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American Mineralogist: Journal of Earth and Planetary Materials

American Mineralogist Information for Authors

Note that each pull-down on the menu above contains specific and important information, including nomenclature, tables, references, CIFs, figures, paper types, and more. Please explore the whole site before submitting your paper -- the tab-based design makes it easy to find what you need instead of scrolling on and on. Alternately, there is a PDF you can download for reference that contains all information.

These guidelines explain the American Mineralogist publication procedures, standardized units, and style in brief. We have organized the information in helpful sections to make reference easier (click here to download the manual, which is the same as the contents of these web pages). A brief overview of the submission guidelines can be found on the inside back cover of each issue, highlighting recent changes. Remember editors, reviewers, and associate editors are all volunteers and vital to maintaining our standards of quality; therefore, make the most of their time and yours by following these instructions. Failure to adhere to these guidelines may delay submission, review, or production of your paper. For more information on Am Min’s Scope & Mission, click here.

Submit manuscripts to our online peer review system at AllenTrack. Note that updating your contact info on this web site does not "transfer" to the MSA membership database (contact the MSA Business Office to update your info).

Submissions must not be already published, in whole or in part, in print or online. Click here if open access/open archive is desired or needed. All Open Access/Archive fees must be paid before publication, at the proof stage.

Quick links to further info:

File type Word .doc(x) or rich text format .rtf* preferred
Line spacing Double spaced throughout
Font Times New Roman (or similar) 12-point type
Page size US Letter (8.5 by 11 inches)
Page numbers Yes
Line numbers Not required (added automatically by the peer review system)

* Note: Although LaTex or Tex files can be uploaded to the peer review system, accepted manuscripts must be provided as doc(x) or .rtf files. Likewise, WordPerfect format files are not permitted.

The parts of the manuscript should appear in this order:

  1. Title

  2. Authors and affiliations
  3. Abstract and keywords
  4. Body of paper with...
  5. Implications section (required)
  6. Acknowledgments, if desired
  7. References cited list
  8. List of figure captions
  9. Appendix text (if any), Footnote, Deposit Items (text)

  10. Tables
  11. Figures

Titles should be concise, but descriptive and indicate the basic importance of the paper.

Author list: To facilitate web discoverability and protect authorship, it is generally recommended that authors spell out first names rather than use initials only-- unless for some reason you are known and established in the literature by your initials.

Affiliations: Please give complete addresses, including postal codes. Add a footnote for authors who have moved (to give a Present address).

Abstract guidelines: Should be 250-800 words (max!); concise; capture broad interest; indicate why results are significant; indicate suitability to an international audience; include important numbers/ranges; followed by list of keywords.

These are the basic components of a good abstract (adjust these to fit your paper):

  1. Motivation/problem statement: Why do we care about the problem? What practical, scientific, theoretical or other gap is your research filling?
  2. Methods/procedure/approach: What did you actually do to get your results?
  3. Results/findings/product: As a result of completing the above procedure, what did you learn?
  4. Implications: What are the larger implications of your findings, especially for the problem/gap identified in step 1?

General text details:

Special characters/notations:


Acknowledgments: The acknowledgments section should be brief but inclusive. Please double check grant numbers and spelling of personal and company names. Do not use titles, such as Dr.


Only three orders of headings may be used. Note if subheadings are used, there must be at least two (e.g., two or more 2nd/3rd-order headings under a superior-order heading; a single 2nd/3rd-order heading by itself is not allowed). Descriptions follow and are also examples:

Main or first-order headings (centered, bold)

Second-order subheadings (on a line by itself, flush left, bold)

Text follows as normal.

Third-order subheadings (after a paragraph indention, bold, and followed by a bold period). Text follows in plain type.

Implications Section the concluding paragraph(s) of a paper:

Authors should follow their "Discussion" section, with a final section titled "Implications". This section should be forward-looking; it is intended to provide authors with the opportunity to place their results into a broader context. That context should highlight the importance of the work, and emphasize relevance to and beyond the sub-discipline. This section is not to be confused with a "Conclusions" section, which like the abstract only summarizes the paper (such sections will be cut, regardless of how they are titled). The Editors will look to the Implications section to help judge whether a paper should be highlighted, and to judge whether a paper is suitable for the journal. We also advise authors to report Implications within the Abstract.

Additional info: Estimated Standard Deviation

Precision of measurement may be indicated as 1.781 ± 0.002, if 0.002 represents a subjective estimate of the measurement error. Where sufficient data permit calculation of the estimated standard deviation (e.s.d.), indicate it with parentheses e.g., 1.781(2) and 1.781(11) indicate an e.s.d. of 0.002 and 0.011, respectively. Only significant digits shall be given for the observed value, i.e., e.s.d. values in parentheses should be given as single or double digit integers. American Mineralogist as a policy requests that all measured values have to be accompanied by some indication on the uncertainty. Ideally this should be a properly calculated standard uncertainty. Only in exceptional cases, if scarcity of sample or some other special circumstances prohibit any even subjective estimation of an uncertainty, can this rule be waived.