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The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy seeks to advance the understanding of the effectiveness of Sandtray with individuals, couples, and families. The journal will publish articles on research surrounding Sandtray therapy including but not limited to, the practice and training of Sandtray, effectiveness of the Sandtray modality, theories underlying Sandtray, and much more!


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The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy supports and promotes research of Sandtray therapy, as a resource for all professionals, researchers, and practitioners of Sandtray therapy. Our aim is to make Sandtray research visible and easily accessible to the public and practitioners. We believe it is important to build a strong and connected Sandtray community, in order to support clinicians and researchers alike. With a strong foundation we hope to encourage new research.

We maintain a small database of Sandtray research. Here you will find research on outcomes and effectiveness of Sandtray therapy. This research is important to providers, families, researchers, and policymakers. Clinicians and practitioners will find studies relevant to the clinical population, special population groups, and case studies.

The editorial board includes academics and professionals from around the world in keeping with an intention to attract a high standard of international contributions, which will have global reach and influence.

Review our Manuscript Guidelines

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The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy is open to authors from all over the world. We want our submission process to be simplified for the ease of submission and resubmission. We are open to quantitative, qualitative, composite case studies. Be sure to follow APA ethical guidelines with your writing. Please also review our Clinical and Authorship Criteria prior to submission.

For journal submission please use the American Psychological Association format.

Figures and Illustrations

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Please refer to the latest edition of APA style

Instructions To Authors

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Click here to view or download the Instructions to Authors as a pdf

Clinical Criteria

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  • Sandtray process and clinical skills (reflection, tracking, directives)
  • Neuroscience
  • Supervision (with Sandtray)
  • Interweave Sandtray with different theories and models
  • Sandtray with special populations (i.e., clinical issues, extreme poverty, minority, family therapy, and substance use)
  • Materials used in Sandtray

Please submit materials for review to the appropriate website. All submissions should be in APA format. Times New Roman 12-point font, double-spaced with 1″ margins, including references following the standard style guide of the American Psychological Association (Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th ed.), www.apastyle.org. Articles should include an abstract of no more than 150 words, on a separate page, which restates the title and provides a summary and purpose of the paper.

Submission Process

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  • Confirm all required sections are included in your manuscript.
    • (i.e. Title page, Abstract, Keywords, Introduction, Materials & Methods, Results, Conclusions, and Artwork/Tables with captions). You should also include conflict of interest disclosures and other ethics statements.
    • English Language
  • Your references may be submitted in APA format. Please confirm formatting is consistent throughout.
    • Including the DOI is highly encouraged.
  • If you are asked to revise your manuscript for corrections after the editorial or peer review process, the journal will request the revised manuscript to be formatted according to guidelines at that time.
  • After peer review, your paper will be submitted to CrossRef to screen for plagiarism and Dual Publication.
  • If there are any issues that need to be resolved, the committee will contact you for revisions.
  • If your manuscript does not meet clinical or APA criteria, this may be a basis for manuscript rejection.

Submission Checklist

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  1. Read The International Journal of Sandtray submission requirements
  2. Read the online submission system guidelines
  3. Upload your document(s)
  4. Read about what to expect from peer review and the possible outcomes for your manuscript, including what to do if your manuscript is not accepted right away

Tables are retained for important data directly related to the content of the paper. A well-constructed table should enable data to be isolated from the text and presented in a way that enables the reader to quickly see patterns and relationships of the data not readily discernible in the text. Use brief but explanatory table titles. Submit tables in Microsoft Word’s table function. Tables in Excel format are also acceptable. (Tables should not be submitted using tabs, returns, or spaces as formatting tools.) Figures must be submitted in the article as needed and in the appendix section.

Tables are retained for important data directly related to the content of the paper. A well-constructed table should enable data to be isolated from the text and presented in a way that enables the reader to quickly see patterns and relationships of the data not readily discernible in the text. Use brief but explanatory table titles. Submit tables in Microsoft Word’s table function. Tables in Excel format are also acceptable. (Tables should not be submitted using tabs, returns, or spaces as formatting tools.) Figures must be submitted in the article as needed and in the appendix section.

