution.

Q. How do I gain access to my assigned papers while I am traveling?

You may request emailed copies of your assigned papers from the journal coordinator if you have problems accessing them through ScholarOne. However, please be aware that all actions and recommendations must be made through the system in order to maintain accurate records and to move the review process along.

Q. How do I nominate an individual for an Associate Editor position on a publication?

If you are interested in nominating an individual for an Associate Editor position on a publication associated with your Technical Committee, please contact the publications’s Editor-in-Chief. Information on the Society’s publications can be found on the Society’s Publications page.


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