Submission Guidelines

Since the USC Upstate Student Research Journal is interdisciplinary, papers will be read by scholars from a wide range of disciplines. Each work should be readable and comprehensible to anyone interested in the topic, regardless of expertise. Yet, authors should avoid devoting more than a few sentences towards the explanation of standard information or common knowledge. Papers should uphold a level of sophistication that represents the standards that USC Upstate strives to promote.  

Paper Length and Formatting

Papers should be at least 5 pages but no more than 15 pages (typed, 11pt Arial font, 1-inch margin, double-spaced). Special exceptions may be granted. Please contact the Editor-in-Chief with questions regarding  length requirements.

Submissions should be uploaded in WORD document form.

Submission Details

The submission process is automated, so you will need to complete ALL parts of the online application form and upload your paper before the submission deadline. The last step of the form allows you to upload your paper in word or PDF format.  In addition, you must name your Word file with the following format:
Primary Student Author’s Last Name and Primary Faculty Mentor’s Last Name_Year_USCUSRJ  Example: Smith and Jones_2017_USCUSRJ

Paper Organization

The Editorial Board welcomes and encourages submissions from all disciplines. The papers and research projects should represent research, scholarship and creative endeavors by USC Upstate students and faculty.

The expectation is that sources assist in developing the projects and assist in interpreting the significance of project findings – therefore, the sources should be cited in the text and listed in the references section. All submissions, regardless of discipline, should have a references section. There should be a one: one correspondence between citations in the text and the sources listed in the references section. Refer to the examples listed below to assist with creating this section.

The organization of submissions will vary slightly among disciplines, but the typical paper organization should be outlined as follows:  

  1. Title (required)
    Place at the very beginning of the manuscript and should reflect upon the holistic nature of the idea behind the manuscript. The title should not be as generalized as to encompass myriad ideas. Make the title appropriate yet appealing.  
  2. Authors (required)
    List all authors below the title. The student who contributed the most to the project/paper should be listed first, followed by any additional students who worked on the project, and finally, the faculty project advisor(s) should be listed last. Include full name, title/major, department affiliation, email address and phone number for each author. 
  3. Abstract (required)
    Provide a clear and concise yet engaging abstract that summarizes the author's research and conclusions. This section should be between 200-250 words.  
  4. Introduction
    Include a general introduction to the main topic with the necessary background information in order for the paper to be fully comprehensible. Include the purpose of the research, why it was conducted, and what is important about it.  
  5. Methods section(s)
    Describe the main procedure used to perform the inquiry. Explain the main methods used, why that particular procedure was used, and any advantages and disadvantages.  
  6. Results and Discussion
    Examine the trends or implications in the results to substantiate the paper's conclusions. The reader will be interested in the implications of the results and the conclusions drawn from the paper's discussion.  
  7. Conclusion
    This relatively short section should be the closing paragraph of your manuscript. In few sentences, summarize the purpose of the study and the conclusions made. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the inquiry, so as to provide an insight into further studies. Though inquiry importance has been already stated, reiterating the importance of the findings and conclusions and their potential effect will create a stronger paper.  
  8. Acknowledgment section
    Include any relevant acknowledgments you would like to make.  
  9. References section (required)
    Make sure all references are cited within the manuscript at the end of the document. Failure to cite properly is a serious academic violation of USC Upstate's Honor Code and will not be tolerated. Each reference number cited in the text should be enclosed in square brackets, and inclusive lists should use a hyphen to indicate a range, even for two consecutive numbers.

    EXAMPLE: [1], [3]-[4], [7]-[9] NOT [1], [3], [4], [7], [8], [9] OR [1, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9]) There is no need to use the term "reference" when citing a reference in text.

    EXAMPLE: In [23]. Sample references are listed below, PLEASE FOLLOW THESE STYLES VERY CLOSELY.  
  10. Tables and Figures
    Include pertinent illustrations, pictures, and graphs in order to make the article more visually appealing to the reader. Each figure should be labeled with an explanatory caption.  

