Journal of Clinical Nursing

Cover image for Vol. 27 Issue 3-4

Edited By: Editor-in-Chief: Debra Jackson Editors: Sue Barnason, Carol Haigh, Leslie Gelling and Graeme D Smith

Impact Factor: 1.214

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2016: 55/116 (Nursing)

Online ISSN: 1365-2702

Author Guidelines


1. Submission
2. Aims and Scope
3. Manuscript Categories and Requirements
4. Preparing Your Submission
5. Editorial Policies and Ethical Considerations
6. Author Licensing
7. Publication Process After Acceptance
8. Post Publication
9. Editorial Office Contact Details


Thank you for your interest in the Journal of Clinical Nursing. Note that submission implies that the content has not been published or submitted for publication elsewhere except as a brief abstract in the proceedings of a scientific meeting or symposium. See Cover letter in Section 4 Preparing Your Submission for further details.

Once you have prepared your submission in accordance with the Guidelines, manuscripts should be submitted online at

The submission system will prompt you to use an ORCID iD (a unique author identifier) to help distinguish your work from that of other researchers. Click here to find out more.

Click here for more details on how to use ScholarOne

For help with submissions, please contact:

We look forward to your submission.


The Journal of Clinical Nursing (JCN) is an international, peer reviewed, scientific journal that seeks to promote the development and exchange of knowledge that is directly relevant to all spheres of nursing practice. The primary aim is to promote a high standard of clinically related scholarship which advances and supports the practice and discipline of nursing. The Journal also aims to promote the international exchange of ideas and experience that draws from the different cultures in which practice takes place. Further, JCN seeks to enrich insight into clinical need and the implications for nursing intervention and models of service delivery. Emphasis is placed on promoting critical debate on the art and science of nursing practice.

JCN is essential reading for anyone involved in nursing practice, whether clinicians, researchers, educators, managers, policy makers, or students. The development of clinical practice and the changing patterns of inter-professional working are also central to JCN's scope of interest. Contributions are welcomed from other health professionals on issues that have a direct impact on nursing practice.

We publish high quality papers from across the methodological spectrum that make an important and novel contribution to the field of clinical nursing (regardless of where care is provided), and which demonstrate clinical application and international relevance.

Topics include but are not limited to:
• Development of clinical research, evaluation, evidence-based practice and scientific enquiry;
• Patient and family experiences of health and health care; illness and recovery;
• Nursing research to enhance patient safety and reduce harm to patients;
• The nature of nursing need, intervention, social interaction and models of service delivery;
• Clinical nursing leadership;
• Examination of clinical decision-making;
• Exploration of organisational or systemic factors that enhance or impede the provision of effective, high-quality nursing care;
• Application and dissemination of clinical knowledge and theory;
• Role development and inter-disciplinary working, exploring the scope and changing boundaries of clinical nursing; and
• Cultural comparisons and evaluations of nursing practice in different health sectors, social and geographical settings.

Useful Resources
Nurse Author & Editor is a valuable resource for authors, editors and reviewers involved or wanting to become involved in nursing journals and the free Nurse Author & Editor newsletter contains useful articles including the Writing for Publication booklet which you may find helpful.

If you are presenting a paper from a study from which publications have already been drawn, or are planned, please carefully read our guidance pertaining to multiple publications from a single study.


i. Original Articles
Pilot studies are not suitable for publication as original articles.
Word limit: 8,000 words maximum (quotations are included in the overall word count of articles, and abstract, references, tables and figures are excluded).
Abstract: 300 words maximum, and structured under the sub-headings: Aims and objectives; Background (stating what is already known about this topic); Design; Methods (for both qualitative and quantitative studies state n); Results (do not report p values, confidence intervals and other statistical parameters); Conclusions (stating what this study adds to the topic); Relevance to clinical practice.
Main text structure: Introduction (putting the paper in context - policy, practice or research); Background (literature); Methods (design, data collection and analysis); Results; Discussion; Conclusion; Relevance to clinical practice.
References: 50 maximum; all references must be available in English
Impact Statement: should contain 2-3 bullet points under the heading 'What does this paper contribute to the wider global clinical community?'
Research Reporting Checklist: May be required. Please see Section 5.

