I am aiming to publish my masters thesis in psychology and found some journals fitting my topic. Is there a recommended number of pages for the parts introductions, methods, results, discussion and conclusions? I could not find this in the authors guides of the journals I was looking for. These are some of the journals of interest: BMC Psychiatry, IEEE-Transactions on Affective Computing, Speech Communication, Computer Speech and Language.

  • 7
    How about reading papers in your target yournals and use these as orientation?
    – LuckyPal
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 10:32
  • Good idea, thank you!
    – bash-asker
    Commented Dec 17, 2022 at 10:41

1 Answer 1


I know of no psychology journal that gives an explicit statement about the proportion of each paper that is expected to be devoted to the introduction, methods, etc. Indeed, it frequently seems to me that the decision by many journals to impose high minimum-word-lengths on articles means that a great many are unnecessarily verbose. When faced with the problem of an appropriate division, probably the best you can do is to see how other authors in the same journal have managed the available space.

However, there is another option which I have only recently encountered. Some journals ("Self and Identity" being the example I saw) make it clear that they will accept articles of (almost) any word length, with figures, tables and references formatted in any style of your choosing. Within the simple constraints of, say, Background, Rationale, Methods, Results, Discussion, you can then present your own research in its best light, choosing a length that best suits you, with the lengths of the sections determined by the demands of the content.

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