Guide For Authors v1

Submitting to Ground Works

Ground Works promotes original reflections on arts-integrative processes. After an initial lightweight submission of a 250-word abstract and evidence of impact, it invites authors to submit a 1000 word reflection describing an arts-integrative effort. These are published as online only rich-text ‘extended abstracts’ illustrated with supporting images, video, code, dataset or other digital assets. We do not suggest a strict format for the article but invite each author or collaborative writing team to think carefully about their project and how to represent its contributions to discourse about the practice of arts-integrative work.

Each article should provide a scholarly analysis of their arts-integrative work, process and/or products. Submissions are accepted continuously, and authors are encouraged to contact the editorial staff early in their project's development. Prospective contributors begin the editorial review process by sending a ‘letter of interest’ (5 minute submission that includes an abstract, statement of relevance, key terms, a list of contributors to the project and links that evidence recognition). Authors who need an alternate delivery method should contact the editors in advance.

In the course of our editorial review process, you should expect editorial staff and editorial board members to analyze your choices of text and media carefully, so please be sure to think them through. Please refer to our Style Guide for guidelines on technical considerations, format, and citation style. The Ground Works editorial process is meant to be more generative than evaluative. Authors can expect some back and forth with Reviewers in Stage 2 as Reviewers attend to:

  1. Clear articulation of how the project uniquely meets Stage 2 criteria
  2. Clear presentation of the project to a broad audience. This may entail the addition of generous explanatory captions to images and video, or the adjustment of language toward that which is broadly accessible.

As an open-access journal, Ground Works does not charge a subscription fee and is freely available for all readers. The journal also does not charge submission or publication fees of potential or published authors. Ground Works does not publish advertisements, announcements of events or publication, or links to resources that are not provided in published articles. Once an article is published, no additional materials or links will be added; however, the editorial staff will attempt to redirect defunct links to the appropriate dated entries in the Internet Archive where available.

Review Process and Blinding

We do not use a double-blind review process; rather, multiple reviewers confer about each submission. When submitting to the journal, there is no need to attempt to remove information about the author(s) or institutions referenced in the work.

Unless otherwise indicated below, queries and submissions should be sent via the online contact form (click 'Get Help')


Submissions to Ground Works should represent original scholarly contributions not directly featured in other journals or under consideration elsewhere. Equally, it should not represent duplicate presentation of work already published by the authors elsewhere. A rule of thumb for content reuse from prior articles is that no article submitted should feature more than 30% of its content from previous sources (and this content should appropriately cite the original articles.) In some cases authors may reuse content from other sources under fair use; egregious copying of significant portions of content from other sources is not permitted.

Concerns about plagiarism may be reported via the online contact form (click 'Get Help'). Depending on the severity of plagiarism, the article may be withdrawn, without notice.

Human Subjects

Authors submitting work to Ground Works are responsible for securing and archiving any human subjects permissions pertaining to their research.

Copyright and Creative Commons

Authors of accepted articles assign to Ground Works the right to publish and distribute their work electronically, including publication on the web and in print formats, and to archive and make it permanently retrievable electronically. Authors retain their copyright interest in their work, however, so after their project has appeared in Ground Works, they may republish their text in any manner they wish—electronic or print—as long as they clearly acknowledge Ground Works as its original site of publication.

We ask authors to place on their work a Creative Commons license, which allows authors to declare what rights (if any) they are willing to grant to others to make use of their work. If no CC license is declared on the work, then the author(s) retain traditional copyright to their work except for the rights granted to journal to publish and archive as listed above. In all cases, the publication agreement with Ground Works supersedes any other licensing provided by the author(s) of the work.

Fair Use

Ground Works encourages authors to exercise their fair use rights when appropriate. However, we expect authors to educate themselves about the law and, accordingly, to make judicious decisions about whether to seek permission for the use of copyrighted works in their article. The editors recommend that authors review the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Scholarly Research in Communication by the Center for Media and Social Impact at American University for guidance on copyright and fair use decisions.

If the author(s) of a submission cannot craft a persuasive fair use argument that works within the structure of current copyright and intellectual property law, then the author(s) should err on the side of requesting permission. Authors bear full responsibility for their choices at all times.


Before publication of any article on Ground Works, authors will be asked to certify that all material is original, utilized with permission, or utilized under fair use. Ground Works is not responsible for securing these permissions. The lead/contact author is also responsible for gaining permission from the full list of contributors to add their biographical information (name, affiliation and email address) to any submission.

