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As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration.
  • The submission file is in Microsoft Word document file format.
  • Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  • The text is double-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, employs no graphs, figures, or tables, and uses numbered endnotes.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal.
  • If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review (available during submission) have been followed.

Author Guidelines

Author Guidelines for Philosophy of Music Education Review


  1. Types of submissions

  • Articles

Philosophy of Music Education Review features philosophical research in music education for an international community of scholars, artists, and teachers. It includes articles that address philosophical or theoretical issues relevant to education, including reflections on current practice, research issues or questions, reform initiatives, philosophical writings, theories, the nature and scope of education and its goals and purposes, and cross-disciplinary dialogue relevant to the interests of music educators.

Along with the title of the article, please include the names of all authors, their affiliations, and email addresses on the paper.

The article should be accompanied by an Abstract of 150-200 words and three to five key words. Please do not include citations in the abstract.

Journal articles should be no more than 8000 words including abstract and endnotes. 

  • Book Reviews

Each issue of PMER includes a review of a recent book that addresses philosophical/theoretical aspects of music education. The reviews of these books should rise to the same level of philosophical rigor as the other articles published in PMER; that is, they should critically engage ideas, clarify and probe concepts, expose assumptions, ideologies, and biases, identify strengths in the argument, and determine the usefulness of the ideas expressed for music education. With this in mind, reviewers should avoid writing book summaries or sketching an outline of the book’s content except where needed to build the review.

Book Reviews are no more than 2500 words, including endnotes. 

  • Book Review Essays

A full-length article (8000 words) that reviews a major book or the oeuvre of a significant thinker for music education is possible. The guidelines are the same as those for a Book Review.

  • In Dialogue

Here readers have an opportunity to respond to an article published in PMER.  Responses should explore the ideas in the article, indicating points of agreement or disagreement or providing additional insight in the topic.  

In Dialogue responses should not exceed 1500 words including endnotes.

  • In Memoriam

In Memoriam pieces celebrate the life and contributions of someone who has added to the international body of philosophy and theory of music education.  These pieces should not exceed 1000 words. 

  1. Document layout

  • Presented as Word documents
  • One-inch margins
  • Times New Roman 12 font
  • double-spaced
  • set text flush left, unjustified
  • no extra lines between paragraphs
  • first line of paragraphs indented one-half inch
  • No underlining in text (except for URLs)
  • Use italics sparingly to highlight a significant concept or distinction/comparison, but not to be used for emphasis.
  • No tables or figures
  • No bulleted or numbered lists 


  1. Style and Usage

PMER follows the Chicago Manual of Style,17th ed. (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2017) as the most appropriate for philosophical writing. Some of the key guidelines are given below:

  • Bias-free language where possible (neutral regarding gender, disability, and ethnicity).
  • Periods and commas fall inside closing quotation marks
  • One space between sentences and after colons
  • Commas are used after each word in a list including the next-to-last item in a list of three or more items and the word and(e.g., Tom, Dick, and Harry)
  • Dates andother time periods are indicated, as:          


              the class of ’92

              the nineties or the 1980s and 1990s

              May 28, 1976

              twenty-first century

  • No spaces around dashes (e.g., He asserted ̶ and often reasserted ̶ that he knew best.)
  • Numbers from zero through one hundred should be spelled out, as should any numbers followed by hundred, thousand, or million (e.g., fifty-six, ten thousand, but 4,307 should be in numerals)
  • Keep abbreviations to a minimum except where they are commonly known. They should be spelled out at first usage (e.g., Journal articles for Philosophy of Music Education Review (PMER) can be submitted online).
  • Some common abbreviations such as g., i.e., and etc., should not be used in the main body of the text.
  • Short quotations are indicated by opening and closing quotation marks; longer quotations of several lines are set off as block quotations, indented one inch from the left margin.
  • Include full name of an author you are referring to on the first occasion; last name will suffice for future references to that author. 
  • Direct questions introduced mid-sentence must begin with a capital letter following a comma.



  1. Block Quotes


Copying large, quoted blocks from other writers is discouraged unless the passage is to be analyzed, critiqued, or developed in significant ways. That is, the words of other writers should not be used to make your own argument. If ideas from another writer have served as a basis for the case you are making, quote and cite significant words, phrases, or sentences, or paraphrase instead of using long quotations where possible.


  1. Headings and Subheadings


Effective subheadings do not exceed one line of text.

