ISSN 1806-9657 online version
Scope and editorial policy
Exclusivity and originality
Manuscripts submitted or published, even partially, in another journal are not accepted. The exclusivity must be declared in the cover letter. Only manuscripts whose content has been published in the form of an abstract, a published lecture or academic thesis/dissertation/monography are accepted. Nonconformities of the manuscript regarding exclusivity and originality will be the sole responsibility of the corresponding author.
Conflict of interest
In the cover letter, declare absence (or declare if any) of conflict of interest associated with financial and personal support or of any other nature which has influenced the manuscript content.
RBCS accepts the following manuscripts types:
Original research papers (Regular papers) – Should be based on an original scientific hypothesis, which was not yet clarified. The hypothesis must be tested through experimentation and/or theoretical models, based on the scientific method, with adequate statistical planning and discussion. Priority will be given to manuscripts that contribute to the understanding of processes and mechanisms occurring in the soil. Comparisons of methods, varieties, types of management, etc. may, exceptionally, be considered as a scientific article only when they provide a basis and/or logical scientific reason; if they solve an important problem in the field; or if there is a significant conceptual advance. The article structure must contain: title, highlights, abstract, keywords, introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion (results and discussion cannot be presented together in the same section – Results and Discussion), conclusions, references and may contain tables and figures. Supplementary material is allowed (see Submission).
Short communication – Describes significant advances and innovative aspects of a technique or equipment/instrument; a new species or observations; and data surveys limited to non-repeatable experiments or other unique situations. It is not an article of inferior quality and it has the same scientific value of an original research publication. This type of manuscript is, in general, shorter than the scientific article. It may not have the conventional structure required to original research papers, but it must obey the same scientific rigor. Adding supplementary material is also allowed.
Review articles – This type of manuscript may be submitted spontaneously or invited by the Editor-in-chief, but both will undergo the same review process to be approved. Besides reporting the state of knowledge on a specific topic, review articles should be analytical and critical and present suggestions for future research.Letter to the editor - It should contain relevant communication to the Soil Science community or a critique on a manuscript published by RBCS. In the latter case, the right of counter argument will be granted to the authors.
All manuscripts must be submitted online through ScholarOneTM, an online submission and paper management system, which can be accessed using the following links:
Title: Concise and informative, with no more than 20 words. Avoid symbols, abbreviations, and formulae. Please consider that titles are often used in information-retrieval systems.
Highlights: Provide 3-5 bullet points that convey the manuscript’s core findings. Each bullet point must have a maximum of 85 characters, including spaces.
Abstract: The abstract must be concise, factual, and informative, not exceeding 400 words. The abstract is an independent section, often presented separately from the manuscript; therefore, it must stand alone and supply the main information about the manuscript. The abstract must start with a brief sentence that clearly introduces the problem and the manuscript relevance. The objective should be explicitly stated. It must present relevant information about material and methods, the principal results and major conclusions. References, symbols, and non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided. If essential symbol or abbreviations be used, they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.
Keywords: Select up to five relevant keywords, which must differ from those words used in the manuscript title. Prepositions and conjunctions (of, or, and) must be avoided. Do not use terms composed of more than three words. Only abbreviations firmly established may be eligible.
Introduction: The introduction must be clear and concise, but sufficient to present the addressed problem and show any existing gap in knowledge. Bibliographic citations should be specific, selected from the most relevant and recent studies, preferably from journals with high impact factors. Thesis, dissertation, newsletters, congress proceedings, and documents of difficult access should be avoided. The hypothesis should be mentioned explicitly. A hypothesis is a statement (therefore, written in the present tense) that establishes a cause-effect relation and which should be supported or denied with experimenting; it will be used to construct the conclusions. State the objectives at the end of the introduction.
Materials and methods: This section can be subdivided by short headings referring to methods/procedures adopted; the information should be organized in a logical order to enable full understanding. Material and methods should provide sufficient details to allow the work to be reproduced by an independent researcher. Field studies should contain the location with geographic coordinates, climatic conditions, and soil classification. Manuscripts describing research carried out in Brazil must have the soils classified according to Brazilian Soil Classification System (SiBCS, edition 2018) and, additionally, to present (parenthetically) equivalent classification consistent with international systems (Soil Taxonomy or WRB). To classify the soils according to the international systems, the authors should access the Table of Partial Equivalence provided in this website or at J appendix of the SiBCS. Manuscripts from foreign authors, whose soils were completely analyzed and classified based on WRB or Soil Taxonomy, are not required to use the SiBCS. Methods that are well known and already published should be indicated by a reference, and only relevant modifications should be described. Reagents and equipment model and brand should be cited only if this information is essential to reproduce the study. The experimental design and the statistical methods used to analyze the data should be described clearly. Software used in the statistical analysis should be informed only if relevant.
