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Manuscript Submission Guidelines

SLEEP'S manuscript submission process is organized through the Rapid Review website. Before you submit your manuscript, you'll need to log in to your Rapid Review account. If you don't have a Rapid Review account click here to create one.

You can log in to your Rapid Review account by clicking here.

In the years since its first volume was published in 1978, SLEEP has become the most influential peer-reviewed journal in our field. Among 13 publications focused on sleep and circadian rhythms, SLEEP is ranked first by Google Scholar Metrics. Furthermore, the journal’s annual impact factor has been above 5.0 for the past four years.

By publishing the best research in the sleep field and continually producing quality and engaging issues, SLEEP has attracted a steadily increasing quantity of submissions from around the world. The number of original manuscripts received by the journal doubled from 2007 to 2012 and continues to ascend.

Processing this influx of papers has caused a corresponding and dramatic rise in the editorial and production expenses incurred by the APSS. Therefore, beginning April 1, 2014, the APSS is instituting a nominal non-refundable submission fee of $50 for all original scientific manuscripts submitted for publication in SLEEP. No fee will be required for other types of papers such as abstracts, book reviews, editorials and letters to the editor. Please contact the national office at (630) 737-9700 with questions.

All materials are submitted and edited electronically using the Rapid Review online service. To submit an original manuscript, short note, editorial, rapid publication, review, book report, or letters to the editor, please go to Complete instructions for the electronic submission process can be found below.


Only original manuscripts will be considered for publication. Articles cannot be concurrently submitted or published by any other publication, print or electronic, except in abstract form.

The APSS is not responsible in the event that any manuscript or any part thereof is lost. Published manuscripts become the permanent property of the APSS and may not be published elsewhere without written permission from the APSS.

All accepted manuscripts are subject to manuscript editing for conciseness, clarity, grammar, spelling, and SLEEP style.


Conflict of interest disclosure and attestation of authorship form
Each author MUST DISCLOSE ALL potential conflicts of interest by submitting the Conflict of Interest Disclosure and Attestation of Authorship form for every submitted editorial, review, and manuscript, before a review will be undertaken. Substantive changes to the disclosure must be reported as they occur. Papers that report on intervention studies on biologicals or technologies must indicate separately in the disclosure what company made and/or markets the product tested. Conflicts of interest will be reviewed by the Editor-In-Chief and the SLEEP staff. This information will be listed within the article, but dollar amounts will not be included. No submission will be considered for review without complete disclosure. This form is an interactive PDF. Save a copy to your computer, and complete it by typing directly into the fields. (Please follow the instructions on the form.) Alternatively, this form may be printed out and faxed to (630) 737-9790, or mailed to APSS, 2510 North Frontage Road, Darien, IL 60561. In addition, list the presence OR absence of any conflicts of interest for each author on the title page of every manuscript submission. No submission will be considered for review without complete disclosure included on the title page.

Clinical trial information
SLEEP now requires that all clinical trials, regardless of when they were completed, and all partial and secondary analyses of original clinical trials must be registered before submission of a manuscript based on the trial. Trials must have been registered at or before the onset of patient enrollment for any clinical trial that began patient enrollment on or after February 1, 2007. The trial name, URL, and registration number should be included at the end of the manuscript abstract.

The following trial registries are acceptable:

Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry:
Chinese Clinical Trial Register (ChiCTR):
Clinical Trials (service of NIH):
Clinical Trials Registry- India (CTRI):
German Clinical Trials Register (DRKS):
ISRCTN Register:
Nederlands Trial Register (NTR):
UMIN Clinical Trials Registry:

Authorship responsibility
Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work and analysis of data, as well as the writing of the manuscript, for his or her name to be listed as a co-author and should attest to this responsibility.

Ethics of investigation
Authors should specify within the manuscript whether ethical standards were used in their research. If results of an experimental investigation in human or animal subjects are reported, the manuscript should include the notation that the institutional review board on human or animal research approved the study and that appropriate informed consent was obtained from human subjects. If approval by an institutional review board is not possible, then information must be included indicating that clinical experiments conform to the principals outline by the Declaration of Helsinki.

