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Instructions to Authors


Interacting with Computers (IwC) is the interdisciplinary journal of Human-Computer Interaction, an official publication of BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT and its interaction Specialist Group. Interacting with Computers actively fosters communication between academic researchers and practitioners to encourage the flow of information across the boundaries of its contributing disciplines. It is a major international forum for the discussion of HCI issues - a catalyst for novel and inspired thinking, which demands of its readers a forward-looking perspective.


Writing for an Interdisciplinary Journal

The journal’s fundamental interdisciplinary ethos is applied to individual papers as well as to each issue. The Editors and Editorial Boards are strongly committed to publishing only papers fulfilling the minimum requirement of accessibility to readers with HCI interests who nevertheless are not specialists in a particular subject area. At the same time, papers should be of interest and relevant to HCI specialists. A great deal of useful information can be conveyed in brief papers that address a single issue while still meeting interdisciplinary requirements. People are unlikely to read extremely long papers, especially if they do not work in academia. Authors thus should be as succinct as possible and avoid needless repetition.

Authors should attempt to describe work that crosses traditional boundaries among the many disciplines represented in the HCI research and practitioner community. Take care to address an interdisciplinary audience, by ensuring that the contribution is comprehensible to the majority of readers in Interacting with Computers' diverse readership.

Papers can be made more interdisciplinary by giving them both a wider context and a forward-looking and speculative perspective. Applications-oriented work should be explicit about the utility and generalisability of content, and about the broader implications of the set of empirical or theoretical issues to which the work relates; the goals and functions of an application must be provided in terms which can be understood by the entire readership. Authors of research papers are strongly encouraged to be explicit about the applied relevance of their work. Authors of theoretical papers are expected to make a serious attempt to relate their manuscript to application-related problems. Authors of papers emphasising practical applications are expected to make an attempt to go beyond “show and tell” by addressing the broader relevance of their project. While it is not a requirement that every paper submitted to the diurnal adopt such a perspective, authors might consider these suggestions useful means of introducing and managing interdisciplinary relevance.

Paper Types

As an international journal, we require that submissions be in well-written and stylistically correct English: poorly written English places an unfair burden on readers whose native language is not English. We encourage authors who do not have strong English writing skills to have their manuscripts edtied by someone with the neccessary skills or to consult Oxford Journals Language Services.

Research papers may have a substantial theoretical basis or contain the findings of experimental work. Typically, papers in this category will contain both. Such papers should place the work in context by describing the practical consequences of the research for the design, evaluation and use of computer systems. Authors should not assume that all readers will be familiar with, or even interested in, the full details of experimental design and statistical analysis, or in complex mathematical or logical formalisms. While such detail is often necessary in the body of a paper, authors should ensure that these aspects are clearly described in plain English.

Applications While a considerable amount of HCI work is applied to specific products within the public, commercial and industrial sectors, such work is of little utility to the international community if it is only described with respect to a particular application. Authors are strongly advised to use such work as examples in support of the more general points their paper is intended to make. This approach also may help to avoid many of the typical objections to publication of material that otherwise might betray sensitive information to competitors.

Critical Reviews
Interacting with Computers welcomes reviews, either of individual pieces of work, or of entire areas, which can advance the state of HCI. A well-written review of this type can make a substantive and original contribution to the HCI community. Eclecticism is both encouraged and supported. In the process of describing the targeted work, authors are expected to provide a critical commentary. This commentary should give the reader insight and an ability to fit the work into a broader context and enable them to judge the review’s relative contribution to the field of HCI.

State-of-Art Reviews
Interacting with Computers also welcomes reviews that give a critical overview of a topic for the benefit of readers who are not familiar with the relevant literature and who may work in other disciplines. Although it is beneficial for these reviews to meet some of the criteria given for “critical reviews”, the major objective of this type of review is to give a clear, self-contained account of the chosen topic, and to demonstrate its broader relevance to the entire field of HCI.

Unorthodox Submissions
Interacting with Computers is prepared to publish papers when referees agree about the quality of the submission, but some aspect of the work may be contentious or “risky” and goes against prevailing orthodoxy. The referees may publish a commentary paper relating to such a paper, or another author may subsequently decide to submit commentaries on published papers. In such cases, the author has a right of reply. Used judiciously, this approach may illuminate areas of controversy in the theory of, or approaches to, HCI.

