American Journal of Human Biology

Cover image for Vol. 27 Issue 3

Editor-in-Chief: Lynnette Leidy Sievert

Impact Factor: 1.928

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2013: 11/82 (Anthropology); 26/85 (Biology)

Online ISSN: 1520-6300

Author Guidelines

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Publication Forms

Author Guidelines

Note to NIH Grantees
Manuscript Types
Journal Policies and Requirements
General Instructions
Authors in Japan
Informed Consent
Disclosure Statement
Conflict of Interest
Title Page
Key Words
Literature Cited
Special reproduction problems
Cover Art
Copyright Transfer Agreement
Supporting Information
Errata and Letters to the Editor
Production Questions

Online Only in 2014

Given that the majority of AJHB’s readers and subscribers access the journal exclusively online, the journal will be published in online-only format effective with the 2014 volume. This is a positive move towards reducing the environmental impact caused by the production and distribution of printed journal copies. Published articles will continue to be disseminated quickly through the journal’s broad network of indexing services, including ISI, MEDLINE and Scopus. Articles will also continue to be discoverable through popular search engines such as Google. All color images will now be published free of charge.

Search Engine Optimization for Your Paper
Consult our SEO Tips for Authors page in order to maximize online discoverability for your published research. Included are tips for making your title and abstract SEO-friendly, choosing appropriate keywords, and promoting your research through social media.

Note to NIH Grantees. Pursuant to NIH mandate, Wiley-Blackwell will post the accepted version of contributions authored by NIH grant-holders to PubMed Central upon acceptance. This accepted version will be made publicly available 12 months after publication. For further information, see

The Journal requires that authors submit electronically via the online submission site at

Manuscript types
Research reports should be prepared as one of two types: Short Reports or Original Research Articles. In addition, the Journal regularly solicits Feature Articles from noted experts on timely topics.

Short Reports: Short reports are presentations of original research findings of a focused nature. They should not exceed 1500 words or text, inclusive of abstract, and include no more than 2 figures or tables and no more than 15 references. Short reports will be given expedited review in order to maintain the shortest possible time to decision and publication.

Original Research Articles: Original articles include presentation of results from more complex research designs and those with more important theoretical or methodological content or implications. While there are no standard limitations on the length of original articles, authors are cautioned to be concise in their presentations and to employ figures and tables only as necessary.

Feature Articles: Feature articles may be solicited on topics of current interest from noted experts. Since it is hoped that these articles will prove useful as teaching materials, authors are encouraged to include clear illustrations and extensive bibliographies. The format of feature articles need not follow the standard organization for research reports, described below, but may be adapted to the content at hand.

Cover photos: Authors are invited to submit color photographs or other artistic material for consideration as cover illustrations. If possible, these should be sent electronically, in .jpg format.

General Instructions

Manuscripts must be submitted in grammatically correct English. Manuscripts which do not meet this standard cannot be reviewed. Manuscript Text files must be submitted electronically as per the submission instructions above.

A manuscript is considered for review and possible publication on the condition that it is submitted solely to the AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HUMAN BIOLOGY, and that the manuscript or a substantial portion of it is not under consideration elsewhere.

Informed consent: The AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HUMAN BIOLOGY requires that all appropriate steps be taken in obtaining informed consent of any and all human and/or experimental animal subjects particpating in the research comprising the manuscript submitted for review and possible publication. A statement indicating that the protocol and procedures employed was reviewed and approved by the appropriate institutional review committee must be included in the Methods section of the manuscript. For research involving recombinant DNA, containment facilities and guidelines should conform to those of the National Institutes of Health or corresponding institutions. For those investigators who do not have formal ethics review committees, the principles outlined in the Helsinki Declaration should be followed.

Disclosure statement: All authors must disclose any affiliations that they consider to be relevant and important with any organization that to any author's knowledge has a direct interest, particularly a financial interest, in the subject matter or materials discussed. Such affiliations include, but are not limited to, employment by an industrial concern, ownership of stock, membership on a standing advisory council or committee, a seat on the board of directors, or being publicly associated with a company or its products. Other areas of real or perceived conflict of interest would include receiving honoraria or consulting fees or receiving grants or funds from such corporations or individuals representing such corporations. The simplest remedy for conflict of interest is disclosure. In the Journal, disclosure will henceforth be achieved by the inclusion of a short footnote with each published article.

