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Author Guidelines

  1. Paleo Contributions publishes in US English Authors whose first language is not English are urged strongly to have a native English speaker review the manuscript prior to submission.
  2. Spelling should conform to Webster’s Third New International Dictionary (Unabridged).
  3. For proper use of stratigraphic nomenclature, refer to the International Commission on Stratigraphy and the North American Stratigraphic Code by NACSN, 1983, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, 67, p. 841–875. Also see and
  4. The metric system and SI units are required.
  5. All submissions are peer reviewed.


Manuscripts must be in the correct format before submission, therefore please follow all formatting guidelines ( An abstract that condenses essential new information from the text and lists all new taxonomic names is required, along with up to five key words not in the title. A table of contents must accompany longer papers to indicate the level of headings. The metric system is to be used throughout the text and on illustrations. Where necessary, measurements in other standards may be given in parentheses. Contact the editorial office if you have any questions after consulting the author guidelines (e-mail:

Illustrations of all sorts are termed figures and are to be numbered sequentially according to their first mention in the text. Illustrations should be planned for one-column (9.0 cm) or two-columns width (18.3 cm). Where possible, photographs of fossils or other subjects should be illuminated from the upper left and photographed on white backgrounds. Photographs must have a high tonal range and high resolution. Stereoscopic pairs must be planned for the same interocular distance throughout the publication, typically in the range of 55 to 70 mm.


All manuscripts must be submitted through our online manuscript submission link at the top of this page. Authors submitting new manuscripts should include a cover letter describing their manuscript and its relevance for the Paleontological Contributions, one manuscript file, figures, or tables, as well as any animations, executables, and other dynamic files, each uploaded as a separate file. The manuscript file should consist of the following subdivisions: 1. title; 2. author listing and author affiliations; 3. abstract and keywords; 4. manuscript text; 5. acknowledgments; 6. references; 7. figure and table captions; and 8. any appendices. Manuscripts should be submitted in .doc, txt, or .rtf format (please contact the managing editor for alternatives if necessary: Figures should be at least 300 dpi. If larger file sizes are critical to the manuscript, please contact the Managing Editor to arrange file transfer.



NOTE: Manuscripts should be in the correct format before submission at Paleontological Contributions Submissions. Use the list below to prepare your manuscript in Paleo Contributions style. Please follow all formatting guidelines. Contact the editorial office if you have any questions or for any items not covered below (e-mail:



         Formats for text files: .rtf, .doc, and .txt.

         Formats for figures: .tif and .eps.

         Font for manuscripts must be in 12-point, Times New Roman.

         DOUBLE SPACE ALL TEXT, including abstract, references, and figure and table captions.

         Italicize only scientific names and non-English phrases (e.g., in situ). Do not use underlining.

         Do not use bold type, except for abstract and figure and table caption headers (see below).

         Metric units (SI) must be used throughout the manuscript. Convert English units to metric.

         Specimen numbers and repository information for all specimens illustrated or used in the study must be included.



         Use 12-point, Times New Roman font.

         Title of paper—in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, CENTERED, BOLD.

         Complete names of authors—CENTERED. Use superscript numbers to designate addresses if more than two authors. Use an asterisk to designate the corresponding author.

         Affiliation of authors, separated by semicolons, in Upper and Lower Case Italics, centered.

         e-mail address of corresponding author—e-mail address follows addresses, use italics (e.g., e- mail:

         Suggested running head, maximum of 80 characters, including spaces.

Format as follows: RRH: Running Head, Italics

         Left running head, author’s last name.

Example: LLH: Smith et al. or Jones and Taylor

         Keywords: please supply up to 5. Do not use the same words as in manuscript title.




Paul Selden,1,2 Denise Mayse,2* and Jill Hardesty2

1University of Kansas, Department of Geology, Lawrence, Kansas, 66045, USA; 2University

of Kansas, Paleontological Institute, Lawrence, Kansas, 66045, USA


*Corresponding author.