ii. Review Articles
Literature reviews on any area of research relevant to clinical nursing are welcomed.
Word limit: 8,000 words maximum (quotations are included in the overall word count of articles, and abstract, references, tables and figures are excluded).
Main text structure: Review Articles should be structures, under the sub-headings: Introduction, Aims, Methods, Results, Discussion, Conclusion, and Relevance to Clinical Practice.
References: 50 maximum; all references must be available in English
Research Reporting Checklist: Required. Please see Section 5.

iii. Discursive Articles
Word limit: 8,000 words maximum.
Main text structure: Aims; Background; Design (stating that it is a position paper or critical review, for example); Method (how the issues were approached); Conclusions, Relevance to clinical practice.

iv. Special Issue Articles
Authors interested in submitting a paper for a forthcoming Special Issue must contact the Editorial Office to discuss and agree submission of the paper with the designated Special Issue Guest Editor before submission to the journal takes place. Upon submission, Authors must indicate that the paper is to be considered for a Special Issue.


Cover Letters
All manuscripts submitted to Journal of Clinical Nursing should include a covering letter stating on behalf of all the authors that the work has not been published and is not being considered for publication elsewhere. Any previous submission of the work, in any form, must be declared. If the study that is being submitted is similar in any way to another study previously submitted/published or is part of multiple studies on the same topic, a brief sentence explaining how the manuscript differs and that there is no identical material should be stated in the cover letter upon submission. Manuscripts undergo a similarity check when submitted and your article may be returned to you, if the above has not been adhered to.

Parts of the Manuscript
The manuscript should be submitted in separate files: title page; main text file; figures.

Title Page:

The title page should be submitted separately to the main file and contain:
i. A short informative title that contains the major key words. The title should not contain abbreviations (see Wiley's best practice SEO tips).
ii. A short running title of less than 40 characters
iii. The full names of the authors
iv. The authors’ institutional affiliations at which the work was carried out
v. Corresponding author’s contact email address and telephone number
vi. Acknowledgements.
vii. Conflict of Interest Statement
viii. Funding or sources of support in the form of grants, equipment, drugs etc.
The present address of any author, if different from that where the work was carried out, should be supplied in a footnote.

For details on eligibility for author listing, please refer to the journal’s Authorship policy outlined in the Editorial Policies and Ethical Considerations section.

Contributions from individuals who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed, with permission from the contributor, in an Acknowledgments section. Financial and material support should also be mentioned. Thanks to anonymous reviewers are not appropriate.

Conflict of Interest Statement
Authors will be asked to provide a conflict of interest statement during the submission process. See ‘Conflict of Interest’ section in Editorial Policies and Ethical Considerations for details on what to include in this section. Authors should ensure they liaise with all co-authors to confirm agreement with the final statement.

Main Text File and Figures
The main text file should be presented in the following order:
i. Title, abstract and key words;
ii. Main text;
iii. References;
iv. Tables (each table complete with title and footnotes);
v. Figure legends;
vi. Appendices (if relevant).
Figures and supporting information should be supplied as separate files.

The title must contain both a descriptive and concise title of the paper. Country names are only to be included in titles where it is made clear the content is being compared and contrasted to the International arena.

Please provide up to 10 keywords When selecting keywords, Authors should consider how readers will search for their articles. Keywords should be taken from those recommended by the US National Library of Medicine's Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) browser list at

Main Text
• As papers are double-blind peer reviewed, the main text file should not include any information that might identify the authors.
• All articles must be relevant to an international audience. Authors should explain policies, practices and terms that are specific to a particular country or region; outline the relevance of the paper to the subject field internationally and also its transferability into other care settings, cultures or nursing specialities; placed discussions within an international context any papers exploring focussed cultural or other specific issues, and that clinical issues are put into context to other geographical regions and cultural settings.
• The journal uses British/US spelling; however, authors may submit using either option, as spelling of accepted papers is converted during the production process.
• Footnotes to the text are not allowed and any such material should be incorporated into the text as parenthetical matter.


APA Style

References should be prepared according to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition). This means in text citations should follow the author-date method whereby the author's last name and the year of publication for the source should appear in the text, for example, (Jones, 1998). The complete reference list should appear alphabetically by name at the end of the paper.

