Journal of Parent and Family Mental Health Author Guidelines

Article Types

We encourage potential authors to think of this brief report as a piece that highlights some aspect of your work on whatever project you choose in relation to parental and family mental health. These brief articles can be useful to provide to policy makers or practitioners who benefit from a brief overview of your work, laying the groundwork for future endeavors.

There is a wide range of article types for Journal of Parent and Family Mental Health products. These include:

Issue Briefs: Issue Briefs are usually one-page (front and back) brief summaries of topics of interest, in this case issues specific to adults and/or children who have experienced parental mental illness. Issue Briefs could offer real world strategies about working with parents to be implemented by mental health providers and clinicians, or could educate family members living with parental mental illness on strategies for talking about their role as parents with people in their lives. Issue Briefs could give an overview of a specific issue related to parental mental illness and families, or discuss policies that affect this vulnerable population. When developing your Issue Brief be aware of your target audience and the message your Brief will convey. What are some specific things that the audience can take away from this Brief and/or put in their work and/or personal lives? How will the information you are presenting directly or indirectly affect providers, individuals with lived mental health experience, and family members?

While the Issue Brief format is fairly fluid, most Issue Briefs will include an Introduction/Overview; Key Points or Results/Findings; Recommendations or Policy Implications/Future Directions; and 2-3 highlighted sentences that summarize the Brief. Issue Briefs are approximately 1,000 words (not including references). Click here for an example of an Issue Brief.

Research in the Works: This product describes new and/or ongoing research focused on adults and/or children and parental mental illness. Research in the Works are typically one page, and provide an overview of research aims, methods, and goals of the research. Click here for an example of a Research in the Works.

Research You Can Use: This product focuses on research findings that can be used in real world settings. Research You Can Use products are typically one page and highlight 3-5 research findings that are relevant for use by a particular audience (e.g., clinicians or parents living with mental illness). Click here for an example of a Research You Can Use.

Tip Sheets: This product is dedicated to tools and worksheets relevant to stakeholders dedicated to adults and/or children living in families experiencing parental mental illness. Click here for an example of a Tip Sheet.


When developing a product for the Journal of Parent and Family Mental Health, you can decide your target audience. Suggested target audiences include:

  • Mental health providers and clinicians
  • Peer professionals
  • Individuals with lived mental health experience
  • Family members of individuals with lived mental health experience
  • Advocacy groups
  • Mental health researchers
  • Mental health administrators and policy-makers

Formatting and other Considerations

  • The manuscript must be submitted as a Microsoft Word file or a Rich Text Format (RTF) file.
  • Please use APA style for bibliography and in-text references (author, year).
  • You are encouraged to use bulleted items and lists whenever possible
  • Identify 1-2 quotes from the Brief that can be highlighted during formatting
  • Use of graphs or charts to highlight findings is encouraged
  • Use plain language strategies