RRH: Paleo Contributions Style LRH: Selden, Mayse, and Hardesty

Keywords: font, purpose, abstract, formatting, guideline



The abstract should be ~250 words and state the purpose and significant conclusions of the investigation. It should be suitable for separate publication and adequate for indexing.

         Abstract should be all one paragraph.

         No citations in the abstract.

         No page break after the abstract.



         Headings in the text should be used as follows. Do use bold for first and secondary headings.


THIS IS A PRIMARY HEADING [Centered, capital letters, bold] This is a Secondary Heading [Centered, sentence caps, bold]

This is a Tertiary Heading.—[Italicized, sentence caps, indented, period, em-dash, and then run into text. Note also that the period following the heading is italicized].



         Use only numbers for lists—no bullet points.

         Items presented as a list within a sentence (i.e., within the text) should be in the following format: (1) this is the first item; (2) this is the second item, and, if there are commas within the listing, then use semicolons to separate list items; and (3) but if commas are not embedded in the listed items, commas may be used between items.

         Items presented in lists and numbered should be formatted as follows:

  1. The first enumerated point should be indented and The second line should be formatted like the paragraphs in the rest of the text.
  2. The second enumerated point should be indented and



         Where necessary, e.g., i.e., and c.f. may be used within the text, but do not use italics.

         Commas follow e.g., and i.e., with no spaces in the abbreviation.

         To cite personal communications, unpublished data, or personal observations, spell out and include author initials, last name, and year (B.A. Brown, personal communication, 2004).



         Citations must be by the last name(s) of the author(s) and date (Smith, 1991).

         Use a semicolon to separate multiple citations used in the text, unless the same author is cited for multiple works (e.g., Smith, 1991; Jones, 1993, 1995).

         Citations should be listed in chronological order, not alphabetical order (by year, oldest first).

         Use “and” in the text and “&” in parens for multiple authors (Dexter, Jones, & Smith, 1993).

         Use “& others” for more than three authors (Jones & others, 1993; Jones, Brown, & Smith, 1995).


Examples of citations within the text: This technique, first used by Smith and Jones (1895), was utilized subsequently in many classic investigations (e.g., Charles & Turner, 1945; Chang, 1946; Peters, 1950, 1955). Additional work in this area (Jones, 1999a, 1999b; Pratt & Taylor, 2002, 2003) has shown the relevance of these studies.



NOTE: If you have a specific question about a reference style, please contact the Paleo Contributions office (


         References must be spelled out completely, no abbreviations in article or journal titles.

         Multiple references of the same author(s) must be spelled out fully.

         Use spaces between author or editor initials.

         Wherever possible, try to avoid citing unpublished theses, dissertations, or published abstracts.

         If you know an article’s DOI or other permanent URL, cite it after a comma at the end of the full reference; for example: PALAIOS 21(2):496–498, DOI: 4598uog-45pu02.


A complete reference includes the following elements, separated by periods: (1) the surname of the author, followed by initials or, if there is only one initial, the full given name if known; (2) year of publication; (3) complete title; (4) journal or publication name, written out in full; if a book, (5) publisher;

(6) place of publication; and for all references, (7) page, figure, and plate numbers, cited as first-to-last if part of a serial publication (e.g., p. 24–31, fig. 4, pl. 3–5) or as a total if independently numbered, and the DOI number or other permanent URL, if known (e.g., 224 p., 3 fig., 18 pl., DOI: 23TJ-0566-Gi9). Except for standard abbreviations of volume, page, figure, and plate (vol., p., fig., and pl.), no abbreviations are used in the bibliography. Authors should include unabbreviated words describing numbers or letters that distinguish the publication: e.g., number 6, fascicule 2, livre 4, Band 2, Jahrgang 1923, Abteilung A,

series C, Bulletin 1047, Memoir(e) 23, Paper 15, part 3.

Titles in Cyrillic characters are transliterated, with an English translation provided in square brackets immediately following the transliterated title. Titles in other nonroman alphabets such as Chinese are given in English with a note at the end of the reference indicating language of composition. Titles in German and the Romance languages should not be translated.

