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Author Guidelines

References/Citations, Format and Style: Work published in Virginia Libraries conforms to the latest edition of the Chicago Manual of Style and Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged.

Accepted pieces are subject to editing for style and clarity. Authors will be consulted on points of fact. Further formatting guidelines:

  • Please note guidelines for length (maximum word count) in Article Type information. Articles should generally fall within the range of 750-7,000 words - please see the full Article Type Section Policy descriptions for word length range for each category. Please query the editors before submitting any work of greater length. 
  • Please submit manuscripts via this Online Submission page - see the information above under the heading, "ONLINE SUBMISSIONS." See the "SUBMISSION PREPARATION CHECKLIST" for acceptable manuscript file formats. 
  • Please also note the additional information in this section on Illustrations, Figures, Tables, Media, and Supplementary materials. 
  • Articles should be double-spaced with any bibliographic notes occurring at the end of the article.

Illustrations, Figures, Tables, and Media: Illustrations are encouraged and should be submitted whenever appropriate to accompany a manuscript. If the author is not the copyright owner, the author is responsible for securing legal permission to publish photographs and other illustrations.  Any figure, image, graph, table, illustration, etc. should be submitted separately as a supplemental file in .jpeg or .tif format with a resolution of at least 300 dpi for placement in the final publication. *For video, audio files, or other media, please contact us to discuss options at

Supplementary Files (datasets, instruments, templates, training materials, etc.): Authors are encouraged to submit supplementary files with their submissions (e.g., datasets, research instruments, templates, etc.) to enhance readers' engagement with their work. For authors wishing to link to or include large datasets, large size supplementary files, or numerous supplementary files, the journal recommends that authors consider depositing supplementary files or datasets in a data repository, institutional repository, or disciplinary repository. This repository record can then be cited and/or linked within the manuscript. One such repository that is useful for housing any type of dataset or accompanying materials (images, handouts, training materials, survey instruments, etc.) is: figshare. For code, GitHub is a key repository. One disciplinary repository for library science and information fields is: eLiS. For additional recommendations, search for an appropriate repository at, or contact us at:

Ensuring a Blind Peer Review

*For submissions to Article Section Types with Peer Review (Research Articles and Best Practice Articles)

To ensure the integrity of the blind peer-review for submission to this journal, every effort should be made to prevent the identities of the authors and reviewers from being known to each other. This involves the authors, editors, and reviewers (who upload documents as part of their review) checking to see if the following steps have been taken with regard to the text and the file properties:

  1. The authors of the document have deleted their names from the text, with "Author" and year used in the references and footnotes, instead of the authors' name, article title, etc.
  2. With Microsoft Office documents, author identification should also be removed from the properties for the file.

    For Microsoft 2003 and previous versions, and Macintosh versions of Word:

    • Under the File menu select: Save As > Tools (or Options with a Mac) > Security > Remove personal information from file properties on save > Save.

    For MacIntosh Word 2008 (and future versions)

    1. Under the File menu select "Properties."
    2. Under the Summary tab remove all of the identifying information from all of the fields.
    3. Save the File.

    For Microsoft 2007 (Windows):

    1. Click on the office button in the upper-left hand corner of the office application
    2. Select "Prepare" from the menu options.
    3. Select "Properties" for the "Prepare" menu options.
    4. Delete all of the information in the document property fields that appear under the main menu options.
    5. Save the document and close the document property field section.

    For Microsoft 2010 (Windows):

    1. Under the File menu select "Prepare for sharing."
    2. Click on the "Check for issues" icon.
    3. click on "inspect document" icon.
    4. Uncheck all of the checkboxes except "Document Properties and Personal information".
    5. Run the document inspector, which will then do a search of the document properties and indicated if any document property fields contain any information.
    6. If the document inspector finds that some of the document properties contain information it will notify you and give you the option to "Remove all," which you will click to remove the document properties and personal information from the document.
  3. For PDF files:

    • With PDFs, the authors' names should also be removed from Document Properties found under File on Adobe Acrobat's main menu.


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.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, RTF, or WordPerfect document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal.
  5. References / Citations are included following the latest edition of the Chicago Manual of Style.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in the Author Guidelines, "Ensuring a Blind Peer Review" information have been followed.
  7. The text is single-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, tables and media are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  8. All files for illustrations, figures, tables, and media have also been submitted as separate supplementary files.
  9. All supplementary files discussed or noted in the text (e.g., datasets, research instruments, templates, etc.) have been submitted as separate supplementary files; OR if such files have been submitted to a repository, the repository record and/or information is included in the text and references.

Copyright Notice

The Virginia Library Association firmly espouses open access principles and believes that authors should retain full copyrights of their work. The agreement between Virginia Libraries and the author is a non-exclusive license to publish and authors retain their copyrights.

Additionally, upon submission of a work to Virginia Libraries, the author chooses a Creative Commons open license to apply to the work if it is accepted. With all such licenses, the author retains full copyrights, and thus, along with all other retained rights, the author is free to post the article on an institutional or personal web page subsequent to publication in Virginia Libraries. All Creative Commons license choices provide that all material published in the journal may be downloaded and distributed for the noncommercial purposes, such as for non-profit of educational advancement, and some content may be used more extensively, in accordance with each article’s designated Creative Commons license. If questions about choosing a license, please contact us:


Privacy Statement

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