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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission file is in PDF, Microsoft Word Docx format, or RTF document file format.
  • The text is single-spaced; uses at least 10-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the AuthorGuidelines page, which is found in About the Journal, or the author agrees to modify the paper to conform to such requirements should the paper be accepted.
  • The submission is written in fluent English without highly technical terms or professional jargon.
  • Metadata, including author affiliation, email, and (where available, ORCHID identification) is provided for the submission.
  • An abstract of at least 50, but not more than 200 words is included.
  • To include a copyrighted text of more than 300 words, the author has secured written permission from the copyright holder of the text. AAAI will not be responsible for the cost incurred as a result of the permission.
  • All figures are original to this submission and have been created by an author of the submission. If a figure is not original to this submission, the author has secured written permission from the copyright holder of the figure. AAAI will not publish figures that are not original without written permission. AAAI will not be responsible for the cost incurred as a result of the permission.
  • The author profile is complete or updated, and includes e-mail, telephone, and surface address information.
  • Brief autobiographical statements from all coauthors (including not-for-publication email contact information) are appended to the end of the article.

Author Guidelines

These guidelines are provided to aid authors and potential authors of AI Magazine articles with the preparation of their submission or accepted author. A careful reading of this document will ensure timely publication of accepted articles, and may be a factor in acceptance of submitted papers.

How to Organize Your Article
These guidelines provide general information about the individual elements of an article: title and author names; abstract; Introduction; headings; illustrations; tables; lists; extracts; cross-references; footnotes; acknowledgments; biographical sketch and photograph; symbols, abbreviations, and mathematical equations; and references. Refer to the appropriate subsection for information about a specific article element.

Title and Author Names
The title of the article should be concise and informative. If the main title exceeds 50 characters (including spaces between words), include an abbreviated title on the first page of the article for use in the table of contents. The complete names of all authors should follow the article title. Title should be capitalized in title case. All prepositions are lowercase, regardless of length.

Include a concise one-paragraph abstract of no more than 250-350 words describing the general thesis and conclusion of the article. A reader should be able to learn the purpose of the article and the reason for its importance from the abstract.

A brief introduction should portray the broad significance of the article. The whole text should be intelligible to readers in various disciplines. Technical terms should be defined the first time they are used. Do not include any heading to begin this section.

Use headings to separate major sections of your article (except for the introduction). Resist the temptation to use too many headings. Avoid the use of successive headings: Insert at least two lines of text between two headings to separate them. Note that fourth-level headings and beyond typically indicate poor organization. Section headings must not be numbered. If a reference to a section is needed, it must be to the section name, not a number. References to sections should be kept to a minimum. 

All illustrations should be submitted in a form suitable for reproduction, preferably of such a size that the same degree of reduction (for example, 75 percent of the original size) can be applied to all of them. Illustrations must not exceed 8 x 10 inches. Have complicated figures professionally rendered by a graphic artist. We prefer illustrations that have been rendered in a drawing program such as Adobe Illustrator or PhotoShop. Please send such illustrations in their native format. If you don't use this software, please send us a vector-based PDF. Gif and PNG formats are not acceptable.

Number the illustrations according to the sequence of their appearance in the text; in text, the illustrations should be referred to as figure 1, figure 2, and so on. Each illustration must be referenced in the text and have a short caption. All captions should begin with the figure number preceded by the word "Figure." (for example: Figure 1. Engineering Workstation.

Please keep figure titles brief so that they fit beneath the figure in one line. Incorporate brief descriptions into figure notes, which if necessary, should appear below the figure caption. Incorporate longer legends and long figure notes into the body of the article. 

llustrations from Other Publications
Illustrations reprinted from other publications must be credited. It is the author's responsibility to obtain written permission from the copyright holder to reprint such illustrations in AI Magazine. Articles will not be scheduled for publication until the author furnishes written permissions, and pays any required fees.

