Sociology Compass

Cover image for Vol. 10 Issue 5

Edited By: Scott Harris

Online ISSN: 1751-9020

Author Guidelines

What is Sociology Compass?

Sociology Compass ( offers the quality of a scholarly journal combined with the speed and functionality of the Web.

Sociology Compass publishes peer-reviewed survey articles on a continuous basis, with new articles appearing as soon as they are ready. All articles are listed in Sociological Abstracts, the major abstracting index for the discipline. Sociology Compass operates the same quality control procedures as for any Wiley journal, both in terms of editorial and production standards.

SOCIOLOGY COMPASS DOES NOT PUBLISH ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLES AND SUCH ARTICLES WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED OR REVIEWED. The mission of the journal is to publish succinct, clearly-written literature reviews that make an argument. Prospective authors should skim or read a few articles, to familiarize themselves the journal’s expectations. Sample articles can be obtained from Section Editors or from the Editor-in-Chief, if authors do not have access to the journal through a library or personal subscription.

Sociology Compass articles allow scholars and advanced students to:

  • keep up with new developments and trends in research

  • teach in a new or unfamiliar area outside of their specialty

  • ensure that students are exposed only to quality-controlled online content (as opposed to haphazard content from search engines)

Encompassing all areas across the discipline, Sociology Compass publishes original, peer-reviewed survey articles on a continuous basis.

In addition, the journal also offers select Teaching & Learning Guides, and VLE / CMS compatibility (e.g. Blackboard, WebCT, Moodle).

Author Benefits

Benefits for authors include:

  • Article published approximately 12 weeks after acceptance of final copy

  • A citable, peer-reviewed article, with a permanent DOI

  • International exposure / broad readership

  • PDF offprint

  • Free personal access to Sociology Compass for 1 year

  • 5% off a subscription for your institution

In addition, you will receive free Wiley books of your choice to the value of £30/$50, if your manuscript is submitted by the agreed deadline.

Article Length and Scope

In general, articles should run between 3000-5000 words. Longer articles can be considered at the Section Editor’s discretion. The Section Editor will agree the topic of your article with you before you begin to write your piece.

The writing style should be crisp, concise and informative, and livelier than a research paper. Remember: you are writing for non-specialists from many different areas. Your article will be their gateway into a new subject. Your aim is to engage as well as inform the reader.

Articles will fall into at least one of the following three categories and will answer one or more of the questions below:

  1. Recent research and debates in your field – What debates are driving your field? What new research has been published? What does it add to these debates or the field more generally? Can you put that new research in context? Does a new school of thought or paradigm seem to be developing? Has a new controversy erupted?

  2. Comparative look across sections or boundaries – Are there related things happening in different fields? Can you suggest comparisons that have not been fully explored? Can one area provide an insight into another when used in teaching or research?

  3. State of the field – Can you offer a fresh perspective on developments in your field? Perhaps there are arguments or fads drawing attention away from what you think are the critical points? Perhaps the field is stagnating? Are students and teachers flocking to or fleeing from your field? Is your area well and fairly covered in the media? Are there resources or archives that are new or underused and are worthy of attention? Has the field been affected by or is it impacting on current affairs?

Articles submitted to Sociology Compass should not have been previously published or accepted to be published elsewhere. Papers presented at a conference or symposium may be accepted for publication by agreement with the relevant Section Editor.

The Sociology Compass Audience

The Sociology Compass audience consists of research and teaching faculty, graduate students, and advanced undergraduates—from potentially any area of the discipline. This is a distinguishing feature of the journal, and a benefit to authors in terms of enhanced exposure. You are writing for your peers, but also for researchers and students from unrelated areas. It is therefore crucial that Sociology Compass articles always remain accessible to non-specialists. The writing should be authoritative and lively.

Sociology Compass readers will be able to cite your article in their publications, email details of the article to their colleagues, or use it in their class reading lists.

