Evidence Based Midwifery Journal

Evidence Based Midwifery (EBM) is an online peer reviewed journal and its aim is the promotion, dissemination, implementation and evaluation of midwifery evidence at local, national and international levels. 

Accessing EBM

RCM members can use their website log in details to access EBM online. If you would like to read EBM online and are not a member this journal becomes open access three months from journal acceptance. Subscribers to MIDIRS Midwifery Digest have access to original prints of the EBM journal.

Access the EBM archive in our publications section.

Submit an article to be considered for EBM

Papers on qualitative research, quantitative research, philosophical research, action research, systematic reviews and meta-analyses of qualitative or quantitative data are welcome.

All authors are encouraged to discuss their research paper with peers or editorial staff with regard to issues of importance to the local, national and international readership.

All suitable papers submitted to EBM are subject to double-blinded peer review to assess their academic rigour, quality and relevance to the overall aim of the journal.

All papers should be submitted via the MIDIRS/EBM submission form on the MIDIRS website here.

For any advice or queries please contact the EBM Administrator Julie Rogers: [email protected]

Guidelines for EBM authors

How to submit papers to Evidence Based Midwifery.

Word count reminder - Papers should be written to a maximum word count of 5000 words excluding references, tables and figures.   Please check the word count and include total word count (Abstract + Main paper) on the Abstract.  Any paper that is submitted with an excess of 5000 words without prior discussion with the editor, will be returned.

Primary Research ( RCTs / Cohort studies/Mixed Methodology studies)

  • Abstract - 400 word maximum
    • Background/rationale
    • Aim(s) & objective(s)
    • Ethics
    • Methods
    • Results
    • Conclusion
    • Keywords (up to ten)   Up to ten key words that identify accurately the paper’s subject, purpose and focus (Evidence Based Midwifery must be included). These key words will be used to assist indexers in cross-indexing the article and will be published with the abstract.
    • Total word count (Abstract + Main paper – excluding tables/references)
  • Main paper
    • Introduction
      State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.
    • Methods
      A brief but clear outline of the methodology, making clear the study setting, the sample, the hypothesis (where relevant) and the reason for the chosen method.  For RCTs we request a CONSORT diagram (Figure) and checklist (Table).  Please provide information of ethical approvals granted and particular ethical considerations in your study.  Please provide details of funding, if appropriate.
    • Results
      Results should be clear and concise.  Results/findings consistent with your chosen methodology. Tables and graphs may be used – see Submission Guidelines / Tables and graphs
    • Discussion

Relate your findings to focus their relevance to midwifery practice. Also include a brief statement of limitations of the research, and implications for practice and future research.

  • Conclusion

A concise conclusion to include implications for future practice/research

  • References

See Submission Guidelines / References

  • Acknowledgements

Should be kept to a minimum and include funder.

  • Funding

Please provide a statement of funding, if applicable.

  • Ethics approvals

Please provide the name of the Ethical Committee and reference number, if applicable.

  • Permissions

Please provide details of any necessary permissions obtained, if applicable

  • Commercial affiliations

Please provide a statement of any commercial affiliations linked to this study, if applicable.

  • Conflicts of interest

Please state any known conflicts of interest, if applicable.

 

Guideline - Secondary Research (Literature reviews / Systematic reviews / Modified systematic reviews)

  • Abstract - 350 word maximum
    • Background/rationale
    • Research question
    • Search methods
    • Results
    • Conclusion
    • Keywords (up to ten)   Up to ten key words that identify accurately the paper’s subject, purpose and focus (Evidence Based Midwifery must be included). These key words will be used to assist indexers in cross-indexing the article and will be published with the abstract.
    • Total word count (Abstract + Main paper – excluding tables/references)
  • Main paper
    • Introduction
      State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.
    • Methods
      A brief but clear outline of the research question (PICO or equivalent PEO or SPIDER), methodology to include search strategy, inclusion/exclusion criteria, study selection, quality appraisal, reflexivity (if applicable), use of PRISMA checklist, data extraction and analysis methods.  Please provide details of funding, if appropriate.
    • Results/Findings
      Results should be clear and consistent with your chosen methodology. Tables and graphs may be used – see Submission Guidelines / Tables and graphs
    • Discussion

Relate your findings to focus their relevance to midwifery practice. Also include a brief statement of limitations of the research, and implications for practice and future research.