Results: Results must be clear and concise. They should be presented using tables or, preferably, figures containing graphics, images, or schematic models. Avoid using more than four tables and four figures. Avoid reproducing numeric values that have already been presented in tables and figures. Tables and figures should be presented along the text as “table 1” or “figure 2”, using a lowercase letter; or highlighted in parenthesis (Table 1 or Figure 2).
Discussion: In this section, the authors should present the significance of the results obtained, without repeating them. Arguments that support the acceptance or rejection of the research hypothesis should be explored. The discussion should support the conclusions. Avoid excessive citations, such as those used to point out basic concepts or common knowledge.
Conclusions: Conclusions should be coherent with the hypothesis and objectives. Conclusions should be a short, clear, and concise text, without further discussions, and results should not be repeated here. This section must stand by itself, without requiring going back to the results and discussion sections. Do not use bulleted or numbered list to organize the conclusions.
References: Every reference cited along the text should be included in the Reference list (and vice versa). Personal communication is not recommended in the reference list. The Reference list should be organized first alphabetically and then further sorted chronologically if necessary; more than one reference from the same author(s) in the same year must be identified by letters (‘a’, ‘b’, ‘c’, etc.), placed after the publication year. Do not translate the references; they should be presented in their original language. It is not necessary to use a specific reference style at submission, as long as the style is consistent. The reference style adopted by the journal (Vancouver style adapted) will be mandatory only to the accepted manuscripts. The formatting requirements are shown below.
Citation in text
Reference to a journal publication
Author AA, Author BB. Title of the manuscript. Abbreviated title of the journal. Year of publication; volume: beginning and ending pages. DOI. Journal names should be abbreviated according to the https://www.library.caltech.edu/journal-title-abbreviations. Examples:
Camargo LA, Marques Júnior J, Pereira GT. Spatial variability of physical properties of an Alfisol under different hillslope curvatures. Rev Bras Cienc Solo. 2010;34:617-30. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-06832010000300003
Brown DJ, Shepherd KD, Walsh MG, Mays MD, Reinsch TG. Global soil characterization with VNIR diffuse reflectance spectroscopy. Geoderma. 2006;132:273-90. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoderma.2005.04.025
Reference to a book
Author AA, Author BB. Title of book. Number of the edition (if not first). Place of publication: Publisher; Year of publication. Examples:
Klug HP, Alexander LE. X-ray diflraction procedures for polycrystalline and amorphous materials. 2nd ed. New York: John Wiley & Sons; 1974.
Ab’Sáber A. Os domínios de natureza no Brasil: potencialidades paisagísticas. 7. ed. São Paulo: Ateliê Editorial; 2012.
Reference to a chapter in an edited book
Jackson ML. Chemical composition of soil. In: Bear FE, editor. Chemistry of the soil. 2nd ed. New York: Reinhold; 1964. p. 71-141.
Sharpley AN, Rekolainen S. Phosphorus in agriculture and its environmental implications. In: Tunney H, Carton OT, Brookes PC, Johnston AE, editors. Phosphorus loss from soil to water. New York, CAB International; 1997. p. 1-53.
Reference to a Conference Proceedings
Author AA, Author BB. Title of conference paper. In: type of publication, number, and title of the event [CD-ROM, when published in]; date of the event (Year Month Date); City and Country where meeting was carried out. City (of the Publisher): Publisher or Institution responsible for the publication; year of the edition (not always the same as the event). Pages of the study or the abstract. Examples:
Bailey TB, Swan JB, Higgs RL, Paulson WH. Long-term tillage effects on continuous corn yields. In: 8th Annual conference proceedings - Annual conference on applied statistics in agriculture; 1996 Apr 28-30; Manhattan, Kansas. Manhattan: Kansas State University Libraries; 1996. p. 17-32.
Reference to an Electronic Source
Author AA, Author BB (use the Organization if no individual author or editor is named). Title of referenced material. Place of publication: Publisher; year [cited Year Month Day]. Available from: URL
Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements - IRMM. Certified reference material BCR - 142R. 2007 [cited 2016 Jan 18]. Available from: http://www.lgcstandards.com/medias/sys_master/pdfs/pdfs/ha6/hc4/9208111169566/BCR-142R-ST-WB-CERT-1515931-1-1-1.pdf.
Reference to a Thesis, Dissertation or Monography
Author AA. Title (include the subtitle if there is one) [academic degree]. City: Institution where it was defended; year. Example:
Brienza S Jr. Biomass dynamics of fallow vegetation enriched with leguminous trees in the Eastern Amazon of Brazil [thesis]. Göttingen: University of Göttingen; 1999.