Your submission should have a title page bearing the name(s) and affiliation(s) of the contributing author(s), the word count, and three to five keywords. These keywords should capture your paper’s main topics and highlight your original contribution. An email address is required for contact purposes and should be stated following the corresponding author’s address in a footnote on the title page. All endnotes should be number referenced, gathered at the end of the article, and kept to a minimum. When submitting a manuscript to IJSTT, your name, email address, affiliation, and other contact details required will be used for the routine operational practices of the publication, including, when necessary, sharing.

Peer Reviewed Process and Type

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The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy uses a collaborative review type. This means, as a team we review your manuscript submission to make sure the study is ethically sound, covering at least one clinical competency and research methodology is appropriate. We will review the submission with two or more reviewers that are working together to review the paper, discuss their opinions, and submit a unified report. Another approach is to have one or more reviewers collaborate with the author, until it reaches a publishable standard. Prior to acceptance and publication, we want to ensure all areas of the article are sound and ready to represent Sandtray Therapy in the research community. This type of review process allows for an evolution of knowledge and gives the opportunity for papers to be corrected or improved. At the International Journal of Sandtray Therapy we believe in the power of connection in the sandtray, and we want to take that into our research.

All manuscripts are read by three reviewers, who will advise the Editor on suitability for publication and any recommended changes. A double-blind review process is utilized (see below for double-blind review guidelines). Reviewers do not know the identity of the authors(s) and the identity of the reviewers is not known to the author(s). The Editor’s decision is final.

Communication, including the Editor’s decision and request for revisions, will occur through email. Manuscripts must be submitted in American English. IJSTT requires formal usage of language. Contractions, slang, and abbreviations should be omitted, except in cases of direct quotation or when usage is specifically demanded by the context and set forth in quotation marks.

SUBMISSIONS: IJSTT is interested in publishing articles by practitioners and researchers within Sandtray community. IJST publishes clinically relevant, reader friendly research articles. We welcome submissions that describe non-traditional studies or that offer nontraditional narratives of traditional studies. Send manuscripts about your innovative ideas and practices to Amy Flantery at amyf@truehopecounseling.com and Jennifer Hayes at jennifer.hayes@jhlmft.com

INTERVIEWS: Occasionally IJST publishes interviews with people who have made a unique or exemplary contribution to the field, whether they are a prominent academic or a committed and talented colleague. For further information about submitting a transcribed interview contact Jennifer Hayes Jennifer.hayes@jhlmft.com

Double Blind Peer Review Guidelines

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For journals that use double-blind peer review, the identities of both reviewers and authors are concealed from each other throughout the review. To facilitate this, authors must ensure that their manuscripts are prepared in such a way that they do not reveal their identities to reviewers, either directly or indirectly.

Please therefore ensure that the following items are present in your submission and are provided as separate files.

  1. Title Page
  2. The title page will remain separate from the manuscript throughout the peer review process and will not be sent to the reviewers. It should include:

    • The manuscript title
    • All authors’ names and affiliations
    • A complete address for the corresponding author, including an e-mail address
    • Acknowledgments
    • Conflict of interest statement
  3. Anonymized Manuscript

Please remove any identifying information, such as authors’ names or affiliations, from your manuscript before submission.

As well as removing names and affiliations under the title within the manuscript, other steps need to be taken to ensure the manuscript is correctly prepared for double-blind peer review.

The key points to consider are:

  • Use the third person to refer to work the authors have previously published. For example, write, “Smith and Jones (2015) have demonstrated” rather than “we/the authors have previously demonstrated (Smith & Jones, 2015)”.
  • Make sure that figures and tables do not contain any reference to author affiliations
  • Exclude acknowledgments and any references to funding sources. Use the title page, which is not sent to reviewers, to detail these and to declare any potential conflicts of interest to the editor.
  • Choose file names with care, and ensure that the file’s “properties” are also anonymized submission.
  • Take care to ensure that you do not inadvertently upload identifying information within any of the files that will be shared with reviewers.