The following examples provide information about different kinds of bibliography entries.

Alexander, R. R. 1986. Frequency of sublethal shell-breakage in articulate brachiopod assemblages through geologic time. In P. R. Racheboeuf & C. C. Emig, eds., Les Brachiopodes Fossiles et Actuels, Actes du 1er Congrès International sur les Brachiopodes, Brest 1985. Biostratigraphie du Paléozoïque 4:159–166, pl. 1.

Al-Rikabi, I. 1992. A Molecular Approach to Palaeontology: Biochemical method applications of brachiopod proteins. Master of Science thesis. University of Glasgow. 116 p.

Bonuso, Nicole, and David J. Bottjer. 2008. A test of biogeographical, environmental, and ecological effect on Middle and Late Triassic brachiopod and bivalve abundance patterns. PALAIOS 23(1):43– 54, 8 fig., DOI: 10.2110/palo.2006.p06-006r.

Conrad, T. A. 1855. Remarks on the fossil shells from Chile, collected by Lieutenant Gilliss, with descriptions of the species. In J. M. Gilliss, ed., United States Naval Astronomical Expedition to the Southern Hemisphere during the Years 1849–’50–’51–’52. Supplementary Papers. A. O. P. Nicholson. Washington. p. 282–286, pl. 41–42.

U.S. House of Representatives, 33rd Congress, First Session. House Executive Document 121, Serial Set 729.

Dagys, A. S. 1968. Jurskiye i rannemelovye brakhiopody Severa Sibiri [Jurassic and Early Cretaceous brachiopods from northern Siberia]. Akademia Nauk SSSR Sibirskoe Otdelenie Institut Geologii i Geofiziki (IGIG) Trudy [Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Academy of Science of the USSR, Siberian Branch, Transactions] 41:167 p., 81 fig., 26 pl.

In Russian.

FAUNMAP: A database documenting Late Quaternary distributions of mammal species in the United States, 1994, updated March 21, 1996. Checked October 2005.

Jope, H. M. 1965. Composition of brachiopod shell. In R. C. Moore, ed., Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology. Part H, Brachiopoda. The Geological Society of America & The University of Kansas Press. New York & Lawrence. p. 156–164.

Logan, Alan, J. P. A. Noble, & G. R. Webb. 1975. An unusual attachment of a recent brachiopod, Bay of Fundy, Canada. Journal of Paleontology 49:557–558.

Microsoft Corporation, 2000, Microsoft Office 2000 [CD-ROM]: Redmond, Washington.

Moore, R. C., ed. 1957. Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology. Part L. Mollusca 4, Cephalopoda, Ammonoidea. The Geological Society of America & The University of Kansas Press. New York & Lawrence. xxii + 490 p., 558 fig.

Williams, Alwyn. 1953. North American stropheodontids: Their morphology and systematics. Geological Society of America Memoir 56:67 p., 13 pl.

Winberg, G. G. 1956. Rate of metabolism and food requirements of fishes. Trudy Belorusskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta Minske 54:253 p.

Translated from Russian by Fisheries Research Board of Canada, Translation Series 194, 1960.



Each figure and table must be referred to in the text, in order of appearance, spelled out in full or, when in parentheses, abbreviated. For example, “Thirty sites were sampled on the western margin of the island (Fig. 1). Table 1 shows the percent fragmentation of crinoids at the sites. The trends illustrated in Figure 2 are manifested in bivariate plots (Figs. 3A–B), time- series (Fig. 4, 7), and surface trends (Fig. 8A, 8C, Table 2).”

         Format for citing figures or tables in other papers: (Smith & others, 2003, fig. 10)



         Figure captions should be succinct. Any discussion should take place within the text.

         List figure captions immediately following the references in the manuscript file.

         Figure caption numbers are formatted in roman letters followed by a period. Example: Figure

  1. Location of study area.

         Phrasing for a compound figure caption must include an introductory sentence and use numbers followed by a comma for parts within figure captions, and a semicolon between each part. Example: Figure 1. Schematic map of the study area. 1, Regional map; 2, location of the 30 sample sites; see text for further explanation.