PMER allows three levels of subheading, although writers are encouraged to keep the structure of their papers simple. Within the main body of the text:

  • Level 1: All caps, flush left, followed by a line break (MAIN POINT)
  • Level 2: Only initial letters in caps, flush left, followed by a line break (Subsection of the Main Point)
  • Level 3: Italics, only initial letters in caps, flush left, not followed by a line break (Subsection of Level Two Subsection. Normal text follows …)



  1. Personal Pronouns


Because PMER follows the Chicago Manual of Style in maintaining a conservative view toward noun/pronoun agreement yet insists on inclusive language usage, authors should craft hypothetical arguments using plural subjects or avoid using pronouns whenever possible. Thus, “A music educator should enjoy his or her subject matter” will no longer be considered inclusive language, but “Music educators should enjoy their subject matter,” “A music educator should enjoy music,” or “Music should be enjoyable to those who teach it” are all equally inclusive and grammatical ways of expressing the same idea, and they are generally preferable to “A music educator should enjoy their subject matter.” Under most circumstances “A music educator should enjoy his subject matter” is not acceptable.

Additionally, any situation in which the gender pronoun preference of a person being written about is known, that subject’s preferred “she/her, they/them, or he/him” combination should be used. Thus, if Sam is known to use ‘they/them,’ then the sentence, “As a music educator, Sam believes that it is important for them to enjoy their subject matter,” is the correct choice. Whenever using “they” as a singular pronoun in such cases, verbs should be pluralized to match the pronoun, not used in the singular even though the subject of the sentence is an individual (“They (Sam) enjoy music,” not “They enjoys music.”) 


  1. Endnotes and Citations

  • If substantial portions of a published poem or similar work is used, authors must gain permission from the publisher to reproduce the item in PMER.
  • Endnotes, rather than a Reference List or in-text citations, using a word-processor function, should be used and numbered with Arabic numerals. Endnotes include citations as well as other notes to support the main text. 
  • Chicago no longer encourages the use of “ibid” for repeated references. Please use shortened citations instead.
  • If a journal produces only volumes and not issues, include a colon after the volume number.


  • Sample references for books:

Susanne K. Langer, Philosophy in a New Key: A Study in the Symbolism of Reason, Rite, and Art (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1957), 124. (Full citation at first occurrence) 

Langer, Philosophy in a New Key, 226. (For subsequent citations from the same book) 

Langer, Problems of Art (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1957), 56. (For subsequent books by same author) 

Bennett Reimer, A Philosophy of Music Education: Advancing the Vision, 3rd ed. (Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2003), 133. (For later editions of an earlier book) 

Diane Apostolos-Cappadona, ed., Mircea Eliade: Symbolism, the Sacred, and the Arts (New York: Crossroad, 1988), 35. (For an edited collection) 

Jacques Attali, Noise: The Political Economy of Music, trans. Brian Massumi (Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1985). (For translated books) 

Chee-Hoo Lum and Katherine Marsh, “Multiple Worlds of Childhood: Culture and the Classroom,” in Gary E. McPherson and Graham F. Welch, eds., Oxford Handbook of Music Education, vol. 1 (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 381-398. (For multiple authors, chapter in a book, and a volume in a series).


  • Sample references for journal articles:

Eva Georgii-Hemming and Jonathan Lilliedahl, “Why ‘What’ Matters: On the Content and Dimension of Music Didactics,” Philosophy of Music Education Review 22, no. 2 (Fall, 2014): 141. (Full citation at first occurrence).

Ibid., 142. (For same reference as in the immediately preceding note) 

Georgii-Hemming and Lilliedahl, “Why ‘What’ Matters,” 143. (For subsequent citations from the same article) 

  • Sample references for web sites:

Ryan N. Bledsloe, “Music Education for All?” General Music Today, 28, no. 2 (Jan, 2015): 18-22. doi: 10.1177/1048371314549888 (It is preferable to include Digital Object Identifier or doi. For articles available in print and online, give print citation first.) 

Alexandra Kertz-Welzel, “Lessons from Elsewhere? Comparative Music Education in Times of Globalization,” Philosophy of Music Education Review 23, no. 1 (Spring 2015): 48-66. http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2979/philmusieducrevi.23.1.48?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents (If doi is not available provide URL for stable sites) 

Laura Lewis Brown, “The Benefits of Music Education,” (blog) http://www.pbs.org/parents/education/music-arts/the-benefits-of-music-education/

Accessed June 12, 2015.  (For unstable web sites with no date, provide date of access) 

  • Sample references for musical works:

The Marriage of Figaro (For large musical works, titles are italicized) 

the “Anvil Chorus” (For songs and shorter musical works, enclose in quotes and capitalize) 

B-flat Nocturne

  • or

Chopin’s nocturnes 

Hungarian Rhapsody no. 12

  • or

the Twelfth Hungarian Rhapsody 

Symphony no. 6 in F Major

  • or

the Sixth Symphony

  • or

the Pastoral Symphony 

Sonata in E-flat, op. 31, no. 3 

Air with Variations (“The Harmonious Blacksmith”) from Handel’s Suite no. 5 in E.