Conflict of Interest: The AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HUMAN BIOLOGY requires that all authors disclose any potential sources of conflict of interest. Any interest or relationship, financial or otherwise, that might be perceived as influencing an author’s objectivity is considered a potential source of conflict of interest. These must be disclosed when directly relevant or indirectly related to the work that the authors describe in their manuscript. Potential sources of conflict of interest include but are not limited to patent or stock ownership, membership of a company board of directors, membership of an advisory board or committee for a company, and consultancy for or receipt of speaker’s fees from a company. The existence of a conflict of interest does not preclude publication in this journal.

If the authors have no conflict of interest to declare, they must also state this at submission. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list in the cover letter (if applicable) to the Editor-in-Chief, in the manuscript (in the footnotes, Conflict of Interest or Acknowledgments section), and in the online submission system ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.


Research reports, both Short Reports and Original Research Articles, should have a uniform style and be submitted exactly as they are to appear in the final published version. A manuscript should consist of the following subdivisions, each beginning on a separate page:

  • Title page
  • Abstract and keywords
  • Text
  • Literature cited
  • Footnotes, if any
  • Tables (may be sent as a separate file if necessary)
  • Figure legends
  • The spelling of nontechnical terms should be as recommended in the current Webster's International Dictionary.
  • Always spell out numbers when they stand as the first word in a sentence; do not follow such numbers with abbreviations. Numbers indicating time, weight, and measurements are to be in Arabic numerals when followed by abbreviations (e.g., 2 mm; 1 sec; 3 ml).

Title page. The title page must contain the following.

  • Title
  • Author's name (or names)
  • Institution and department from which the paper emanated, with city, state, and zip codes
  • Abbreviated title (running headline) not to exceed 48 characters and spaces
  • Name, address, telephone and fax number, and e-mail address of the person to whom the proof is to be sent
  • All grant information including corresponding grant numbers.

If you plan to be away a month before publication of your article, please inform the publisher.

Abstract. The abstract should consist of 250 words or fewer. When published, it will precede the introductory section of the text. The abstract should be written in complete sentences and should include the following sections with section heads in bold followed by a colon.

  • Objectives: A succinct statement of the goal(s) of the research.
  • Methods: A brief description of the study design, materials, subjects, data collection and statistical or other analysis methods used.
  • Results: A brief description of the principal findings.
  • Conclusions: A brief statement of the conclusions drawn relative to the objectives of the study.

This structure can be waived for Feature Articles and certain other articles at the discretion of the Editor.

Key Words. Authors should supply 4 to 6 key words, terms, or brief phrases that will aid in identifying the article to electronic search engines and in indexing the content of the article.

Literature Cited

In the text, references to the literature should be cited by author's surname followed by year of publication. If more than two authors, use only lead author and "et al.":

. . . studies by Madrigal (1994) reveal . . .
. . . studies by Winkler and Kirchengast (1994) reveal . . .
. . . studies by Spurgeon et al. (1994) reveal . . .
. . . an earlier report (Smith, 1994) . . .
. . . earlier reports (Leonard and Robertson, 1994; Malina and Reyes, 1994) . . .

When references are made to more than one paper by the same author published in the same year, they should be designated in the text as (Lampl, 1993a,b) and in the literature list as follows.

Personal communications and submittted manuscripts should be listed as unpublished communications in the text and not listed in the "Literature Cited" section.

Lampl M. 1993a. Introduction: human growth patterns. Am J Hum Biol 5:601–602.
Lampl M. 1993b. Evidence of saltatory growth in infancy. Am J Hum Biol 5:641–652.

The literature list must be arranged alphabetically, not chronologically, by author's or authors' surname(s) in the following style: Author's name (or names), year of publication, complete title, volume, and inclusive pages as follows:

Journal Article:
Madrigal L. 1994. Twinning rates in admixed Costa Rican populations. Am J Hum Biol 6:215–218.

Felber J-P, Acheson KJ, Tappy L. 1993. From obesity to diabetes. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 508 p.

Book Chapter:
McClain C, Stuart M, Kasarskis E, Humphries L. 1993. Zinc, appetite regulation, and eating disorders. In: Prasad AS, editor. Essential and toxic trace elements in human health and disease: an update. New York: Wiley-Liss. p 47–64.

Abbreviations of journal titles should follow those used in Index Medicus.

