Ethics of Publication

Fair Play basically follows the rules of Elsevier.

Fair play and editorial independence

Editors evaluate submitted manuscripts exclusively on the basis of their academic merit (importance, originality, study’s validity, clarity) and its relevance to the journal’s scope, without regard to the authors’ race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, citizenship, religious belief, political philosophy or institutional affiliation. Decisions to edit and publish are not determined by the policies of governments or any other agencies outside of the journal itself. The Editor-in-Chief has full authority over the entire editorial content of the journal and the timing of publication of that content. 


Editors and editorial staff will not disclose any information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author, reviewers, potential reviewers, other editorial advisers, and the publisher, as appropriate.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest

Editors and editorial board members will not use unpublished information disclosed in a submitted manuscript for their own research purposes without the authors’ explicit written consent. Privileged information or ideas obtained by editors as a result of handling the manuscript will be kept confidential and not used for their personal advantage. Editors will recuse themselves from considering manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships/connections with any of the authors, companies or institutions connected to the papers; instead, they will ask another member of the editorial board to handle the manuscript.

Publication decisions

The editors ensure that all submitted manuscripts being considered for publication undergo peer-review by at least two reviewers who are expert in the field. The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for deciding which of the manuscripts submitted to the journal will be published, based on the validation of the work in question, its importance to researchers and readers, the reviewers’ comments, and such legal requirements as are currently in force regarding libel, copyright infringement and plagiarism. The Editor-in-Chief may confer with other editors or reviewers in making this decision.

Involvement and cooperation in investigations

Editors (in conjunction with the publisher and/or society) will take responsive measures when ethical concerns are raised with regard to a submitted manuscript or published paper. Every reported act of unethical publishing behaviour will be looked into, even if it is discovered years after publication. AP-SMART editors follow the COPE Flowcharts when dealing with cases of suspected misconduct. If, on investigation, the ethical concern is well-founded, a correction, retraction, expression of concern or other note as may be relevant, will be published in the journal.

Duties of Reviewers

Contribution to editorial decisions

Peer review assists editors in making editorial decisions and, through editorial communications with authors, may assist authors in improving their manuscripts. Peer review is an essential component of formal scholarly communication and lies at the heart of scientific endeavour. AP-SMART shares the view of many that all scholars who wish to contribute to the scientific process have an obligation to do a fair share of reviewing.


Any invited referee who feels unqualified to review the research reported in a manuscript or knows that its prompt review will be impossible should immediately notify the editors and decline the invitation to review so that alternative reviewers can be contacted.


Any manuscripts received for review are confidential documents and must be treated as such; they must not be shown to or discussed with others except if authorized by the Editor-in-Chief (who would only do so under exceptional and specific circumstances). This applies also to invited reviewers who decline the review invitation.

Standards of objectivity

Reviews should be conducted objectively and observations formulated clearly with supporting arguments so that authors can use them for improving the manuscript. Personal criticism of the authors is inappropriate.

Acknowledgement of sources

Reviewers should identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that is an observation, derivation or argument that has been reported in previous publications should be accompanied by the relevant citation. A reviewer should also notify the editors of any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other manuscript (published or unpublished) of which they have personal knowledge.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest

Any invited referee who has conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies or institutions connected to the manuscript and the work described therein should immediately notify the editors to declare their conflicts of interest and decline the invitation to review so that alternative reviewers can be contacted.

Unpublished material disclosed in a submitted manuscript must not be used in a reviewer’s own research without the express written consent of the authors. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for the reviewer’s personal advantage. This applies also to invited reviewers who decline the review invitation.

Duties of Authors

Reporting standards

Authors of original research should present an accurate account of the work performed and the results, followed by an objective discussion of the significance of the work. The manuscript should contain sufficient detail and references to permit others to replicate the work. Review articles should be accurate, objective and comprehensive, while editorial 'opinion' or perspective pieces should be clearly identified as such. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behaviour and are unacceptable.

