Authors submitting manuscripts to a subset of journals will have the opportunity to get free copy-editing suggestions from a scientifically-trained language model prior to submission.

A person holding a pencil over a piece of paper.

Sharing your scientific findings with your community is one of the most exciting parts of the scientific endeavor. ACS Publications is piloting a new option that can help make that process easier.

Starting in March 2024, authors submitting their manuscript to a subset of ACS journals will have the option to receive free automated copy-editing suggestions from Writefull’s scientifically trained language model system, which has been thoroughly vetted and refined by our journal production team. The system’s suggestions will be focused on clarifying meaning, improving grammar, and strengthening phrasing to enhance a manuscript — all at no cost to authors.

Find out more about this pilot below.

Why is ACS Publications piloting this service?

As a trusted partner to the scientific community, ACS Publications consistently invests in initiatives like this pilot program that can improve our service to researchers.

ACS is committed to cultivating global equity in scientific communication, and we expect that offering this scientifically trained language tool for free to authors will reduce language barriers to publication, helping authors everywhere tell their stories with confidence and clarity.

What is Writefull and what is its relationship with the ACS Publications?

Writefull is an AI-based academic language service owned by Digital Science and built to assist users with all aspects of their scholarly writing. ACS Publications has partnered with Writefull to empower its production teams and this pilot is an extension of the existing partnership to offer these powerful tools to authors.

Which journals are involved in the pilot?

This pilot program is offered to authors who submit a manuscript to the following journals:

  • ACS Sensors
  • ACS Photonics
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Chemistry of Materials
  • Journal of Proteome Research
  • Macromolecules
  • Nano Letters
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry A/B/C
Do I have to use this service in order to submit my manuscript to one of these journals?

Not at all. Use of Writefull is totally optional.

How do I receive the suggestions?

At the Writefull site, you will be able to directly upload a file. The suggestions will be inserted as tracked changes on a new version of the document that you download from Writefull.

How long will it take for the suggestions to arrive?

Most files will be processed in less than 2 minutes, though larger files may take longer. Authors should stay on the website to download their suggestions.

What if I don’t like some of the suggestions made?

Authors maintain full responsibility for their manuscript and are empowered to choose which suggestions are accepted or rejected. In those cases where an edit seems to misunderstand the intended meaning of a sentence, an author may either reject the suggestion or revise the text to clarify their original meaning.

Can Writefull help me write the first draft of my paper?

No, it cannot. The service works on existing text to clarify grammar and meaning. A full draft should be prepared before navigating to the Writefull page.

Will Writefull’s service help me restructure my entire manuscript?

The model focuses on establishing clear and readable scientific English at the sentence level. It does not offer suggestions about how to best order the manuscript for optimal flow. Authors who seek additional advice about how to construct or substantively revise their manuscript should take the free ACS Author Lab course or explore ACS Authoring Services.

Does using the service guarantee my paper will be accepted?

No. ACS journals have editorial independence in their decision-making processes, and manuscripts that are sent through the Writefull copy-editing service will be evaluated for scope, rigor, and other factors as with any other manuscript submitted to the journal.

I submitted the initial version of my paper prior to this pilot; can I use Writefull at revision?

Yes! A link will be offered to authors whether they are submitting a new paper or returning a revision or resubmission.

If my paper is not accepted, can I use the updated text for a subsequent manuscript submission?

Yes! The edits suggested are for your use regardless of any editorial decision.

How long will the pilot last?

We anticipate that it will take several months to collect sufficient data to evaluate the effectiveness of the program. We may pause or end the pilot without notice.

How do I get to the Writefull site?

Authors will be provided a link during the submission process that directs them to an external website hosted by Writefull.

Is there a fee for the service?

No. This program is offered at no cost to authors submitting to ACS journals included in the pilot.

Does Writefull’s system use generative AI?

No. Writefull’s language model is trained using artificial intelligence, but it does not create content. Instead, it draws from a scientifically trained model to offer superior versions of the same grammatical suggestions that your word-processor might make.

Am I required to acknowledge use of Writefull in my manuscript?

No. ACS Publications’ policies regarding AI tools focus on situations in which text or imagery is being created, which is not the case with Writefull’s model. For more information, navigate to the authorship section of the author guidelines at your preferred ACS journal.

Do I have to create an account with Writefull? What are their terms?

No, you don’t. Registration with Writefull is not required and the full terms and privacy notice are available at the link provided during submission.

Will Writefull own or be able to reuse my content if I upload the manuscript?

No. Writefull does not own your manuscript. It doesn’t store or ingest your document in any permanent way, and the connection with the server is encrypted end-to-end.

Once my manuscript is uploaded to Writefull’s site, can I recall it?

No. The process cannot be stopped once you have successfully uploaded the paper. Writefull’s AI tool will immediately start to work on copy-editing the text. The manuscript file is not stored or ingested, so there is nothing left behind to recall.

Can I use this service if I want to submit my manuscript to a different journal?

Not yet. Initial data gathered during the pilot will determine whether this service is expanded to other ACS journals.

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