Copyright assignment and CME educational objective form (transfer of author copyright)
A signed copy of the Copyright Assignment and CME Educational Objective form MUST be submitted with your manuscript. Include the title of the article being submitted, as well as the date. This form is an interactive PDF. Save a copy to your computer, and complete it by typing directly into the fields. (Please follow the instructions on the form.) This form may also be printed out and faxed to (630) 737-9790, or mailed to APSS, 2510 North Frontage Road, Darien, IL 60561.

Learning objectives
Authors should keep in mind the overall learning objectives of the journal SLEEP. After reading each issue, readers should be able to: 1) appraise sleep research in basic science and clinical investigation; 2) interpret new information and updates on clinical diagnosis/treatment and apply those strategies to their practice; 3) analyze articles for the use of sound scientific and medical procedures; and 4) recognize the inter-relatedness/dependence of sleep medicine with primary disciplines.


Title page
This page should include the title and subtitle; full first and last names, highest academic degrees, and institutional affiliations for all authors; the institution at which the work was performed; disclosure of the presence OR absence of financial support and off-label or investigational use; the presence OR absence of any conflicts of interest for each author; corresponding author’s full address, phone and fax numbers and e-mail address. No submission will be considered for review without complete disclosure included on the title page. Titles of articles may NOT be longer than 110 characters and spaces. Titles of articles may NOT end in a question mark (?) or any other punctuation.

Each article must be preceded by a structured abstract. For clinical or original investigations, the abstract is limited to 250 words. The components of this format are (start each on a new line): Study Objectives; Design; Setting; Patients or Participants; Interventions; Measurements and Results; Conclusions; keywords. Conclusions should not simply restate results and they should carry as few abbreviations as possible. (For any of the previously mentioned components of the abstract not supplied, whether the information is unavailable or not supplied, it will be published as N/A (Not Available) for continuity purposes.) For smaller departmental articles, abstracts should not exceed 100 words. Please provide no fewer than three but no more than ten key words that reflect the content of your manuscript. For guidance consult the Medical Subject Headings - Annotated Alphabetic List, published each year by the National Library of Medicine and available in most hospital or institution libraries.

State the object of research with reference to previous work.

Describe methods in sufficient detail so that the work can be duplicated, or cite previous descriptions if they are readily available. Manuscripts that require extensive details about methods and procedures may place some of this information in an electronic Supplement that will accompany the manuscript through production and electronic publication on the SLEEP website (not in printed version). The supplement should be referred to in the appropriate locations in the published paper.

Describe results clearly, concisely, and in logical order. When possible give the range, standard deviation, or mean error, and significance of differences between numerical values. Results (including tables and figures) that go beyond the key findings reported in the paper may be placed in an electronic Supplement that will accompany the manuscript through production and publication on the SLEEP website (not in the printed version). The supplement should be referred to in the appropriate locations in the published paper.

Interpret the results and relate them to previous work in the field. Include a paragraph near the end of the Discussion that briefly lists the limitations of the study.

The minimum compatible with the requirements of courtesy should be provided.

Figure legends, numbered sequentially. Give the meaning of all symbols and abbreviations used in the figure.

ALL tables must be created using the table function in a word processor program and also should conform to a one- (3.25”) or two-column (6.5”) format. Prepare each table with a title above and any description below the table. Tables should be self-explanatory and should not duplicate textual material. They must be numbered and cited in consecutive order in the text, and must have a short title. Tables consisting of more than 10 columns are NOT acceptable. Previously published tables must have a signed permission from the publisher and complete reference data so that appropriate credit can be given.

SLEEP complies with the reference style given in "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (see International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) online). Each reference should be cited in the text, tables, or figures in consecutive numerical order by means of superscripted Arabic numerals outside periods and commas and inside colons and semicolons. When three or more references are cited at one place in the manuscript, a hyphen should be used to join the first and last numbers of a series; commas should be used without spaces to separate other parts of a multiple-reference citation. There is no limit on the number of references for original articles. The reference section should be included starting on a separate page at the end of the text, following the style of the sample formats given below. It is highly recommended that a standard bibliography program such as EndNote or Reference Manager be used. For EndNote users, the formatting style for SLEEP should be used. For abbreviations of journal names, refer to “List of Journals Indexed in Index Medicus”. Provide all authors' names when fewer than seven; when seven or more, list the first three and add et al. Provide article titles and inclusive pages. Note that SLEEP does not include the issue number in its reference style. Accuracy of reference data is the responsibility of the author. We cannot guarantee that citation/reference software will match all SLEEP author guidelines. Failure to initially comply with SLEEP’s style requirements may result in manuscripts returned to authors for correction and may potentially delay publication.

