User:Andy Maloney/Notebook/Lab Notebook of Andy Maloney/2010/08/12/PLoS ONE Requirements

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Cover letter

  • Why is it suitable for PLoS ONE?
  • How is the paper contributing?
  • How does it relate to previous work?
  • Who will be interested?


  • Title, Authors, Affiliations, Abstract, Introduction, Results, Discussion, Materials and Methods, Acknowledgments, References, Figure Legends, and Tables.


  • 150 characters or less.
  • Title case.
  • Online submission requires a title of 50 characters or fewer.


  • First Middle Last, Affiliation/Department, University/Organization, City, State, Country.


  • 250-300 words.
  • Must include methods used.
  • Must summarize results.
  • Avoid abbreviations.
  • No citations.


  • Broad context of study.
  • Brief review of key literature.
  • Any controversies or debates in the field.
  • Include a brief overall aim of what the experiments were to achieve and if they were achieved.


  • Details of the experiment to support the conclusion.
  • Raw data can be submitted as supplemental information.
  • Write in past tense.


  • Reiterate conclusions with explanation or speculations.
  • Are the conclusions affecting the current literature's understanding?
  • How can future research be built on the findings?
    • Key experiments that must be done.
  • Can be combined with the Results section.

Methods and materials

  • Detail enough so that anyone can reproduce.
  • Detailed protocols can be submitted as supplemental information.


  • People that helped but are not authors.
  • Do not include funding agencies. This is done on a separate form during submission.



  • Must be less than 10MB in size. Minimum 300 dpi.
  • Format should be either a TIFF or EPS.
  • Must use RGB for color.
  • Dimensions width
    • 1 column = 3.27
    • 1.5 column = 4.86"
    • 2 column = 6.83"
    • Max height = 9.19"
  • Must use a white background as opposed to a transparent one.
  • Lines must be 0.5 ≤ line ≤ 1.5 point
  • 2 point white space border around the figure.
  • Font: Arial 8 ≤ size ≤ 12 point.
  • Figures with multiple images but the same figure are to be submitted as one file. Labeled with letters for each image that are Arial 12 point and no punctuation. Top left justified.
  • It's always better to embed the fonts.

Movie files

  • ≤ 10MB in size.
  • mov, avi, mpg, mpeg, mp4, mkv, flv and wmv are OK. mp4 is preferred with 128 kbit/s AAC audio and 480p H.264 video.
  • Encode with XviD so that VLC, Quicktime, and Windows media player can view it.