Publication Ethics

Authors should observe the highest standards with respect to publication ethics as set out by the Commission on Publication Ethics (COPE) in their document, International Standards for Editors and Authors. Falsification or fabrication of data, plagiarism, including duplicate publication of the authors’ own work without proper citation, and misappropriation of the work are all unacceptable practices. Any cases of ethical misconduct are treated very seriously and will be dealt with in accordance with COPE guidelines.

All authors listed on the manuscript should have contributed significantly to the work and have been involved in the writing of the manuscript at draft and any revision stages, and have read and approved the final version. Anyone who made major contributions to the writing of the manuscript should be listed as an author. Any other individuals who made less substantive contributions to the experiment or the writing of the manuscript should be listed in the Acknowledgements section.

Any change in authorship (including author order, addition or removal of author names) after the initial manuscript submission, and before the accepted manuscript is available in online form with a DOI must be approved in writing by all authors, including any author being added or removed. All such requests should be made to the Editorial Office, together with the rationale for the change request. Requests not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded to the corresponding author, who should follow the procedure as described above. Publication of an accepted manuscript (online, or in print) will be suspended until authorship has been agreed. Subsequent to publication, any such request will follow the same procedures and will result in a formal corrigendum in the journal.

By submitting your manuscript to the journal it is understood that this it is an original manuscript which has not been published elsewhere (except as an academic thesis, an abstract only or as part of a published lecture) or is not simultaneously under consideration for publication elsewhere, such as as in another journal, or in conference or workshop proceedings. Publication must be approved by all authors and by any responsible authorities or funding bodies.

Plagiarism, including duplicate publication of the author’s own work, in whole or in part, without proper citation is not acceptable to this journal. Manuscripts submitted to the journal will be checked for originality using anti-plagiarism software.

Conflicts of interest
At the point of submission, each author should reveal any financial interests or connections, direct or indirect, or other situations that might raise the question of bias in the work reported or the conclusions, implications, or opinions stated – including pertinent commercial or other sources of funding for the individual author(s) or for the associated department(s) or organisation(s), personal relationships, or direct academic competition. When considering whether you should declare a conflicting interest or connection please consider the conflict of interest test: Is there any arrangement that would embarrass you or any of your co-authors if it was to emerge after publication and you had not declared it?

If the manuscript is published, Conflict of Interest information, including if none was declared, will be communicated in a statement in the published paper.

Experimental Ethics
Ethical standards adhered to should be as described in Ethical Guidelines for Educational Research (2011) [ISBN 978 0 946671 32 8] published by the British Educational Research Association (BERA).

Manuscript Submission

All material to be considered for publication in Interacting with Computers should be submitted in electronic form via the journal's online submission system. Instructions on how to submit your manuscript online can be found by clicking here.
Authors may also provide LaTeX source files of their paper. For class files along with instructions please click here. When submitting in LaTeX, please include a pdf prepared from the source files for review purposes.

The following must be included:

Title Page
The journal operates a double blind review system. This means there must be nothing identifying the authors in the submitted manuscript. Identifying information should be submitted under the ‘Title Page’ option.

The title page of the article should include the following information (where applicable):

  • Article type
  • Manuscript title (Titles should be succinct while also adequately descriptive of the paper’s content. Titles running more than two lines of text are strongly discouraged.)
  • Names and affiliations of all contributing authors
  • Full address for correspondence, including telephone and fax number and email address
  • Acknowledgements

Abstracts are crucial for confirming a reader's intentions to read a paper. They should provide an extremely brief overview of the issues addressed, the approach adopted and the conclusions drawn. It is particularly important that the practical consequences of the work are made explicit in the Abstract. This should be between 100 and 150 words in length. An abstract is a summary of key aspects of the paper, not an introduction to the paper.

Keywords serve to characterise the nature of the paper and are used for indexing and search purposes. Please choose up to six keywords from the following list based on the 2012 ACM Computing Classification System. Top level headings (in blue) should not be used.
If your interests, expertise or paper topic are not covered, you may enter additional terms that better express these, as keywords. You will also need to enter these keywords on the submission site itself.
Please think carefully about any terms which may be missing and consider which descriptors and keywords would be most suitable, given that future revisions of the classification schema are planned.