Sample citations
According to our previous work,1,3-8,19
The patients were studied as follows3,4:

Sample references

1. Kapur VK, Baldwin CM, Resnick HE, Gottlieb DJ, Nieto FJ. Sleepiness in patients with moderate to severe sleep-disordered breathing. Sleep 2005;28:472-7.

2. Quan SF, Howard BV, Iber C, et al. The Sleep Heart Health Study: design, rationale, and methods. Sleep 1997;20:1077-85.

3. Guilleminault C, Lugaresi E, eds. Sleep/wake disorders: natural history, epidemiology, and long-term evolution. New York: Raven Press, 1983.

Chapter of a book:
4. Coleman RM, Bliwise DL, Sajben N, et al. Epidemiology of periodic movements during sleep. In: Guilleminault C, Lugaresi E, eds. Sleep/wake disorders: natural history, epidemiology, and long-term evolution. New York: Raven Press, 1983:217-30.

Drug names
Use generic names in referring to drugs; trade names may be given in parentheses after the first mention, but the generic name should be used thereafter.

Follow the list of abbreviations given in "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (see section on References). For additional abbreviations, consult the Council of Biology Editors Style Manual (available from the Council of Biology Editors, Inc., 9650 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814) or other standard sources. Please note that Journal style for the abbreviation of Standard Deviation is SD. Please do not use SD as an abbreviation for Sleep Deprivation.

Please provide on a separate sheet all abbreviations used with their full definition. Each should be expanded at first mention in the text and listed parenthetically after expansion.


1. Figures should be black-and-white line drawings, professionally drawn and lettered. Avoid the use of screens and grayscale elements within a figure.
2. Figures and illustrations should be submitted in their final size, either 3.25 inches wide or 6.5 inches wide (see #4 below), and must be clear and easily readable.
3. Photographs, either black-and-white or color, are permitted, provided they fit the size requirements and are of high quality.
4. Most figures and illustrations should have a maximum width of 3.25 inches so they can fit into the confines of a single column. Only illustrations of particular importance and relevance, or figures that incorporate several smaller elements, should appear in two-column size, which is 6.5 inches wide.
5. Figures should be of a uniform style within the manuscript; the same typeface should be used for each figure (the font and size is Arial 9 point) you submit, and figures of the same type-such as bar graphs-should appear similar and be proportioned ' to the same scale.
6. Figures will be evaluated both for scientific relevance and for design integrity, and authors may be asked to modify figures based on either of these concerns.
7. All figures and illustrations will be reproduced in “portrait” format; SLEEP cannot accommodate “landscape” presentation (i.e., no table or figure will be included that requires the reader to turn the journal sideways).
8. Each figure and illustration should be numbered and cited in consecutive numerical order within the text of the manuscript. A legend should be provided for each figure and illustration.
9. Reproduction in color must be approved by the Editor. Authors are required to pay a color fee for each color reproduction. The cost to the author will be $100.00 per figure/photo/illustration, and payment will be required before publication.


Signed statements of consent by the individual, (parents or legal guardians for minors) the physician, and institution must accompany a photograph if there is a possibility the subject could be identified.


Editors first determine if a submitted manuscript is suitable for review and publication. Manuscripts selected are then sent for peer-review to reviewers who are selected based on their expertise related to the particular manuscript. After reviews are in, a recommendation of accept, reject or revise (for further consideration) is made by the Associate Editor to the Editor in Chief, who makes the final decision.

Manuscripts are reviewed with due respect for the author's confidentiality. At the same time, reviewers also have rights to confidentiality, which are respected by the editors. The editors ensure both the authors and the reviewers that the manuscripts sent for review are privileged communications and are the private property of the author.

