Author Guidelines

The Journal of Behavioral Health Services and Research (JBHSR) is a quarterly, peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary journal that publishes articles on the organization, financing, delivery, and outcomes of behavioral health (including mental health, alcohol, and drug abuse) services. It is the official publication of the National Council for Behavioral Health (NCBH). Download a pdf of the guidelines.

Submission of Manuscripts

JBHS&R will only review manuscripts for publication with the understanding that it has not been previously published (in full or in part) either in print or online, and is not currently being reviewed for publication elsewhere. The JBHS&R invites contributions in the form of Regular Articles (approximately 20 pages, not including references, tables, or figures), Brief Reports (13 Pages), Policy Perspectives (16 pages), Literature Reviews (20 pages), Commentaries (16 pages), Letters to the Editor (1 page), and Book Reviews (1 page). Neither the length of the paper nor the category to which manuscripts are assigned necessarily reflects their importance to the behavioral health field.
Manuscripts are to be submitted online via the JBHS&R’s Editorial Manager Website, http://www.editorialmanager.com/jbhs/default.aspx . Please visit this site for more details on how to register with Editorial Manager and how to upload and electronically submit your manuscript.

Manuscript Preparation

Manuscripts must be uploaded to Editorial Manager as a Microsoft Word document. Do not use the graphics option for tables or the sequential (embedded) footnote option. Manuscripts must be double-spaced (including abstracts, footnotes, block quotations, references, and tables), with one-inch margins. The manuscript pages should be numbered consecutively starting with the first page of the text (not abstract). The use of first person (i.e., I, we, our) in the manuscript narrative should not be used. In addition, authors are expected to use "person/people first" language (e.g., "individuals with chronic mental disorders" rather than "the chronic mentally ill").

Manuscript Contents

Manuscript submissions should contain four separate Microsoft Word document files: 1) a title page with author information; 2) the manuscript narrative including a second title page WITHOUT author information, abstract, and references list; 3) tables (if applicable); and 4.) figures (if applicable). Table and figure document files should be uploaded and appear at the end of the manuscript narrative. Each manuscript submission must include the following items:

Title Page WITH Author Information: Include title, key words for indexing, name(s) of author(s), academic degree(s), name and address of organization where the work was done, and any acknowledgments, credits, or disclaimers. Manuscripts should include a running head on the title page of the manuscript.

Abstract: All manuscripts, except Letters to the Editor, require an Abstract of no more than 150 words. No references should be cited in the abstract. The Abstract should not include any subheadings. Please double-space the Abstract and place it on a separate page following the title page WITHOUT author information.

Implications for Behavioral Health: JBHS&R is committed to publishing manuscripts in applied behavioral health policy and services delivery as well as publishing articles based upon empirical research. All manuscripts must contain a section heading (with appropriate narrative) as the last major section of the manuscript entitled "Implications for Behavioral Health".

Notes (as needed): These should be grouped together in a separate, double-spaced section after the text and before the References. In the text, notes should appear as superscript, lower-case letters. For example: This has caused a number of significant controversies . . .

Conflict of Interest Statement: Authors are required to include a Conflicts of Interest Statement section after the Implications section and before the References.


Figures may be created using electronic software (i.e., Adobe Illustrator, Corel Draw, and Photoshop). Use computer-generated lettering. Do not use screenshots, color, shading, or fine lines. Cite each figure in the text in consecutive order. If a figure has been previously published, in part or in total, acknowledge the original source and submit written permission from the copyright holder to reproduce or adapt the material. Supply a caption for each figure, typed double-spaced. Captions should include the figure number, (centered and in bold) on the first line and the figure title (centered) on the second line, followed by explanatory statements, notes, keys or sources and permissions lines. Include all Figures in one file, separate from the article text.


Tables should be numbered consecutively and should each include a brief title. The table number should appear centered and in bold on the first line, while the table title should appear on the next line, also centered. Include explanatory footnotes for all nonstandard abbreviations. Cite each table in the text in consecutive order. They should be self-explanatory and not duplicate the text. If you use data from another published or unpublished source, obtain permission and acknowledge fully. Include all Tables in one file, separate from the article text.

Conflict of Interest Statement
Authors are required to include a Conflict of Interest Statement section after the Implications section and before the References.


Major headings (e.g., Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Discussion, and Implications for Behavioral Health) should be centered with bold face type (not italicized) and should not be numbered. Do not include any author information in the headers, footnotes, Abstract, or paper. All author information should be included only in the separate Title Page WITH author information.