Research Highlights
Research Highlights should not be identical to the abstract but, instead, be overall pointers to the impact and important areas covered in the paper, similar to the requirements of some conference submissions. They are searchable in a similar fashion to keywords and so must be fairly specific, but short. Brief bullet points seem to work quite well.

The Body of the Paper
The style of the paper will be mainly determined by its contents. Consider using sections to add to readability and provide a clearly delineated introduction and conclusion. Use a maximum of three levels of section heading, and make sure all headings are informatively titled.

Interacting with Computers adheres to the citation style of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) (6th edition, American Psychological Association) which provides many useful examples.

An insistence on consistent style from issue to issue is a hallmark of professionally edited publications. At times, style at variance with standards causes delays in publication deadlines, with a risk of introducing significant errors in the text. The Editors sincerely appreciate efforts by authors to conform to style as much as possible.

References can be an important part of a paper because they place a paper in its historical context. It is possible to either under-or over-reference. A balance between the two needs to be struck. Authors should be wary of over-citing their own work relative to the work of others. References never should substitute for explanation; there should be little loss of immediate comprehension in a paper if they were to be removed. If footnotes are used, they also should be expendable. Wherever possible, authors should cite publicly available work that is available readily from most libraries. Generally speaking, doctoral and masters theses should not be cited.

In the body of the paper, references should be made by using an identifiable name or names. Each time a work is cited, the authors’ surnames plus year of publication should be provided. If the cited work has more than three authors, use the first author’s surname followed by “et al” and the publication year. Do not use “op. cit.” or other shorthand for subsequent citations of the same work; fully cite the work as was done in its first appearance. Where there are multiple references to an author or authors within the same year, the date should be followed by the letters 'a', ‘b’, etc. Multiple references should be separated by semicolons.

In the References section, at the end of the manuscript, full references should be provided to facilitate readers obtaining them, ordered alphabetically by the first author.

Journal references should follow the style:

name(s); year; reference title; journal title, (volume number: issue number); page numbers.

Book chapters and papers in conference proceedings should follow the style:

names(s); year; reference title, book/proceedings title; name of editor(s), (if appropriate); chapter number. (if appropriate); place and date of conference; publisher; page numbers.

For web sources, the full URL and date that the site was last accessed successfully by the author(s) should be included in the citation in the recommended specific format for electronic references (see APA Manual).

Figures and Tables
These should be submitted in separate files, and not embedded in the text. They should not be combined into figure or table files.

All figures submitted to the journal in colour will be published in colour online at no cost (unless the author specifically requests that their figures be in black and white online). Authors may choose to also publish their figures in colour in the print journal for a fee; you will be asked to approve this cost after your article is accepted for publication.

Figures should be referred to in the text and numbered consecutively. As indicated above, they should be supplied separately from the main body of the text as individual files, with their approximate final positions marked within the main text. Each figure should be accompanied by an explanatory legend. The legend can be submitted with the figure, but all legends should also be grouped and listed on a separate page at the end of the main text file.

Figures may be supplied in the following file formats: .DOC; .TIFF; .EPS; .JPEG; .PPT and be created in the same size you wish them to be printed: 85mm single column; 170mm double common. Resolution should be as follows: Line drawings 1200 dpi; Half Tones/photographs 300 dpi.

For useful information on preparing your figures for publication, go to

In tables, footnotes are preferable to long explanatory material in either the heading or body of the table. Such explanatory footnotes, should be included on the same pages as the tables themselves and should be used to explain any abbreviations used in the table and denote them by letter. Footnotes should also be used to quote sources.

Non-English Notations
It is likely that some authors will need to include mathematical or logical expressions in their papers. Use of such notations should be supported fully by prose descriptions as some readers will have difficulty with such representations. As with footnotes, relatively easy comprehension of paper contents should be possible even if the notations are ignored.