Data access and retention

Authors may be asked to provide the raw data of their study together with the manuscript for editorial review and should be prepared to make the data publicly available if practicable. In any event, authors should ensure accessibility of such data to other competent professionals for at least 10 years after publication (preferably via an institutional or subject-based data repository or other data centre), provided that the confidentiality of the participants can be protected and legal rights concerning proprietary data do not preclude their release.

Originality and plagiarism

Authors should ensure that they have written and submit only entirely original works, and if they have used the work and/or words of others, that this has been appropriately cited. Publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the work reported in the manuscript should also be cited. Plagiarism takes many forms, from "passing off" another's paper as the author's own, to copying or paraphrasing substantial parts of another's paper (without attribution), to claiming results from research conducted by others. Plagiarism in all its forms constitutes unethical publishing behaviour and is unacceptable.

Multiple, duplicate, redundant or concurrent submission/publication

Papers describing essentially the same research should not be published in more than one journal or primary publication. Hence, authors should not submit for consideration a manuscript that has already been published in another journal. Submission of a manuscript concurrently to more than one journal is unethical publishing behaviour and unacceptable.

The publication of some kinds of articles (such as clinical guidelines, translations) in more than one journal is sometimes justifiable, provided that certain conditions are met. The authors and editors of the journals concerned must agree to the secondary publication, which must reflect the same data and interpretation of the primary document. The primary reference must be cited in the secondary publication.

Authorship of the manuscript

Only persons who meet these authorship criteria should be listed as authors in the manuscript as they must be able to take public responsibility for the content: (i) made significant contributions to the conception, design, execution, data acquisition, or analysis/interpretation of the study; and (ii) drafted the manuscript or revised it critically for important intellectual content; and (iii) have seen and approved the final version of the paper and agreed to its submission for publication. All persons who made substantial contributions to the work reported in the manuscript (such as technical help, writing and editing assistance, general support) but who do not meet the criteria for authorship must not be listed as an author, but should be acknowledged in the "Acknowledgements" section after their written permission to be named as been obtained. The corresponding author should ensure that all appropriate coauthors (according to the above definition) and no inappropriate coauthors are included in the author list and verify that all coauthors have seen and approved the final version of the manuscript and agreed to its submission for publication.

Disclosure and conflicts of interest

Authors should—at the earliest stage possible (generally by submitting a disclosure form at the time of submission and including a statement in the manuscript)—disclose any conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. Examples of potential conflicts of interest that should be disclosed include financial ones such as honoraria, educational grants or other funding, participation in speakers’ bureaus, membership, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, or other equity interest, and paid expert testimony or patent-licensing arrangements, as well as non-financial ones such as personal or professional relationships, affiliations, knowledge or beliefs in the subject matter or materials discussed in the manuscript. All sources of financial support for the work should be disclosed (including the grant number or other reference number if any).

Acknowledgement of sources

Authors should ensure that they have properly acknowledged the work of others, and should also cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work. Information obtained privately (from conversation, correspondence or discussion with third parties) must not be used or reported without explicit, written permission from the source. Authors should not use information obtained in the course of providing confidential services, such as refereeing manuscripts or grant applications, unless they have obtained the explicit written permission of the author(s) of the work involved in these services.

Hazards and human or animal subjects

If the work involves chemicals, procedures or equipment that have any unusual hazards inherent in their use, the authors must clearly identify these in the manuscript. If the work involves the use of animals or human participants, the authors should ensure that all procedures were performed in compliance with relevant laws and institutional guidelines and that the appropriate institutional committee(s) has approved them; the manuscript should contain a statement to this effect. Authors should also include a statement in the manuscript that informed consent was obtained for experimentation with human participants. The privacy rights of human participants must always be observed.

Peer review

Authors are obliged to participate in the peer review process and cooperate fully by responding promptly to editors’ requests for raw data, clarifications, and proof of ethics approval, patient consents and copyright permissions. In the case of a first decision of "revisions necessary", authors should respond to the reviewers’ comments systematically, point by point, and in a timely manner, revising and re-submitting their manuscript to the journal by the deadline given.