         All figures must be cited in order in the text.



The editors of Paleontological Contributions expect exceptionally high quality in all submitted figures. Guidelines must be followed or you will be asked to revise your figures. Figures should be used in place of words wherever possible but must be essential to the aim of the paper. See below for examples of figures.

         All electronic figures must be saved as either .tif, .pdf, or .eps files.

         Each figure should be uploaded as a separate file.

         Gray-scale or color photos must be taken (or scanned) and saved at 450 dpi minimum (600 dpi preferred).

         Line drawings (both color and black and white) must be created (or scanned) and saved at 600 dpi minimum (1200 dpi preferred).

         All labels on figure should be in sentence caps and black type (for example, Sandstone and siltstone, Oolitic limestone), no italic or bold type unless special formatting has a meaning (for taxon names, for example) or is explained in figure explanation.

         Submit figures at final size, either 1 column [3.5" (8.8 cm)] or 2 column [7.15" (18.2 cm)], page length 9" (22.9 cm), including caption.

         Figures in which more than one part is used should be labeled with numbers (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4) and submitted as one integrated figure, not separately.

         Each part should be labeled with a black letter in the lower left-hand corner, using only the part number (i.e., do not use Fig. 3.1, Fig. 3.2 as labels on figure, rather use 1 and 2).

         Figures with more than one part should be separated by a white line or space no wider than 2 mm.

         Authors are responsible for obtaining permission to reprint previously published illustrations and should submit a copy of this permission with the copyrighted figure to be printed.

         Scale bars should be no thicker than 3 point lines and should be consistent thickness throughout out the manuscript.



         Each table should be uploaded as a separate file (.txt, .doc, or .xls), not included in the manuscript file.

         All tables must be cited in order in the text.

         Table captions should be succinct. Any discussion should take place within the text.

         Table captions should be part of manuscript file, listed after figure captions, NOT as part of the table itself.

         Table caption numbers are formatted in roman letters followed by a period. Example: Table 1.

Results for ANOVA, Site 1.



When properly formatted, please submit all text, figures, tables, and supplementary data files electronically via our online submission site: Paleontological Contributions Submissions


EXAMPLE FIGURES (low-resolution files, for formatting only)




Sprinkle, James, & Colin D. Sumrall. 2008. New parablastoids from the western United States. University of Kansas Paleontological Contributions (new series) 15:14 p., 10 fig.




Sprinkle, James, & Colin D. Sumrall. 2008. New parablastoids from the western United States. University of Kansas Paleontological Contributions (new series) 15:14 p., 10 fig.


Hembree, D. I. 2007. Phylogenetic revision of Rhineuridae (Reptilia: Squamata: Amphisbaenia) from the Eocene to Miocene of North America. University of Kansas Paleontological Contributions (new series) 16:20 p., 6 fig., 1 table.




Hembree, D. I. 2007. Phylogenetic revision of Rhineuridae (Reptilia: Squamata: Amphisbaenia) from the Eocene to Miocene of North America. University of Kansas Paleontological Contributions (new series) 16:20 p., 6 fig., 1 table.



Fang Zong-jie, Chen Jin-hua, Chen Chu-zhen, Sha Jin-geng, Lan Xiu, and Wen Shi-xuan. 2009. Supraspecific taxa of the Bivalvia first named, described, and published in China (1927–2007). University of Kansas Paleontological Contributions (new series) 17:157 p., 49 fig., 1 table.


Submission Preparation Checklist

All submissions must meet the following requirements.

  • 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).
  • Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  • References should include DOIs whenever possible.
  • The submission file is in Microsoft Word or RTF document file format.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines at
  • The text is double-spaced; uses a 12-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, as well as high-quality TIFF or EPS images being provided separately.
  • If the submission is accepted for publication, all authors agree to the terms in the Paleontological Contributions publication agreement ( .

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