guidance for emerging scholars and student authors
We welcome submissions of any type (as outlined in our Submission Requirements) from current JD students and recent graduates. The information on this page is intended to provide additional guidance to students and emerging scholars with respect to how the TMU Law Review defines submission types, as well as general features of academic research and writing.
The TMU Law Review seeks high-quality work that provides a unique and well-supported contribution to legal scholarship. The TMU Law Review’s standards apply equally to student work. The TMU Law Review does not publish course or seminar papers; however, an adapted paper that has undergone significant revision and refinement may meet our requirements.
It is rare for student submissions to be published on their first submission or without significant substantive revision. In-depth revision for student submissions is commonly required ahead of publication. Students should consider whether academic commitments will allow for such revision within our editorial timelines.
Current or recent JD students may wish to review student contributions in legal journals to further familiarize themselves with the level of work typically accepted for publication. For instance, student-published Comments can be viewed on the HeinOnline Law Journal Library by performing an Advanced Search for Comments. Additionally, more guidance for law students is available via the Law Student Publication Guide.
While the editorial team is happy to answer questions to the extent possible, students should refrain from discussing potential or current submissions in depth with current members of the TMU Law Review editorial team to ensure the integrity and anonymity of our review process.
Types of Submissions
The below definitions are provided for guidance only and are not exhaustive of types of scholarly works in general, or as may be accepted for publication by the TMU Law Review.
Articles: the TMU Law Review defines an Article as a full-length scholarly work that is generally between 8,000 to 15,000 words in length. A scholarly article is research-based; has a specific scope; and offers new information, or a unique intervention, on its topic. Scholarly articles are generally supported by many citations from previously published scholarly works (secondary sources) and/or legal decisions, policies and legislation (primary sources).
Comments: the TMU Law Review defines a Comment as a shorter piece of scholarship that analyzes a recent decision or legal development. For instance, comments may analyze and critique a court decision or new or emerging legislation (e.g., through discussing how the court should have decided and why, how the court should have reasoned, anticipated outcomes of the decision and how audiences should approach relevant implications, or demonstrate the impact of emerging legislation). Comments may also tackle a new idea, respond to existing scholarship, apply an existing theory in a novel way, or propose solutions to current problems that would benefit from legal analysis or intervention within the TMU Law Review’s scope.
The TMU Law Review defines the word limit for Comments in its Formatting Requirements as 5,000 words, exclusive of footnotes.
Features of Academic Scholarship
Students and emerging scholars may find the below features of academic scholarship helpful in determining whether their submission is of publishable quality.
The work is a new contribution to scholarship, or appropriate evolution within an existing scholarly topic, that furthers research or understanding of your topic. Consider whether your topic and writing contribute something new that is relevant to the TMU Law Review’s audience;
The work is research-based and aims to create a new contribution, not solely to persuade or inform an audience;
The work is both relevant and timely within its topic and for its intended audience;
The work has a coherent organizational structure with headings and subsections in advancement of its argument or contribution (for instance, a summary of the main argument is evident in the abstract and opening paragraphs), and the work follows a logical progression and flow;
The work demonstrates an excellent grasp of required formatting and citation requirements;
The work appropriately leverages existing and relevant scholarship on its topic and does not possess significant inaccuracies, research omissions, or logical gaps on its topic;
The work employs an appropriate writing style and tone for its topic and content (for instance, a scholarly research article often engages a logical, persuasive tone and draws on citations to further its claims, whereas critical scholarship may additionally employ storytelling techniques and a viewpoint that situates its author within the scholarship);
The work has benefitted from multiple stages of editing and revision by the author before submission;
Authors possess relevant permission to use and reproduce all information and source materials that are not publicly accessible or the subject of appropriate copyright for reproduction; and
Authors are in a position to produce evidence of sources, if requested, to assist in source verification, including providing PDFs or hardcopy materials that are not readily available online or locating alternate sources if any included citations are not verifiable.