Research Ethics

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Human Rights, Confidentiality and Privacy

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The International Journal for Sandtray Therapy (IJST) requires authors to provide a statement identifying the ethics committee that approved the study and that the study conforms to recognized ethical standards. For example, studies must ensure that adequate steps have been taken to minimize harm to participants, to avoid coercion or exploitation, to protect confidentiality, and to minimize the risk of physical and psychological harm. The JSTT requires authors to obtain the individual’s informed consent and confirm that explicit written consent “to publish” has been received from any of the people described (as in case studies), shown in still or moving images, or whose voices are recorded. All identifying information that could identify the subject must be removed from the image. Research participants must give consent/permission before recording (audio and/or video) in accordance with national law.

Authors are also responsible for protecting the confidentiality/anonymity of human participants, and obtaining informed consent from all participants by openly communicating any and all information that is likely to influence their willingness to participate (for example, sponsorship, purpose and anticipated outcomes, any possible consequences that publication of the research may have for participants, etc.). The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, as quoted by Wiley (Publishing-Ethics-Best-Practice-Guidelines-Wiley.pdf p.5),, states: “Non-essential identifying details should be omitted. Informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt that anonymity can be maintained. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of patients is inadequate protection of anonymity.”

Cultural Heritage

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Publication of culturally sensitive materials may be checked against the US Office for Human Research Protection, which has a searchable database of independent community review boards that may approve research and publication. In regards to intercultural research, there is growing recognition of joint copyright to appropriately enable legal acknowledgment of intellectual property. When publishing images of objects that may have cultural significance, editors should consider such sensitivities so as not to cause offence. If necessary, editors may confer with the author about appropriate representation of subjects.

Research Integrity

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The US Federal Policy on Research Misconduct defines research misconduct as falsification, plagiarism and/or fabrication and/or image manipulation in the performing, proposing, reporting research results or reviewing research.

The members of the Journal of Sandtray Therapy editorial team play an important role in addressing cases including, but not limited to, those of potential falsification, plagiarism, data fabrication, unethical research, undeclared conflicts of interest, fabrication, authorship abuse and/or redundant or duplicate publication.

The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy will request investigations by research institutions, funders, employers, or relevant statutory national body rather than conducting investigations themselves. However, the IJST editorial team may investigate some cases of misconduct, such as, but not limited to, plagiarism, falsification or image manipulation. The IJST publishing team will inform relevant parties of the investigation. The team, editor and publisher will consider regulations and decide how to, if necessary, to refer cases of misconduct and what action is deemed necessary.

The IJST editorial team will handle cases at a speed that allows for appropriate care to be taken. Depending upon the results, investigations may lead to expressions of concern, retractions or other sanctions as necessary.


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Suspected misconduct allegations by “named” or anonymous Whistleblowers will be investigated appropriately with specific detailed evidence being submitted to support said allegations

Falsification, Fabrication and Image Manipulation

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Misleading results in research data may happen when images are manipulated or changed in some way. This is one form of fabrication or falsification. There may be a legitimate need to edit images, such as an enlargement or close-up of part of the sandtray or miniature as necessary to reveal features that would otherwise not be visible. The editing of video data and/or images may be essential to maintain and protect the privacy of the participants.

The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy asks that authors declare where edits/manipulations have been made. In general, specific elements within an image should not be removed, enhanced, obscured, moved or introduced.

It is necessary for authors to submit original images of unprocessed, unmanipulated images alongside any images that are processed, edited and/or manipulated.

Contrast or adjustment to brightness is only acceptable if it is applied equally across the entire image and applied equally to the controls. These adjustments must NOT eliminate, misrepresent or obscure any information present in the originally captured information.

It is inappropriate to have excessive manipulations. For example, emphasizing one region/area of the image/sandtray at the expense of the others or a control. For recordings, it must be disclosed if portions are deleted or nonlinear adjustments are made. Such manipulations must be disclosed in a figure legend.

Specific features within an image should not be enhanced, obscured, removed, moved, or introduced. Component parts of a composite image must be indicated by clear dividing lines in the figure as well as described in the legend.


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According to Wiley’s Best Practice Guidelines on Publishing Ethics, “The US Office of Research Integrity (ORI) defines “plagiarism to include both the theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another’s work. It does not include authorship or credit disputes.” p.3.

