Author Guidelines

Article types | What is a video article? | File exchange | Authorship, copyright, and fair use | Language style | Required textual information | Transcripts and access | Ethical Matters | Indicative links

Journal of Embodied Research solicits video articles of between 10 and 20 minutes that document and share the results of research projects in which embodied practice is an essential part of the methodology. There are no annual deadlines and video articles are published on a rolling basis throughout the year. Informal inquiries to JER can be made by emailing the journal editor at any time. Formal submissions should be made electronically through this website. 

Formal submissions should be structured with the following headings: Title, Authors (including affiliations), Abstract, link to article draft (using Vimeo, WeTransfer, etc.). Do not send a transcript with the initial submission as this will need to be produced after the final video is approved.

Recognizing that the scholarly video article is a new medium for sharing research, the following guidelines and suggestions are offered to potential contributors. Please read these guidelines carefully and contact the journal editor with any further questions.

Types of Contribution

  • Video Articles document the outcomes of original embodied research. These should make a substantial and clearly articulated contribution to knowledge and understanding in a specified area of embodied practice. They can combine video and audio recordings, still images, graphics and animation, voiceovers, textual material and other multimedia forms. Research articles should be approximately 20:00 in duration.
  • Video Essays also document embodied knowledge and research, but they are curated rather than peer reviewed in order to allow for a wider range of formal experimentation. JER usually publishes contributions in this category only in response to a special issue or section focusing on a particular theme. The editors or curators of that call will determine which video essays are published. The duration of video essay submissions should be in line with any instructions provided in the call.
  • Video Editions make historical audiovisual materials available in a stable ‘version of record’ that can be used as a reference for future citation. Contributors who own the copyright to such materials or who wish to produce a scholarly edition of materials in the public domain should send a proposal to the journal editor for consideration. There is no maximum or minimum duration for items in this category.

At this time JER does not publish reviews or any text-only materials. If you have an idea for other types of media that JER could publish and would like to get involved, please contact the journal editor.


What is a video article?

  • The scholarly video article is a new medium for which detailed style guidelines have yet to be developed. Contributors are advised to consider relevant precedents (see below) while making their own creative and informed design choices. As with a traditional journal article, form and content should be integrated to articulate a substantive critical position.
  • All video articles must include a title and list of authors. Most articles will contain more than these minimal textual elements in order to adequately frame audiovisual materials and explicate their noteworthy aspects. However, JER is a space for exploring how audiovisual materials can make knowledge available with little or no verbal/discursive framing. The establishment of scope and context, what the article is about, and what contributions it makes to which fields can be articulated in many different ways.
  • Incidental media, such as a recorded soundtrack that does not come from the documented practice, is discouraged. JER emphasizes the difference between scholarly video articles and promotional videos such as ‘trailers’, which use rapid editing and musical soundtracks to create an effect of intensity. In contrast, a research video article should strive for relative transparency with regard to the documented practices and knowledge.
  • Each video article should have a clear multimedia design that is appropriate to its content. Use of specialized annotation tools such as ELAN, TKB Creation Tool, or PieceMaker (MotionBank), as well as graphics and animations that can be created in video editing programs like FinalCut Pro and Adobe Premiere, are welcome but not required. JER recognizes that such additions can effectively add ‘density’ to a video, allowing richer access to embodied knowledge and practice, but can also be distracting or confusing if overused. Older and simpler forms of annotation such as voiceovers and subtitles are also welcome.
  • Visual design choices apart from the above are left open to the contributors.

File exchange

  • Video files should be submitted either as web links to streaming video (hosted on a site such as Vimeo or YouTube) or as video files transmitted directly (via sites like WeTransfer or DropBox). Streaming files should be password protected during the review phase to maintain privacy and to avoid making multiple versions publicly available. Based on peer review comments, contributors may need to send multiple versions of the article.
  • Final versions of accepted articles should be sent directly to the editor as an HD quality (1920x1080) MP4 file via a file sharing service like WeTransfer or Dropbox. The JER intro animation will be appended to the video, including volume/issue number and year.
  • Correspondence regarding submitted video articles should be conducted through this website to ensure that the peer review process is appropriately tracked. Associated files (see below) can also be sent via this website.
  • Proofreading is the responsibility of the contributor(s). At this time it is not feasible to transfer the video editing file and its associated resources to the editorial team. Therefore, editors and peer reviewers will only have access to uneditable video files. This means that only the authors can make direct changes. Proofread all embedded textual materials carefully!

Authorship, copyright, and fair use

Matters of authorship are notoriously complex when it comes to embodied and audiovisual research. JER recognizes this and aims to be a space in which to work through some of these complexities.

JER recognizes multiple types and degrees of authorship for audiovisual works. We do not assume that directors, editors, scholars, and ethnographers hold greater authority or authorship than do performers, practitioners, and participants whose bodies appear audiovisually onscreen. When submissions are jointly created by people working in different capacities, the appropriate crediting of authorship should be discussed throughout the process. Any questions about authorship categories and credit taxonomies should be directed to the journal editor.

The following categories of authorship are suggested, but not required:

  • Primary authors are responsible for the entire video editing process through to publication. Their names appear first when the work is cited.
  • Secondary authors appear audiovisually in the work and must agree upon the final version of the edited video, however they do not participate as an author in the editing process. Their names appear in the suggested citation after the word “with”.
  • Participants or performers appear in the work, but instead of agreeing upon the final version of the edited video, they grant permission for their appearance to be used at an earlier stage of the process. Their names are given within the video and transcript but are not part of the work’s suggested citation.
  • Guests, extras, or cited practitioners appear in the work in a way that does not require explicit permission or authorship. For example, when referencing a previously published work, a short excerpt may be included via the research exception for copyright, without explicit permission having been granted.

