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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • Author(s) have ensured that their manuscript matches the aims and scope of JIL.
  • Author(s) have read closely and followed the instructions in the Author Guidelines on the Submissions page.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration, or been rejected by another journal (or if it has, please provide an explanation in Comments to the Editor section).
  • Author(s) have included a Declarations section after the main body of their article, which includes details of their ethics approval, funding, AI-generated content and acknowledgements.
  • Author(s) have followed JIL's policy regarding authorship and using AI tools such as ChatGPT and large language models.
  • The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, or RTF document file format.
  • The submission follows APA style guidelines for inclusive and bias-free language.
  • If the submission is to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, authors and institutions should be replaced by anonymising text, eg XXX
  • If the submission is to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring an Anonymous Review (see JIL Submission Guidelines) have been followed.
  • The bibliographic requirements outlined in the Referencing section of the Author Guidelines are adhered to.
  • When available, the URLs to access references online are provided, including those for open-access versions of the reference. The URLs are ready to click (e.g.,

Author Guidelines

The information on this page contains important information about formatting and submitting your work to the Journal of Information Literacy (JIL). Please make sure you follow the instructions carefully and that your submission falls within the aims and scope of the journal. 

Submission Types
Submission Guidelines
Submitting Your Work

Submission Types

The journal accepts five types of submissions:

Research Articles (peer-reviewed articles)
Project Reports
Book Reviews (and reviews of other relevant literature)
Conference Updates
Students' Views of IL

Please note carefully our submission guidelinesguidance on referencing and details about submitting your work. JIL is open to accepting submissions in a variety of media, and we encourage authors considering alternative formats to contact the editors to discuss publication possibilities.

Submission Guidelines

The Journal of Information Literacy seeks innovative and challenging research articles and project reports which push the boundaries of information literacy thinking in theory, practice and method, and which aim to develop deep and critical understandings of the role, contribution and impact of information literacies in everyday contexts, education, health care and the workplace. 

Research Articles (peer-reviewed articles)

  1. Scope and focus

Papers published in the sections ‘Articles’ and ‘Articles from LILAC’ undergo a process of peer review. These papers may be based in research or practice and should offer an original contribution to the wider community’s understanding of information literacy. Papers in these sections should be:

  • Research informed and evidence based
  • Designed around an arguable research question
  • Contextualised with reference to previous and current advances in IL thinking
  • Methodologically robust with a demonstrable research design

All peer-reviewed articles should offer a scholarly investigation into an aspect of information literacy. Descriptive reports of classroom or online practice which do not contain such a dimension are not suitable for the ‘Articles’ and ‘Articles from LILAC’ sections.

Papers should be between 3,000 and 8,000 words, excluding references.

  1. Practical Guidance

Authors must use the article template, which can be found here. Papers are published in English and should use UK spelling.

The abstract should cover the following areas (however, please do not use these headings within the abstract):

  • Purpose of the study, including the aim and objectives and/or research questions
  • Research design and context
  • Key findings
  • Significance of the research in terms of:
  • Originality and contribution to the field of information literacy research
  • The potential impact of the research on society

Finally, authors should include a list of at least four keywords that describe the main themes of their paper. While JIL generates its own controlled vocabulary to enhance the search facilities of the site, we feel that authors would find the selection of their own keywords helpful in setting the key themes conveyed by their paper.

  1. Ensuring an anonymous review

To facilitate the anonymous review process, the name, title, affiliation and contact details of all authors should NOT be given on the title page and their institutions should NOT be identified anywhere else in the paper. Throughout the body of the paper, authors and institutions should be replaced by anonymising text, e.g. XXX. 

Please also take the following steps:

  • The authors must delete their names from the text, with XXX used in citations and references instead of the authors' names, article title, etc.
  • With Microsoft Office documents, author identification should also be removed from the properties for the file (see under File in Word), by clicking on the following, beginning with File on the main menu of the Microsoft application: File > Save As > Tools (or Options with a Mac) > Security > Remove personal information from file properties on save > Save.
  • With PDFs, the authors' names should also be removed from Document Properties found under File on Adobe Acrobat's main menu.
  1. Structure and argument

  • The focus of the paper should be clearly set out, together with its relevance to the IL debate.
  • Clearly articulate the main themes, aims and objectives of the study in a problem statement. Outline the research questions that guided the work from its inception and design through the analysis and findings to the conclusions, implications and applications.
  • The paper should provide a balanced and thoughtful review of previous related literature, placing its contribution in context and indicating how it adds to what has gone before.
  • Whether the research is theoretical or applied, authors should give an account of the method(s) used to frame their thinking and approach, generate or collect their data (if appropriate), and guide their analysis, findings and discussion. Include an explanation of why this method was the most appropriate one for the investigation, and deal honestly with any limitations it may have had.
  • Demonstrate that the research was conducted ethically. Where appropriate, authors should describe how they protected their participants and met the requirements of their institution’s ethics committee. If the research has been assigned an ethics protocol number, please include it.
  • Make clear statements of the findings, conclusions, implications and applications as appropriate. Papers should examine their findings analytically (not simply describe them) and discuss their implications for both further research and wider social impact. Where appropriate, please relate the findings back to the themes and previous research discussed in the literature review.
  • Either in the discussion or conclusion, authors should critically reflect on their work, exploring any limitations and how it could have been improved. They should restate briefly whether and how the research has succeeded in attaining the aims and objectives set out initially, and how the research question(s) have been met. Recommendations for further work may also be included here.
  1. The peer review process

JIL follows a double-anonymous peer review process, meaning that articles are read by at least two reviewers who have no knowledge of the author’s identity. To enable this, authors should ensure they follow the guidelines in section (3) above on anonymising their work. Authors should also ensure that any observation, derivation or argument that has been previously published should be accompanied by the relevant citation. Further information about JIL's peer review process is on our About page.

