Submission Policies

Submission Policies

Content and Scholarship

The editorial board is pleased to accept manuscripts reporting the results of original research of a philosophical, historical, or scientific nature that contribute to a stronger understanding of music teaching and learning. Paradigms may represent quantitative, qualitative, or mixed methods approaches. The journal especially welcomes research that offers new and progressive takes on music teaching and learning in K12, community, and societal contexts. In short, does this work help make music education better? Authors should endeavor to articulate sections and content clearly, and include standard elements of scholarly writing. These may include background, purpose, scope, questions, literature review, methodology, data and analysis, conclusions, and implications for the profession, among other areas.

In addition, papers that provide a comprehensive review and critique of the research literature on a topic, clearly discussing possible ramifications for music education, will also be evaluated for possible publication. Only unique reviews of literature will be considered; comparable reports (unless a significant contemporary update) should not be available in other music education publications. It is suggested that prospective authors review prior CME volumes to know the work included in its history. Full text digital access to 1972 is available through JSTOR and RILM. If further details would be helpful after reading the submission guidelines, please view the CME website or contact the editor at

Style and Format

The manuscript text should be on 8.5 by 11.0 inch paper, double-spaced with 1.0 inch margins, and use the 12-point serif font Times (New Roman). Tables and figures should be designed so that they will fit the page size of the journal (approximately 4.5 inches wide by 7.5 inches high) and use no smaller than 9-point font. Any figures, drawings, charts, tables, graphics utilized should be camera-ready, in JPG or TIFF format (at least 300 DPI), clear and easy to decipher, and in black-and-white or grayscale schemes. Please do include within in the article as they should appear, but these may be requested later as separate compressed files (if necessary). Utilize centered section headings and left-justified sub-headings, both in bold print, avoiding no lower than third or fourth level.

Authors should include an abstract of 150-200 words at the beginning of their article, on a separate sheet just after the title page, along with 3-5 keywords below. The corresponding author’s (and any co-authors) name/s, email address/es, institutional affiliation/s, and mailing address/es should (only) appear on the cover sheet at the beginning of the document. Any references to author/s identity should be removed from the body of the manuscript to ensure anonymity in the review process. Add a running header with abbreviated article title on each sheet, and page numbers at the bottom, starting on the title/abstract page. Total length of the manuscript, including the abstract, figures, drawings, tables and references, should not be more than 5000-6000 words (20-25 double-spaced pages), including title page, references, appendices, and the like. Longer papers may be considered based on the particulars of the topic, content, method, and necessity to convey the importance and message of the work.

Manuscripts should adhere to recommendations made in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th edition, 2020), or The Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition, 2017). Those who select Chicago Style should utilize the Author-Date option; avoiding footnotes, and only endnotes as absolutely necessary. References should include DOI or persistent URL information, where available and feasible. The style chosen should be used consistently throughout the manuscript, and title page must indicate the style used. Please check your paper carefully for adherence to style and accuracy of writing before submitting work to the journal.

Submission Procedures

Electronic submissions via email are required, following CME content, scholarship, style, and format guidelines. Please send manuscripts to the Editor as a single file (cover sheet included) in WORD DOC/DOCX format. In the subject line, please use: CME Submission (Corresponding Author Surname – Month and Last Two Digits of Year). An example would be: CME Submission (Meyers – Apr20). Authors should retain a digital copy (and subsequent evaluations and revised versions) to ensure against loss, and for future reference. If the manuscript is based on a thesis or dissertation, a full bibliographic citation of the original work should appear on the title page. Order should be cover page, title/abstract page, then manuscript (with title again at the top of the page).

Contributions to Music Education follows the NAfME Society for Research in Music Education Code of Ethics. As stated there, submitting a manuscript indicates that it has not been published previously and is not currently submitted for publication elsewhere, either in its entirety or in part. CME also requires that authors of proposed articles and their methods have treated human participants ethically, according to standard research protocols of an Institutional Review Board (IRB) or affiliate, Collaborative Institute Training Initiative (CITI), and the American Psychological Association.

Evaluation Protocol

Authors are notified on receipt of the manuscript in the Editorial Office. The editor will initially review the work to determine fitness for the journal, and then send out for official evaluation. Several members of the editorial board (generally 3-6 based on number of appraisals), utilizing a rigorous, blind process to analyze submissions. The collective recommendation of committee members, with editor feedback, normally determines whether a manuscript will be accepted for publication.

