The main goal of PHAIR is to publish empirical papers. Empirical papers should use accepted methods to analyze data to test hypotheses of relevance to the psychology of human animal intergroup relations (see Authoring Guidelines). In most cases, we expect the methods to be quantitative in nature, although we also consider qualitative studies. Empirical papers are judged based on their relevance and importance for the field, the quality of the methodology, and the soundness of the conclusions drawn from the study. There are three types of empirical papers:
PHAIR welcomes replications of effects important to the psychology of human-animal intergroup relations. This includes direct replications, in which a previous finding is replicated using the same methods, to the degree possible, and conceptual replications, in which a previous finding is replicated using different methods, chosen to extend the boundaries of previous findings in a principled manner. The degree to which findings from a previous study replicated or not would not be used as a criterion for accepting the paper. However, replication studies would need to be well-done and must include a discussion of how the specific replication adds to the literature. Like all empirical papers, replication studies will be evaluated by reviewers and judged based on their relevance and importance for the field, and the quality of the methodology. Registering replication studies in advance (described below) is encouraged to ensure that these standards are met prior to the study being conducted. In most cases, the editorial team will attempt to solicit comments from the authors of the studies being replicated, to help ensure relevance and quality.
Empirical studies are papers that report the results of an investigation or investigations designed to test hypotheses relevant to the scope of the paper. There are two kinds of empirical studies, distinguished by the expected limits on words, tables and figures: those that report the results of a single study and those that report the results of multiple studies. As with replication studies, registering empirical studies in advance (described below) is encouraged to ensure that appropriate standards are met prior to the study being conducted.
Registered Reports (Pre-Data and Post-Data)
Registered Reports are empirical papers in which hypotheses and methods are registered either (a) before any data have been gathered (Registered Report — Pre-Data) or (b) before already existing data have been examined and analyzed (Registered Report — Post-Data). Registered Reports represent a means to minimize or disincentive questionable research practices, mitigate biases, reward best practice implementations, and ensure more rigorous science. PHAIR strongly encourages the submission of Registered Reports. Registered Reports should be clearly marked upon submission.
The process of publishing a registered report has the following steps:
- Study plans (study protocols) are submitted and peer-reviewed.
- Following the review process, approved study protocols are formally registered on PsychArchives (the public and freely accessible repository affiliated with PHAIR) or another trustworthy repository that support the registraion of study plans, e.g., OSF/Registries) . Note that just uploading your study plan on a public repository is not sufficient to be considered as a Registered Report or to get credit for preregistration. Preregistraion requires a public file archive that garantees the preservation of a time-stamped, immutable version of your study plan. At this stage, approval mean that the paper would ultimately be accepted so long as the researchers follow through on the preregistered plans.
- The actual data analyses and the final write-up of the paper are performed.
- The paper is submitted and reviewed again. The pre-registration constrains the confirmatory analyses, but authors additionally have the flexibility to conduct un-registered and thus exploratory analyses (e.g., often as follow-up or in-depth analyses that could not have been anticipated beforehand). However, confirmatory and exploratory analyses should be clearly distinguished in the manuscript. There may also be deviations from the pre-registered plans. Deviations need to be clearly indicated upon submission, and the editorial team will consider the reasonableness of such deviations during the review process. At this stage, the purpose of the review is to confirm that the researchers followed through on their registered plans and to evaluate other more general aspects of quality. It is rare for a paper to be rejected at this point, and under no circumstances are the results of the study (i.e., whether the results supported the hypotheses or not) used as a basis for rejecting the paper. In principle acceptance of a Registered Report is valid for 1 year, although authors could apply for an extension.
PHAIR offers two sub-types of Registered Reports: Those where everything has been pre-registered and no data were available to begin with (Registered Report — Pre-Data) and those where data were already available but have not been analyzed yet (Registered Report — Post-Data). Regardless of its sub-type, a Registered Report is submitted in two stages (Stage 1: review of the project + revisions; pre-registration; running the study; final write-up; Stage 2: review of the final paper). The final version of Registered Reports has the same word, table, and figure limits as other empirical papers.
In any field, it is important to take stock, review, and organize the existing literature, and connect that literature to theoretical concerns and concepts that guide research. Review papers at PHAIR provide a dedicated space for this to occur. Reviewer papers should have one of two aims: a) to synthesize existing literatures, either qualitatively (systematic narrative review) or quantitatively (meta-analysis) or b) to present a new theoretical model.
Review papers should make a major contribution by clearly demonstrating the importance of the issue being reviewed, providing new knowledge about the topic, and orienting the field towards new questions, methods, or areas of research. PHAIR seeks to be primarily an empirically oriented journal. As such, meta-analyses are generally preferred over qualitative reviews, and there is a high standard for papers that propose novel theoretical models. Review papers are judged based on the importance of the topic, the degree to which the paper offers a convincing and significance theoretical and/or methodological advance, and the degree to which the paper orients the field toward a new and important direction
Meta-analyses would be expected to conform to contemporary standards as described in the Journal Article Reporting Standards (JARS) of the most recent American Psychological Association (APA) Publication Manual.
It is important, in any field, to continue to refine methodologies so that research is based on the most up-to-date and cutting-edge empirical approaches. This helps ensure sound findings in the published literature. As it can be difficult for researchers to keep up with the many methodological advances that occur in the field, there needs to be a place to develop novel methods for research, to communicate the value of particular approaches, and to demonstrate how to apply particular methods to relevant research questions. The purpose of the Methodology section of PHAIR is to provide a space to do so in the area of human-animal intergroup relations.
Methodology is a broad category. The major distinction between Methodology and other sections is that the focus of a Methodology paper should not be on a substantive hypothesis or a theoretical innovation, but rather on a methodological approach to testing substantive theories or hypotheses. Here are some examples of the kinds of papers that would be considered for the Methodology section.
- Tutorials that demonstrate how to use certain kinds of sophisticated analytic approaches to test hypotheses that are commonly of interest
- Psychometric evaluations or translations of commonly used measures
- The development of new statistical or analytic techniques of relevance to the field
- Simulation studies designed to determine sample sizes to provide sufficient power for testing certain kinds of hypotheses
In rare cases, PHAIR will publish brief applied articles. These could include case studies demonstrative of important empirical points or which generate novel hypotheses. They may also include articles documenting best practices in the science of human-animal intergroup relations. Authors interested in contributing Applied articles should consult with the Editorial team regarding their fit for the journal prior to submission.
Comments are short communications in which the author(s) comments publicly on a paper that is published in the journal (i.e., post-publication review) or makes an announcement or expresses an opinion relevant to the field. These may be invited or submitted. There is a very high threshold for the publication of comments, and strict word limits will be applied.
Limits for Words, References, Tables, and Figures
|Category||Instantiation Examples||Word Count (Main Text)||Word Count (Abstract)||Number of References||Number of Tables||Number of Figures|
|Single empirical study||5,000||250||30||3||3|
|Multiple empirical studies (2+)||7,000||250||30||4||4|
|Review||Literature review, meta-analysis, new theory||6,000||250||40||2||2|
|Methodology||Methods, statistics, psychometrics, simulations||5,000||250||30||3||3|
|Applied||Case study, best practice example||3,000||250||20||1||1|