Photographs should be no smaller than 5 x 7 inches, with medium-high contrast. Photographs must be a minimum of 300 dpi (ppi), must be at least 5 inches (12.7 centimeters) across or 8 inches (20.32 centimeters) deep, and may be black and white or color. If color, use CMYK, not RGB.

Tables should supplement, not duplicate, the text. They should be numbered consecutively with respect to their citation in the text. Column headings should be short and self-explanatory. A brief title should be given below each table. Please used title case capitalization for column headings.

In all instances, bulleted or other lists are converted into nonbulleted paragraphs containing complete sentences. Accordingly, please integrate such lists into the text prior to submitting your final article. Confine lists to illustrations, and do not include them in the text.

Long quotations and extracts should be identified as such and indented slightly at both margins. All extracts must be cited appropriately with a reference in author-year format that includes the page number(s) on which the extract appears.

Extensive text reprinted from other publications must be credited. It is the author's responsibility to obtain written permission from the copyright holder to reprint such material in AI Magazine. If you are unsure whether you need to obtain copyright permission, contact the AI Magazine managing editor or the AAAI Executive Director.

Cross-references should used only rarely — if at all — and are therefore discouraged. (AI Magazine does not ever use section or subsection numbers.) If a cross reference is absolutely necessary, title the section of the article, and cite cross-references by section (or abbreviated section) title; for example, see The Programmer's Apprentice. Do not number sections or cross-reference by citing page numbers.


Avoid end notes as much as possible; they interrupt the reading of the text. If you are unable to incorporate the information into the body of the text, number the notes consecutively throughout with superscript Arabic numbers. All endnotes should end with a period, including urls.


AI Magazine does not use footnotes except in tables. If footnotes have been used in the text, change them to end notes, and put them at the end of the article just before the reference section. In tables, endnotes are preferred to long explanations in the headings or the body of the table; place the endnotes under the table, and begin them with superscript lowercase letters. 

This section includes acknowledgments of help from associates, financial support, and permission to publish. Please limit acknowledgments to no more than three sentences.

Autobiographical Sketch and Photograph
All articles should include a three- to five-sentence autobiographical statement about yourself, your current place of employment, your current job title, and any information relevant to your article, such as your current research interests. A biographical sketch should be provided for each author. Please compose the sketches in the third person. References to the author within the statement should be by surname, not given name.

Symbols, Abbreviations, and Mathematical Equations
For necessary mathematical notation, please use widely accepted symbols and forms of abbreviation. If you have any doubt about a particular symbol or abbreviation, give the full expression followed by the abbreviation (in parentheses) the first time it appears in the text. Note that complex or extended mathematical formulae or proofs are not appropriate for AI Magazine. We cannot accept multilevel equations in text. For example, vectors indicated with overbars or variables with "hats" must be converted to alternative notation (such as boldface for vectors).  Mathematical equations must fit, at normal size, within the column width of AI Magazine. Longer equations must be broken appropriately or, if that is not possible, rewritten or placed in a figure.

Abbreviations for US states and Canadian provinces, when appropriate (such as in reference lists and addresses), should use two-letter postal abbreviations. 

Abbreviations for academic degrees should follow the Chicago Manual of Style. For example, BA, BS, JD, MA, MS, PhD, MD, and so on. Do not include periods in these abbreviations.


All acronyms must be defined. Spell out the acronym first and follow it immediately by the acronym within parentheses. For example, natural language processing (NLP).

Reference citations in the text should appear in author-year format, for example (Smith 1975). References of the same year by the same author(s) should be distinguished by small letters following the year, for example (Smith 1977c) and alphabetized alphabetically by title. When referring to a paper in text in narrative form, use a narrative form. For example, say "In his paper, Michael Youngblood (2017) refers to ...." not (Youngblood 2017) refers to...."

All entries in the reference list must be cited in the text. In-text citations of four or more authors should be shortened to "first author et al." For example, the university technical report reference in the sample that follows would be cited as (Vattam et. al.  2013) in the text because it contains four authors.

