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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission is a PDF file.  You may create this file using any system (LaTeX, Word, Google Docs, etc.) but if your paper is accepted for publication you will be asked to provide a LaTeX source file with all supporting files, including images and bibliography.  Some limited assistance may be available for those without experience with LaTeX.
  • The submission includes a complete list of authors and their affiliations (as appropriate).  If your paper is accepted we will ask each student author for a brief biography including their current institution and future career plans.  If you wish you may include this information as part of the initial submission.
  • The submission cites works appropriately and includes a bibliography.  (Any standard format is acceptable at this stage.)
  • You have asked a research sponsor (usually a faculty member at a college or university) to send an email to in support of your work, as described in the author guidelines.

Author Guidelines

All initial submissions must be made as a PDF file. Authors are welcome to use whatever typesetting tools they prefer to create this initial submission. Authors of accepted papers will be asked to provide a working LaTeX source file with all supporting files (images, bibliography, etc.) Authors using other tools may be required to resubmit their work in LaTeX form. We strongly recommend that authors use LaTeX throughout, to expedite this process.

Faculty may be involved in the research and writing, through advising, mentoring, editing, and being a coauthor, but the majority of the original work and writing must be completed by students.  Students must have completed the research while undergraduates, although they do not need to be undergraduates at the time of submission. Each paper must be sponsored by a sponsor familiar with the work who will write a letter of support. Normally the sponsor would be a faculty member who supervised the research, but it could be any professional mathematician who has discussed the work with the student, and given feedback about the results and the writing.

Part of our mission is to mentor undergraduates about the publication process. Hence submissions must be made by a student, not a sponsor, even if the sponsor is a coauthor.  If an article is submitted by a sponsor we will not begin the review process until it has been resubmitted by a student author.

Contents: Each paper must include the following:

  • A relevant title.

  • A complete list of authors, including an affiliation for each author (as appropriate).

  • A brief abstract (100-150 words) written for a non-specialist audience. The abstract must not refer to the bibliography.

  • A bibliography, preferably created using BibTeX. All works included in the bibliography must be cited in the body of the paper. Electronic links to published versions should be included whenever possible.

  • Acknowledgements. In particular, any sources of funding used to support the work should be acknowledged.

Images: For accepted papers, images must be submitted in a high-resolution format. PDF or EPS are strongly preferred; JPEG and GIF are discouraged as they will not print at sufficiently high quality. Graphics must be in vector format if at all possible.

Formatting: Authors should follow the standard conventions of mathematical writing. The work must be well-organized, and all mathematical formulas must be properly formatted. It is not necessary to “tweak” spacing or formatting beyond standard paragraph breaks, sections, etc. The journal will apply its own style sheet to the final LaTeX file, which will change all spacing.

Author Information: We also ask that each student author include a brief biography including their current institution and future career plans, as applicable.

Sponsor Letter: Before we consider your submission, we ask that you arrange a research sponsor to send an email to in support of your work. The subject line should be:

  • Subject: Submission by (Student's Name)

The email should include the following:

  • A description of the relationship to the student.  Usually the sponsor would be the faculty mentor for the research project.
  • Verification that the student was an undergraduate when the research was done.
  • Any suggestions for potential referees for the paper.
  • An honest assessment of (a) the quality of the work and (b) the quality of the written submission.  A full referee's report is not necessary, but these should be more than one or two lines long; the reviewer guidelines may be helpful here. 

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