A sample of the most common entries in reference lists appears below. Please note that a DOI should be provided for all references where available. For more information about APA referencing style, please refer to the APA FAQ. Please note that for journal articles, issue numbers are not included unless each issue in the volume begins with page one.

Journal article
Beers, S. R., & De Bellis, M. D. (2002). Neuropsychological function in children with maltreatment-related posttraumatic stress disorder. The American Journal of Psychiatry, 159, 483–486. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.159.3.483

Bradley-Johnson, S. (1994). Psychoeducational assessment of students who are visually impaired or blind: Infancy through high school (2nd ed.). Austin, TX: Pro-ed.

Internet Document
Norton, R. (2006, November 4). How to train a cat to operate a light switch [Video file]. Retrieved from

Tables should be self-contained and complement, not duplicate, information contained in the text. They should be supplied as editable files, not pasted as images. Legends should be concise but comprehensive – the table, legend, and footnotes must be understandable without reference to the text. All abbreviations must be defined in footnotes. Footnote symbols: †, ‡, §, ¶, should be used (in that order) and *, **, *** should be reserved for P-values. Statistical measures such as SD or SEM should be identified in the headings.

Figure Legends
Legends should be concise but comprehensive – the figure and its legend must be understandable without reference to the text. Include definitions of any symbols used and define/explain all abbreviations and units of measurement.

Although we encourage authors to send us the highest-quality figures possible, for peer-review purposes we are happy to accept a wide variety of formats, sizes, and resolutions.
Click here for the basic figure requirements for figures submitted with manuscripts for initial peer review, as well as the more detailed post-acceptance figure requirements.

Figures submitted in colour will be reproduced in colour online free of charge. Please note, however, that it is preferable that line figures (e.g. graphs and charts) are supplied in black and white so that they are legible if printed by a reader in black and white. If an author would prefer to have figures printed in colour in hard copies of the journal, a fee will be charged by the Publisher.

Additional Files

Appendices will be published after the references. For submission they should be supplied as separate files but referred to in the text.

Supporting Information
Supporting information is information that is not essential to the article but that provides greater depth and background. It is hosted online, and appears without editing or typesetting. It may include tables, figures, videos, datasets, etc. Click here for Wiley’s FAQs on supporting information. Note, if data, scripts or other artefacts used to generate the analyses presented in the paper are available via a publicly available data repository, authors should include a reference to the location of the material within their paper.

General Style Points
The following points provide general advice on formatting and style.
Abbreviations: In general, terms should not be abbreviated unless they are used repeatedly and the abbreviation is helpful to the reader. Initially, use the word in full, followed by the abbreviation in parentheses. Thereafter use the abbreviation only.
Units of measurement: Measurements should be given in SI or SI-derived units. Visit the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures (BIPM) website at for more information about SI units.
Numbers: numbers under 10 are spelt out, except for: measurements with a unit (8mmol/l); age (6 weeks old), or lists with other numbers (11 dogs, 9 cats, 4 gerbils).
Trade Names: Chemical substances should be referred to by the generic name only. Trade names should not be used. Drugs should be referred to by their generic names. If proprietary drugs have been used in the study, refer to these by their generic name, mentioning the proprietary name and the name and location of the manufacturer in parentheses.

Wiley Author Resources
Manuscript Preparation Tips
Wiley has a range of resources for authors preparing manuscripts for submission available here. In particular, authors may benefit from referring to Wiley’s best practice tips on Writing for Search Engine Optimization.

Editing, Translation and Formatting Support
Wiley Editing Services can greatly improve the chances of your manuscript being accepted. Offering expert help in English language editing, translation, manuscript formatting and figure preparation, Wiley Editing Services ensures that your manuscript is ready for submission.


Editorial Review and Acceptance
The acceptance criteria for all papers are the quality and originality of the research and its significance to our readership. Except where otherwise stated, manuscripts are double-blind peer reviewed. Papers will only be sent to review if the Editor-in-Chief determines that the paper meets the appropriate quality and relevance requirements. Wiley's policy on confidentiality of the review process is available here.

Decision Appeals
Appeals should be filed within 28 days of notification of the decision. The appeal should be in the form of a letter addressed and submitted to the Journal of Clinical Nursing Editorial Office. The letter should include clear and concise grounds for the appeal, including specific points of concern. The appeal will then be assessed by the Journal of Clinical Nursing management team, led by the Editorial Office, and informed by the subsequent editorial communications.
You will be informed of the outcome of the appeal in writing, normally within 28 days. The decision will be final.

