General guidelines  
Typology of articles
Methodological structure of an article
Literature citation
Article submission guidelines

Guide to reviewers
Author / reviewer guidelines

Ethical guidelines for publication
PDF version

Updated on May 25, 2016

Cite as:
Slovenian Nursing Review: author/reviewer guidelines, manuscript submission guidelines 2016. Available at: http://www. obzornikzdravstvenenege.si/eng/ Information_for_authors.aspx
[25. 5. 2016].
Methodological structure of an article

The title, the abstract and the key words should be written in the Slovene and English language. A concise but informative title should convey the nature, content and research design of the paper. It must not exceed 120 characters. Up to six key words separated by a semicolon and not included in the title, define the article content and reflect the article’s core topic or message. Articles must be accompanied by an abstract of no more than 150-250 words written in the third person. Abstracts accompanying articles must be structured and should not include references.

A structured abstract is an abstract with distinct, labelled sections for rapid comprehension. It is structured under the following headings:

Introduction: This section states the main question to be answered, and indicates the exact objective of the paper and the major variables of the study.

Methods: This section provides an overview of the research or experimental design, the research instrument, the reliability of the instrument, methods of data collection, and analysis indicating where, how and when the data were collected.

Results: This section briefly summarizes and discusses the major findings. The information indicated in this section should be directly connected to the research question. In quantitative studies it is necessary to state the statistical validity and statistical significance of the results.

Discussion and conclusion: This section states the conclusions and discusses the research findings drawn from the results obtained. Presented in this section are also limitations of the study and the implications of the results for practice and relevant further research. Both, the positive and the negative research findings should be adequately presented.

Structure of an Original Scientific Article (1.01)

An original scientific article is only the first-time publication of original research results in a way that allows the research to be repeated, and the findings checked. The research should be based on the primary sources which are not older than five years at the time of the publication of the article.

Introduction: In the introductory part the research problem is defined within the context of knowledge and evidence it was developed. The literature review on the topic provides a rationale behind the work and identifies a problem highlighted by the gap in the literature. It frames a purpose for a study, research questions or hypotheses as well as the method of investigation (a research design, sample size and characteristics of the proposed sample, data collection and data analysis procedures). The research should be based on the primary sources of the recent national and international research which are not older than ten or five years respectively, if the topic of has been widely researched. Citation of sources and references to previous research findings is obligatory. Finally, the research intentions and purposes are stated. Recommended is also the framing of research questions (qualitative research) and hypotheses (qualitative research) to investigate or guide the study.

Method : This section states the chosen paradigm (qualitative, quantitative) and outlines the research design. It usually includes sections on research design; sample size and characteristics of the proposed sample; description of research process; and data collection and data analysis procedures.

The description of the research instrument includes information about the construction of the instrument, the mode of instrument development, instrument variables and measurement properties (validity, reliability, objectivity, sensitivity). Appropriate citations of the literature used in research development should be included. In qualitative research, a technique of data collection should be given along with the preliminary research questions, a possible format or structure of data collection and process, the criteria of validity and reliability of data collection.

The description of a sample defines the population from which the sample has been drawn, the type of the sample, the response rate of the participants, the respondents’ demographics (gender, educational level, length of work experience, post currently held, and the like). In qualitative research, the category of sampling technique and the inclusion criteria are also defined and the sample size saturation is explained.

The description of the research procedure and data analysis includes ethical approvals to conduct a research, permission to conduct a research in an institution, description of the research process, guarantee of anonymity and voluntariness of the research participants, period and place of data collection, method of data collection and analysis, statistical methods, statistical analysis software and programme version, limits of statistical significance. A qualitative research should include a detailed description of modes of data collection and recording, number and duration of observations, interviews and surveys, sequences, transcription of data, steps in the data analysis and interpretation, and receptiveness of a researcher.

Results: This section presents the research results descriptively or in numbers and figures. A table is included only if it presents new information. Each finding is presented only once so as to avoid repetition and duplication of the content. Explanation of the results is focused on statistically significant or unexpected findings. The results are presented according to the level of statistical complexity. All abbreviations used in figures and tables should be provided with explanatory captions. The results are presented according to the variables, answering all the research questions or hypotheses. In qualitative research, the development of codes and categories should also be presented, including one or two representative statements of participants. A schematic presentation of the codes and ensuing categories are given.

