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Author Guidelines

Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work is an international, peer-reviewed journal that provides a platform for research, analysis and scholarly debate on social work theory, policy and practice. Published quarterly, it particularly welcomes work offering critical perspectives on contemporary policy developments, indigenous social work, post-colonialism, anti-racism, feminism, and progressive social work theory, policy and practice.

We seek four types of articles: original articles that are empirical or theoretical in nature between 5000 and 7000 words including references; research brief reports of up to 3000 words including references and viewpoints that explore and reflect on controversies, ethical issues, or policy and practice developments that are of interest to the social work community (no longer than 2,000 words including references).

We also seek submissions for articles that review a classic book that has influenced the author's career in social work and social policy (no longer than 3000 words including references).

Original articles will be anonymously reviewed by two readers from a panel of reviewers, viewpoints by an editor and one reviewer. Reviewers are asked to offer constructive feedback to authors.

You are welcome to discuss ideas for prospective articles with the editors and we are very happy to support new and emerging researchers and authors. 

Book reviews

We also review all New Zealand books related to social work, social policy, research and related topics, as well as relevant contemporary international publications. If you have expertise in a particular area in which a recent book has been published, and would like to review it, please contact our book review editor Simon Lowe ( Book review guidelines are available on request.

Copy specification

  1. The article must be the author’s original work. It cannot have been submitted for publication to any other journal.
  2. Original articles should not exceed 7000 words including references and abstract. Viewpoints should be between 1500 – 2000 words including references.
  3. The article must not contain material or language that is discriminatory in any way.
  4. Please provide the text in Microsoft Word format using 1.5 line spacing and a 12 point font. The text file should be non-identifying of the authors. 
  5. Authors using tables or illustrations from other authors/publishers should provide relevant permissions. Please contact the editors if unsure.
  6. Authors should declare any funding sources, conflicts of interest and acknowledgements.
  7. Please include a statement of the ethical approvals obtained for research reported in your article and a brief discussion of relevant ethical issues. 

Text structure

Please observe the following structure for your article. Failure to do so may mean it is returned for additional information, re-writing or editing:

  1. Title: A brief indication of the article’s subject.
  2. Abstract: Outline, in no more than 250 words, your main findings or arguments and the implications for practice or policy. Please structure the abstract using the following headings: introduction, methods, findings, and conclusions for empirical articles and  introduction, approach and conclusions for theoretical articles. See an example
  3. Keywords: Please provide four to six keywords separated by semi-colons.
  4. Subheadings: Use subheadings sparingly and indicate these by bold type.
  5. Tables:  Keep tables to a minimum. Number them (e.g. Table 1. Table 2.) with a self-explanatory title.
  6. Illustrations: You can submit black and white illustrations that are relevant to the article. Label these Figure 1 with a self-explanatory title.
  7. Footnotes: Do not use footnotes.
  8. Referencing: Peer reviewers and editors require authors to adhere strictly to the APA 7th referencing style both within the text and for listing references at the end of the article. Please refer to APA Publication Manual (7th Ed.).
  9. Style: In general, authors should refer to APA 7th on all matters relating to structure, content and style. For example, APA recommends that authors do not use quotation marks to emphasise words but use other aspects of syntax to express points. The APA blog is a good source of advice on correct use of APA.

Peer review

Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work is a scholarly journal that uses a blind peer-review process. We encourage prospective authors to submit using the online submission process. You may submit your article online at any time. 

As a result of these reviews, we may suggest major revisions of your article, minor revisions, accept as is, or suggest your article may be more suitable for another publication. The editors also reserve the right to edit the article as necessary for final publication.

The Editorial Collective email address for inquiries is


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in Microsoft Word document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text uses 1.5 line spacing and a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  5. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.

Copyright Notice

Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:

By completing the online submission process, you confirm you accept this agreement. The following is the entire agreement between you and the Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers (ANZASW) and it may be modified only in writing.

You and any co-authors

If you are completing this agreement on behalf of co-authors, you confirm that you are acting on their behalf with their knowledge.

First publication

By submitting the work you are:

  1. granting the ANZASW the right of first publication of this work;
  2. confirming that the work is original; and
  3. confirming that the work has not been published in any other form.

Once published, you are free to use the final, accepted version in any way, as outlined below under Copyright.


You assign copyright in the final, accepted version of your article to the ANZASW. You and any co-authors of the article retain the right to be identified as authors of the work.

The ANZASW will publish the final, accepted manuscript under a Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY 4.0). This licence allows anyone – including you – to share, copy, distribute, transmit, adapt and make commercial use of the work without needing additional permission, provided appropriate attribution is made to the original author or source.

A human-readable summary of the licence is available from, which includes a link to the full licence text.

Under this licence you can use the final, published version of the article freely – such as depositing a copy in your institutional research repository, uploading a copy to your profile on an academic networking site or including it in a different publication, such as a collection of articles on a topic or in conference proceedings – provided that original publication in Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work is acknowledged.

This agreement has no effect on any pre-publication versions or elements, which remain entirely yours, and to which we claim no right.

Reviewers hold copyright in their own comments and should not be further copied in any way without their permission.

The copyright of others

If your article includes the copyright material of others (e.g. graphs, diagrams etc.), you confirm that your use either:

  1. falls within the limits of fair dealing for the purposes of criticism and review or fair use; OR
  2. that you have gained permission from the rights holder for publication in an open access journal.



Privacy Statement

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