Data storage and documentation
Journal of Clinical Nursing encourages data sharing wherever possible, unless this is prevented by ethical, privacy or confidentiality matters. Authors publishing in the journal are therefore encouraged to make their data, scripts and other artefacts used to generate the analyses presented in the paper available via a publicly available data repository, however this is not mandatory. If the study includes original data, at least one author must confirm that he or she had full access to all the data in the study, and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

Authors can consult the global registry of research data repositories to help them identify registered and certified repositories relevant to their subject areas.

Data Citation
In recognition of the significance of data as an output of research effort, Wiley has endorsed the FORCE11 Data Citation Principles, and is implementing a mandatory data citation policy. Journal policies should require data to be cited in the same way as article, book, and web citations and authors are required to include data citations as part of their reference list. Data citation is appropriate for data held within institutional, subject focused, or more general data repositories. It is not intended to take the place of community standards such as in-line citation of GenBank accession codes.

When citing or making claims based on data, authors must refer to the data at the relevant place in the manuscript text and in addition provide a formal citation in the reference list. We recommend the format proposed by the Joint Declaration of Data Citation Principles:
Authors; Year; Dataset title; Data repository or archive; Version (if any); Persistent identifier (e.g. DOI)

Human Studies and Subjects
For manuscripts reporting medical studies involving human participants, we require a statement identifying the ethics committee that approved the study, and that the study conforms to recognized standards, for example: Declaration of Helsinki; US Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects; or European Medicines Agency Guidelines for Good Clinical Practice.
Images and information from individual participants will only be published where the authors have obtained the individual's free prior informed consent. Authors do not need to provide a copy of the consent form to the publisher, however in signing the author license to publish authors are required to confirm that consent has been obtained. Wiley has a standard patient consent form available for use.

Clinical Trial Registration
We require that clinical trials are prospectively registered in a publicly accessible database and clinical trial registration numbers should be included in all papers that report their results. Please include the name of the trial register and your clinical trial registration number at the end of your abstract. If your trial is not registered, or was registered retrospectively, please explain the reasons for this.

Research Reporting Guidelines
Accurate and complete reporting enables readers to fully appraise research, replicate it, and use it. We expect authors to adhere to the following guidelines, and to declare this adherence in the Abstract and Methods sections of their submission.
CONSORT checklist for reports of randomised trials and cluster randomised trials
TREND checklist for non-randomised controlled trials
PRISMA guidelines for systematic reviews and meta-analyses
STROBE checklist for observational research
COREQ checklist for qualitative studies
SQUIRE checklist for quality improvement
See the EQUATOR Network for other study types.
The position of reporting guidelines in qualitative nursing research
Transparency in the reporting of nursing research

Conflict of Interest
The journal 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 directly 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. 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 collectively to disclose with the submission ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.

Authors should list all funding sources in the Acknowledgments section. Authors are responsible for the accuracy of their funder designation. If in doubt, please check the Open Funder Registry for the correct nomenclature:

The list of authors should accurately illustrate who contributed to the work and how. All those listed as authors should qualify for authorship according to the following criteria:
1. Have made substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data;
2. Been involved in drafting the manuscript or revising it critically for important intellectual content;
3. Given final approval of the version to be published. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content; and
4. Agreed to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.
Contributions from anyone who does not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed, with permission from the contributor, in an Acknowledgments section (for example, to recognize contributions from people who provided technical help, collation of data, writing assistance, acquisition of funding, or a department chairperson who provided general support).
When submitting a manuscript authored by a group, the corresponding author should clearly indicate the preferred citation and identify all individual authors as well as the group name. Prior to submitting the article all authors should agree on the order in which their names will be listed in the manuscript.

Additional Authorship Options
Joint first or senior authorship: In the case of joint first authorship, a footnote should be added to the author listing, e.g. ‘X and Y should be considered joint first author’ or ‘X and Y should be considered joint senior author.’

As part of our commitment to supporting authors at every step of the publishing process, The Journal of Clinical Nursing requires the submitting author (only) to provide an ORCID iD when submitting a manuscript. This takes around 2 minutes to complete. Find more information here.