Discussion: The discussion section analyses the data descriptively (numerical data should be avoided) in relation to specific variables from the study. The results are analysed and evaluated in relation to the original research questions or hypotheses. The discussion part integrates and explains the results obtained and relates them with those of previous studies in order to determine their significance and applicative value. Ethical interpretation and communication of research results is essential to ensure the validity, comparability and accessibility of new knowledge. The validity of generalisations from results is often questioned due to the limitations of qualitative research (sample representativeness, research instrument, research proceedings). The principles of reliability and comparability should be observed. The discussion includes comments on the expected and unexpected findings and the areas requiring further or in-depth research as indicated by the study results. The limitations of the research should be clearly stated.

Conclusion: Summarised in this section are the author’s principal points and transfer of new findings into practice. The section may conclude with specific further research proposals grounded on the substantive content, conclusions and contributions of the study, albeit limitations cited.

The article concludes with the following statements:

- whether the article publishes results of a larger study;

- whether the article was based on the diploma work, master’s thesis or doctorate dissertation; in this case the student is always listed as the first author;

- whether the research was financially supported; in this case the sponsors and other participating researchers must be included at the end of the text;

- personal acknowledgements.

The article concludes with a list of all the published works cited or referred to in the text of the paper.

Structure of a Review Article (1.02)

Included in the category of review scientific research are: literature review, concept analyses, discussion based articles (also referred to as a review article). The Slovenian Nursing Review publishes review scientific research, the data collection of which has been concluded maximum three years before the publication of an article.

A review article is an overview of the latest works in a specific subject area, the works of an individual researcher or a group of researchers with the purpose of summarising, analysing, evaluating or synthesising the information that has already been published. Research findings are not only described but explained, interpreted, analysed, critically evaluated and presented in a scientific research manner. A review article brings either qualitative data processing of the previous research findings (meta-analyses) or qualitative syntheses of the previous research findings (meta-syntheses) and thus provides new knowledge and concepts for further research. The organizational pattern of a review article is similar to that of the original scientific article.

The introduction section defines the scientific, conceptual or theoretical basis for the literature review. It also states the necessity for the review along with the aims, objectives and the research question.

The method section accurately defines the research methods by which the literature search was conducted. It is further subdivided into: review methods, the results of the review, the quality assessment of the review and the description of data processing.

Review methods include the development, testing and search strategy, predetermined criteria for the inclusion in the review, the researched data bases, limited time period of published literature, types of publications according to hierarchy of evidence, key words and language.

The results of the review include the number of hits, the number of reviewed research works, the number of included and excluded sources consulted.

The quality assessment of the review and the description of data processing include the assessment of the research approach and the data obtained as well as the quality of included research works, the final criteria to include or exclude the sources of evidence consulted and the data processing method.

The results are presented in the form of a diagram of all the research stages of the review. The international standards for the presentation of the literature review results may be used for this purpose (e.g. PRISMA for systematic review. The results should include a quality analysis of the sources included from the view point of the research methods used. It should be evident which studies are included in the review according to hierarchy of evidence. The results are presented verbally and visually, the main findings concerning the research design should also be included. In qualitative synthesis the codes and categories are used as a result of the qualitative synthesis review. In quantitative analysis, the statistical methods of data processing of the used scientific works are described.

The first section of the discussion answers the research question which is followed by the author’s observations on literature review findings, the quality of the research works included. The author evaluates the review findings in relation to the results from other comparable studies. The discussion chapter identifies new perspectives and contributions of the literature review, their theoretical, scientific and practical applicability. It also defines research limitations and points the way forward for applicability of the review findings and further research.

The conclusion section emphasises the contribution of the literature review conducted, it sheds light on any gaps in previous research, it identifies the significance of further research, the translation of new knowledge and recommendations into practice/research/education/management by taking into consideration the research limitations. It also pinpoints theoretical concept which may guide or direct further research.

Structure of a Professional Article (1.04)

A professional article is a presentation of what is already known, with the emphasis on the applicability of original research results and the dissemination of knowledge. The organisational structure of a professional article is similar to that of an original scientific article, in the case of literature review it follows the structure of review article. It presents the research results which upgrade the current knowledge on the topic. No new knowledge or scientific evidence is presented, it is, however, focused on the applicability of the results with the aim to improve the existing professional practice.


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