gms | German Medical Science

GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung

Gesellschaft für Medizinische Ausbildung (GMA)

ISSN 1860-3572

Information for authors

GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung – Authors' Guidelines
[version: 09.01.2014]

1. General information
GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung – German Journal for Medical Education (GMS Z Med Ausbild) is an open access, interdisciplinary e-journal which publishes a wide range of papers, in both German and English, on the entire field of medical education and continuing medical education. Additionally to the online version with free access all issues from Volume 30 (2013) onwards are available as print-on-demand-versions. The printed version can also be subscribed (see 5.). Before publication all articles go through a peer review process. The guidelines for authors follow the recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors: Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals.
The processing fee for manuscript submission amounts to 200 € for non-GMA-members as of 01/01/2012. Relevant is the corresponding author.
All authors may upload their submissions into the Manuscript Operating System (MOPS) of German Medical Science (GMS). This option is available via "Login & Submit" on the GMS Web site (
Alternatively manuscripts may be sent via e-mail to the editorial office of GMS Z Med Ausbild, Beate Herrmannsdörfer, c/o Corscience GmbH & Co. KG, Hartmannstraße 65, 91052 Erlangen,
The Editorial Office will confirm the receipt of the manuscript and inform you of the manuscript's acceptance or rejection. No liability shall be accepted for unsolicited manuscripts. Recourse to legal action is excluded for all procedures concerning the submission and publication of manuscripts.
2. Publication requirements
2.1 Goals and target groups
GMS Z Med Ausbild accepts submissions on issues and problems within the medical education and continuing medical education, medicine didactics, adult education, quality management in teaching, pedagogical psychology (insofar as it is relevant to medical education), educational policies and higher education. The journal's goal is to provide information and communications on medical education and continuing medical education, including relevant research. The target audience includes all persons involved in higher education as well as the interested public.
Submissions can include the formats given in 3.2.
Manuscripts can be submitted in the categories given in 3.3.
2.2 Authorship and copyright
All authors ensure that they have each made a substantial contribution to the article and that they are in agreement with regards to the form and content of the manuscript. The author conducting the negotiations confirms in the Author's Contract that he holds the rights to both the work and the text and illustrations therein. If material (e.g., illustrations or tables) is used from other sources, the author must submit a written statement from the holder of the copyrights indicating agreement with publication in GMS Z Med Ausbild. The exact source is to be cited in the text or in the corresponding legend or caption. In case of publication, the author shall grant GMS Z Med Ausbild the right to store the article for an unlimited amount of time in databases, the right of distribution and reproduction of the article in electronic form, as well as the right to provide individualized prints for users of the print-on-demand service. All remaining usage rights of the author are not restricted; however, any further publication of the article must carry a notice of where it was published first ("originally published in: GMS Z Med Ausbild. 2005;1…").
2.3 Conflicts of interest/support
Financial or other kinds of support received from institutes or companies, as well as public funding, are to be listed in the acknowledgments or conflict of interests section. The author should disclose in an attached form any financial or other ties he or she has to a company whose products or whose competitor's products are central to the facts contained in the article. This information will be treated confidentially. If the manuscript is accepted for publication, the Editorial Office will discuss with the author how this information will be communicated.
An important aspect in scientific publication is information about funding. The correct full name of the sponsor and the corresponding grant number must be indicated. The information on funding can be formulated as follows: This article was funded by [sponsors name] under grant number [xxx].
2.4 Protection of subjects and patients
When using photographs of patients or subjects, the author must ensure that the person is rendered unidentifiable. Otherwise, the author must seek explicit consent from the person concerned (or their representative) that he or she agrees to the publication in the present form. The author shall confirm in writing that this consent has been given.
2.5 Ethical standard/information and consent
Studies on persons must comply with the ethical standards of the Declaration of Helsinki (2008 Seoul version) and those of the Declaration of Geneva. Clinical studies and educational interventions require the opinion, and if necessary, the approval of an ethics committee. If applicable the author must state that the informed consent of patients and subjects as well as the approval of an ethics committee has been granted.
