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The Journal of Forensic Sciences (JFS) is the official publication of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS). The mission of the JFS is to advance forensic science research, education and practice by publishing peer-reviewed articles of the highest quality and impact.
The JFS publishes original material in the following categories:
Critical Review – JFS welcomes detailed Critical Reviews of a topic area of interest to forensic science. Critical Reviews may be invited by the EIC and are subject to peer review. Non-critical compilations of literature will not be accepted. Such submissions will be peer-reviewed for quality, considering, among others, the following factors:
- A stated methodology for the review.
- Clear search criteria including inclusion and exclusion criteria.
- A tabulated list of considered papers with a quality of evidence rating using an appropriate tool or tools.
- Assessment of included studies by at least two authors.
- Appropriate meta-analysis where possible.
- A clear statement of forensic relevance.
Paper – A full-length research report. Such submissions will be peer-reviewed for quality, considering, among others, the following factors:
- A clear stated hypothesis.
- Quality of the literature review and clear statement of the novelty and value of the work in this context.
- Strength of the experimental design, e.g., clear description of sample size and experimental controls.
- Sufficient method validation and figures of merit.
- Reasonable, defensible, and data-based interpretation and conclusions.
- Potential of the paper to strengthen the scientific foundation of forensic science in legal and regulatory communities around the world.
Technical Note – A description of a technical aspect of a field or issue, a report on a procedure or method, or a validation of techniques or methodologies. Technical Notes are usually shorter than Papers. Such submissions will be peer-reviewed for quality, considering, among others, the following factors:
- A clearly stated problem that the manuscript addresses.
- The novelty of the approach, method or outcome.
- A clear focus on forensic practice.
- A concise but supportive reference list.
Case Report – A brief description or analysis of an unusual case or a small series of cases. Case Reports are to include new information and/or a critical review of the topic area to be acceptable for publication. Such submissions will be peer-reviewed for quality, considering, among others, the following factors:
- A clear statement of impact and relevance.
- A concise review of the literature making it clear how the current case or series of cases adds to current knowledge.
Letter – Usually a discussion on a manuscript previously published in JFS, or an issue of interest to the AAFS. Publication of a Letter is at the sole discretion of the EIC. Letters commenting on previously published items are shared with the original authors to afford them an opportunity to respond to the commentary.
Response to Letter – Usually an author(s) response to a Letter commenting on their published work.
Invited Commentary – The EIC and/or Associate Editors may invite respected researchers to submit a Commentary on his/her area of expertise or on a Paper to be published in an upcoming issue of JFS.
Book Review – A review of a book or other publication of interest to the forensic science community or closely related fields. The EIC or the Book Review Editor invites Book Reviews.
Critical Reviews, Papers, Technical Notes and Case Reports are subject to double-blind peer review.