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Short Report

Criteria

Shorts reports are suitable for the presentation of research that extends previously published research on established measurement instruments (surveys, questionnaires or tests). Short reports may include the reporting of additional insights, confirmatory as well as valid negative results, and procedural updates to existing work and established methods. The findings may or may not depend on specific measurement settings or concern necessary adaptations of instruments to improve measurement specifically in major population groups. Specific recommendations can be made on better measurement procedures.

Short reports are typically characterized by an existing measurement instrument and a single sample – ideally representative for the general population. Intriguing findings may specifically concern different (though major) population groups, yet sample size and research design that affect the stringency of conclusions are always to be reported. The focus should be on the quality of measurement instruments (or procedures) in question, yet a full validation is out of scope (please refer to Validation of Measurement Instruments instead).

Please ensure the Background section includes some theoretical background (established instruments used, quality or validation status, and research domain that directly leads to the research gap or present research question).

In the Main Text section provide the relevant findings. Where findings concern the quality of measurement instruments, you may use recent methodological standards (e.g., the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing developed by the American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association, and National Council on Measurement in Education). A checklist for comprehensive reporting and which quality criteria are considered adequate is provided by GESIS. Depending on the development status of the instruments, new insights may require reviewing other quality criteria as well. To the extent that findings need to be contextualized you should also mention any limitations

In the Conclusion section provide main conclusions and recommendations.

Supplementary online material (instructions, questionnaires, code/syntax for analysis of scores, code/syntax to replicate analyses, datasets/databases) can be provided.

Maximum length (as a rule of thumb): 2000 words of text (not including abstract, tables, figures, acknowledgments, references, and online-only material), with no more than a total of three tables and/or figures.

Double-blind peer review

Please note: Measurement Instruments for the Social Sciences operates double-blind peer review. The following information should not be included in the main manuscript file, but should instead be uploaded as part of the covering letter:

  • Title page
  • Competing interests
  • Authors’ contributions
  • Acknowledgements
  • Authors’ information

Preparing your manuscript

Title page

The title page should:

  • present a title that includes, if appropriate, the research design
  • list the full names and institutional addresses for all authors
    • if a collaboration group should be listed as an author, please list the Group name as an author and include the names of the individual members of the Group in the “Acknowledgements” section in accordance with the instructions below
  • indicate the corresponding author

Abstract

The abstract should briefly summarize the aim, findings or purpose of the article. Please minimize the use of abbreviations and do not cite references in the abstract. See the criteria section for this article type (located at the top of this page) for information on content.

Keywords

Three to ten keywords representing the main content of the article.

Background

The background section should include some theoretical background (established instruments used, quality or validation status, research domain).

Main Text

This section should include the major findings of the study including, if appropriate, results of statistical analysis which must be included either in the text or as tables and figures. A discussion of any practical or operational issues involved in performing the study, and/or the adaptation of instruments and procedures, as well as any issues not covered in other sections (limitations) can be included here.

Conclusions

This section should state clearly the main conclusions and any recommendations for the future use of an instrument or relevant procedural adaptations.

List of abbreviations

If abbreviations are used in the text they should be defined in the text at first use, and a list of abbreviations should be provided.

Declarations

All manuscripts must contain the following sections under the heading 'Declarations':

  • Availability of data and materials
  • Competing interests
  • Funding
  • Authors' contributions
  • Acknowledgements
  • Authors' information (optional)

Please see below for details on the information to be included in these sections.

If any of the sections are not relevant to your manuscript, please include the heading and write 'Not applicable' for that section.

Availability of data and materials

For all journals, BioMed Central strongly encourages all datasets on which the conclusions of the manuscript rely to be either deposited in publicly available repositories (where available and appropriate) or presented in the main paper or additional supporting files, in machine-readable format (such as spreadsheets rather than PDFs) whenever possible. Please see the list of recommended repositories in our editorial policies.

For some journals, deposition of the data on which the conclusions of the manuscript rely is an absolute requirement. Please check the Criteria section for this article type (located at the top of this page) for journal specific policies.

For all journals, authors must include an “Availability of data and materials” section in their article detailing where the data supporting their findings can be found. If you do not wish to share your data, please state that data will not be shared, and state the reason.

For instructions on how to cite your data and format this section see preparation/style and formatting.

If you wish to co-submit a data note describing your data to be published in BMC Research Notes, you can do so by visiting our submission portal. Data notes support open data and help authors to comply with funder policies on data sharing. Co-published data notes will be linked to the research article the data support (example).

Competing interests

All financial and non-financial competing interests must be declared in this section. See our editorial policies for a full explanation of competing interests. If you are unsure whether you or any of your co-authors have a competing interest please contact the editorial office.

Funding

All sources of funding for the research reported should be declared. The role of the funding body in the design of the study and collection, analysis, and interpretation of data and in writing the manuscript should be declared.

