There's an unpublished paper I'd like to include in my CV list that I haven't yet submitted for publication (because I'm waiting for a conference that will open submissions later this year).

Is there an appropriate phrase intermediary to "Draft in Progress" and "Under Review" that I can use in the bibliographic entry? I'm not sure "Draft in Progress" is itself appropriate, because technically the draft is complete.

  • 2
    At least I'm not aware of any typical phrase, but the situation calls for a distinct one indeed. You could write scheduled for submission to signify that you have a concrete plan. Jul 15, 2021 at 18:08

3 Answers 3


Your paper is a preprint.

What you plan to do with it in the future is not relevant, or appropriate to include in your CV, in my humble opinion. It is generally assumed that authors of preprints are planning to submit their papers for publication, so listing your paper as “scheduled for submission”, or similar, will add nothing and make you seem clueless or insecure. The rule for (academic) CVs is you brag about things you have accomplished in the past, not things you plan to accomplish in the future.

What’s much more important than your plans for submitting the paper is what it contains. So if the norms of your field allow you to include a link to a downloadable copy of the paper, I’d recommend doing that.

  • so mentioning it will add nothing and make you seem clueless or insecure. - I think this is written in a confusing way---you're not saying just listing it as preprint on your CV will make you seem insecure, I presume (which is how it first parsed to me).
    – Kimball
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:03
  • @Kimball good point, edited to clarify.
    – Dan Romik
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:05
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    I agree that there is no need for adding any additional information when a preprint is included in a CV; as you say, the assumption is that a preprint is or will be submitted for peer review at some point, and it would look silly to mention this separately. However, I wouldn't necessarily discourage early career students (especially undergraduates) from including papers on their CV that are "in preparation" or "submitted", especially if preprints aren't yet the norm in their field.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:07
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    @BryanKrause I’m not discouraging OP from listing the preprint. By all means, list it! To be clear, I’m merely discouraging them from including irrelevant information that comes across as resumé-padding. As for “in preparation”, I don’t have a strong opinion on whether to include such things or not, but when I personally look at people’s CV, the effect that “in preparation” items have on me ranges from zero (in the most common case) to slightly negative (in the more uncommon situation where the person has a bit too many such items, and too few other things, to sound credible).
    – Dan Romik
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:40
  • @DanRomik Got it, agree with all that.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:41

I think it's fine to include projects on a CV that haven't been peer reviewed with a parenthetical that they are "submitted" or "in progress", especially for early-career researchers like undergraduate students. It's a bit weird when professors with a longer CV include these projects, but I doubt many people really count it against them (and some funding agencies will consider them progress), they just will know and understand not to consider those finished published projects, because, well, they aren't.

You, however, have a preprint available for others to read, so you don't need to make any note about it being under review or anything: just include it as a preprint with all the citation information pointing to the preprint archive version of the paper. I've seen CVs that split these out into a separate section and those that mix them with other papers. If you want to be completely transparent I think a separate section is good.


"Work in Progress" is pretty common and generally acceptable. You could make it a bit more specific if you like if you have an immediate need to send out a CV.

"Work in Progress" is actually a good section to include in a CV since it implies that you are currently active. Such a section with a firm title for a paper will probably give readers the correct impression about where you are.

  • 1
    I think "work in progress" indicates the preprint is not complete, which is not the case here.
    – Kimball
    Jul 15, 2021 at 21:04
  • @Kimball, Giving the full title gives a different impression. And, of course, you can also tag it as "under review". But TBH, I'd rather be seen as someone who had "work in progress" than someone who did not. And, of course, it technically is "in progress" until accepted.
    – Buffy
    Jul 15, 2021 at 22:11
  • @Kimball I'd argue that it's not complete until it has passed review, which might involve some changes, and a final "camera ready" version has been submitted for publishing. It may be almost finished, but it's still a work in progress until it's actually finished.
    – Peteris
    Jul 16, 2021 at 14:10
  • @Peteris I am just saying, at least in pure math, if I look at someone's CV and I seek "work in progress" I interpret that to mean that there is no complete preprint ready for submission, and quite possibly no results. Which is why saying something like "preprint" (with a link if possible) is much stronger.
    – Kimball
    Jul 16, 2021 at 18:04

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