Overview and Eligibility
Undercurrent publishes well-supported, well-reasoned essays and research on international development issues by Canadian undergraduate students. Although topical papers from all disciplines are welcome, the journal does not publish fiction, poetry, or creative writing.
Papers may include coursework past or present. Only work written while the author is enrolled as an undergraduate is eligible. Students who have graduated have six months (from day of convocation) to submit work to the journal. Only one submission per author will be accepted for consideration per issue. Previously published work is not eligible for inclusion in Undercurrent.
Manuscripts may be written in English or French.
Topical submissions are accepted from any academic discipline. If you have questions about the appropriateness of your manuscript, artwork or commentary, please e-mail the journal with a brief description of the work. The editorial board would be glad, as time permits, to indicate its level of interest and/or ways in which you might consider revising your work. (possible topics.pdf)
Although manuscripts, artworks and commentaries are accepted on an ongoing basis, the submission deadline for fall/winter issues is September 21st, and the deadline for spring/summer issues is January 31st. Submissions received after the deadline will automatically be considered for the following issue.
Acceptance is determined by the editorial board, with the input of faculty advisors from universities across Canada. Submissions will be evaluated according to the following criteria: topicality, relevance to a broad audience, technical merit/quality of research, creativity, originality, and clarity of expression.
Manuscripts are refereed anonymously, undergoing two blind reviews by undergraduate editors. Authors’ identities are held in strict confidence by the Editor-in-Chief, whose role is to administer the board’s activities and whose vote in editorial matters is never decisive. The final selection process runs for just under three months — from the submissions deadline until the publication date of any given issue.
Publication of selected papers and written commentary is conditional and contingent upon editing. With respect to submissions accepted for publication, corrections of spelling and grammatical errors or changes to improve clarity may be made by the editors without consent of the author; however, substantive changes will not be undertaken without the author’s consent.
Students interested in being published in the journal should submit their articles electronically, attached as a Microsoft Word document (.doc).
Please note that the journal cannot review work submitted as a Wordperfect or Adobe Acrobat file.
Manuscripts should be set in 12-point Times New Roman font aligned left, double-spaced, titled, and have numbered pages. The title and any headings should be centered and bolded. Tables of data should be sent as Excel spreadsheets. Images (graphics, pictures, figures, equations, etc.) should be sent as .jpg or .gif files.
The e-mail accompanying the manuscript must include:
- The author’s name
- Article title
- An abstract of no more than 150 words
- Total word count of article (excluding tables, figures, and references
- A short biographical sketch (including name of university, academic interests, current year of study, expected year of graduation, major or intended major, and e-mail address)
- Any acknowledgements (if necessary)
- Name and e-mail address of a faculty member able to verify that the work was authored solely by an undergraduate student
Before submitting, please ensure the manuscript includes a copy of the abstract.
Any identifying information (ie. the author’s name, class, professor, or grade received) must be taken out of the manuscript, as the review process is anonymous.
Manuscripts should range from 2,500 words (minimum) to 5,000 words (excluding tables, figures, and references).
Work must be written in non-sexist and non-racist language. Authors are encouraged to use a clear, accessible style, free from specialized jargon, in order to reach the widest possible readership.
Please note in your e-mail if your manuscript is currently under review by another journal. While simultaneous submissions with other publications are accepted, authors should notify Undercurrent immediately upon their manuscript’s acceptance elsewhere. Original work selected for publication in the journal may be reprinted subsequently in another publication if Undercurrent is properly credited (however, please note that Undercurrent itself does not accept previously published manuscripts).
Please ensure that permission has been received if you plan to reproduce materials that are subject to copyright laws.
Anyone who is unable to submit a manuscript in the required format or who has questions about formatting should contact the journal.
Footnotes should be limited to content notes and appear in the footer of the appropriate page; all other referencing should conform to the APA parenthetical citation style (see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/). A list of references should accompany the manuscript, showing only those works actually cited in the article. Please note that the journal cannot publish articles where sources are not documented both completely and correctly.
As stated above, although submissions are accepted on an ongoing basis, the submission deadline for fall/winter issues is September 21st, and the deadline for spring/summer issues is January 31st. Submissions received after the deadline will automatically be considered for the following issue.
The final selection process runs for just over two months: in the fall, from September 21st until December 1st; in the spring, from January 31st until June 1st. Please wait until at least two months into this period to query the journal regarding the status of your submission.
Notification of acceptance or rejection of work will be sent via e-mail for all submissions. An initial acknowledgement of receipt is usually sent within two days. If you do not receive a notification within this time, please re-send your original e-mail.