Review Procedures

Manuscript Submissions: Authors must submit manuscripts to SIAM Undergraduate Research Online (SIURO) in PDF format. Hard-copy submissions will not be considered. Authors should  enter submissions via the web form at Authors must submit with their manuscript a letter from an advisor or sponsor that documents the fact that the authors did a significant amount of the research and that the research was done while the authors were undergraduates.

Figures, tables: Figures and tables, if any, must be embedded "inline" in your PDF manuscript file. Supplemental files are accepted, but are optional.  See the section below titled Supplemental files for specifics.

Manuscript receipt: Upon receipt of a submission, the SIAM office sends the corresponding author an e-mail acknowledging receipt and providing the manuscript number. Authors are asked to include the manuscript number in all correspondence regarding the paper.
After checking the files the author submitted, the SIAM office contacts the Editor-in-Chief (EIC) to let him/her know that there is a new manuscript that needs to be routed. Note that all contact with the EIC and all subsequent review correspondence with the Associate Editor (AE) and the SIAM office regarding the manuscript will be done via e-mail. The EIC briefly reviews each submission to determine whether it is appropriate for SIURO and, if so, which AE is best suited to handle the review. In making this decision, the EIC takes into account both the areas of expertise and the current workloads of the editors. If the EIC assigns the paper to an AE, (s)he routes the paper through the web. The AE is notified of the assignment by email. The paper is now considered in review (status R). Note that the EIC can reject papers that are clearly inappropriate for SIURO without assigning them to a Reviewing Editor.

Note on Manuscript Length: There is a limit of approximately 20 pages and 3 megabytes. The limit can be exceeded; however, substantial deviation from the limit requires that the referees, reviewing editor, and EIC be convinced that a longer paper is required.

Conflicts of Interest and Rerouting: It is vital that conflicts of interest be avoided. Therefore, it is SIAM policy that editors not review papers authored by students, or recent former students. The same policy applies to referees: editors should not send papers to referees who work at an author's institution or who are known to have close ties to the author. To help avoid conflicts of interest, it is SIAM policy that editors who receive manuscript submissions or who are assigned manuscripts that present a conflict of interest contact the SIAM office ( and the EIC to request that the manuscript be reassigned to another editor.

If the AE is unable or unwilling to handle a given submission, either because of workload difficulties, because the submission is outside his/her areas of expertise, or for any other reason, (s)he should email the EIC with a cc: to the SIAM office. The EIC will then reroute the manuscript to another editor.

Manuscript Review: Once the SIAM office contacts the AE about the assignment, the AE should contact referees. Referees are contacted by e-mail. SIAM asks that referees complete their review and send their reports in an accelerated timeframe, preferably within 45 days. If reports lag, the AE or SIAM office will prompt the referees.

Referees are required to complete a report and the Reviewing Editor may choose to include it in his or her decision letter to the author. The referees' names are always kept confidential.

Option for EIC Assistance: There may be some instances in which the Reviewing Editor feels uncomfortable making a decision on a paper or communicating a decision to the author. In such cases, the AE has the option of contacting the EIC for assistance or to request that the EIC make the decision and/or communicate the decision to the author.

Status Changes and Communicating with Authors: It is vital that, in all communications with authors, AEs avoid wording that could make the status of the paper seem unclear (e.g., in a rejection message to the author: Is the intent to reject clear, or is a revision being implicitly encouraged?). Please note especially the important distinctions among the following statuses: rejected (RJ), in revision (V), and provisionally accepted (PA).

Accepted (A): Accepted in its current form. The editor sends an acceptance letter to the Corresponding Author and to the SIAM office. SIAM will contact the author for a signed copyright form. A PDF version of the manuscript, as accepted, is then posted.

Provisionally Accepted (PA): "Provisionally accepted" papers may be accepted, pending minor revisions. Unlike a paper that is "in revision (V)," a provisionally accepted paper will likely be published if the author makes the minor changes as requested. AEs should indicate whether the revised paper will need to be refereed or will automatically be considered acceptable once the author completes the changes.

In Revision (V): When an author is asked to revise a paper, there is no guarantee that the revised version will be accepted for publication. Usually, such revisions are substantial and the paper will need to be refereed again. In this way, the "in revision" status differs from the status "provisionally accepted." Authors should complete revisions within 4 months, if not sooner. Any revision received after 4 months may be treated as a new submission.

Rejected (RJ): AEs should be very clear when rejecting a manuscript; i.e., a rejection message should not leave an author thinking that a revision is expected. If a substantially revised paper would, in fact, be welcome, the AE should clearly state that the revised version will be treated as a new submission when received. Note: if an AE assesses that a paper is clearly inappropriate for the journal or that it is of poor quality, before having it sent to referees, (s)he can reject the paper without refereeing.

Rerouted (RR): An editor can't handle a given manuscript, and informs EIC and the SIAM office. The EIC reroutes the paper—sends it to another editor to handle the review process.

Withdrawn (W): An author can ask SIAM staff to withdraw a manuscript from the review process. Withdrawal messages should be e-mailed by the author to The SIAM office will let the AE and EIC know of a paper being withdrawn. If an AE receives such a message, (s)he should forward it to the SIAM office.

Papers may also be deemed withdrawn when an author fails to revise a paper within a reasonable amount of time and has not responded to inquiries. The decision to close out a manuscript is made jointly by the SIAM office and the editors, and exceptions are negotiated on a case-by-case basis. Files are never closed out without first giving the author ample opportunity to respond to prompts and submit a revision.

Supplemental files:  Authors may and should take advantage of the web-based nature of the publication by submitting supplemental files that include animations, software demonstrations, and innovative graphics. Supplemental files will be evaluated with the manuscript as part of the peer-review process. We accept the following file formats for supplemental files:

TIF (tif), JPEG (jpg), GIF (gif), Animated GIF (gif), PostScript (ps), Encapsulated PostScript (eps), Adobe Photoshop (psd), AdobePDF (pdf), Audio (au), Audio (mp3), Audio (wav), MPEG (mpg), Quicktime (avi), Quicktime (mov).  

Computer code: should be contained within a common compressed file format such as TAR, TGZ, RAR, or ZIP.

Prize competitions: Students may submit their work to SIURO and to a competition for undergraduates, such as USRESP (the Undergraduate Research Project Competition). If the paper is under prize consideration at the time of SIURO submission, the cover letter must note this. If the paper is submitted to SIURO following award of a prize and resulting appearance on a website, a page 1 footnote is required.


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