  1. The route to publication

The peer-reviewed publication process consists of the following stages:

  1. Initial submission: Author submits their article using the template supplied and through the journal’s online submission process.
  1. Peer review: Article is reviewed and recommendations are made by the peer reviewers on the suitability of the submission and the extent of the changes required.
  1. Feedback and revision: Feedback from the reviewers and the editor is sent to the author with suggested corrections, improvements and clarifications where needed. The author should consider these changes carefully but should feel free to provide justifications for not changing the paper in line with the suggested amendments.
  1. Submission of amended article: If the changes requested by the reviewers are substantial, the article is sent back to them so that they can comment on the amended version of the article. If the requested changes are minor, then the article goes directly to the editor who supervises the final editing stage.
  1. Editing: This stage may occur a number of times depending on the extent of the changes required. If the changes made do not address the concerns made by reviewers and editor, the article may be declined at this stage. Final corrections by the editor are undertaken before the article is accepted for publication.
  1. Copyediting: During this stage, the copyeditor finalises the wording and layout in consultation with the author(s).

Project Reports

Contributions to this section include reports on projects or resources related to information, digital and learning literacies. Reports should be between 1,000 and 5,000 words and may include images and diagrams. Longer reports (over 2,500 words) should include a brief abstract describing the purpose and context of the project.

The major difference between contributions to the Project Reports section and the Articles section is that articles must be driven by an arguable research question, as outlined above, whereas project reports enable authors to share good practices in developing a project or resource. Reports should not simply describe classroom practice or routine course evaluation procedures. They should be situated in relation to an existing theory, model, framework or definition of information literacy, and should clearly demonstrate how the project or resource advances our thinking about IL, or showcases innovative practices in supporting its development.


- If the project has been assigned an ethics protocol number, please include it.
- Authors must use the article template, which can be found here.
- Papers are published in English and should use UK spelling.

Book Reviews (and reviews of other relevant literature)

The journal publishes reviews of a wide range of media, including books, e-books, and websites on the topic of information literacy and software fostering information literacy practices. Reviews should discuss appropriateness for the intended target audience, readability, currency, content and overall value. The suggested length for reviews is 750–1,000 words. Please use the book review template which can be found here.

Conference Updates

We welcome accounts of information literacy events, such as conferences, seminars and workshops that have taken place both in the UK and other countries. The suggested length for these types of contributions is 750-1,500 words, and authors may include photos of the event. Authors should submit the file in Word or RTF.

Submissions for the Conference Updates section should be structured as follows: Title of the contribution, details of the author(s), and short account. Please format report titles as follows:

- For annual or other regular conferences, use the name of the event as the main title, followed by the year (e.g. 'LILAC 2016: ...', 'LOEX 2017: ...') and with a subtitle of your choice;
- For one-off events, use the same format as above but omit the year;
- Ensure that the full date and location of the event or conference are given in the main body of the report.

Please obtain the permission of any speakers or participants you wish to photograph and bear in mind that pictures, like all material published in JIL, should be made available under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike licence. 

Students’ Views of IL

Submissions for this section consist of papers drawn from research (theoretical or applied) undertaken by students as part of a postgraduate course in LIS or other cognate disciplines, such as education or media. Contributions to this section should be structured as follows: Title, author, summary of the research undertaken (covering: outline of research and audience targeted, main findings and conclusion) and list of references. The suggested length is 1,000 words. Please submit the file in Word or RTF.


Authors must ensure that they present an accurate account of their research and that the work they submit is their own. Where they have used the words or ideas of others, they must quote or cite the original appropriately. Failure to do this may have serious repercussions (see the journal’s Publication Ethics and Publication Misconduct Statement for more details).

Referencing should be in APA style. See the website for the particular conventions used. Please include DOIs for sources where these exist.

It is the author’s responsibility to ensure that any material used in the article, such as photographs, images, charts or tables, may be used without infringing copyright. Authors must obtain permission to include any third-party content that is not openly licensed.

Submitting Your Work

All contributions must be submitted through the journal’s website to ensure that the editing process is appropriately recorded and managed. For this reason, we regret that it is not possible to consider papers submitted directly to the Managing Editor, although prospective authors may contact the Managing Editor for a preliminary discussion on their submission.

Submissions to JIL must be previously unpublished and must not be under review or consideration by another journal.

To ensure the broadest possible audience for the Journal of Information Literacy the editorial team has set up a number of agreements that stipulate that the journal’s issues will be included on one or more subscription databases, although the articles will still be available free of charge and in full-text format. If you wish to have your article excluded from these agreements please state so in the ‘Comments to Editor’ box on the submission form.

By submitting their articles to JIL the author(s) retain the copyright, but grant the right of first publication to the journal (including publication in print and electronic media). From December 2015 articles published in JIL are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike Licence.

Research articles (peer-reviewed articles)

Section default policy

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