Geology Impact Factor
2022: 5.8
5-year: 5.9
Cited half-life: >10 years
#1 in "geology" category for 16 years in a row

Author Guidelines

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Published since 1973, Geology features rapid publication of about 23 refereed short (four-page) papers each month. Articles cover all earth-science disciplines and include new investigations and provocative topics. Professional geologists and university-level students in the earth sciences use this widely read journal to keep up with scientific research trends. The online forum section facilitates author-reader dialog. Includes color and occasional large-format illustrations on oversized loose inserts.

Type of Articles

  • Geology articles are timely, innovative, and provocative, relevant to the journal's international audience, and representative of research from all fields of the geosciences.
  • Geology manuscripts must fit the following size constraints:
    (1) A character count with spaces (in Microsoft Word) of no more than 18,500 characters for the title, author names, affiliations, abstract, main text, Acknowledgments, and figure captions (the References Cited list does not need to be counted).
    (2) Up to 35 references in the References Cited list.
    (3) No more than 4 figures and tables. You may have any combination of figures and tables, as long as you keep to a total of 4 items or fewer.
  • Research Focus Articles provide an (invited) opportunity for authors familiar with specific issues and disciplines to draw new insights from a published article, as well as to provide additional background and depth for readers unfamiliar with the most recent techniques and/or results in this field.
  • Comments and Replies provide a forum in which published papers can be discussed. These are each limited to one PDF page, including references, figures, and tables (about 7,500 characters of text = one printed page). Comments focus on the broad assertions or implications in the original article; they are not overly specific or personal. A comment must be submitted within six months of publication of the original article. Replies are written by the original author(s) after receiving a copy of the relevant comment. Replies must be submitted to GSA within one month.

All Geology papers are subject to GSA's Ethical Guidelines for Publications.

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Author Guidelines

Submission, Review, and Decision Process

Getting Started

Submit your manuscript via the online submission and review system, eJournalPress, at
GSA Bulletin:

First-time users will need to register for an account at this URL using their active e-mail addresses. The same Username and Password are used to log in as an author or as a reviewer. For help using the eJournalPress system, select “Author Instructions” from the menu at the bottom of every page. All submissions, reviews, revisions, and proofs are handled electronically. If you are unable to access the site, please contact the journal editorial office at
GSA Bulletin:

Original Submission

  1. After your paper is submitted, it will be quality checked to determine that all needed elements are present. The paper will be returned to you to fix if it does not include a cover letter, continuous line numbers, double spaced text, captions for figures and tables, all required files, or clearly legible figures. Your manuscript will be considered officially submitted only after it has passed the quality check.
  2. After the paper passes the quality check, it is assigned to a Science Editor. The Science Editor will examine the manuscript to see if it meets the basic acceptance criteria. Papers may be rejected without review if they are inappropriate for the journal, clearly of poor quality, previously published, etc. GSA publication submissions are expected to be innovative, provocative (or describe a significant advance in the field), of timely significance, and of broad interest, either within a discipline and/or across disciplines. Content should reflect new discoveries or approaches, and should not overlap with publications presented elsewhere by the authors. Prepublication via Internet or other methods is prohibited.
  3. Most manuscripts are sent out for peer review. The acceptance or rejection of a manuscript is based on the appraisal of the paper by two or more reviewers and the editor.


  1. The editor will solicit reviews of the manuscript from two to three qualified external reviewers.
  2. Reviewers are expected to treat the manuscript confidentially. Reviewers may choose to be identified to the authors or to remain anonymous.
  3. The reviewers evaluate the manuscript and submit their reviews.
  4. Critical review determines the suitability and originality of the paper and the adequacy and conciseness of the presentation.

NOTE: The review process can take anywhere from one to four months, depending on the availability of reviewers and their timeliness in returning reviews. Authors will be contacted immediately after a decision has been made.


  1. On the basis of the external reviews and their own reading, the editor makes a decision on the manuscript (accept, revise, reject but encourage resubmission, reject).
  2. The decision is sent to the author. The science editor has sole responsibility for the decision to accept or reject a manuscript, and that decision is final.

Revised Submission

  1. Nearly all manuscripts are returned to the author with suggestions for revision, condensation, or final polish. The author is provided with a due date for submission of a revised paper. Authors can request an extension, if needed.
  2. When submitting a revised manuscript, the author follows the same submission steps and the revised paper again goes through an initial quality check.
  3. The revised paper will be returned to the author if the author does not provide a cover letter, separate document, or tracked changes manuscript detailing exactly how the author has conscientiously considered and answered the suggestions from reviewers and editor(s).
  4. Depending upon the nature of the revisions, the revised paper may be sent out for additional review or it may be accepted directly. This decision is the sole responsibility of the journal editor.

Final Decision

After all revisions have been made (papers may be returned to the author more than once for revision), if the paper is found suitable for publication in a GSA journal, the Science Editor will send a final decision letter to the author, accepting the manuscript for publication.

Note: Upon acceptance, authors are encouraged to send a short description of the paper and its significance, for release to the media. News stories and other reporting about articles should not appear any earlier than the posting of the online paper.

Checking Manuscript Status

After you approve your manuscript, you are finished with the submission process. You can access the status of your manuscript at any time by:

  • Logging into the system with your password.
  • Clicking on the "Submissions being processed" link.
  • The status of your paper will be displayed in a tabular view.

This procedure will display detailed tracking information about where your manuscript is in the submission/peer-review process.

Withdrawing a Manuscript

If at any point you wish to withdraw your manuscript, contact the editor handling your manuscript and advise him or her of the specific manuscript number of the manuscript that you wish to withdraw. You will receive a letter acknowledging the withdrawal.

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Contact Information

Geology Questions:

Kea Giles, Managing Editor
tel: +1-303-357-1057

Jennifer Olivarez, Editorial Assistant
tel: +1-303-357-1010

Mailing Address:
The Geological Society of America
Publications Department
3300 Penrose Place
PO Box 9140
Boulder, CO 80301-9140
tel: +1-303-357-1000
fax: +1-303-357-1070