Authors will likely receive comments on their work and suggestions to strengthen the writing. If this is the case, a revision and second version of the article may be required, along with a narrative indicating how the editorial comments and related matters were edited by the author/s. This narrative should be included in DOC/X format with a clear listing of how you addressed reviewer suggestions, along with your revised manuscript. The review process takes approximately 6-8 weeks for each blind board review, after which authors are notified of the initial editorial decision to publish, revise/resubmit, or not publish the submission. If a second review is requested, authors will generally have 6-8 weeks to complete, followed by another review period of 6-8 weeks. This may mean that an article could take as many as 18-24 weeks (or longer) for a decision, then time for further editing, suggested updates, and the like. While this schedule is necessarily flexible, our hope is to be as transparent and communicative as possible about the protocols and factors impacting the review process (at that time).

For original research, reviewers evaluate the following criteria when making a decision as to whether to accept, reject, or suggest revision: (a) importance of the problem, (b) discussion of the problem and it substance, (c) review of relevant literature and/or theory, (d) application of procedures appropriate to the purpose of the study, (e) presentation and analysis of data, (f) validity of conclusions, (g) writing mechanics and communicability, and (h) conformity to style guide and similar regulations. There is also attention to clarity and flow of writing, how it might impact the profession, and applicability to music education practice.

When examining reviews of literature, the editorial board will consider if: (a) the topic of the manuscript is timely, important, and will be of interest to readers, (b) the text provides a comprehensive review and critique of the literature, (c) analysis is perhaps based on unique questions that the literature can address, (d) the examination is clear and coherent, (e) studies are synthesized with connections made among them and providing new insights; not merely a summary of existing studies, (f) a review of literature on this topic is not available in other music education publications, (g) the manuscript is well written and compelling, and (h) the work will contribute pragmatically to music education.

Publication Details

If your article has been accepted for publication by Contributions to Music Education, please note these final requirements to complete your submission. Articles that have been accepted are reviewed by the editor, editorial assistant, and media designer for issues of accuracy of format, layout, and content. It is the responsibility of the author, to their best ability, to send work that is free of errors, adhering to CME style regulations, including clean, compact images of charts/tables/figures/statistics/and so on. All of these should be included within the article as TIFF or JPG files in black-and-white or grayscale format, no less than 300 DPI. Authors will be notified if separate images/files are required. While limited use of photographs is permitted, authors must provide permissions for any images submitted to the journal.

Please also check that all research citations are listed in the final reference section, in alphabetical/chronological order, and adhere to correct style guidelines (APA or Chicago). You should also convert your reference list/bibliography to single-spaced entries for your final version. The more accurate and clear your submission, the more efficient our publication process. These policies are designed to help ensure your article is represented in its best light, and streamline the production schedule. This includes thorough checking of statistical procedures, qualitative reporting, related aspects of methodology, writing and presentation style, exactness of the work, and similar matters.

Those authors who will have their research published in CME agree to its distribution via print and electronic means. While authors will retain copyright and ownership of their work, CME and OMEA are also copyright holders of the publication itself. Authors should be aware of permissions they are offering to OMEA and CME for the opportunity of having their research disseminated in a professional academic journal. Unless author/s specifically state otherwise, they demonstrate understanding and agreement with the terms listed in this Publication Details section of CME Submission Requirements. If author/s would prefer not to have their work published or distributed as their article is readied for publication, they may withdraw at any time.

The agreement between author/s and the publisher, Ohio Music Education Association, is consistent with U.S. copyright law, and grants without charge, non-exclusive permission for the publisher to: (1) reproduce, prepare derivative works based upon the original, publish, and distribute copies of the work to the public by sale or other transfer; and (2) grant licenses to third parties for reproduction, display, and distribution of the work, in whole or in part, as the publisher sees fit. Author/s waive any right to inspect or approve the finished product that may be used in conjunction herewith, or the use to which it might be applied. (Note that this is after the work has been thoroughly reviewed/approved by the editorial board, editors, and author/s prior to publication.)

Author/s guarantee to the publisher and licensees they are the sole author/s of the work, and remain the owner of all the rights granted to the publisher. It is also agreed that author/s have full power to enter into this agreement; that the research contains no libelous, obscene or other unlawful matter; and that it does not infringe upon the copyright or violate any other right of any person or party. The author agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the publisher against any loss, damage, claim, liability, settlement cost, or expenses by reason of a violation of any of these warranties.

The Ohio Music Education Association and Contributions to Music Education highly value the individuals who are willing to submit their work to the journal. These regulations are meant for the protection of all interested in the dissemination of their research through CME, various research databases, and related professional avenues. OMEA and CME appreciate the collaboration of those authors who present their scholarship for the benefit of the music education field. Should authors or interested parties have questions about these regulations, please contact the editor at