Submitting Your Article

Almost all articles are invited. Potential authors should contact the relevant Section Editor about their ideas for a paper: After a tentative title and a deadline have been agreed upon, authors will receive a “welcome” email from the Editorial Office. The next steps are as follows:

  • Go to Manuscript Central is our online submission and editorial interface.

  • Log in if you have already been sent your User ID and password (in a reminder or confirmation email). If you don’t know your password, use the Password Help box.

  • If the system has no account registered for you, click on "Create Account" in the top right-hand corner to get started.

  • Once logged in, the Main Menu will be displayed. Click on "Author Center."

  • Under "My Manuscripts" click on "1 Invited Manuscript" link. This will load the basic details at the bottom of the page.

  • Click "Continue Submission" on the right to begin manuscript submission!

Submission Checklist

Please submit, in Microsoft Word (.doc) format:

  • An anonymous version of your article, incorporating the title, abstract, full text, reference list, any figures, tables or captions. Please do not include references to yourself as the author of the paper.

  • A separate title page (inc. your article title, name, affiliation and correspondence address / email address).

  • A one-paragraph short biography.

  • Any separate figure files in EPS, TIF or JPG format at 300 dpi.

NOTE: If you do not use Microsoft Word, files in .rtf and plain text formats can also be accepted. If your article contains any special characters, it is advisable to submit a supplementary PDF version of your paper, for cross-checking. provides free file conversion, including PDF to Word.

Copyright Form

We no longer require FAXs or other hardcopy of the Copyright Transfer Agreement. Instead we have introduced a convenient new process for signing your copyright transfer agreement electronically (eCTA) that will save you considerable time and effort. If your paper is accepted, the Author whom you flag as being the formal Corresponding Author for the paper will receive an e-mail with a link to an online eCTA form. This will enable the Corresponding Author to complete the copyright form electronically within ScholarOne Manuscripts on behalf of all authors on the manuscript. You may preview the copyright terms and conditions here.

Online Open

OnlineOpen is available to authors of primary research articles who wish to make their article available to non-subscribers on publication, or whose funding agency requires grantees to archive the final version of their article. With OnlineOpen, the author, the author's funding agency, or the author's institution pays a fee to ensure that the article is made available to non-subscribers upon publication via Wiley Online Library, as well as deposited in the funding agency's preferred archive. For the full list of terms and conditions, see

Any authors wishing to send their paper OnlineOpen will be required to complete the payment form available from our website at:

Prior to acceptance there is no requirement to inform an Editorial Office that you intend to publish your paper OnlineOpen if you do not wish to. All OnlineOpen articles are treated in the same way as any other article. They go through the journal's standard peer-review process and will be accepted or rejected based on their own merit.


Free Book for Prompt Delivery

Authors who are able to deliver within the deadline agreed for their article will be entitled to free Wiley books up to the value of $50/£30. The author can browse titles online ( and should then email the details of their chosen book to the Sociology Compass Editorial office.

Peer Review

Once submitted, your article will first be evaluated by the relevant Section Editor to ensure it fulfills the journal’s principles and aims. If this is the case, the article is then reviewed by referees, chosen by the Section Editor for their specific subject knowledge.
Authors of submitted articles are asked to consider the criticisms, suggestions and corrections of the referees and Section Editor and where possible, to address them. The Section Editor will mediate any conflicting reviews.

If the author disagrees with the reviews, they are entitled to set forth their views and justifications. However, the Section Editor is entitled to decline publication if they feel the review criticisms have not been sufficiently addressed. The decision of the Section Editor is final. An invitation to contribute an article does not guarantee acceptance.


How long to publication?

Time to publication depends on many factors, including authors’ timeliness in correcting proofs and submitting copyright agreements. As an online-only journal, Sociology Compass articles tend to be published more quickly than most conventional print journals.


Once accepted, your article will be sent to the copyeditor. You will then receive your PDF proof via email. At this stage you should be correcting minor errors only. You will receive specific instructions with your PDF proof.

Access to Sociology Compass

Once your article has been published on Sociology Compass you will be given free personal access to the site for 1 year.