Footnotes. Footnotes to the text are discouraged.
Footnotes to a table should be typed directly beneath the table and numbered with superscripts (1, 2, 3, etc.). They should not be numbered in sequence with the footnotes in the text. Also, if superscript numbers could be mistaken for exponents, substitute superscript a, b, c, etc.

Tables. All tables must be cited in the text. Since tabular material is expensive to reproduce, it should be simple and uncomplicated, with as few vertical and horizontal rules as possible. Table titles should be complete but brief. Information other than that defining the data should be presented in footnotes.

Figures. All figures must be cited in the text. Figure legends are to be numbered consecutively as follows: Fig. 1. . . . , Fig. 2. . . . , and should follow the sequence of reference in the text. Type double-spaced.

Abbreviations for all figures should be listed alphabetically and placed before the first figure mentioning them.

CPCortical plate
SmIPrimary somatosensory cortex

Group figures to fit a single page along with their appropriate legends. Reference to relevant text passages can often reduce the length of legends and avoid redundancy.

Metric system. The metric system should be used for all measurements, weights, etc. Temperatures should be expressed in degrees Celsius (centigrade). Metric abbreviations should be expressed in lowercase without periods.

Symbols. When preceded by a digit, the following symbols are to be used: % for percent; ° for degree.


Electronic versions of illustrations are preferred for the review process; they must be saved in .tif or .eps format.

Authors should bear in mind the final size of illustrations in published form and be sure that appropriate font sizes, line thicknesses, etc. are used for legibility.

  • Lettering and labels must be readable after reduction. When reduced, the minimum height of a capital letter should not be less than 2.5 mm for a photomicrograph and 1 mm for a graph or chart.
  • An individual figure or group of figures should not exceed the dimensions of 5½" (14.0 cm) wide by 7¾" (19.7 cm) long or 2 5/8" (6.7 cm) wide by 7¾" (19.7 cm) long in the case of single-column placement.

Color figures must be submitted in RGB colorspace. Color figures are published at no charge.

Cover art: Authors are invited to submit color photos or other artwork for consideration as cover illustrations.


If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author for the paper will receive an email prompting them to login into Author Services; where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be able to complete the license agreement on behalf of all authors on the paper.

For authors signing the copyright transfer agreement

If the OnlineOpen option is not selected the corresponding author will be presented with the copyright transfer agreement (CTA) to sign. The terms and conditions of the CTA can be previewed in the samples associated with the Copyright FAQs below:

CTA Terms and Conditions

For authors choosing OnlineOpen

If the OnlineOpen option is selected the corresponding author will have a choice of the following Creative Commons License Open Access Agreements (OAA):

Creative Commons Attribution License OAA

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License OAA

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial -NoDerivs License OAA

To preview the terms and conditions of these open access agreements please visit the Copyright FAQs hosted on Wiley Author Services and visit

If you select the OnlineOpen option and your research is funded by The Wellcome Trust and members of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) you will be given the opportunity to publish your article under a CC-BY license supporting you in complying with Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK requirements. For more information on this policy and the Journal’s compliant self-archiving policy please visit:

Proofs. A single set of page and illustration proofs will be sent to the author. All corrections should be marked clearly, directly on page proofs.

Reprints. Reprints may be ordered at

Numbering. Figures, including charts and graphs, must be numbered consecutively.

Supporting Information. Authors are encouraged to submit supporting information that could aid readers in understanding the authors' findings and where appropriate to ensure that the page limits are met. This accompanying information may include (but is not limited to) figures, tables, video clips, large sections of movies (QuickTime or mpeg), data sets, program code, and electronic graphical files. Supporting information must be submitted at the time of peer review, although the reviewers and editors may also suggest that figures or table(s) be provided as supporting information during the review process. Each piece of supporting information should be referenced within the text.  Supporting information should be numbered in order, but independently of figures in the main article, e.g. S- Figure 1 would indicate a figure that follows Figure 1 in the main text. Please note that supporting information is NOT edited by the publisher after final acceptance by the editors, and is posted online in the format in which it is supplied.

Errata and Letters to the Editor

Should an error occur in the publication of a manuscript or should a responsible retraction be appropriate, timely correction or retraction will be done upon notification in writing to the Editor-in-Chief.

Appropriate comments and/or dissenting opinions, in writing to the Editor-in-Chief, are also considered for publication.

Production Questions


The AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HUMAN BIOLOGY is proud to participate in COPE.