Accepted File Formats

Still Images

In order of preference, please deliver the highest quality version (highest resolution, bit-depth and uncompressed) in the following formats:

  • TIFF
  • PNG
  • JPEG (For JPEG compression, use the highest quality option available; not including JPEG 2000)
  • SVG

Video (Direct File Upload)

In order of preference, please deliver the highest quality version (H.264 codec if possible) in:

  • MPEG-4 (.mp4)
  • Quicktime (.mov)
  • AVI (.avi) formats

Video files:

  • Should not exceed 2 GB each
  • Resolution: 1280x720 (720p)
  • Framerate: 30 fps
  • Video bitrate: 1500 kbps, Audio bitrate: 125 kbps
  • Video codec: H264, Audio codec: AAC

The video must include a WebVTT transcript.

Video (YouTube or Vimeo)

You may add video from an online sharing platform. In this case, it must be of the highest resolution possible (minimum 1080p).

The video must include a WebVTT transcript.


In order of preference, please deliver the highest quality version of your audio in:

  • Wave (.wav)
  • MPEG 3 (.mp3)

Aim to have audio files less than 1GB.


Please make sure to include closed captions for videos in WebVTT format. Timecodes should be provided in this format: 0:00:13.160 --> 0:00:18.480.

Style Guide

Design Requirements

All articles go through a design-edit to ensure they are ready for publication. The design edit consists of checking for readability, accessibility, usability, and sustainability. Design-editing, just like copy-editing, is a practice in negotiation with the author's design-voice. Authors of Ground Works Articles are required to follow these design requirements.

General Considerations

  • All media and design elements should be non-gratuitous and facilitate the argument of the text.
  • All links should contribute to the possible meanings and readings of the texts. Linking for the sake of linking is discouraged.
  • Authors should attempt to make clear where links are going so that readers may make informed navigational decisions. This can often be done by linking from descriptive phrases rather than individual words.
  • Links to external nodes should point, to the best of the author's knowledge, to stable sites and resources.
  • Care should be given in linking to commercial sites in order to avoid promoting any particular companies or their products. If links must be made to commercial sites for the purposes of the webtext, they should be made to informational documents rather than sales pages when possible.
  • Offsite/external links should open in a new browser window.
  • Links to other Ground Works articles should open in the same window.
  • Do not link terminal punctuation.


  • Captions and long descriptions must be provided for every image and embedded media element to provide a clear and concise description of the image and improve accessibility; captions (alt tags) should describe the image, description should narrate the visual resource in a manner that translates into words its content or purpose in the publication. explain the rhetorical use of the image.
  • All submissions that include audio or video multimedia files must also include transcripts.
  • Screenshots that primarily contain text should not be placed as images in an article.
  • Contact the journal if you think you may need to use using proprietary presentation software / non standard software displayed inline that might affect the readability and accessibility of the content.
  • For any media or presentation types, please provide alternate versions of your text as external XML and/or multimodal transcripts to increase readability and accessibility of your webtext. If we do accept work that uses an authoring system, you may be asked to submit the editable version (.fla, .doc, .aup, etc.) for editing by the staff once a piece has been accepted for publication.
  • Upon acceptance, any documents, files, text files or transcripts that are linked to the article must be supplied for archiving on our server.


Upon acceptance, we will need copies of all embedded media files, and all 3rd-party sites that host files or digital media must be shared with the journal in order to facilitate editing and archiving.

Citation Style

Ground Works recognizes that different disciplines have different preferences for citation styles. As such, Ground Works does not dictate a citation style and authors may elect to use their preferred format providing it is consistently applied.

We do request that authors adhere to some shared standards:

  • For consistency across articles, the final listing of sources is called “References”, not “Works Cited” or “Bibliography.”
  • A reference should include the name(s) of the author(s), publication date, and page number (when applicable).
  • References to online sources include the full and original link to the source material and a date on which it was retrieved in preparing this article. This will allow us, should the source become unavailable, to redirect the link to web archive. Several examples are next provided.
    1. A YouTube reference:
      Edutopia. (2012, March 21). James Paul Gee on learning with video games [Video file]. YouTube. Retrieved September 1, 2015, from
    2. A Soundcloud reference:
      Anthology. (2015, July). The tell tale heart by Edgar Allan Poe [Audio file]. Soundcloud. Retrieved September 1, 2015, from
    3. A blog post reference:
      Colby, Richard. (2014, March 29). Sparklepony drama [Blog post]. Games, writing, rhetoric. Retrieved July 18, 2014, from
    4. An image reference:
      Cassidy, Kathy. (2013, March 4). Race for a flat [Photograph]. Flickr. Retrieved June 27, 2014, from

Credit and Acknowledgements

This guideline for authors is developed in consultation with the University of Michigan Press, Fulcrum, and Kairos, often drawing on their published statements to authors. We have adapted their language for Ground Works, and we fully credit them for their time, thought, and effort in producing the original versions that informed our approach.