Once your article has been published, you will be sent a PDF version of your article via email, which you are free to distribute to your colleagues and students as you wish, as long as it is for standard, recognized academic purposes. Selling copies of the article is not permitted.

Writing Your Article

Journal Style: Harvard

Harvard style should be used for inline citations and the list of references. Examples can be found towards the end of these guidelines.

Optimizing Your Title and Abstract

Many students and researcher looking for information online will use search engines such as Google, Yahoo! or similar. By optimizing your title and abstract, you will increase the chance of someone finding it. This in turn will make it more likely to be viewed and/or cited in another work. In order to optimize your abstract, we recommend you to:

  • Ensure the key phrases for your article's topic appear in the title and abstract e.g. "postcolonial history."

  • Use the same key phrases, if possible, in the title and abstract. Note of caution: unnecessary repetition will result in the page being rejected by search engines so doesn’t overdo it.

Example of Well-Optimized Title/Abstract

Genocide and Holocaust Consciousness in Australia
Ever since the British colonists in Australia became aware of the disappearance of the indigenous peoples in the 1830s, they have contrived to excuse themselves by pointing to the effects of disease and displacement. Yet although 'genocide' was not a term used in the nineteenth century, 'extermination' was, and many colonists called for the extermination of Aborigines when they impeded settlement by offering resistance. Consciousness of genocide was suppressed during the twentieth century - until the later 1960s, when a critical school of historians began serious investigations of frontier violence. Their efforts received official endorsement in the 1990s, but profound cultural barriers prevent the development of a general 'genocide consciousness'. One of these is 'Holocaust consciousness', which is used by conservative and right-wing figures to play down the gravity of what transpired in Australia. These two aspects of Australian public memory are central to the political humanisation of the country.

This article appears on the first page of results on Google for "holocaust consciousness Australia."

Poorly Optimized Title/Abstract

Australia's Forgotten Victims
Ever since the British colonists in Australia became aware of the disappearance of the indigenous peoples in the 1830s, they have contrived to excuse themselves by pointing to the effects of disease and displacement. Many colonists called for the extermination of Aborigines when they impeded settlement by offering resistance, yet there was no widespread public acknowledgement of this as a policy until the later 1960s, when a critical school of historians began serious investigations of frontier violence. Their efforts received official endorsement in the 1990s, but profound cultural barriers prevent the development of a general awareness of this. Conservative and right-wing figures continue to play down the gravity of what transpired. These two aspects of Australian public memory are central to the political humanisation of the country.


  • People tend to search for specifics, not just one word—e.g. "women's fiction" not "fiction." So use key phrases rather than individual words in your article title and abstract.

  • Key phrases need to make sense within the title and abstract and flow well.

  • It is best to focus on a maximum of three or four different keyword phrases in an abstract rather than try to get across too many points.

  • Finally, always check that the abstract reads well—remember the primary audience is still the researcher, not a search engine, so write for readers not robots.

Figures, Illustrations, & Multimedia

Since Sociology Compass is online-only, there are almost no significant printing costs for color visual material, and we have exciting opportunities to include supporting video and audio files. Supplementary files are an effective way to support your article, and they add valuable texture and interest to your article. However, please be aware of the guidelines below.

NOTE: Authors are responsible for obtaining copyright permissions and paying any related fees for any supplementary material they wish to include, be it images, video or audio. Please confirm with the Sociology Compass Editorial office that the supplementary material can be included before paying any such fees

Figures and Illustrations: Authors are strongly encouraged to include as many illustrations, photographs, maps and diagrams as they wish. These are all referred to as “figures” and should be numbered consecutively using Arabic numerals (Figure 4, etc.). You can see examples of possible visualization methods here: All figures should be computer generated. The figure should be submitted in EPS, TIF or JPG format at 300 dpi. If exporting to EPS all fonts should be embedded. The maximum image size that can be loaded onto Manuscript Central is 40 Megapixels. Detailed guidelines may be found here: Captions should be concise but as informative as possible, and must be typed double spaced and listed on a separate sheet. Titles should be incorporated into the figure caption. Captions should not be a part of the figure and should include any acknowledgements necessary.

