Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Supplements

        The American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine (ACRM) offers an opportunity for members to be the guest editor of a Supplement to its journal, the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (Archives). The goal of the ACRM supplements is to publish high quality scientific manuscripts, which are thematically organized and of interest to ACRM members and to the general readership of the Archives. We are interested in proposals in all fields of rehabilitation, but especially those of interest to the ACRM membership as indicated by the existence of special interest and networking groups for brain injury, spinal cord injury, stroke, neurodegenerative diseases, cancer, pediatrics, geriatrics, pain, neuroplasticity, health policy, outcomes and measurement, military/veterans affairs, physicians and clinicians, arts and neurosciences, limb loss rehabilitation, and technology. This is a unique opportunity for an experienced rehabilitation researcher or group of researchers to compile a thematically based supplement to the Archives with a maximum of 100 journal pages (approximately 300 double-spaced manuscript pages). Proposals for a supplement are reviewed by the ACRM Communications Committee, which makes a recommendation to the ACRM Board for approval.

        Supplement Proposal and Submission Process

        Step #1.

        Individuals interested in serving as guest editors for an Archives Supplement must be an ACRM member and submit a proposal of no more than 10 pages. Copy, complete, and print the following table and include it as the first page(s) of your application. Subsequent pages should describe each proposed manuscript including manuscript title, name/affiliation of all proposed authors (membership in ACRM not required), summary of content, and estimated page length. Please note that authors of supplement submissions will be expected to follow the instructions for authors for the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation including the word length limits for each article type. Please go to for more detail.
        Tabled 1
        Supplement Title (preliminary)
        Name/affiliation of guest editor(s)
        Intended audience: researchers, clinicians, policy makers

        Include 2-3 paragraphs describing the central theme of the supplement and how the proposed manuscripts contribute to the theme
        Statement of relevance to the interests of ACRM members and Archives readers
        List of proposed manuscripts: Include title, lead author, additional authors, and estimated page length. (All but first author are preliminary). Suggest 10-12 manuscripts. If the articles are shorter the total number of articles could increase
        Action plan for “internal” peer review and editing process, timeline for completion, and outline of mechanisms to stay on timeline
        Use remaining pages to describe each manuscript (title, authors, summary, # pages)


        Unique manuscripts. It is the supplement proposer’s responsibility to solicit manuscripts that complement rather than duplicate one another, and together offer a rounded overview of the topic selected. The supplement proposers and their internal peer reviewers (see below) are to keep this issue in mind in shepherding manuscripts for review by the ACRM Communications Committee and Archives editorial team.
        Internal and external peer review timeline. The supplement proposer is REQUIRED to develop and implement a review process timeline (if the supplement proposal is accepted). This timeline should include internal peer review by the supplement proposers, senior scientists on their team, or outsiders (or a combination of these) for each manuscript. Next, it should include a period of time for authors to make revisions based on this internal peer review as is done with any peer review. The third component is formal submission using the Elsevier Editorial System and following the standard peer review practices of the Archives of PM&R. The average time for articles going out for peer review is 4-8 weeks. Thus, a timeline may look like this:
        Month 1-3: authors prepare manuscript
        Month 4-5: final draft is submitted for internal peer review
        Month 6 (or more): internal peer review
        Month 7 (or more): edit per internal review and resubmit to internal peer review. Acceptance by internal review team*
        Month 8-9: Submit to Archives, review by Archives-selected peer reviewers
        Month 10: if provisionally accepted by the Archives, edit per external review and resubmit
        Month 11-14: continue review and revision process with Archives until final decision made by editor
        *There is no guarantee that any paper will be accepted for publication by the Archives even if it is accepted by the internal peer review team.
        Manuscripts using single database/project. If manuscripts use a single database from one project, each analyzing a different aspect of treatment, measures, outcomes, etc., the proposal must suggest a plan for how the supplement will include a project/database description. Having each manuscript give the same complete description of how data were collected and processed is not a good use of space, but not including anything but a reference to an introductory paper is not satisfactory for readers who are interested in just one supplement paper. One solution may be for the lead manuscript to provide a detailed description of project methods and the database used for analyses; subsequent manuscripts then may contain a short methods summary and reference back to the lead manuscript. Subsequent manuscripts may also include details that are of specific importance to that manuscript that were not described in the lead manuscript.