2.6 VG Wort royalties “texts in the internet”
In case of publication the text can be marked by a counter of the VG Wort on the author’s request (for further information:
3. Composition of the manuscripts
Only submissions can be considered for publication which have been prepared with careful consideration of this information.
3.1 General information
The manuscripts can be submitted in German or English. Manuscripts may also contain tables, figures and pictures as well as audio and video sequences. Following acceptance for publication, the text must be translated either into English or German (by a translation agency or a native speaker) as the Z Med Ausbild publishes bilingually. The author has to provide a declaration that the translation was examined and the content conforms to the original.
3.1.1 Cover letter
All manuscripts require a cover letter which should contain the following points:
  • A declaration containing a possible overlap of the submission to GMS Z Med Ausbild and other already published or submitted manuscripts
  • A declaration that each author has contributed to the research project and the preparation of the manuscript, and explanation how each one has done so
  • A statement by the author submitting the manuscript that all co-authors have read the finished manuscript and approve of its publication in the present form
  • A declaration relative to the claims listened in 2.5 on the ethical standard
  • Finally, any conflicts of interest must be disclosed.
3.1.2 Length of the manuscript
Manuscripts should not exceed the following length. Manuscripts that are short and concise have better chances for publication:
  • Review articles and research works: 18,000 to 21,000 characters
  • Project reports: 9,000 to 12,000 characters
  • Other publications: 6,000 to 9,000 characters
  • Additionally to all review articles, research articles and project reports an abstract must be submitted, which should not exceed 1,800 characters.
Headings are included in the number of characters. Please construct your manuscript obligatorily by following the technical requirements given in 3.4.
3.1.3 Information on the structure of the manuscript
The main sections of the submission should be clearly separated by short subheadings and a decimal numbering up to 3 figures (e.g., 1. Introduction 1.1 Problem 1.1.1 Historical background … 1.1.4 Objective of the paper ... 1.2 Question, etc.).
3.1.4 Title page
The first page of the manuscript should state the title of the article in German and in English, followed by the authors' full names, their e-mail addresses and institutional affiliations in which they work. Below this, the name, postal and e-mail addresses of the corresponding author should be listed separately.
3.1.5 Abstract and keywords
All reviews, research and project works must be preceded by an abstract. The abstract is to be drawn up in such a way that it represents a condensed extract of the work (max. 1,800 characters). It should be divided in bold-faced headings objectives, methods, results, and conclusion. At the bottom the author should list appropriate keywords, which should be selected from Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) as far as is possible. In addition, the author should specify any trade names or manufacturer names of pharmaceuticals and medical products used, as well as chemical substances and their CAS numbers, in order for this information to be indexed in appropriate databases. See "Article Types" for further information on manuscript guidelines.
3.1.6 References
The literature cited in the text is listed at the end of the article in the reference list and in accordance with the Vancouver Style of References, which is also used in MEDLINE. References should be numbered in the order in which they were listed in the reference list. The reference list can be arranged according to the citation in the text or alphabetically according to the surnames of the first author. The references list is to be numbered consecutively in any case. The numbers from the references list are used for the citations in text, tables and legends, whereby the Arabic numerals are placed within square brackets. Please do not use footnotes!
Some examples:
Standard journal article:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347(4):284-7.
Murray PR, Rosenthal KS, Kobayashi GS, Pfaller MA. Medical microbiology. 4th ed. St. Louis: Mosby; 2002.
Chapter/Contribution in a monograph:
Meltzer PS, Kallioniemi A, Trent JM. Chromosome alterations in human solid tumors. In: Vogelstein B, Kinzler KW, editors. The genetic basis of human cancer. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2002. p. 93-113.
Anderson SC, Poulsen KB. Anderson's electronic atlas of hematology [CD-ROM]. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2002.