Authors' contributions

The individual contributions of authors to the manuscript should be specified in this section.

Acknowledgements

Please acknowledge anyone who contributed towards the article who does not meet the criteria for authorship including anyone who provided professional writing services or materials.

Authors should obtain permission to acknowledge from all those mentioned in the Acknowledgements section.

See our editorial policies for a full explanation of acknowledgements and authorship criteria.

Group authorship: if you would like the names of the individual members of a collaboration Group to be searchable through their individual PubMed records (where applicable), please ensure that the title of the collaboration Group is included on the title page and in the submission system and also include collaborating author names as the last paragraph of the “Acknowledgements” section. Please add authors in the format First Name, Middle initial(s) (optional), Last Name. You can add institution or country information for each author if you wish, but this should be consistent across all authors.

Authors' information

You may choose to use this section to include any relevant information about the author(s) that may aid the reader's interpretation of the article, and understand the standpoint of the author(s). This may include details about the authors' qualifications, current positions they hold at institutions or societies, or any other relevant background information. Please refer to authors using their initials. Note this section should not be used to describe any competing interests.

Footnotes

Footnotes should be designated within the text using a superscript number. It is not allowed to use footnotes for references/citations.

References

Examples of the American Psychological Association (APA) reference style are shown below. For further guidance, see the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association and the respective web site of the Association (http://www.apastyle.org/).

See our editorial policies for author guidance on good citation practice.

Web links and URLs: All web links and URLs, including links to the authors' own websites, should be given a reference number and included in the reference list rather than within the text of the manuscript. They should be provided in full, including both the title of the site and the URL, as well as the date the site was accessed, in the following format: The Mouse Tumor Biology Database. http://tumor.informatics.jax.org/mtbwi/index.do. Accessed 20 May 2013. If an author or group of authors can clearly be associated with a web link, such as for weblogs, then they should be included in the reference.

Example reference style:

Article within a journal

Harris, M., Karper, E., Stacks, G., Hoffman, D., DeNiro, & R., Cruz, P. (2001). Writing labs and the Hollywood connection. Journal of Film Writing, 44(3), 213-245.

Article by DOI (with page numbers)

Slifka, M.K., & Whitton, J.L. (2000). Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. Journal of Molecular Medicine, 78(2), 74-80. doi:10.1007/s001090000086.

Article by DOI (before issue publication and without page numbers)

Kreger, M., Brindis, C.D., Manuel, D.M., & Sassoubre, L. (2007). Lessons learned in systems change initiatives: benchmarks and indicators. American Journal of Community Psychology. doi: 10.1007/s10464-007-9108-14.

Article in electronic journal by DOI (no paginated version)

Kruger, M., Brandis, C.D., Mandel, D.M., & Sassoure, J. (2007). Lessons to be learned in systems change initiatives: benchmarks and indicators. American Journal of Digital Psychology. doi: 10.1007/s10469-007-5108-14.

Complete book

Calfee, R.C., & Valencia, R.R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Book chapter, or an article within a book

O'Neil, J.M., & Egan, J. (1992). Men's and women's gender role journeys: Metaphor for healing, transition, and transformation. In B.R. Wainrib (Ed.), Gender issues across the life cycle (pp. 107-123). New York: Springer.

Online First chapter in a series (without a volume designation but with a DOI)

Saito, Y., & Hyuga, H. (2007). Rate equation approaches to amplification of enantiomeric excess and chiral symmetry breaking. Topics in Current Chemistry. doi:10.1007/128_2006_108.

Complete book, also showing a translated edition [Either edition may be listed first.]

Adorno, T.W. (1966). Negative Dialektik. Frankfurt: Suhrkamp. English edition: Adorno, TW (1973). Negative Dialectics (trans: Ashton, E.B.). London: Routledge.

Online document

Abou-Allaban, Y., Dell, M.L., Greenberg, W., Lomax, J., Peteet, J., Torres, M., & Cowell, V. (2006). Religious/spiritual commitments and psychiatric practice. Resource document. American Psychiatric Association. http://www.psych.org/edu/other_res/lib_archives/archives/200604.pdf. Accessed 25 June 2007.

Online database

German emigrants database (1998). Historisches Museum Bremerhaven. http://www.deutsche-auswanderer-datenbank.de. Accessed 21 June 2007.

Supplementary material/private homepage

Doe, J. (2006). Title of supplementary material. http://www.privatehomepage.com. Accessed 22 Feb 2007.

FTP site

Doe, J. (1999). Trivial HTTP, RFC2169. ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/rfc2169.txt. Accessed 12 Feb 2006.

Organization site

ISSN International Centre (2006). The ISSN register. http://www.issn.org. Accessed 20 Feb 2007.

Figures, tables and additional files

See General formatting guidelines for information on how to format figures, tables and additional files.

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