Author Guidelines

Manuscripts are submitted to the Editor-in-Chief at and must meet the requirements described in theGuidelines for Contributors to AJOT, ” a document that is updated and published annually in the November/December supplement to the American Journal of Occupational Therapy.

  • If you are considering submitting an article to AJOT, first visit; answers to most questions about submitting an article are provided there.
  • Authors who are able to suggest one or more reviewers at the time of their submission may find that their manuscript moves more quickly through the review process. Many factors influence the speed with which papers are reviewed, however, so we cannot guarantee an exact response time.
  • If you are an author and have questions about an article that has been submitted or published, contact

Updates to the "Guidelines for Contributors to AJOT"

AJOT is distributed online only. At this time, the journal does not require fees for submissions.

Authors should review the following documents before submitting manuscripts to AJOT:

  • Chan, L., & Heinemann, A. W. (2014). Elevating the quality of disability and rehabilitation research: Mandatory use of the EQUATOR reporting guidelines. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 68, 137–138.
  • Gutman, S. A. (2010). From the Desk of the Editor—Reporting standards for intervention effectiveness studies. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 64, 523–527.
  • Gutman, S. A., & Murphy, S. L. (2012). From the Desk of the Editor and Associate Editor—Information commonly unreported in intervention effectiveness studies. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 66, 7–10.

In addition, the most recent edition of the Guidelines contains changes to the requirements for discussion of effect sizes, impact of research, and implications for practice as well as information on reporting standards for different types of studies. 

AJOT uses structured abstracts; guidelines are available here.

Authors should note the following technical requirements for figures and strive to submit camera-ready materials:

  • Figures submitted with articles may be in black and white or in color and should be able to be reproduced with minimal editing or resizing. All text within figures should be legible on an 8.5 x 11 printed page and may be up to 7 inches wide.

Single-subject case reports are not considered for publication; studies must have an N of at least 3. 

Limited space is allocated to "The Issue Is . . ." articles, and otherwise acceptable manuscripts may be rejected if they cannot be published within a reasonable time frame.

Systematic Reviews

Clinical Trials

Beginning January 1, 2016, clinical trials that are the subject of manuscripts submitted to AJOT must be registered with  (or, for non-U.S. researchers, a similar public clinical trials registry). All trials commencing participant recruitment on or after January 1, 2016, should be registered prospectively (i.e., before recruiting participants). Trials that started or finished recruitment before January 1, 2016, but are the subject of manuscripts submitted  on or after that date must be retrospectively registered.

The trial registration website address and trial registration number must be included in the final, unmasked manuscript in the Acknowledgments section.

AJOT uses the National Institutes of Health (2014) definition of clinical trial:

A research study in which one or more human subjects are prospectively assigned to one or more interventions (which may include placebo or other control) to evaluate the effects of those interventions on health-related biomedical or behavioral outcomes.

Refer to the NIH website ( for definitions of terms and more information.

Qualitative Research

Authors submitting manuscripts based on qualitative research should refer to the standards developed by the American Psychological Association Publications and Communications Board Working Group on Journal Article Reporting Standards for Qualitative Research (JARS–Qual Working Group). See Levitt, H. M., Bamberg, M., Creswell, J. W., Frost, D. M., Josselson, R., & Suárez-Orozco, C. (2018). Journal article reporting standards for qualitative primary, qualitative meta-analytic, and mixed methods research in psychology: The APA Publications and Communications Board task force report. American Psychologist, 73,  26–46.

Open Access

Authors may now purchase immediate open access for articles. To do so, please email

Kudos: Get the Word Out About One's Research!

To help AJOT authors publicize their research to colleagues and funders, all authors—corresponding authors as well as contributing authors—are encouraged to participate in a free service called Kudos. Authors can use Kudos to make outreach efforts more effective:

  • Open up research to new audiences.
  • Track the most effective networks for getting one's work read, discussed, and cited.
  • Learn where to focus efforts to make best use of time.
  • Improve the metrics by which one's reach is evaluated.

With Kudos, authors can do the following:

  • Tell the story behind the research: Explain what the work is about and why it is important in plain language. Researchers can include a personal perspective that shares their experiences and inspirations with potential readers.
  • Keep track of all outreach: Kudos links can be shared through any existing social media networks (Twitter, ResearchGate, LinkedIn, etc.); its central dashboard maps any clicks on these links against changes in the number of downloads, altmetrics, and citations.
  • Manage all publications in one place: Kudos can be used to explain and share publications from any publisher that uses CrossRef DOIs. Researchers can also add links to related resources that further help explain the research, set it in context, or connect it to more recent activity in the field.

Centralizing outreach efforts and mapping them against meaningful metrics will let researchers make the most of their scarce time and improve understanding of which activities are most effective.

We encourage authors to take advantage of this free service. Questions may be directed to

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