Fundamental errors in published works

When authors discover significant errors or inaccuracies in their own published work, it is their obligation to promptly notify the journal’s editors or publisher and cooperate with them to either correct the paper in the form of an erratum or to retract the paper. If the editors or publisher learns from a third party that a published work contains a significant error or inaccuracy, then it is the authors’ obligation to promptly correct or retract the paper or provide evidence to the journal editors of the correctness of the paper. 

Duties of the Publisher

Handling of unethical publishing behaviour

In cases of alleged or proven scientific misconduct, fraudulent publication or plagiarism, the publisher, in close collaboration with the editors, will take all appropriate measures to clarify the situation and to amend the article in question. This includes the prompt publication of an erratum, clarification or, in the most severe case, the retraction of the affected work.  The publisher, together with the editors, shall take reasonable steps to identify and prevent the publication of papers where research misconduct has occurred, and under no circumstances encourage such misconduct or knowingly allow such misconduct to take place.


By sending their work to the Fair Play editorial office, the author gives the publisher the rights of reproduction, publication and communication. This reproduction, publication and communication will be carried out from the journal's own premises and from the cooperative deposit of Catalan Journals with Open Access (RACO), with the owners with whom agreements have been reached in order to promote the dissemination of their publications.

The author is allowed to reuse the published works for non-commercial purposes, including their deposit in institutional, thematic repositories or personal websites.

There are no charges for the submission and processing of articles.
Plagiarism detection policy. A plagiarism detection system (Turnitin) is in place upon receipt of the manuscript and prior to its eventual publication.

All articles must be original, unpublished and not in the process of publication. Papers will be subject to a double blind review process. In the event of a discrepancy between the reviewers, the manuscript is sent to a third party who decides whether to publish or not.

Papers must be sent in duplicate to the e-mail address [email protected]. One of the files must contain the author, title, word count, abstract (maximum 200 words), a short biographical note and key terms in Spanish and English. The second attached file should have the same characteristics, but should omit the name of the author. The files must be presented in OpenOffice format, Microsoft Word, Pages (Mac) or any other software that complies with the characteristics of the Open Document Format for Office Applications. 

The maximum length of the articles is 15,000 words (approx. 30 pages) and the reviews 2500 words (approx. 4 pages).

Articles may be submitted in Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese, Italian and English. 

As regards format, articles should be written in Times New Roman 12, 1.5 spacing. Paragraph justified.

Copyright note

Authors of works published in the Magazine are allowed to reproduce them in other media as long as mention is made of their previous publication in Fair Play. Journal of Philosophy, Ethics and Sports Law.

The order in which they must be written is as follows:

Title and subtitle: 14 points and bold (title) and 12 points and bold (subtitle) Author(s) (first name, then surname): 12 points.
Institution to which the author belongs: 12 points
Abstract: 10 points.
Keywords (maximum 4): 10 points
Summary: 10 points
Text: 12 points.
Titles and subtitles

The main titles will appear in box 14, in bold italics and preceded by Arabic numerals.
The subtitles will follow the numbering: 1.1, 1.2 etc., in a box equal to the body of the text (12) and in bold.
Subsequent subheadings will be indicated with a), b), etc., in a box equal to the text (12) and normal.
In the subsequent enumeration of ideas or sections the guide will be used as the only symbol and other bullets such as spheres, boxes, asterisks, etc. will be avoided.
Bibliographical references should be included within the text, writing the author's surname in parentheses after the citation, followed by the date of publication of the work and the number of pages cited, as follows

(Honneth, 1997)

If reference is made to an author's works published in the same year, they will be distinguished from each other by means of lower case letters, in alphabetical order:

(Habermas, 2000a) (Habermas, 2000b)

To indicate the page of the corresponding appointment, it will be separated by a colon: (Beauchamp, 2006: 75).

When the quotation starts on one page and ends on the next, the pages will be separated by a dash: (Beauchamp, 2006: 91-92).

The number of notes should be limited to what is strictly necessary, and should appear at the end of the text, preceded by the heading "NOTES".

