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Article Guidelines

Manuscript Guidelines


Articles must be original work, previously unpublished, and not simultaneously submitted to another publication.

• Articles should clearly demonstrate practical relevance to law enforcement executives and provide them with information they can apply to their agencies and/or officers. Including lessons learned, recommendations, or similar information is strongly encouraged.

• Articles should be authored by professionals in the field or law enforcement officers. Other articles will be considered, but those by law enforcement are preferred.

• Manuscripts are subject to a multi-stage review and editorial process; the editor reserves the right to edit and revise submitted manuscripts prior to publication.

• Feature articles (main articles) should be 2,000–4,000 words long; exceptions may occasionally be made for online bonus material or at the editor’s discretion.

Police Chief house style is based on the most recent edition of The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS). Articles will be edited to align with CMS and our internal style guides. Please adhere to the following guidelines for articles:

• Articles should be explanatory, rather than anecdotal—keep direct quotations to a minimum.

Manuscripts must be written in third person (he, she, they, it). First-person (I, we, our) submissions will only be permitted in rare circumstances at the editor’s discretion.

Images/figures are welcome (even encouraged), but should contribute to the text, not merely serve as text ornamentation. Please see the submission guidelines for graphics below.

Police Chief uses endnotes—manuscripts should not have footnotes, in-text citations, or reference lists. Instead all notes should be marked in the text in brackets. (i.e., [1]) and the corresponding citations or information should be listed at the end of the manuscript, also with bracketed numbers.

• Follow CMS guidelines in §14 for endnote formats.

• Do not use Microsoft Word’s automatic footnote/endnote functions

• Citations (via endnotes) are required for all statistics, court cases, quotations, facts, and works mentioned.

• Sources may include texts, people, websites, internal documents, periodicals, newspapers, etc. However, we do not allow citations from uncontrolled sources such as Wikipedia.


Preparing your manuscript:

• Ensure your manuscript adheres to the guidelines above. Variation from the above without the direct permission from the editor may result in the rejection of a manuscript.

• Avoid over-formatting submissions. Do not use decorative fonts, headers/footers, page numbers, colored text, text boxes, or other formatting elements. Submissions should be in Times New Roman, Calibri, or a similar font, and should be clean documents.

• Acceptable file types are Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx) or other editable text files (.txt). Please do not send PDFs, InDesign, or WordPerfect files.

• Include a brief author bio with the article. All submissions must include at least the author’s name, position/title, organization, mailing address, and e-mail address.

Graphics (Images, photos, tables, graphs, etc.):

Do not embed graphics in text; instead, mark their placement in brackets. (i.e., [Insert Figure 1 here]). Provide any necessary captions along with the placement instructions.

Send graphics as separate files. They must be high-resolution (300 dpi+) image files (.jpeg or. tif).


• Use the electronic submission form; you should receive an automatic acknowledgement to let you know your submission has been received.

• Submissions undergo a multi-stage review process. This process, along with the need to evaluate space and schedule availability, means it can take up to 18 months for an author to receive notice of a decision to publish. Articles not selected for publication are returned without criticism.

Policies and Payment

• Authors do not receive compensation for published articles—they receive byline credit and five complimentary copies of the issue.

• IACP holds exclusive manuscript rights between acceptance and publication. Authors must withdraw their manuscript from consideration if they wish to submit it to another publication.

• Upon publication in Police Chief, copyright is held by IACP. This applies regardless of whether the article is published online or in the print magazine.

It is the author’s responsibility to ensure that he or she has permission to use photographs and other materials. Additionally, submissions assumes that all authors/contributors are open to the publication of the article in Police Chief and on www.policechiefmagazine.org.


Danielle Gudakunst
Managing Editor

Magazine Copies/Reviews/Manuscript Status
Joycelyn Newell
Circulation Assistant