Submission Process

Please note: On Our Terms ceased publication in 2016 and is no longer accepting submissions.

Q. What is On Our Terms? A. On Our Terms (OOT) aw an online, peer-reviewed, academic journal of women and leadership, which ceased publication in 2016. Produced under the auspices of the Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College, this publication features scholarship by undergraduates from across the globe seeking to enhance our generation’s discourse on the theme. We are a journal created for students, by students, and our goal is to provide a platform for student thought, debate, and voice through the publication of original academic articles and multimedia pieces. Our staff consists of undergraduate students at Barnard College enrolled in the Athena Scholars Program and we are happy to address questions at onourterms@barnard.edu.

Q. What subjects does On Our Terms consider? A. As women and leadership is an inherently broad theme,On Our Terms is highly interdisciplinary and includes undergraduate research across all disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, and the STEM fields that inform our readership on the topic. We encourage pieces that promote the exercise of leadership skills such as advocacy, ambition, communication, entrepreneurship, leverage, resilience, and vision. Potential concepts to consider are women in activism and social movements, progressive female change-makers in politics, literature, or history, and women’s influence in the changing global economy.

Q. How frequently is the journal published? A. On Our Terms is published online once each year—in the Spring. Every cycle, approximately five submissions are presented.

Q. How do I submit? A. Select “Submit a Manuscript” from the “Submissions” drop down menu and follow the prompts. If you experience any complications, please contact onourterms@barnard.edu before the deadline.

Q. May I submit after the deadline? A. If you send your submission after the initial deadline or fail to provide a full submission by the second deadline, there is no guarantee that it will be considered. Please be in touch at onourterms@barnard.edu if you anticipate delays.

Q. Who is eligible to submit? A. We welcome submissions from undergraduates attending colleges and universities across the globe. Recent graduates may submit pieces written during their undergraduate years.

Q. What is the optimal submission length? A. We publish papers that are between 10 and 20 pages, including citations. Shorter pieces will be considered at the discretion of the Editorial Board and must be more narrowly focused. Longer works are welcome, but should include an abstract and appropriate section headings. Additionally, as an online publication, multimedia pieces are encouraged. As drama, dance, art, and film works are varied, please send a proposal or synopsis to the Editorial Board at onourterms@barnard.edu at early as possible for consultation on appropriate length.

Q. How should I format my submission? A. Submissions may be in any widely-recognized citation format (namely, Chicago, APA, APSA, MLA, etc.). Regardless of the format, specific page numbers must be listed for cited material that is paginated. Please note that the Editorial Board may request that authors change the citation format before publication of selected works. We encourage the use of section headers and abstracts to guide our editors and readership and these features are required on submissions longer than 20 pages.

Q. May my submission be written in a language other than English? A. No, we can only accept submissions written in English. Translated pieces may be submitted with the appropriate translation information. Please include the translator’s contact information or the professional service’s information, so that On Our Terms can credit the translator.

Q. May I create a submission from scratch for On Our Terms? A. Yes, but we cannot guarantee publication.

Q. May I submit multiple pieces? A. Yes, but we will not select more than one article per author per publication cycle.

Q. May my submission already be published elsewhere? A. No, we will not accept previously published works. Additionally, authors must request the Editorial Board’s permission before reprinting selections from On Our Terms.

Review Process

Q. What is the timeline from submission to publication? What does each step entail? A.

  1. Call for submissions —Until November 15 – The Managing Editor will spearhead requests for submissions and will field inquires addressed to onourterms@barnard.edu.
  2. Selection – Until February 3 – The Editorial Board reads all of the submitted materials and chooses about five that best fit our mission and/or demonstrate the most promise. At least two members will review each submission. At this stage, initial remarks on content, structure, and major grammatical issues are noted. Authors who submitted complete pieces by the initial submission deadline are prioritized and can expect a decision by January 31.
  3. Initial revisions – Until February 11 – Authors make revisions based on initial comments and suggestions.
  4. Professor review – Until March 15 &ddash;Professors selected from across Barnard College and Columbia University will review articles for content, vet arguments and provide avenues for improvement. The Editor-in-Chief and Managing Editor (hereafter the Executive Board) match pieces with professors who specialize in the relevant discipline and, if possible, topic area.
  5. Substantive content revisions – Until April 5 – Based on the professor’s remarks and the further corrections made by the Editorial Board, all adjustments to the content, form, and presentation of the article will be made at this time. To ensure the best product, the editing process is collaborative. In addition to the review tools on the website, editors will be in contact by email, phone, and/or Skype as necessary. During this period, authors can anticipate being in contact with the following individuals: content editor on refining the text, Barnard College librarians on collecting more relevant sources to bolster your piece, copy editor to correct stylistic and grammatical infelicities, Executive Board member on all of the above.
  6. Final preparations for publication – Until April 12 – At this stage, authors should be available for consultation on final copy editing and titling of the piece. Additionally, an author biography must be supplied in the stipulated format.
  7. Journal launch – Late April – The Spring 2015 issue will be formally launched online and will be distributed to subscribers and partners.

Throughout the process, we aim to retain as much of the initial submission as possible. Nonetheless, authors must be flexible and should anticipate devoting substantial time to making the necessary improvements. If any of the above deadlines will pose a particular problem, please be in touch with onourterms@barnard.edu as early as possible.

Q. What is selected for publication? A. We look for submissions that uniquely inform and expand the academic discourse on women and leadership. Focusing on how our generation can learn and grow into leaders, selections may be reflective or predictive. The selections in each issue will ideally reflect a variety of academic disciplines and present a range of perspectives. Whether theoretical, historical, or practical, we look for innovative approaches and ideas. All published submissions will make engaging and enlightening arguments framed by coherent theses.

Q. Why are submissions rejected? A. We reject submissions that are unrelated to women and leadership, are not written by undergraduates, and/or otherwise fail to meet our basic criteria. Unfortunately, due to the large number of articles we receive, we also must reject many submissions every cycle that do meet these guidelines.