Tables: Please submit tables as editable text and not as images. Tables should not be included in the main document and they should have portrait (not landscape) orientation. They should be numbered sequentially with Arabic numbers. Each table should be self-explanatory, containing the elements that allow readers to understand the table's content without having to go back to the text. The descriptive title above it should be brief, but with enough information to describe the variables and their cause-effect relationships. Supplementary information should be placed in footnotes (for example: the methodologies used to determine the properties values presented in the table). The footnotes should be indicated by superscript numbers in parentheses (or asterisks for significance values and other statistical data) and included beneath the table’s body. Horizontal lines should only be used in header lines, to highlight variables, and in the last line of the table. Units should be placed in the body of the table, on the first line above the numerical values (results). Vertical and horizontal lines should not appear in the body of the table. Tables should be created using a table tool of the text editing software, preferably from MS Word or MS Excel. Avoid tables which have only a few rows and columns, try stating the findings in a few sentences. Information in small tables can often be presented better in the text. Do not insert blank columns or rows. Asterisks or letters next to values indicating statistical significance should appear in the same cell as the value, not an adjacent cell (i.e., they should not have their own column). Revisions, such as adjustments of tables, may be requested after manuscript acceptance.
Figures: Figures encompass two- or three-dimensional graphs, images, and schematic models. Do not include figures in the main manuscript file. Figures should have portrait (not landscape) orientation and be numbered sequentially with Arabic numbers. The title should appear below the figure and should be brief but sufficiently detailed to stand on its own. Notes below the figure can be used to present additional information. For multipart figures, each part should be labeled (a), (b), (c),⋯, sequentially. And each part should be described in the caption. Avoid using figures with more than four sub-figures, and it is not allowed to insert graphs as an image. For review (submission), figures may be submitted in EPS, TIFF, and PDF formats (JPG and GIF formats are acceptable). However, editable figures must be provided after manuscript acceptance. Photographs should be in tagged image (TIF) format with 500 dpi. Be sure that the overall style in the figures follows the journal standards. For example, if you use Mg ha-1 in the text, do not use Mg/ha in the figures. Minor revisions in the figures may be requested after manuscript acceptance.
Formulae and equations: They should be inserted as editable text and not as image. Formulae and equations should be created using the equation editor available in text editing software such as MS Word or any other tool which allow to edit them. Equations should be cited along the text as “equation 1”, using a lowercase letter; or highlighted in parenthesis (Equation 1). Equations should be numbered consecutively as Eq.1, Eq. 2, Eq. 3, etc. at the right-hand side.Supplementary File: The supplementary material allows presenting a more concise and clearer manuscript. Supplementary material encompasses tables, figures, schematic models, photographs, and datasheet, which are additional or complementary to support the scientific paper. Each supplementary material should contain a concise and descriptive caption. The supplementary material should not be cited in the main manuscript text. Supplementary material will be published as received from the author, without any conversion, editing, or reformatting; therefore, it should be clearly and succinctly presented, and its formatting style should conform with that adopted for the whole paper. The link to the supplementary material, if any, will be inserted after the Reference section
This journal uses double-blind review, which means the identities of the authors are concealed from the reviewers, and vice versa. After concluding the corrections required by editors and reviewers, the author should submit a revision.To do so, the author should access the Author Centre (at ScholarOne) and click on Create a Revision. In step one, it is mandatory to prepare a text with general and specifics answers to ALL questions raised and suggestions made by the reviewers and editorial board, indicating in which lines changes were done; this text should be inserted in a text box named “your response”. In the following steps, the author will be required to upload the revised version of the manuscript (main document). In this step, the author must provide a main document file with ALL changes (removals and additions) made in the revision process. The corrections must be highlighted (using a different color, or any other tool, like bold for example) in the main document.
After acceptance, the process will be conducted by e-mail (email@example.com).
Procedures: If necessary, the corresponding author will be requested to: apply the reference style adopted by the journal and to edit/format figures and tables. To ensure correct spelling and formal style, the editor may request, if necessary, a text revision by one of the specialists indicated in this guidance.
Publication expenses – including those of the peer review management, journal production, and online hosting and archiving – are covered by charging a publication fee.For Brazilian and foreign manuscripts in which the first author and the corresponding author are members of the Sociedade Brasileira de Ciência do Solo – SBCS (Brazilian Soil Science Society), the publication fee per page is R$ 80.00 and $ 70.00, respectively. If the first author and the corresponding author are not members of the SBCS, the publication fee is R$ 200.00 and $ 100.00 for Brazilian and foreign manuscripts, respectively.
General guidelines for manuscript enhancement will be presented below. Some of them will not be mandatory in the peer-review phase but may be requested after manuscript acceptance. Units should be adopted according to the International System of Units (SI).
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