Who Can Submit?

Anyone may submit an original article to be considered for publication in Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry provided he or she owns the copyright to the work being submitted or is authorized by the copyright owner or owners to submit the article. Authors are the initial owners of the copyrights to their works (an exception in the non-academic world to this might exist if the authors have, as a condition of employment, agreed to transfer copyright to their employer).

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Editorial and Publishing Process

Manuscripts should meet the word length for their genre listed in Aims and Scope (including footnotes) and should be submitted online. At the time of submission, authors must represent and warrant that submitted manuscripts have not been published elsewhere, are not currently under review elsewhere, have been submitted with the full knowledge of their institutional home (if any), and are not infringing of copyright or other rights of third parties.

Once a manuscript has been determined to be of sufficient academic rigor and relevance to the journal's mission, the editors will initiate a double-blind peer-review process, during which time authors and reviewers remain anonymous. Authors will receive email notification once reviewers agree on one of the following possible outcomes for the article:

  • Accept article: Article is accepted for publication exactly as it is (no modifications required).
  • Accept article with minor revisions: Article is accepted, assuming the author makes minor revisions as requested by the reviewer/editor.
  • Major revisions required for acceptance: The content of the article is not suitable for publication without major revisions. The author is invited to make the changes suggested by the editor and reviewers and submit a revision.
  • Reject article: The article is rejected as not being eligible for publication in the journal.

If Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry agrees to publish the article, its author will retain copyright to the article for the full term of the copyright, all renewals, and extensions.

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Open Access and Copyright

Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry joins the library and information community in supporting open access and knowledge dissemination as established by the Budapest Open Access initiative. We support this philosophy by making the full text of all articles freely available without charge to users or their institutions. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this journal without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author—provided they completely and accurately identify the original articles' author(s), citation details, and publisher.

Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry is published by the Siburt Institute using the publishing infrastructure provided by the ACU Library. These institutions are committed to making high quality information available to anyone around the world, regardless of institutional affiliation or ability to pay. Authors can seek publication in this journal knowing that we adhere to standards of preservation, of discovery and dissemination, and of a general philosophy that information is best when shared freely.

At this point in time, those of us working with Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry find the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC-BY 4.0) license to best support open access scholarly publishing. Authors who submit to this journal will have the opportunity to choose their particular license from a pull-down menu when they submit their work. At that time they can opt for the CC-BY 4.0 license we recommend or select a more restrictive license for their work. Remember, in all citations Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry must be identified as the original publisher of the work.

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General Submission Rules

Submitted articles cannot have been previously published, nor be forthcoming in an archival journal or book (print or electronic). Please note: "publication" in a working-paper series does not constitute prior publication. In addition, by submitting material to Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry, the author is stipulating that the material is not currently under review at another journal (electronic or print) and that he or she will not submit the material to another journal (electronic or print) until the completion of the editorial decision process at Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry. If you have concerns about the submission terms for Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry, please contact the editors.

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Formatting Requirements

See Final Manuscript Preparation Guidelines for details.

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Rights for Authors and Digital Commons @ ACU

As further described in our submission agreement (the Submission Agreement), in consideration for publication of the article, the authors assign to Digital Commons @ ACU all copyright in the article, subject to the expansive personal--use exceptions described below.

Attribution and Usage Policies

Reproduction, posting, transmission or other distribution or use of the article or any material therein, in any medium as permitted by a personal-use exemption or by written agreement of Digital Commons @ ACU, requires credit to Digital Commons @ ACU as copyright holder (e.g., Digital Commons @ ACU © 2024).

Personal-use Exceptions

The following uses are always permitted to the author(s) and do not require further permission from Digital Commons @ ACU provided the author does not alter the format or content of the articles, including the copyright notification:

  • Storage and back-up of the article on the author's computer(s) and digital media (e.g., diskettes, back-up servers, Zip disks, etc.), provided that the article stored on these computers and media is not readily accessible by persons other than the author(s);
  • Posting of the article on the author(s) personal website, provided that the website is non-commercial;
  • Posting of the article on the internet as part of a non-commercial open access institutional repository or other non-commercial open access publication site affiliated with the author(s)'s place of employment (e.g., a Phrenology professor at the University of Southern North Dakota can have her article appear in the University of Southern North Dakota's Department of Phrenology online publication series); and
  • Posting of the article on a non-commercial course website for a course being taught by the author at the university or college employing the author.

People seeking an exception, or who have questions about use, should contact the editors.

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General Terms and Conditions of Use

Users of the Digital Commons @ ACU website and/or software agree not to misuse the Digital Commons @ ACU service or software in any way.

The failure of Digital Commons @ ACU to exercise or enforce any right or provision in the policies or the Submission Agreement does not constitute a waiver of such right or provision. If any term of the Submission Agreement or these policies is found to be invalid, the parties nevertheless agree that the court should endeavor to give effect to the parties' intentions as reflected in the provision, and the other provisions of the Submission Agreement and these policies remain in full force and effect. These policies and the Submission Agreement constitute the entire agreement between Digital Commons @ ACU and the Author(s) regarding submission of the Article.

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