The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy will use CrossRef (or CrossCheck) to screen submitted manuscripts for plagiarism and dual publication. See how to submit a manuscript to JSTT for additional information on how manuscripts will be screened for content and originality.

Duplicate and Redundant Publication

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Authors of submitted manuscripts MUST avoid duplicate publication. Duplicate publication means reproducing direct verbatim content from the author’s other publications. The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy requires authors to submit a manuscript for review to certify that the article is an original work and has not been published before, and is not being considered for publication in any other journal in its final form.

The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy does not accept duplicate publications. The IJST requires clear reporting on any previously published results, which includes figures and images and numerical information. Manuscripts that present new analysis of previously published results must identify the primary data source, and a full reference to the related primary publication.

“Prior publication” such as dissertations and theses in university archives, abstracts and posters presented during conferences, results presented at meetings, and results in databases, such as tables, are permissible and not cause for concern about redundant or duplicate publication.

Should a manuscript be published and later found to be redundant, the International Journal of Sandtray Therapy editorial team will retract the duplicate paper following the Peer Review flowchart.

Duplicate Information Published in Translation Submission

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The International Journal of Sandtray Therapy may choose to publish previously published works, should they be accurately translated from an original publication in a different language. Authors submitting translated manuscripts must indicate where the material was originally published, and that they have appropriate permission for republishing.

Editorial Standards and Process

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The Journal of Sandtray Therapy requires a list of authors who contributed to the work and how. One or more authors should be identified on all published work.

Editorial Standards and Processes

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  1. Authorship of a scientific or scholarly paper should be limited to those individuals who have contributed in a meaningful and substantive way to its intellectual content. All authors are responsible for fairly evaluating their roles in the project as well as the roles of their co-authors to ensure that authorship is attributed according to these standards in all publications for which they will be listed as an author
  2. Requirement for Attribution of Authorship
  3. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for its content. All co-authors should have been directly involved in all three of the following:
  4. Planning and contribution to some component (conception, design, conduct, analysis, or interpretation) of the work which led to the paper or interpreting at least a portion of the results;
  5. Writing a draft of the article or revising it for intellectual content; and
  6. Final approval of the version to be published. All authors should review and approve the manuscript before it is submitted for publication, at least as it pertains to their roles in the project.
  7. Some diversity exists across academic disciplines regarding acceptable standards for substantive contributions that would lead to attribution of authorship. This guidance is intended to allow for such variation to disciplinary best practices while ensuring authorship is not inappropriately assigned
Lead Author

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The first author is usually the person who has performed the central experiments of the project. Often, this individual is also the person who has prepared the first draft of the manuscript. The lead author is ultimately responsible for ensuring that all other authors meet the requirements for authorship as well as ensuring the integrity of the work itself. The lead author will usually serve as the corresponding author.


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Each co-author is responsible for considering his or her role in the project and whether that role merits attribution of authorship. Co-authors should review and approve the manuscript, at least as it pertains to their roles in the project.

Authorship Disputes

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Determinations of authorship roles are often complex, delicate, and potentially controversial. To avoid confusion and conflict, discussion of attribution should be initiated early in the development of any collaborative publication. For disputes that cannot be resolved amicably, individuals may seek the guidance of the dean of their school or the cognizant deputy provost in the Faculty of Arts & Sciences.

Disclosure of Research Funding and Other Support

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In all scientific and scholarly publications and all manuscripts submitted for publication, authors should acknowledge the sources of support for all activities leading to and facilitating preparation of the publication or manuscript, including, but not limited to:

  • grant, contract, and gift support;
  • salary support if other than institutional funds. Note that salary support that is provided to the University by an external entity does not constitute institutional funds by virtue of being distributed by the University; and
  • technical or other support if substantive and meaningful to the completion of the project.
Disclosure of Financial Interests and External Activities

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Authors should fully disclose related financial interests and outside activities in publications (including articles, abstracts, manuscripts submitted for publication), presentations at professional meetings, and applications for funding.

In addition, authors should comply with the disclosure requirements of the IAST Committee on Conflict of Interest.

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