  • Conclusion

A concise conclusion to include implications for future practice/research.

  • References

See Submission Guidelines / References

  • Acknowledgements

Should be kept to a minimum and include funder.

  • Funding

Please provide a statement of funding if applicable.

  • Permissions

Please provide details of any necessary permissions obtained, if applicable

  • Commercial affiliations

Please provide a statement of any commercial affiliations linked to this study, if applicable.

  • Conflicts of interest

The author must disclose if they have received funding or they are working for any parties liable to bring disrepute to the RCM or where there may be a conflict of interest.

Download article types information

Author information 

No identifying details of the authors or their institutions should appear in the submitted paper. Author details should be communicated in a separate word document.  You will need to provide the following information: 

  • Lead Author (also corresponding author)
  • Preferred title
  • Name
  • Role
  • Workplace
  • Contact author email(This is usually the Lead author)
  • Contact author address
  • Contact author telephone number
  • Twitter or Instagram handle (if applicable).
  • Co-Author(s)
  • Preferred title
  • Name
  • Role
  • Workplace

Font and formatting

  • Use Arial font, size 12.
  • Use 1.5 line spacing.
  • Insert line and page numbers
  • Headings and sub-headings in bold, further sub-headings in italic.
  • If you have included boxes of writing (possibly as extras or illustrative comments), please ensure these appear as text within the article (with borders, if you wish) rather than as separate items; this is to ensure they are easily accessible for our editorial team, but also so that the text is included in the word count.
  • When using abbreviations or acronyms in the text, always show the term or the name of the organisation in full the first time it is used in the text. For example: lower segment caesarean section (LSCS); National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Thereafter, just use the abbreviation, ‘LSCS’, ‘NICE’ etc.

Word count

Papers should be written to a maximum word count of 5000 words excluding references, tables and figures.   Please check the word count and include total word count (Abstract + Main paper) on the Abstract.  Any paper that is submitted with an excess of 5000 words without prior discussion with the editor, will be returned.

References 

Primary Research (RCTs / Cohort studies/Mixed Methodology studies) - A maximum of 30 references is allowed.

Secondary Research (Literature reviews / Systematic reviews / Modified systematic reviews) - A maximum of 30 references is allowed for printing at the end of the manuscript.  Additional references (for example, articles reviewed but did not satisfy inclusion criteria) can be provided as a supplementary file.

  • The chosen style for citing references is Harvard. Using this style, authors are named in the text with the publication year of their work shown in brackets after their name(s).
  • All references, regardless of the format they take, (whether they are journal articles, books, book chapters etc) should be listed alphabetically at the end of your paper.
  • Use authors’ initials as they appear in the article/publication but do not leave spaces between them. For foreign names, refer to Medline for the correct citation style.
  • Do not use commas between author names and initials in the reference list:
    • Duff E (2003) not Duff, E (2003).
  • When referencing papers with different number of authors:

One author: 

In the text:   In a study by Duff (2003) it was concluded that…

In the reference list: Duff E (2003). Millennium development goals: where are the goalkeepers? MIDIRS Midwifery Digest 13(3):319-20.

Two authors: 

In the text:  When citing two authors, names should be linked by “&” :  In a study by Hey & Hurst (2003) it was concluded that…

In the reference list:  Hey M, Hurst K (2003). Antenatal screening: why do women refuse? RCM Midwives Journal 6(5):216-20.

Three authors or more: 

In the text:  Show the name of the first author only, and follow this by the phrase ‘et al’.  Thompson et al (1997) conclude that…

In the reference list:  All the authors’ names are included in the reference list.

  • The source (book, journal) should be shown in italics.
  • Journal titles should be shown in full, e.g.  Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine.
  • A comprehensive guide to referencing can be found here

Tables and graphs

A maximum of three tables and/or graphs are allowed for all types of article – excluding Systematic Reviews/Meta-analyses or RCTs.  Each table should be submitted on a separate word document with a short descriptive title. All relevant statistical data should be included. Charts and graphs must be clearly labelled, and the axes on graphs made clear. If charts or graphs are to be included, original or coordinate values should also be sent.  Always include a citation in the text for each figure and table.