Supplementary Data
Only directly relevant material should be included in the full text of manuscripts. Supporting materials and Appendices which are not essential for inclusion in the full text, may be published as online-only Supplementary Data. Supplementary Data should be submitted for review, in a separate file or files from the manuscript. Most common file formats may be used: .doc; .ppt. .xls; .tif; jpg. Video files may be supplied in MP4, AVI or WMV format.
Authors should ensure that the Supplementary Data is referred to in the main manuscript at an appropriate point in the text. It cannot be altered or replaced after the paper has been accepted for publication.

Authors may wish to include computer programs or parts of programs in their papers. Wherever possible, such material should be supplied in camera-ready form so they can be treated as artwork. Since many readers will not be familiar with a particular language or language variant, authors should consider using a readily readable pseudocode, where possible. When using any notational form, a glossary of terms that defines the notation should be included.


Interacting with Computers authors have the option to publish their paper under the Oxford Open initiative; whereby, for a charge, their paper will be made freely available online immediately upon publication. After your manuscript is accepted the corresponding author will be required to accept a mandatory licence to publish agreement. As part of the licensing process you will be asked to indicate whether or not you wish to pay for open access. If you do not select the open access option, your paper will be published with standard subscription-based access and you will not be charged.

Oxford Open articles are published under Creative Commons licences. Authors publishing in Interacting with Computers can use the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC-BY). Please click here for more information about the Creative Commons licences.

You can pay Open Access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post. The open access charges applicable are:

Regular charge - £1750/ $2800 / €2275
List B Developing country charge* - £875 / $1400 / €1135
List A Developing country charge* - £0 /$0 / €0
*Visit our Developing Countries page for a list of qualifying countries

Please note that these charges are in addition to any colour/page charges that may apply.

Orders from the UK will be subject to the current UK VAT charge. For orders from the rest of the European Union, OUP will assume that the service is provided for business purposes. Please provide a VAT number for yourself or your institution, and ensure you account for your own local VAT correctly.


All submissions to the journal are initially reviewed by the General Editor and are allocated to a member of one of the Special Editorial Boards to act as Editor for it. At these stages manuscripts may be rejected without peer review if it is felt that they are not of high enough quality or not relevant to the journal.

Manuscripts that are not immediately rejected are sent out for peer review, most usually to three independent reviewers, who will not know your identity. Referees are instructed to consider intellectual content, style, and the general suitability of the paper. Guidelines to Referees for considering submissions are available at {URL}. Based on feedback from reviewers, and the Editors’ judgment, a decision is given on the manuscript for [a] acceptance for publication (usually with minor revisions), [b] rejection with no resubmission option, [c] rejection with suggested resubmission as a new manuscript after major work, [d] recommendation to develop the submission further and resubmit for another review and decision-making round.

The General Editor will reply directly to authors about editorial decisions. In general, authors may expect a reply within three months from the initial submission. Further refereeing (normally by the same referees) will take place if papers are recommended for further development. The Special Editorial Board member who is responsible for your submission will collate the review comments and provide an overview, together with guidance for revision if appropriate. Authors are required to accommodate these suggestions in a resubmission; it is expected that such revisions are carried out within 1-2 months at the most. Resubmitted manuscripts may be rejected at this, or at any later stage; a request for resubmission does not guarantee future acceptance for publication in the journal.
If you strongly believe that your manuscript has been wrongly rejected (as per [a], above), and can make a valid case for such, authors may send an appeal to the editorial office. To submit an appeal contact the editorial office giving as much detail as possible about why you believe that your manuscript has been incorrectly rejected. Please do not re-submit your article but ensure that you quote the journal manuscript number on any correspondence. An appeal does not imply that the submission will be subsequently accepted for publication in the journal.


Self-Archiving Policy

For information about this journal's policy, please see the Author Self-Archiving Policy.

Book Reviews

This journal does not carry reviews of any form. Publishers who wish to submit books for review should instead contact the Book Reviews Editor of the magazine, Interfaces, an official publication of interaction.

Material Disclaimer

The opinions expressed in Interacting with Computers: the interdisciplinary journal of Human-Computer Interaction are those of the authors and contributors, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Society, the Editors, the Editorial Board, Oxford University Press or the organisation to which the authors are affiliated.

Colour Figure Charges

Where authors request this, colour figures will be published in print in colour at a charge of £350 per figure. If you do not wish to pay any colour charges, colour figures will be published online in colour and black and white in print.