References must be cited in text and styled in the reference list according to the American Medical Association Manual of Style, Tenth Edition, 2007. The JBHS&R deviates from this style of referencing by completely spelling out the entire title of journal publications listed in the References section.
When references are cited, the citation number should appear superscripted in the body of the text and should follow all punctuation marks (e.g., Persons in substance abuse treatment.11-13) Page numbers should appear with the citation, in parentheses, following a specific quote (e.g., “Persons in substance abuse treatment.”11(p.213)) References should not be created using Microsoft Word's automatic footnote/endnote feature. References must be included on a separate page at the end of the article and should be double-spaced.
Only material that has been published, accepted for publication, or presented at a major conference may be listed in the References. References should be numbered as they appear in the text. In the references list, name all authors and editors through the third; if there are more than three authors or editors, list the first three followed by et al. Journal titles, book titles, titles of presentations, and titles of technical reports should appear in italics.

Journal Articles
Delman J, Clark JA, Eisen SV, et al. Facilitators and barriers to the active participation of clients with serious mental illnesses: The perceptions of young adult clients. Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research. 2015;42(2):238-253.
Books or Monographs
Hanson A, Levin BL. Mental Health Informatics. New York, NY: Springer, 2013.
Chapters in Books
McCarty D, Rieckmann T. The treatment system for alcohol and drug disorders. In: BL Levin, KD Hennessy, J. Petrila (Eds). Mental Health Services: A Public Health Perspective, Third Edition. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010, pp. 283-297.
Government Documents
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Results from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Mental Health Findings. NSDUH Series H-49, HHS Publication No. SMA 14-4887, Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, 2014.

Miller B. Innovative Management for Research Development. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of Mental Health Administrators, Hollywood, FL, September 29, 1987.

Web Sites
Office of Adolescent Health. Mental Health. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Available online at http://www.hhs.gov/ash/oah/adolescent-health-topics/mental-health/. Accessed on March 7, 2016.


Authors are responsible for obtaining signed letters from copyright holders granting permission to reprint material being borrowed or adapted from other sources, including previously published material of your own or from Springer. Authors are responsible for any permission fees to reprint borrowed material. This includes forms, checklists, cartoons, text, tables, figures, exhibits, glossaries, and pamphlets; concepts, theories, or formulas used exclusively in a chapter or section; direct quotes from a book or journal that are over 30 percent of a printed page; and all excerpts from newspapers or other short articles. WITHOUT WRITTEN PERMISSION FROM THE COPYRIGHT HOLDER, THESE ITEMS WILL NOT BE USED.

Accepted Manuscripts

These papers become the property of JBHS&R and may not be published elsewhere without permission from the Editor-in-Chief. Authors will be asked to sign a copyright transfer agreement (which must be returned prior to manuscript publication) acknowledging the manuscript transfer. Once the author receives confirmation that the manuscript has been accepted, it is considered a published article in the journal. Accepted manuscripts, while waiting assignment to the print edition of the JBHS&R, will appear in their entirety, on Springer Online First http://link.springer.com/journal/11414/onlineFirst/.
Opinions and views expressed by authors in all manuscripts (including Commentaries and Letters to the Editor) submitted to the JBHS&R should not be construed to represent the opinions and views of the JBHS&R, the JBHS&R Editorial Board, the National Council for Behavioral Health, Springer, or the University of South Florida. Authors are responsible for all statements made in their work, including changes made by the production and copy editors. Papers are edited to conform to JBHS&R style as well as to improve the effectiveness of communication between the author and JBHS&R readers.

Galley Proofs

Springer prefers to send an email providing a link to a PDF file of the page proofs; this e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author only. No pre-prints are available.


The contents of the Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research (ISSN 1094-3412) are indexed or abstracted in Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, Social Science Citation Index, Journal Citation Reports/Social Sciences Edition, PubMed/Medline, SCOPUS, PsycINFO, EMBASE, Google Scholar, EBSCO, CSA, ProQuest, Academic OneFile, Academic Search, Corporate ResourceNet, Criminal Justice Abstracts, CSA Environmental Sciences, Current Contents / Social & Behavioral Sciences, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMCare, Expanded Academic, Health Reference Center Academic, OCLC, PSYCLINE, SCImago, and Summon by ProQuest.
JBHS&R is a ranked journal in Journal citation Reports.