 

  • For systematic reviews we require a PRISMA Flowchart (Figure), and PRISMA Checklist (Table) and 2 further tables of outputs. If a meta-analysis is conducted we accept 2 additional Forest Plots unless prior agreement with the editor indicates otherwise. Authors are referred to the PRISMA checklist. Accessed 01/10/2020
  • For experimental studies/trials of clinical effectiveness/RCTs we require a CONSORT diagram (Figure), and CONSORT Checklist (Table) and 2 further tables of outputs. CONSORT (Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials.

Images

We welcome the addition of illustrations as they enhance articles. Please ensure that pictures, photos, diagrams, etc. are sent as VERY HIGH RESOLUTION jpegs or pdf attachments in addition to showing their placement in the article. Please clearly indicate in the text where the images are to be placed.  Please ensure that the APPROPRIATE PERMISSIONS ARE OBTAINED and these are clearly stated next to the image.

Illustrations

Please provide good quality photographs (high res jpegs at a size of 1MB), diagrams or illustrations to go with your article. If you want to use or adapt illustrations from another source, it is your responsibility to obtain written permission to reproduce the material and to credit it accordingly. Photographs need the permission of both the photographer and all subjects within the pictures. Please submit all photos, diagrams and other illustrations as high res jpegs or pdfs separately, clearly highlighting where in the article it should go.  Captions should be supplied for all illustrations. All illustrations are submitted at the owner’s risk.  In cases where approval for reproduction or modification of material is required, the principal author must obtain this.  While every effort will be made to return all illustrations, the publisher accepts no liability for loss or damage while in possession of the material.

Author disputes  

Authors are referred to the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) for advice on how to handle authorship disputes: a guide for new researchers. 2003. Accessed on 01/10/2020.

Download article submission guidelines

Publication

The journal is published four times a year and is fully online and openly accessible within three months of publication. All papers should be submitted via the MIDIRS/EBM submission form online. 

It is the responsibility of the lead author to acknowledge that there is no plagiarism in the paper and the paper has not been published elsewhere.

Acceptance

Your submission is only formally accepted at the end of the review period.  It is under review during that time.  If successful you will receive a formal email of acceptance and it is from this date that the Open Access requirements must be actioned & met.

 

Open Access (OA)

The EBM journal is Sherpa REF compliant.  It is the responsibility of the lead author to satisfy the following requirements:

  1. Discovery Requirement

Put bibliographic details of your article in an institution repository within 3 months of acceptance, making these open to view.

2: Deposit Requirement

Deposit the full text of the Published Version of your article in a Subject Repository within 3 months of acceptance, with restricted access.

3: Open Access Requirement

Make it open access: this journal has a 3 month embargo period when you comply in this way. You must make the full text of your article open access in a Subject Repository immediately after this embargo period ends

The journal permits you to archive your final paper in your institutional repository as soon as it has been accepted for publication. Three months after publication your paper is fully open access and downloadable from any electronic device anywhere in the world. Research papers from EBM were included in the REF2014 and are acceptable for inclusion in REF2021.

The Doctoral Midwifery Research Society

EBM is the official journal for papers presented at the annual meeting of the Doctoral Midwifery Research Society and these papers are subject to fast tracking.

 

Referees and review process

All suitable papers submitted to Evidence Based Midwifery are subject to double-blind, peer review to assess their academic rigour, quality and relevance to the overall aim of the journal. Referees with relevant expertise in the subject area and or methodology will be asked to provide a structured critical review of papers and reviews will be forwarded to the authors along with comments from the editor. Where necessary, papers will also be sent to members of the Advisory Panel for expert opinion on matters to do with statistical accuracy, professional relevance or legal ramifications.

All authors will have an acknowledgement of receipt of their paper and the review process should be complete within 12 weeks. Major changes will be agreed with the authors, but the editors reserve the right to make modifications in accordance with in-house style and demands for space and layout.

All papers are sent to the first named author for essential corrections  before publication and should be returned promptly. Corrections at this proofreading stage should be kept to a minimum and references and quotations should be checked carefully. Proofs will be sent to all authors for final proofing as word documents prior to publication and the accuracy of the content is the responsibility of the corresponding (Lead) author. Figures and tables that have to be redrawn in-house may not be included with proofs. Supplementary material can be made accessible online. The editors will decide on the time of publication.