Generally, references include the name of the author (surname first, followed by initials only for given names) and the date, followed by a period, then the title, presented in mixed case. For multiple authors, separate two names with a comma, and three or more authors with a semicolon.  The place of publication (which is required for all book and proceedings publications) is followed by a colon, with the name of the publisher following. For journal articles and serial publications, provide the volume and issue numbers as well as the page numbers. DOIs are required for serial publications if they have been assigned. For conference papers, and book chapters, give inclusive page numbers. Provide the DOI if it is available. Do not use shorthand abbreviations (such as AAAI-19) — spell out the full title of the publication.

If you are citing an ephemeral or general page of a website (such as, but not limited to, the landing page of a company or product), please do not include the citation in the reference list. Instead, incorporate the URL into an endnote (do not ever include the protocol prefix). All references must contain author, title, and date information.

All cited journal articles within a reference list must include a DOI if one has been assigned. 

References should be listed alphabetically (by surname of the primary author or main entry) at the end of the article. Multiple references by the same author(s) should be listed in ascending chronological order with the earliest reference first (for example, Matthews 1979 precedes Matthews 1986). Information for each reference should be in the sequence illustrated by the following examples.

Dissertation or Thesis 
(Note: Include department and university): Clancey, W. J. 1979b. Transfer of Rule-Based Expertise through a Tutorial Dialogue. PhD dissertation, Department of Computer Science, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.

Forthcoming Book
Clancey, W. J. Forthcoming. The Engineering of Qualitative Models. Redwood City, CA: Addison-Wesley Publishing Company.

Preprint Server
Agrawal, A.; Batra, D.; and Parikh, D. 2016. Analyzing the Behavior of Visual Question Answering Models. arXiv preprint. arXiv:1606.07356v2 [cs.CL]. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Library.

Published Book
Petroski, H. 1985. To Engineer Is Human: The Role of Failure in Successful Design. New York: St. Martin's Press.

Chapter in Published Book
Brown, J. S. 1977. Artificial Intelligence and Learning Strategies. In Learning Strategies, edited by J. O'Neil, 345–78. New York: Academic Press.

Forthcoming Journal Article
O'Connor, J. L. Forthcoming. Artificial Intelligence and Commonsense Reasoning. AI Magazine 42(3).

Published Journal or Magazine Article
Cox, M. T. 2007. Perpetual Self-Aware Cognitive Agents. AI Magazine 28(1): 32–45.

Paper Presented at Meeting
(Note: Use this format only if no published proceedings appeared): Schoenfeld, A. H. 1981. Episodes and Executive Decisions in Mathematical Problem Solving. Paper presented at the 1981 AERA Annual Meeting. Boston, MA, September 24–30.

Zhou, S.; Suhr, A.; and Artzi, Y. 2017. Visual Reasoning with Natural Language. Paper presented at the AAAI 2017 Fall Symposium on Natural Communication for Human-Robot Collaboration. Arlington, VA, November 9–11.

Paper Presented at Meeting and Published in Proceedings
Lester, J.; Converse, S.; Kahler, S.; Barlow, T.; Stone, B.; and Bhogal, R. 1997. The Persona Effect: Affective Impact of Animated Pedagogical Agents. In Proceedings of the ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. New York: Association for Computing Machinery.

Company Technical Report
Carbonell, J. R. 1970. Mixed-Initiative Man-Computer Instructional Dialogues, Technical Report QW-19871. Marina del Rey, CA: USC/Information Sciences Institute.

Scholarly Society Technical Report
Lin, F. 2007. Finitely-Verifiable Classes of Sentences. In Logical Formalizations of Commonsense Reasoning: Papers from the 2007 AAAI Spring Symposium. Technical Report SS-07-05. Palo Alto, CA: AAAI Press.

University Technical Report
Vattam, S.; Klenk, M.; Molineaux, M.; and Aha, D. W. 2013. Breadth of Approaches to Goal Reasoning: A Research Survey. In Goal Reasoning: Papers from the ACS Workshop, edited by D. W. Aha, M. T. Cox, and H. Muñoz-Avila. Technical Report CS-TR-5029. College Park, MD: University of Maryland, Department of Computer Science. 