Online journal article:
Eysenbach G. SARS and population health technology. J Med Internet Res. 2003;5(2):e14. Available from:
Web site: [homepage on the Internet]. New York: Association of Cancer Online Resources, Inc.; c2000-01 [updated 2002 May 16; cited 2002 Jul 9]. Available from:
For further detailed sample references, see
Personal messages and unpublished works should not be located in the reference list. 
3.1.7 Figures and tables
Figures and graphic illustrations serve to present facts in a condensed form. They may be used to visualize structures or interactions. They should help to clarify the text. Figures and/or tables should not be used to repeat what has been presented in the text, nor should the text repeat the information in the figures/tables; numerical data in particular should only be presented once, either in the text or, preferably, in a table or figure. Please draw up your figures and tables according to the requirements of the American Psychological Association (APA). 
3.1.8 Acknowledgements
Acknowledgements, e.g. to collaborators, who collected material, but were not involved in the process of creating the manuscript should be located at the end of the text. Furthermore the acknowledgements should be short but include a justification for the mention.
3.2 Article types
are short texts that offer commentary on the main subjects of the journal, on individual articles in the issue or on topics of general importance. They are solicited by the editor-in-chief. They may contain figures and/or a short reference list.
Review articles
give a detailed yet concise description of the state of current research and clarify open research questions. Review articles should include an abstract and an introduction; they may be subdivided into further sections according to the requirements of the topic. Meta-analyses or structured review articles are welcome.
Research articles
address current research problems using adequate empirical or experimental methods and generalizable results. Research articles should be a significant contribution toward clarifying the formulated problem (research question). The research question should be described in detail and should lead to the formulation of a hypothesis. We recommend employing the assistance of a statistician. Research articles are to be divided into the following sections: Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, and Conclusion.
 Rapid publications and letters to the editor
can report research data or include commentaries or newsworthy notices and announcements and represent a welcome addition to the journal insofar as they play a central role in the discussion of research findings. The structure of this kind of articles follows the demands of the content (for research data e.g. Introduction, Methods, Results, Conclusions). They go through a peer review process like the other articles.
present projects relevant to the scientific interest in medical education. They should have the following sections: Abstract, Introduction, Project Description, Discussion, and Conclusion.
By students
This column contains papers by students addressing aspects of medical education and continuing medical education. It is meant to increase the visibility of people who will profit most by successful improvements of teaching and learning. Position papers, personal opinions and personal experiences as well as research projects in medical education are especially welcome.
are statements of opinion and hypothetical assumptions which are well argued and deal with current issues in medical education. They should include an abstract and an introduction, and possibly other sections according to the requirements of the topic.
 Pro & contra
contains papers aimed at stimulating discussion and which can then receive responses and replies quickly. Papers in this column only reflect the opinion of the authors.
Book reviews/conference reports
are short commentaries on books or events.
are evidence-based recommendations for medical education that are the product of a consensus-building process.
are short reports on deceased personalities who made major contributions to the field of medical education.
News and notes
are current reports on events in the field of medical education. They do not need to follow a particular format.
Rapid responses
are commentaries that are directly attached to an article which enable users to debate issues raised in the article. They are limited in length and cannot be cited. The editors reserve the right to select, abridge and edit rapid responses at any time. This feature will be implemented shortly. Announcements about awards, scientific prizes and personalities should be submitted to the editor-in-chief (see below).
3.3 Categories
Particular topics can be summarized in the following categories:
Human medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, healthcare professions, students, public health, and health policies.
3.4 Technical requirements
3.4.1 Typography and technical terms
  • Enter your text as running text (i.e., only use hard line breaks at the end of a paragraph); do not use block style or end-of-line hyphenation.
  • To indent a paragraph, use a tab stop or the indent function instead of spaces.
  • Enable the automatic page numbering feature of your application.
  • Use no more than one form of emphasis in your manuscript (e.g., only italic).
  • Use the ASCII code for special characters.
  • Citations are to be numbered consecutively in the text as explained in 3.1.6 and listed as text in the references section at the end of the document. Do not use the automatic footnote function. The GMS publication system does not allow for comments in the form of footnotes and endnotes. Textual explanations have to be integrated into the continuous text (in brackets, in italics, etc.).
