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Preparing Tables for Journal Articles


Tables can be the best way to present data or other essential information. The tables you submit with your manuscript should be prepared with the same skill, thought, and care as the text. Failure to do so will result in the delay in publication. Tables are expensive to typeset, so include only those tables that make a positive contribution to the book. All tables submitted with the final manuscript must be complete and accompanied by permissions documentation if necessary.

Table Style

  • Tables must be consecutively numbered (Table 4, Table 5, etc.). A complete list of tables must be included on the Illustration and Permissions Inventory as part of your manuscript submission.
  • Tables should have a brief title describing what is being presented in the table; the table number and title appear above the table text.
  • Table text should be arranged so that the rows outnumber the columns and that each column contains similar material.
  • All table columns must have a heading.
  • Table text may be followed by notes and footnotes (in that order). A table note is introduced by the word “Note:” and contains information applicable to the entire table, such as a key to abbreviations or symbols. Table footnotes use superscript, roman lowercase letters to identify the footnote in the table and in the footnote.

Table Preparation

  • Tables are best prepared in Word or Excel. Do not create tables in drawing or graphics programs and then paste them into a Word file. Tables will be copyedited in Word.
  • If you create tables in Word, use the Table feature that sets up tables using cells for rows and columns. (Avoid setting up tables using the Tab key only.) Put one row of the table in one row of cells. Do not put multiple rows of data in a single row of cells and align them with the return key.
  • If you create tables in Excel, be sure that the actual data is embedded in the file you submit, and not cross-referenced to Excel files that you will not be submitting.
  • Tables may be included at the end of the text or in separate Word files.