Publication Ethics
This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Note this journal uses iThenticate’s CrossCheck software to detect instances of overlapping and similar text in submitted manuscripts. Read our Top 10 Publishing Ethics Tips for Authors here. Wiley’s Publication Ethics Guidelines can be found at


If your paper is accepted, the author identified as the formal corresponding author will receive an email prompting them to log in to Author Services, where via the Wiley Author Licensing Service (WALS) they will be required to complete a copyright license agreement on behalf of all authors of the paper.
Authors may choose to publish under the terms of the journal’s standard copyright agreement, or OnlineOpen under the terms of a Creative Commons License.
General information regarding licensing and copyright is available here. To review the Creative Commons License options offered under OnlineOpen, please click here. (Note that certain funders mandate that a particular type of CC license has to be used; to check this please click here.)

Self-Archiving definitions and policies. Note that the journal’s standard copyright agreement allows for self-archiving of different versions of the article under specific conditions. Please click here for more detailed information about self-archiving definitions and policies.

Open Access fees: If you choose to publish using OnlineOpen you will be charged a fee. A list of Article Publication Charges for Wiley journals is available here.

Funder Open Access: Please click here for more information on Wiley’s compliance with specific Funder Open Access Policies.

Reproduction of Copyright Material If excerpts from copyrighted works owned by third parties are included, credit must be shown in the contribution. It is the author’s responsibility to also obtain written permission for reproduction from the copyright owners. For more information visit Wiley’s Copyright Terms & Conditions FAQ.


Accepted article received in production
When your accepted article is received by Wiley’s production team, you (corresponding author) will receive an email asking you to login or register with Author Services. You will be asked to sign a publication license at this point.

Accepted Articles
The journal offers Wiley’s Accepted Articles service for all manuscripts. This service ensures that accepted ‘in press’ manuscripts are published online shortly after acceptance, prior to copy-editing or typesetting. Accepted Articles are published online a few days after final acceptance and appear in PDF format only. They are given a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), which allows them to be cited and tracked and are indexed by PubMed. After the final version article is published (the article of record), the DOI remains valid and can still be used to cite and access the article.
Accepted Articles will be indexed by PubMed; submitting authors should therefore carefully check the names and affiliations of all authors provided in the cover page of the manuscript so it is accurate for indexing. Subsequently, the final copyedited and proofed articles will appear in an issue on Wiley Online Library; the link to the article in PubMed will update automatically.

Once your paper is typeset you will receive an email notification of the URL from where to download a PDF typeset page proof, associated forms and full instructions on how to correct and return the file.
Please note that you are responsible for all statements made in your work, including changes made during the editorial process and thus you must check your proofs carefully. Note that proofs should be returned 48 hours from receipt of first proof.

Publication Charges
Colour figures may be published online free of charge; however, the journal charges for publishing figures in colour in print. If the author supplies colour figures, they will be sent a Colour Work Agreement once the accepted paper moves to the production process. If the Colour Work Agreement is not returned by the specified date, figures will be converted to black and white for print publication.

Early View
The journal offers rapid publication via Wiley’s Early View service. Early View (Online Version of Record) articles are published on Wiley Online Library before inclusion in an issue. Note there may be a delay after corrections are received before your article appears online, as Editors also need to review proofs. Once your article is published on Early View no further changes to your article are possible. Your Early View article is fully citable and carries an online publication date and DOI for citations.


Access and sharing
When your article is published online:
• You receive an email alert (if requested).
• You can share a link to your published article through social media.
• As the author, you will have free access to your paper (after accepting the Terms & Conditions of use, you can view your article).
• The corresponding author and co-authors can nominate up to ten colleagues to receive a publication alert and free online access to your article. You can now order print copies of your article (instructions are sent at proofing stage or use the below contact details).

Video Abstracts: A video abstract can be a quick way to make the message of your research accessible to a much larger audience. Wiley and its partner Research Square offer a service of professionally produced video abstracts, available to authors of articles accepted in this journal. You can learn more about it at . If you have any questions, please direct them to .

Now is the time to start promoting your article. Find out how to do that here.

Measuring the Impact of your Work
Wiley also helps you measure the impact of your research through our specialist partnerships with Kudos and Altmetric.


For queries about submissions, please contact