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Length of Journal Submissions


For most ASCE journals, the suggested maximum number of words and word-equivalents is as follows:

  •  10,000 for papers 
  •  3,500 for notes 
  •  2,000 for discussions 

The journal editor may waive these guidelines to encourage papers on topics that cannot be treated within these limitations. Such topics may include state-of-the-art reviews and detailed case histories. However, authors are advised that most topics can be covered within these limitations, and that clear justification is required for longer manuscripts.

Estimating Manuscript Length

Please use the ASCE Sizing Worksheet to estimate the words and word-equivalents of your submission. To use the Sizing Guide, count the number of words (except for tables and figures) on a typical manuscript page and multiply that by the number of total pages. Add word-equivalents for figures and tables by estimating the portion of the journal page each will occupy when reduced to fit on a journal page. A page in ASCE's journals holds approximately 1,260 words; therefore, a figure that would fill one quarter of a journal page would be 315 word-equivalents and a table that would fill one half of a journal page would be 630 word-equivalents. 

Companion papers

Papers submitted as sets of companion papers will be reviewed as separate papers if the editor or associate editor determines that this is the most appropriate and logical presentation of the work. If the editor or associate editor determines that the work would more logically be presented as a single paper, the companion papers will be returned to the author(s), who may then revise the papers and resubmit the work as a single paper. If the resulting single paper is overlength, it will be subject to the normal rules for overlength papers.

When submitting companion manuscripts, author(s) are encouraged to include a written justification for publishing their work as companion papers. Sets of companion papers should be submitted together. Authors should recognize that review of companion papers may take longer than review of a single paper.