        Step #2.

        Compile ONE file that includes truncated CV (limit 4 pages per CV) or NIH Bio sketch for guest editor(s) and each manuscript’s authors, or at least its lead and/or senior author. A SECOND file must include a letter signed by the lead and/or senior author committing to delivering the manuscript described, by the time specified in the time schedule. (The two files for CVs and letters are not included in 10 page supplement limit).

        Step #3.

        Submit three files (10-page proposal, CV file, and letter file) to the ACRM Communication Committee Chair c/o the editorial office of the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. [email protected] .

        What to Expect After Submission

        • 1.
          The ACRM Communications Committee will review the proposal and respond within 60 days with requests for modification. Upon receipt, guest editors will have 30 days to respond to Committee modification requests and resubmit the application following the above steps. Note, the CV and letters files only need to be resubmitted if the proposed lead and/or senior authors are different from original submission.
        • 2.
          If the ACRM Communications Committee approves the (revised) proposal, it will make a recommendation to the ACRM Board of Governors, and share the supplement proposal with them. The ACRM Board of Governors may accept, reject, or request further modification of the proposed supplement.
        • 3.
          Once approved by the ACRM Communications Committee and the ACRM Board of Governors, the Communications Committee will inform the guest editors of approval.
        • 4.
          Individual manuscripts will be written and the Guest Editors’ internal review process will be undertaken, as described in the supplement application form.
        • 5.
          Guest editors will provide bimonthly updates to the Communication Committee and Managing Editor of the Archives regarding the state of readiness for each manuscript and anticipated completion date. See table below for reporting content guidelines.
        • 6.
          Following changes made in response to internal review, manuscripts will be submitted to the Archives following the standard manuscript submission processes: The letter to the editors that must accompany each submission to Archives should mention that the proposed manuscript is part of the XYZ (Supplement title) Supplement as being assembled by Dr. ABC (the guest editor).
        • 7.
          Each manuscript will undergo the external peer review process per the Archives editorial board and staff.
        • 8.
          Authors will respond to reviewer comments and make manuscript modifications until each manuscript is approved for publication by the Archives supplement editor.
        • 9.
          Publishing of the supplement is dependent on all proposed manuscripts undergoing the peer review process and being accepted for publication. The Archives editorial board will determine final publication date and communicate with guest editors. If some papers are rejected during the Archives review process the supplement editors may wish to substitute a new paper or publish the supplement without the paper. The supplement guest editor(s) should discuss the final table of contents with the Communications Committee chairman and Archives Editor and the Managing Editor to ensure that the final supplement is as close to the original proposal as possible.
        Tabled 1
        Suggested format for bimonthly updates to Communication Committee.

        Enter applicable dates, with explanatory notes as indicated.
        Manuscript name and lead authorManuscript #In progressSubmitted for internal review by guest editorsApproved by guest editorsSubmitted to ArchivesProgress of review processAccepted for publication

        Criteria for Evaluating Supplement Proposals

        • 1.
          Qualifications of guest editor and other contributors, specifically the lead and/or senior author of each manuscript proposed:
          • a.
            Professional experience
          • b.
            Research qualifications
          • c.
            Editorial and publication experience
        • 2.
          Relevance of theme to ACRM mission and interests of ACRM members.
        • 3.
          Quality and relevance of proposed manuscripts with supplement theme and lack of duplication of subject matter or significant omissions of material in proposed papers.
        • 4.
          Feasibility of implementation plan.

        Responsibilities of Supplement Guest Editor(s)

        • 1.
          Ensure submitted manuscripts conform to guidelines outlined in the Archives information for authors (
        • 2.
          Supervise/coordinate manuscript preparation and internal peer review and editing by the agreed-upon deadlines.
        • 3.
          Coordinate activities with the Archives managing editor assigned to the Supplement, assist with logistics of manuscript review and editing, and provide updates on progress of the project by submission of the bimonthly reports and otherwise, if needed.