Video:Sociology Compass encourages authors to submit supplementary video files. We can accept a wide range of video file formats such as .WMV, .AVI, .MOV, and .MPG. If your video is not in one of these formats we may still be able to accept it—please let us know before submitting. Videos should have a maximum length of 10 minutes and maximum file size of 1024 MB. If you have larger files for inclusion, they should be split into two or more separate videos. All video files should be in their final form upon submission. The maximum file size that can be uploaded to Manuscript Central is 100 MB. If your file exceeds this, please email the Editorial Office for details on how to submit larger files through our FTP site. Audio Sociology Compass encourages authors to submit supplementary audio files. Audio files can be submitted in .aif, .aifc, .aiff .asf, .au, .mp2, .mp3, .mpa, .snd, .wav, or .wma format. All audio files should be in their final form upon submission.

Short Biography / Biographies

Authors should include a short biographical paragraph about themselves (and for co-authors where applicable). The Biography should be submitted as a separate document and contain a few sentences about each of the following: educational history, recent professional/teaching history, research interests and some information about recent or forthcoming publications. Here is an example of a well-written biography:

John Doris' research is located at the intersection of psychology, cognitive science, and philosophical ethics; he has authored or co-authored papers in these areas for Bioethics, Cognition, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, The Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science, The Encyclopedia of Ethics, and the Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Analytic Philosophy. His book Lack of Character (Cambridge 2002) argues that reflection on experimental social psychology problematizes familiar philosophical and “folk” conceptions of moral character. Current research involves both theoretical and empirical research on moral responsibility, evaluative diversity, rationality, and the self. He has held fellowships from Michigan's Institute for the Humanities, Princeton's University Center for Human Values, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Before coming to Washington University in St. Louis, where he presently teaches, Doris taught at the University of Michigan and the University of California, Santa Cruz. He holds a BA in Philosophy from Cornell University and a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.


Harvard style should be used for inline citations and the Reference List. All articles must contain an Abstract, a Reference List and a Short Biography. (This last item should be submitted as a separate file.)

UK or US style?

UK or US spelling and punctuation may be adopted but, whichever conventions are used, they must be followed consistently throughout. e.g. italicise OR italicize, behaviour OR behavior, centre OR center, spectre OR specter, etc.


Articles should be written in non-sexist, non-racist language, and phrasing that might generate antagonism or be construed to be cynical or derogatory should be avoided.


Should be given in the form 20 September 1985.

Latin Abbreviations (e.g. i.e. cf. N.B.) appear in plain text without a trailing comma.


Every quotation should be accompanied by a reference to its source (e.g. Author 1996).

Short quotations (less than 30 words) "should run on within the normal sentence structure" (Author 1996). Use quotation marks to distinguish the quote, and, if appropriate, precede by a comma (for shorter quotations) or a colon (for longer quotations).

Long quotations (more than 30 words) should be displayed.

Displayed quotations do not require quotation marks. They should be set smaller than normal text type and indented by the normal paragraph indent, with no extra space above or below. (Author 1996)

The spelling, grammar, etc. of direct quotations should not be edited. Use [sic] to signify a direct quote of an error.

Tables and Figures

Tables must be typed double spaced, using as few horizontal rules as possible and no vertical rules. They should be numbered consecutively using Arabic numerals (Table 4, etc.). Titles should be concise but as informative as possible. Decimals appearing in tables should include leading zeroes i.e. 0.1273.

Each table or figure is to be followed by a number (Figure 1, Table 1, etc.). Provide a caption for each table or figure, set in boldface. Ensure that tables and figures are numbered consecutively (one series for tables and another for figures). Place them at the end of your manuscript and indicate the main article text that is expected to follow immediately after the appearance of the table or figure, as illustrated here:

Table 2: Laboratory findings in common disorders
Insert Table 2 here
According to...


Notes should appear sequentially throughout as endnotes. Endnotes should be in the format 1, 2, 3 rather than i, ii, iii.