The section "BIBLIOGRAPHY" will then be included, listing the works cited in the body of the text in alphabetical order according to the author's surname. The rules for citing bibliographical information will be those of the A.P.A., which we summarise below:

A.P.A. rules for citing bibliographical information
A. Books.
1. Must appear: author's surname, comma, first name initial/s, full stop, date in brackets, full stop, title underlined or in italics, dot, place of publication, colon, publisher, full stop. For example:

Carr, Wilfred and Kemmis, Steve (1988). Critical Teaching Theory: Action-Research in Teacher Education. Barcelona: Martínez Roca.

Sáenz Barrio, Oscar (Dir.)(1991). Teaching practices: Curriculum and action-research projects. Alcoy, Alicante: Marfil.

2. If there is more than one author, they should all be indicated, separated by a semicolon (;) except the last one, which is preceded by the conjunction 'and'. For example:

 Thomas D. and Reichardt, Charles S. (1986). Qualitative and quantitative methods in educational research. Madrid: Morata.

Goetz, Judith P. and LeCompte, Margaret D. (1988). Ethnography and qualitative design in educational research. Madrid: Morata.
Kemmis, Steve and McTaggart, Robin (1988). How to plan action research. Barcelona: Laertes.

3. If during the text a reference of more than three authors is cited, the first one can be quoted followed by the expression et al. For example, "Bartolomé et al. (1982)", "Gelpi et al. But in the bibliography all the authors must appear. For example:
Bartolome, Margarita; Echeverría, Benito; Mateo, Joan and Rodríguez, Sebastián (Coord.). (1982). Models of educational research. Barcelona: ICE of the University of Barcelona. Gelpi, Ettore; Zufiaur, Rosa; Cabrera, Flor and Ferrández, Adalberto (1987). Techniques for the evaluation and monitoring of vocational training programmes. Madrid: Largo Caballero.

4. Sometimes the author is a body or institution. In these cases, to avoid repetition, the reference is indicated at the end with the word "author" for example:
Circulo de Progreso Universitario (1982). Guide to university outings. Madrid: Author. Ministry of Education and Science (1989). White Book for the Reform of the Educational System. Madrid: Author.

5. In the case of classical works, of which a recent version has been consulted, but it is interesting to specify the year of the original version, this can be done in brackets after the reference consulted. For example:
Bacon, Francis (1949). Novum Organum. Buenos Aires: Losada. (Original Version 1620). Bernard, C. (1976). Introduction to the study of experimental medicine. Barcelona: Fontanella. (Original Version 1865).

6. When there are several different editions, it is specified in parentheses after the title, in numbers. For example:

Brueckner, L.J. and Bond, G.L. (1984). Diagnosis and treatment of learning difficulties (10 ed.). Madrid: Rialp.

Tenbrink, T.D. (1988). Evaluation: A practical guide for teachers (3 ed.). Madrid: Narcea.

7. If a work has not been published but its prompt publication is known, the expression "(in press)" is written instead of the date. For example:
Rodríguez Rojo, Martín (coord). (in press). Proceedings of the International Symposium on Critical Theory and Research/Action University of Valladolid: Valladolid, 1-4 November.

8. If several volumes make up the publication, which have been edited in several years, they are written separated by a script. For example:
Wittrock, Merlin C. (Ed.). (1990). La investigación de la enseñanza (3 volumes) Barcelona: Paidós/MEC.

Arnau, Juan (1981-1984). Experimental Designs in Psychology and Education, (2 volumes). Mexico: Trillas.

9. When they are compilations (readings), the name, compiler, editor, director or coordinator will be specified after them. For example:
Haynes, Lucila (Comp.) (1989). Research/classroom action (2nd ed.). Valencia: Generalitat Valenciana.

López Melero, Miguel and Guerrero López, J.Francisco. (Coords.). (1991). Walking towards the 21st century; school integration. VII Conference on Universities and Special Education. Malaga: University of Malaga.
Quintana Cabanas, José M. (Coord.). (1986). Participatory research. Madrid: Narcea.