Revision process

  • If you are asked to revise your paper, please do so with care and attention to detail.
  • Submit a ‘Response to peer review’ table with your revised paper and insert two columns:

First column ‘Request for revision’ - in this column put in the request for revision /clarity /word reduction etc.

Second column ‘Response’ – in this column insert the line and page numbers where the changes have been made.  If you have not made any changes to the text and are submitting a justification for not revising the original text please state the rationale for non-revision.

You must then highlight the changes in the document that you have made or the content of the text that you have justified its original format.  Make the changes, accept them and then highlight them.  Do not use track changes.  The referees will then be able to easily locate the changes/justification you have made in response to their feedback. 

Authorship (updated  from: International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (2019).

EBM recommends and endorses the guidance set out by the  ICMJE (2019) for  authorship  based on the following 4 criteria:

  1. Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
  2. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
  3. Final approval of the version to be published; AND
  4. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship, and all those who qualify should be listed. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content. One or more authors should take responsibility for the integrity of the work as a whole, from inception to published article.

 Authorship credit should be based only on:

1) substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data

2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content

3) final approval of the version to be published.

Conditions 1, 2, and 3 must all be met.

Acquisition of funding, the collection of data, or general supervision of the research group, by themselves, do not justify authorship.

All others who contributed to the work who are not authors should be named in the acknowledgments, and what they did should be described. Increasingly, authorship of multi-centre trials is attributed to a group. All members of the group who are named as authors should fully meet the above criteria for authorship. Group members who do not meet these criteria should be listed, with their permission, in the acknowledgments or in an appendix. The order of authorship on the byline should be a joint decision of the co-authors. Authors should be prepared to explain the order in which authors are listed. In addition to being accountable for the parts of the work he or she has done, an author should be able to identify which co-authors are responsible for specific other parts of the work. In addition, authors should have confidence in the integrity of the contributions of their co-authors.

All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship, such as a person who provided purely technical help, writing assistance, or a department chair who provided only general support, should be listed. Financial and material support should also be acknowledged. Groups of persons who have contributed materially to the paper, but whose contributions do not justify authorship may be listed under a heading such as ‘clinical investigators’ or ‘participating investigators’, and their function or contribution should be described – for example, ‘served as scientific advisors’, ‘critically reviewed the study proposal’, ‘collected data’, or ‘provided and cared for study patients’.

Because readers may infer their endorsement of the data and conclusions, all persons must have given written permission to be acknowledged.

Download essential information

General advice

  • Read the guidelines carefully and read papers published in the journal that are similar to yours (e.g., systematic reviews)
  • Pay particular attention to your abstract as this is the window that shows the reader what to expect in the content.
  • Proof read your paper before you submit.
  • Complete the submission checklist.
  • If English is not your first language, seek support from a colleague or friend who has an excellent grasp of the language to quality assure your paper before submission.
  • Rejection of papers is part of the process and cannot be avoided. Do not be discouraged from resubmitting with revised content, structure etc.

Download submission checklist

Dr Sara Webb, Head of MIDIRS
Professor Jayne Marshall, Foundation Professor of Midwifery, University of Leicester
Dr Jenny McNeill, Senior Lecturer in Midwifery Research, LME, Queen’s University Belfast
Helen Janiszewski, Doctoral Researcher, Registered Midwife
Professor Lesley Kay, Associate Professor, Midwifery and Radiography, City, University of London
Caitlin Wilson, Consultant Midwife, University of Worcester/Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust
Dr Samantha Chenery-Morris, Associate Dean, Head of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Suffolk
Helen Elliott-Mainwaring, Doctoral Researcher
Dr Sally Pezaro, Midwife Lecturer, Coventry University
Jenny Cunningham, Research Advisor, Royal College of Midwives
Professor Edith Hillan, University of Toronto, Canada
Professor Nicky Leap, Adjunct Professor of Midwifery, University of Technology, Sydney
Professor Marlene Sinclair, Professor of Midwifery Research, Centre for Maternal, Fetal and Infant Research, Ulster University

If you have further questions regarding EBM contact us here.

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