  • All figures and tables are to be placed on an extra paper and provided with legends and numbered consecutively. Please indicate clearly in the manuscript where figures and/or tables are to be inserted.
  • The basic units of the International System of Units (SI) and the units derived from them are to be used for all units of measurement. The unit "mmHg" is permissible for blood pressure values; the unit "°C" may be used for temperature. If other units of measure are used in figures and tables, please indicate the conversion factors in the legend.
  • For the designation of chemical substances, use the nomenclature of the International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) or the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB). We recommend indicating the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) registry number in addition.
  • Generic names should be used for pharmaceuticals in most cases.
  • If commercial products were used during the research, then their trade names and the names of their manufacturers should be mentioned in the Methods section. In addition, this information will be indexable by recording it in special data fields. For articles written in German, the orthography of "Rote Liste" applies.
  • Common acronyms such as DNA and WHO may be used without further explanation. The complete term for all other acronyms should be given when they are first used. A list of acronyms and abbreviations may be added to the manuscript if necessary.
3.4.2 Submission and text formats
Authors may upload their submissions into the Manuscript Operating System (MOPS) of German Medical Science (GMS). This option is available via "Login & Submit" on the GMS Web site ( Alternatively, manuscripts may be submitted as an e-mail attachment to the editorial office of the ZMA. Electronic submissions may be sent as Microsoft Word (*.doc) or Rich Text Format (*.rtf) files. The processing fee for manuscript submission amounts to 200 € for non-GMA-members as of 01/01/2012. Relevant is the corresponding author.
3.4.3 Graphic formats
The following graphic formats can be used: TIFF and BMP (bitmap formats with no data loss), GIF and PNG (compressed bitmap formats) for charts, JPG (compressible bitmap format) for photos. Even if the graphics are integrated in the text, please provide them additionally as separate files with clear file names.
3.4.4 Research Data / Primary Data (Supplementary Material)
We expect from our authors that relevant underlying data are submitted in addition to manuscripts for peer review and publication. This complies with demands of funding organizations like Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) and European Research Council in terms of "Good scientific practice". By co-operation with the Dryad repository, German Medical Science offers an easy way to achieve that. Dryad is both an international repository of data underlying peer-reviewed scientific and medical literature, and a membership organization, governed by journals, publishers, scientific societies, and other stakeholders. Benefits of publishing research data / primary data include:
For authors:
  • Citeability: via persistent identifiers (DOI)
  • Long-term archiving
  • Independent quality assurance through peer review
  • Legal security: Like the article, data are published under a Creative commons licence. Dryad is using the Creative Commons Zero.
For the scientific community:
  • Subsequent use: enables further interpretation of data, utilization for follow-up research projects, creation of interconnections between data sets, data/text mining
  • Transparency: through traceability and reproducibility (if applicable) of research results
  • Efficiency: through limitation of work and financial expenses
Please submit a descriptive caption together with your data. Use of platform-independent file formats is required, such as:
  • For additional documentation (e.g. detailed case reports): PDF
  • For image data: GIF, TIFF, PNG, JPG
  • For audio-visual material: MPG
  • For text or tabular data: TXT, CSV
If you have further questions about the data submission, please send an e-mail to For general questions concerning the manuscript submission, please address the Editorial Office of GMS Z Med Ausbild.
3.5 Proofs
The proofs should be checked carefully and the corrected proofs are to be returned to the editorial office. Corrections must be made by the specified deadline; proofs returned after this deadline cannot be considered. The publisher reserves the right to seek reimbursement from the author for proofs returned late or which contain exceptionally extensive corrections or corrections for which the author is responsible. The proofs must be returned by the deadline in order to ensure that the journal can be published on time.
4. Review process
The Editorial Office of GMS Z Med Ausbild confirms the receipt of every manuscript. All submissions go through a review process which assesses the originality and scientific quality of the presented material. The review is conducted by at least two experts chosen by the editorial advisory board. In case of a positive review (where necessary, after a revision), the editorial advisory board sends its recommendation to the editor-in-chief. The editor-in-chief makes the final decision on whether the manuscript will be accepted or not. The Editorial Office communicates this decision to the authors as soon as possible (precise description, see “about ZMA”).