When submitting a manuscript for consideration for publication, authors may suggest the names of potential reviewers to invite and/or exclude.


If a manuscript is returned to the author(s) for revisions, all resubmissions must follow the Instructions for Submitting a Manuscript and include the following:

  1. Both a clean copy and a redline copy of the revised submission. NOTE: If the redline copy was created using “track changes” mode in Word, please create a PDF file of the redline version and upload the PDF file in Rapid Review. If you are not able to create a PDF file of your redline version, please use alternative font colors or highlighting tools in Word to show the redlined changes – not “track changes” mode.
  2. You must also upload a letter (Corresponding Author’s Rebuttal) responding to each of the points made by the reviewers.

The deadline for submission of a revised manuscript needing major revisions is two months from the date of the notice. For Minor revisions, the deadline for resubmission is one month. There is no guarantee that a revised manuscript will be accepted for publication.


At the option of the authors, manuscripts previously peer-reviewed by SLEEP, but not accepted for publication may be considered for expedited review for Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (JCSM). An expedited review will consist of an analysis by the Editor-in-Chief of JCSM of the previous critiques returned by SLEEP as well as an examination of the submitted manuscript. Using these documents, an initial decision of accept, reject or revision will be made without additional outside reviews. To obtain an expedited review, the corresponding author MUST request this in the cover letter to JCSM. The authors must include the critiques returned from SLEEP, a detailed response to each of these critiques, and both a track changes and a clean version of the paper. The Editor-in-Chief will decide whether to conduct an expedited review or to proceed with the standard review process. If a decision is made to conduct a standard review, the author will be so informed and given the option to withdraw the manuscript without prejudice.


Once a manuscript is accepted, it will be scheduled for publication in an upcoming issue of SLEEP. The corresponding author will be notified as to the assignment of the manuscript to an issue and page proofs will be sent to the corresponding author. These proofs will be emailed as a PDF file and authors will be expected to return their corrections or approval of these proofs within the timeframe given in the email. It is the authors’ responsibility to keep their account in Rapid Review current and to notify the journal’s administrative office of any changes in contact information after a paper has been accepted.


To order author reprints please call (630) 737-9700 for a price quote and minimum order requirements. For commercial reprint orders contact Cenveo Publisher Services, 4810 Williamsburg Road, #2, Hurlock, MD 21643. 


Rapid Publication
Papers of sufficient scientific importance and interest to the clinical and research community that warrant a rapid publication process may be submitted under this category. The standard review and processing procedures used by the Journal SLEEP are substantially accelerated such that a paper will move from original submission to final acceptance in about 3 weeks and to print publication in about 8 weeks. This process is now available to any study of major scientific importance. Our plan is to publish such studies in 8-12 weeks from the time of original submission with on-line availability being 3-4 weeks earlier. However, many papers that ultimately meet the standard for publication in SLEEP are not appropriate for rapid publication. Papers that, in the judgment of the Editor-in-Chief or in the judgment of the appropriate Deputy Editor, do not meet this criteria will be returned to the author without review (and may be re-submitted using the standard publication guidelines). Rapid publication is not a mechanism to have all papers reviewed more quickly, rather it is reserved for scientifically, highly meritorious work and this should be respected.

Short Notes or Letters
Short notes may be a maximum of 6 double-spaced, typewritten pages. One figure or one table may be added. Letters should be 1-2 double-spaced pages at most. There are no limits on the number of references for Short Notes or Letters.

Critical reviews on important topics can be submitted to SLEEP for consideration. The Review section may also include summaries of symposia presentations at national or international meetings. Editors initially review these submissions for merit and request peer reviews if deemed appropriate. Additions and changes may be requested of the author to better communicate the state of the art presented in the review. Books to be considered for review should be submitted to the Editor-in-Chief.


Peer-reviewed, scientific papers accepted for publication in SLEEP may be designated for Category 1 continuing medical education credit. On the Copyright Assignment and CME Educational Objective Form, authors are asked to write a broad, one sentence learning objective to accompany their manuscript.

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