AI Magazine assigns a doi to every substantive article. 

Article Style
Although text published in the magazine is copyedited, time can be saved in the publication process if the initially submitted article conforms reasonably with AI Magazine style. The author should, at least, be aware of the elements of style listed here:

Acronyms do not take articles. For example, refer to AAAI, not the AAAI. Do not use more than five acronyms in any one article.

Active versus Passive
Active voice replaces passive voice whenever possible.

Use of boldface for emphasis is not allowed. See Italics.

Capital Letters
Use all capital letters only with acronyms (for example, ICP for interactive control panel). Systems, programs, commands, routines, and so on, however, appear in lowercase letters.

Down Style
AI Magazine follows a down style. All words appear lowercase except a title preceding a name (President George Washington or George Washington, the president); acronyms (ICP or GPS); a person's name; or the official title of a program, conference, department, or group.

Use he/she, not he or she alone (the use of they as a singular neutral pronoun is also accepted).

I versus We
Use the singular pronoun I (not we) for a singular author.

Visual clutter is to be kept to a minimum. Italics may be used when introducing and defining a term, and when using mathematical terms and equations. They are also appropriate to set off the titles of books, journals, paintings, movies, ships, and words used as words. On rare occasions, italics may be used sparingly to emphasize a term (no more than once or twice in an article). The text should already read with the appropriate emphasis. See the Chicago Manual of Style 17th edition for details.

Quotation Marks
Quotation marks should be used sparingly under a limited set of circumstances. They may be used to set off quotations, songs, magazine articles, and the like. They should not be used for emphasis, nor are they appropriate to indicate slang, colloquial or slightly nonliteral words and phrases. Such instances of scare quotes will be discarded. If quotation marks are being used to indicate a word or term, they must be discarded. The first instance may appear in italics without the quotation marks, and subsequent appearances must be in roman. Book series and websites are neither italicized nor placed in quotation marks. For words used as words, use italics.

Jargon is eliminated and the text rewritten. Articles in AI Magazine must be readable by a wide range of individuals, including those not familiar with the jargon of a particular subfield. If no other term or phrase can be found to replace the jargon, use of the term or phrase must be approved by the AI Magazine editor, and a definition must be given.

Latin Terms
Avoid the use of Latin terms; when their use is unavoidable, they appear in roman text type.

Spell out numbers 1 through 9; use numerals for numbers 10 and over. In a series or sentence containing both, use numerals for all. Spell out numbers when they begin a sentence. Use numerals with units of measure or as values. Write four-digit numerals without commas; write numerals of five digits or more with commas. In a table or sentence containing both, use commas with all.

Postal Abbreviations
Use postal abbreviations for state names in the reference list and in conjunction with zip codes; otherwise, spell out the state name within text. United States should be abbreviated US (without periods).

Serial Commas
Use commas in all sentence groups of three elements or more (one, two, and three).

Split Infinitives
Split infinitives if doing so makes the text easier to read.

Since versus Because
Use since to indicate time and because to indicate reason.

That versus Which
Use that in restrictive clauses (those without a comma) and which in nonrestrictive clauses (those with a comma)

The antecedent of this or these must always be clear. Referents should always be defined.

While versus Although
Use while to mean at the same time; and although to mean in spite of the fact.

Do not include (TM), reg., or (c) symbols within your article. Following standard publishing practice, trademarked terms throughout AI Magazine are used for editorial purposes only.

Spelling and Hyphenation

Use American English spelling. Follow Merriam-Webster's unabridged or online dictionary for spelling and division of words. AI Magazine uses the preferred term, given first in dictionary entries, if more than one spelling is provided. For those words not cited in these dictionaries, the copyeditor maintains a word list. This list contains many of the terms commonly used in articles appearing in AI Magazine. A copy of this list is available on request.

Reference Materials
For those style questions not answered here, refer to The Chicago Manual of Style (17th ed., University of Chicago Press) or contact the AI Magazine managing editor.

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