5. Subscription costs for the print version of GMS Z Med Ausbild
The subscription costs for 4 issues a year (60 typed pages each) are as follows:
For individuals: subscription 100 €, single issue 25 €
For institutions: subscription 300 €, single issue 75 €
The subscription price for four issues a year is due in advance at the beginning of each year. The subscription is automatically renewed by one year if it is not cancelled by September 30th. Orders can be placed with the Editorial Office of GMS Z Med Ausbild.
Membership applications may be submitted online at without any difficulties.
Authors' Guidelines for GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung (PDF)


GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung – Author's Contract

§ 1 Subject Matter of the Contract
  1. The subject of this contract is the submitted work of the author.
  2. The author insures that he or she alone is authorized to dispose over the rights of use on his work promoted by copyright and that hitherto he made no legal concessions that oppose to the provisions of this contract.
    This also applies to the standard texts or master illustrations supplied by the author and whose rights of use he or she holds. If he or she offers GMS Zeitschrift für Medizinische Ausbildung – German Journal for Medical Education (GMS Z Med Ausbild) standard texts or master illustrations for which this does not apply, or where it is uncertain if this applies, then he or she has to inform GMS Z Med Ausbild about it and about all recognizable legally relevant facts known to him or her. As soon as GMS Z Med Ausbild assigns the author with the procurement of other standard texts or master illustrations, a special agreement is required.
  3. The author is obligated to point out to GMS Z Med Ausbild in writing if the work includes interpretations from persons or incidents with which the risk of an infringement of personal rights is connected.
§ 2 Rights
  1. The author transfers to GMS Z Med Ausbild the basic right of duplicaton and circulation of machine readable data media and their safeguard media.
  2. The author transfers to GMS Z Med Ausbild the right to electronic storage in databases and web pages, to make available to the public for individual requests and display on the monitor. This also comprises the right to notify and transfer the document to third parties e. g. within the framework of national collection mandates, especially for the purpose of long-term archiving.
  3. The author transfers to GMS Z Med Ausbild the right for the translation into other languages.
  4. The author transfers to GMS Z Med Ausbild the right of Print-on-Demand-Production.
  5. The author transfers to GMS Z Med Ausbild the right to copy and to convert the document for archiving purposes into additional, different electronic or physical formats. When doing so, impairments which are suitable to endanger the content’s integrity or the intellectual and personal rights of the author on the work are to be omitted.
  6. GMS Z Med Ausbild grants an online-access-right to the author pertaining to his or her work that is stored in the database.
§ 3 Contractual Obligation
  1. The work will first appear exclusively in electronic form, subsequent changes of the form of the first edition require the author's agreement.
  2. GMS Z Med Ausbild is obligated to duplicate, circulate and adequately campaign for the work in the form specified in section 1, once it has been accepted for publication.
§ 4 Fee
  1. The author does not receive a fee for his or her work.
§ 5 Author Designation, Copyright-Note
  1. GMS Z Med Ausbild is obligated to appropriately identify the author as originator of the work.
  2. GMS Z Med Ausbild is obligated to attach the copyright note with the publication of the work in the sense of the Universal Copyright Convention.
  3. The author agrees that GMS Z Med Ausbild publishes his work under a „Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported" license ( That means that anyone can copy, distribute and transmit the work, under the condition that author and source are credited, but nobody may alter, transform or build upon the work. GMS Z Med Ausbild is obligated to attach a note about this license upon publication of the work.
§ 7 Final Clause
If not regulated by this contract, the general legal provisions of law of the Federal Republic of Germany apply. The invalidity or inefficacy of individual regulations of this contract does not affect the validity of the remaining regulations. The parties are then obligated to replace the deficient regulation by such a regulation whose economic and legal sense comes closest to that of the regulation to be replaced.