10. When a chapter of a book is cited, which is a compilation (reading), the author of the chapter and the title of the chapter are cited first, followed by the compiler (Comp.), editor (Ed.) or director (Dir.), coordinator (Coord.), title (the pages in brackets). place of publication: and publisher, as in the reference of any book. For example:

Guba, Egon G. (1983). Credibility criteria in naturalistic research. In José Gimeno Sacristán y Angel. Pérez Gómez (Comps.), La enseñanza: su teoría y su práctica (pp. 148-165). Madrid: Akal.

11. When the author's surname is very common, both surnames are usually used. For example:

Martínez Rodríguez, Juan B. (Coordinator). (1990). Towards an interpretative approach to teaching. Granada: University of Granada.
Pérez Serrano, Ma. Gloria (1990). Action-research: Applications to the social and educational field. Madrid: Dykinson.

Rodríguez Espinar, Sebastián (1982). School performance factors. Vilassar de Mar, Barcelona: Oikos-Tau.

B. Journal articles.
1. In this case, what is underlined, or in italics, is the name of the magazine. The volume of the journal and the pages that the article occupies must be specified, separated by a hyphen. The volume and number of the journal should be specified, when each issue begins on page one. For example:


García Ramos, J.Manuel (1992). Methodological resources in programme evaluation. Bordón, 43, 461-476.
House, Ernie R. (1992). Big politics, small politics. Cuadernos de Pedagogía, 202, 51-57. Stenhouse, Lawrence (1991). Curriculum research and the art of teaching. Research in the School, 15, 9-15.

Molina García, Santiago (2003). Mental representations of teachers with respect to school failure. Inter-University Journal of Teacher Education, 17(1), 151-175.

2. In all other aspects the standards are equivalent to those given by book references.

C. Other documents.

1. In the case of unpublished documents, which are not known to be published, the word "unpublished" may be used. For example:
Blanco Villaseñor, Angel (1984). Interpretation of the APA regulations regarding bibliographical references. Barcelona: Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Barcelona (unpublished).

2. In the case of communications and papers presented at congresses, seminars, symposia, conferences, etc., the author, title and congress are specified, specifying if possible the month in which it is to be held. The word "paper" can be added at the end to indicate that it has not been published, for example:

Pérez Gómez, Angel (1992). The training of the teacher as an intellectual. International Symposium on Critical Theory and Action Research, Valladolid, 1-4 April, (paper).

If the subsequent publication of the paper presented at a congress is known, this can also be specified. For example:
Cronbach, Lee J. (1974). Beyond the two disciplines of the scientific psychology. Communication to the APA Assembly, September 2. Reproduced in Beyond the two disciplines of the scientific psychology. In F. Alvira, M.D. Avia, R. Calvo and F. Morales, (1979). The two methods of the social sciences, (pp. 253-280). Madrid: Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas.

D. Alphabetical order.

1. Bibliographical references must be presented in alphabetical order by the name of the author, or first author in the case of several.

2. If an author has several works they will be ordered by order of appearance. For example:
De Landsheere, Guy (1982). Experimental research in education. Paris: UNESCO.
De Landsheere, Guy (1985). Dictionary of evaluation and educational research. Vilassar de Mar, Barcelona: Oikos-Tau.
De Landsheere, Guy (1986). La recherche en éducation dans le monde. Paris: P.U.F.
Stenhouse, Lawrence (1984). Research and development of the curriculum. Madrid: Morata.

Stenhouse, Lawrence (1987). Research as a basis for teaching. Madrid: Morata.

Stenhouse, Lawrence (1991). Curriculum research and the art of teaching. Research in the School, 15, 9-15.

3. If there are several references from the same author in the same year, the years followed in alphabetical order will be specified. For example:

Freire, Paulo (1978a). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Madrid: Siglo XXI.
Freire, Paulo (1978b). Pedagogy and liberating action. Madrid: Zero.

Freire, Paulo (1978c). Cartas a Guinea-Bissau: Apuntes para una experiencia pedagógica en proceso. Madrid: Siglo XXI. 

More information about the APA standards in the following links: 

* APA Style Guide
* APA Style Essentials
* A Guide for Writing Research Papers
* Guidelines for Writing in APA Style
* Writer's handbook: documentation, APA style
* Writers' workshop