Harvard style should be used for endnote references to books, journal articles, book chapters and web references. Ibid may be used, while publisher names should be written out in full, e.g. Cambridge University Press rather than CUP.

In-text Citation Examples

  • Jones (1988, p. 223) found that specific references were made…

  • Carlson (1981) obtained results which...

  • A recent study (Bloggs 1990) found that…

If volume, issue or page numbers need including:

  • (Jones 2005, vol. 2, p. 23)

  • (Jones 2005, vol. 2, p. 23; vol. 3, pp. 20-41)

  • (Jones 2005, sec. 2)

  • (Jones 2005, eq. 3)

Two authors

  • (Smith & Jones 2006)

  • Smith and Jones (2006) theorized that...

Note: The ampersand is used when the authors' names are in brackets.

Three or more authors

Use the first author only followed by “et al.” For example, a work by Smith, Jones and Anderson becomes:

  • Smith et al. (2006) discussed library search methods…

  • A range of search methods (Smith et al. 2006) were discussed.

Unpublished works

  • (Crowley, unpub.)

  • Crowley (unpub.) argues that...

Citations from secondary sources

  • Brown (cited in Smith 1995) reported...

  • (Brown, cited in Smith 1995)

The Bible

Psalm 23:6-8

Reference List

The reference list is a very important tool for readers. Each reference will be linked electronically to the online source, so it is important that your bibliography be as concise and comprehensive as possible. YOUR ARTICLE CANNOT BE PROCESSED WITHOUT A REFERENCE LIST IN THE CORRECT FORMAT (see below).

References should be listed in alphabetical order at the end of the article.
Authors should use the Harvard system in which authors’ names (no initials) and dates are given in the main body of the text with specific pages indicated only in the case of quotations (e.g. Linton and Moisley 1960, 29). References are listed alphabetically at the end of the paper under the heading References, set out as follows, with double spacing for all lines.

For not-yet-published titles, in the place of a date put “forthcoming.” Where possible, follow this with a predicted date in parenthesis.

For multiple references with same first author in same year but different second/third authors, references should be listed in alphabetical order. With only one author, list by date order and then alphabetical.

Please note that all citations must be in the reference list and that all referenced texts should be cited in the body of your manuscript.

Reference List Examples


Appelbaum, E. and R. Batt. (1994). The New American Workplace. Ithaca, NY: Industrial and Labor Relations Press.

Chapter in edited book

England, P. and L. McCreary. (1987b). 'Gender Inequality in Paid Employment.' Pp. 286–320 in Analyzing Gender: A Handbook of Social Science Research, edited by B.B. Hess, and M. Marx Ferree. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Journal Article

Bloggs, J. (2008). Media in the Digital Age. Sociology Compass 2(1), pp. 347–56


Jones, F. (1998). The mechanism of Bayer residue flocculation. PhD thesis, Curtin University of Technology. Retrieved December 21, 2005, from Curtin University of Technology Digital Theses.

Conference Paper

Debono, C. (2000). The National Trust into the new millennium. Proceedings of the ninth meeting of the International National Trust, Australian Council of National Trusts, Alice Springs, NT, pp. 44-6. Retrieved January 20, 2006, from Informit Online database.

Newspaper Article

Towers, K. (2000). Doctor not at fault: coroner. Australian, 18 January, p. 3.

Other publications

Where there is doubt (e.g. occasional papers) include all bibliographical details. The place of publication should always be given when books are referred to.

Online Documents

The full title of a Website or page should be provided. Website URLs should be cited at the end of a citation to an online source as follows: url (Last Accessed Date)

The last accessed date is required information for a citation, and authors should check all URLs before final submission of their article to ensure that they are still active. If they are not, alternative URLs or citations for the same information should be provided.

Forthcoming style for both books & articles

Larner, W. (forthcoming). Neoliberalism in (regional) theory and practice: the Stronger Communities Action Fund in New Zealand. Geographical Research.

Ridley, A., Peckham, M. and Clark, P. (eds.) (forthcoming). Cell motility: from molecules to organisms. Chichester: Wiley.