Sample References Section Citation Formats:  

Article in a Journal  

[1] W.E. Stephens, H. Samueli, and G. Cherubini, "Copper wire access technologies for high performance networks," IEEE. J. Select. Areas Commun., vol. 13, no. 9, Dec. 1995, pp. 1537–1539.  

Article in Published Conference Proceedings  

[2] M.R. Gibbard, A.B. Sesay, and L. Strawczynski, "Asymmetric equalization structure for broadband indoor wireless data communications," in Proc. 6th Int. Conf. Wireless Communications, vol. 2, Calgary, Alta., July 11–13, 1994, pp. 521–535.  

Paper Presented at a Conference (Unpublished)  

[3] K. Iba, H. Suzuli, M. Egawa, and T. Watanabe, "Calculation of the critical loading condition with nose curve using homotopy continuation method," presented at IEEE/PES 1990 Summer Meeting, Minneapolis, Minn., July 15–19, 1990.  

Technical Report  

[4] J.E. Roy, W.R. Lauber, and J.M. Bertrand, "Measurements of the electromagnetic far-fields produced by a portable transmitter (principal planes)," Electromagnetics and Compatibility Group, Communications Research Centre, Ottawa, Ont., Report No. CRC-RP-98-002, Feb. 1998.

Published Report by a Committee or Body  

[5] ISO/IEC JTC1/SC29/WG1, JPEG Part I Final Committee Draft, version 1, Document N1646R, Mar. 16, 2000.  Unpublished Dissertation or


[6] R.F. Gauthier, "Multiple-antenna data transmission over fading channels," M.Eng. thesis, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ont., 1998.  

Published Dissertation or Thesis  

[7] L. Tan, Theory and Techniques for Lossless Waveform Data Compression, Ph.D. dissertation, Dept. of Electrical Engineering, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, N.M., May 1992.  

Chapter or Section of a Book

 [8] Fred Garner, "Beginning at the beginning," chap. 1 in Digital Computer Arithmetic, 2nd ed., Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1993.  


[9] Fred Garner, Digital Computer Arithmetic, 2nd ed., Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1993, pp. 79–82.  

Multivolume Work or Part of Multivolume Work  

[10] R.V. Pao and Kenneth Christy, eds., Synthesis of Passive Networks, 2 vols., Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1968.
[11] John Venekov, Passive Networks, vol. 1 of Synthesis of Passive Networks, ed. R.V. Pao and Kenneth Christy, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1968.  
[12] John Venekov, "Some introductory comments," chap. 1 in Passive Networks, vol. 1 of Synthesis of Passive Networks, ed. R.V. Pao and Kenneth Christy, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1968, pp. 213–223.  


[13] ANSI/IEEE Std 944-1986, IEEE Recommended Practice for the Application and Testing of Uninterruptible Power Supplies for Power Generating Stations.  


[14] L.J. Karr, "Polled data network auto-equalizer system and method," U.S. Patent No. 4969162, Nov. 6, 1990.  

Document from a Website

[15] Robert Miner and Jeff Schaefer, "Tutorial: A gentle introduction to MathML" [online], Long Beach, Calif.: Design Science, Inc., Oct. 2001 [cited Jan. 16, 2002], retrieved from World Wide Web: put website address (url) here.  Note: The posting date or revision date for many online documents can be found at the bottom of the screen at the end of the document. Where no author is listed for a document, the organization sponsoring the website may be listed as the author.

Article from an Online Journal or Serial Publication  

[16] Erica Vonderheid, "Artists create masterpieces with new technology," The Institute [online], vol. 26, no. 1, Jan. 2002 [cited Jan. 16, 2002], retrieved from World Wide Web: put website address (url) here.  

Computer Program or Software  

[17] Adobe Illustrator, ver. 9.0, Adobe Systems Incorporated, San Jose, Calif.