The default license for all articles published by JER is Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0). This ensures the widest possible distribution for the material while requiring that authors receive proper accreditation for their work. Copyright remains with the author(s) and the video article can be freely published elsewhere. Contributors who have questions regarding CC licensing or who wish to use a different license (such as CC BY-NC) should discuss this with the journal editor during the review process.

Fair Dealing (UK/Canada) and Fair Use (US) are legal exceptions to copyright law which allow for the publication of limited excerpts of copyrighted materials for research purposes and/or when they are used in a transformative way. JER supports the strengthening of the public domain and will publish articles that include small excerpts of audio, video, or graphic material under copyright, as long as this publication is unlikely to impinge upon the commercial interests of the copyright owner. (This policy is identical to the one commonly applied to textual quotations.) Where such materials potentially conflict with the cultural rights of indigenous or other communities, this should be discussed with the journal editor as early as possible in the process.


Language style

  • English is the default language for commentary, written texts, and voiceovers in JER articles, but contributor(s) are encouraged to produce versions of their article in other languages wherever possible. Because many video articles may include a small amount of text, the task of translation into other languages may be relatively easy. Closed captions, abstracts, and transcripts can also be provided in multiple languages.
  • Written text should be embedded in the video file as part of an overall multimedia design that integrates video, sound, image, and other content. JER suggests using written text only where necessary and avoiding long paragraphs or numerous fast-moving subtitles as this can be difficult to follow or distracting for the viewer. However, as this is a new medium, such decisions will be left to the contributor(s) as much as possible. Choices in size, typeface, and placement should be consistent and should reflect a coherent multimedia design. Closed captioning or subtitles can be also be used, but please keep in mind the differences between using automatic closed captioning and embedding text within the video itself.
  • References and citations must be included within the video article as well as in the required transcript. The choice of referencing style (including whether to use author/date citations with a reference list or to place footnotes throughout the video) is left up to the contributors, but this must be consistent throughout any given article.
  • Please note that JER makes no provision for additional textual materials apart from the abstract and keywords, which are necessary to make the video articles accessible to search engines. JER does not publish research statements alongside video articles. Any contextual information that is required for the article must be included within the video file itself.

Required textual information

All video articles must contain at least the following textual information:

  1. Title and author;
  2. A descriptive abstract (300-500 words);
  3. Up to eight keywords identifying the main themes and topics of the article; and
  4. A competing interest statement in accordance with our Competing Interest Guidelines.

This information must be included in textual form in order for the article to be properly indexed and to follow Open Library of Humanities policy.

It is standard to include this information as part of rolling credits at the end of the video, however contributors may place it anywhere according to the article’s audiovisual design.


Transcripts and access

Once the final version of a video article has been approved for publication, the author is responsible for supplying to the editor a complete transcript including all spoken and written text that appears in the video. In the transcript:

  • Text that appears onscreen visually is left-justified.
  • Text that is spoken in the audio track is indented.
  • Crucial information that would be evident to someone watching, such as which person is speaking, can be included within square brackets.
  • Time code is provided intermittently at relevant section breaks.

You can see examples of this format by looking at previously published articles. The format is still in development and the editor will work with you on it, however the production of the transcript is the responsibility of the contributor(s). The transcript is essential to make the content of video articles accessible to text-based search engines and accessibility tools.

The editor will also select four screenshot images to include at the top of the transcript and on the article webpage. However, please feel free to suggest particular moments/images if you wish.

Apart from the above, the transcript should not include additional substantive materials that are not in the video article itself. The video article must stand alone as a research document without the support of additional writing. The transcript is a placeholder for the video article, to be used in situations where video is not possible. It is not intended as a replacement or supplement for the video article itself.

Providing additional access methods for video articles is strongly encouraged. It is in the interest of contributors to provide multiple access methods in order for their work to reach the widest possible audience across various kinds of sensory and cognitive difference including visual and hearing impairment. Simple, low-tech methods for creating Closed Captions are available through hosting sites like Vimeo and YouTube. Audio description is also encouraged both as an access method for sight-impaired auditors and as a methodological tool for engaging with visual imagery.


Ethical Matters

Where applicable, research must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee and the authors should include a statement within the article detailing this approval. Individuals whose practice features centrally in the article should be counted as authors (see above) rather than subjects and are assumed to have contributed and/or consented to the video article in its final form.


Indicative links

Precedents for the scholarly video article can be found in documentary film making, performance documentation, dance film, video journalism, media studies, and other multimedia genres. In addition to previous issues of JER, the following selection of indicative links may be useful in thinking about scholarly video format and design.


Theatre, Dance and Performance Training blog
Motion Bank Project
William Forsythe’s Synchronous Objects
Hemispheric Institute Digital Video Library
Siobhan Davies Replay
Arts Archives
On the Boards TV


[in]Transition Journal of Videographic Film & Moving Image Studies
Screenworks Journal
Film Studies for Free
Film Studies for Free — links to online streaming platforms
Filmmaking Research Network
JoVE: Journal of Visualized Experiments

Many more resources and ideas are available via independent film, visual anthropology and sociology, and visual culture studies, and the history of video essay/film essay.