Focus and Scope

Disability Studies Quarterly (DSQ) is the journal of the Society for Disability Studies (SDS). It is a multidisciplinary and international journal of interest to social scientists, scholars in the humanities and arts, disability rights advocates, and others concerned with the issues of people with disabilities. It represents the full range of methods, epistemologies, perspectives, and content that the field of disability studies embraces. DSQ is committed to developing theoretical and practical knowledge about disability and to promoting the full and equal participation of persons with disabilities in society. (ISSN: 1041-5718; eISSN: 2159-8371)

Peer Review Process

All articles and creative works are reviewed by peers who have the appropriate knowledge and expertise. When we receive a new submission at DSQ we read it first, as editors, and then determine 2-4 peer reviewers for each submission.  We contact those reviewers and begin by requesting a review back in 4 weeks time.  Reviewers don't always respond quickly (or even agree to do the review) and thus, additional reviewers, or nudges for initial reviewers, must often follow.  It is not uncommon for the peer review process to take up to 6 months although we do our best to move a new submission through the process as quickly as possible.  

If you have not heard anything back from the DSQ editors on the status of your submission in 8-12 weeks time, you should always feel free to contact us and we will update you regarding the review process for your submission.

Once we have reviews back, we read those reviews and the original submission once again; we make careful consideration in our regular editorial meetings about the next steps forward.  A DSQ Editorial Decision Letter then goes back to the author/s.  If it is a Revise & Resubmit, we indicate the extent of those revisions (and include the original peer reviewer comments).  We generally ask for a revision in 3 month's time; we also ask that such revisions also include a cover letter from the author/s that details the revisions that were made.

Final publication decisions are made by the Editor/s based on information gathered from the peer reviews and the success and extent of the revision that is re-submitted.

Publication Frequency

DSQ is published by The Ohio State University Libraries four times a year: Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall.

Open Access Policy

Journals published by The Ohio State University Libraries provide immediate open access to their content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.

In order to lower barriers to publication for authors, our journals do not charge submission or any other form of author fees.

(updated April 11, 2016)

Statement of Principles

By Rosemarie Garland-Thomson and Paul K. Longmore
Approved Fall 2003 by the Society for Disability Studies Board

The values and ideologies that shape social arrangements, public policies, professional practices, and, most important, the experience of "disability" are in the midst of a classic paradigm shift. Disability issues are demanding attention in every sphere and institution of society. Everything related to disability and people with disabilities is in the process of being rethought and needs to be rethought.

The academic study of disability has primarily been shaped by ideologies that define it as limitation in the performance of expected social roles due to underlying physiological pathology. That definition inevitably prescribes medical treatments and habilitation or rehabilitation as the appropriate solutions to the problems of people with disabilities. Yet those approaches have had only limited impact in ameliorating disabled people's socioeconomic marginalization.

In contrast to these traditional modes of addressing and studying disability, Disability Studies takes as its domain the relationship of social values to societal organization and public policies, professional training and delivery of services, individual behavior and interpersonal encounters, cultural representation and technological and architectural design. Disability Studies utilizes a multidisciplinary approach to analyze the intricate interactions among social, cultural, political, economic, and physiological variables. It seeks neither to jettison, nor to embrace medical paradigms of disability, but to transcend them. It explains personal experiences of disability, not simply in terms of the functioning of bodies that operate in nonstandard ways, but by locating those differences within the larger context of the cultural milieus that shape disability experiences. Disability Studies also seeks to supply the rigorous research and critical analysis essential to any effort at social reconstruction.


In pursuit of this vision and in support of an agenda that builds the academic field of Disability Studies in both the United States and globally, the Disability Studies Quarterly (DSQ) will provide a peer-reviewed forum for scholarship. It will represent the full range of methods, epistemologies, perspectives, and content that compose multidisciplinary Disability Studies.

DSQ aims to play a leading role in developing the field of Disability Studies by providing scholars with a vehicle to publish academic research that is credible within their particular fields of specialization. Discipline-specific articles must therefore match the highest and most rigorous standards in those fields. At the same time, all articles must be accessible to readers outside of those particular disciplines.

DSQ will seek articles that cut across disciplines and have implications for the full range of the field of Disability Studies. The ideal DSQ reader will be the general academic reader in Disability Studies. In addition, the journal will publish nonacademic essays that reflect the perspectives of the disability community. Finally, DSQ intends to fashion itself as a model of accessibility for academic journals.


DSQ will have a rotating editorship. The editor will serve for a term of three to five years. The DSQ editorial offices will be located at the home academic institution of the editor. The editor may hire a managing editor(s). The editor will recruit an editorial board that represents the various disciplinary perspectives of Disability Studies. In collaboration with the editorial board, the editor will develop a roster of referees to evaluate articles submitted for publication.

The journal will be produced permanently at the journals division of an academic press. The formats for DSQ will be special issues dedicated to topical themes, refereed articles, both short book reviews and essay length book reviews, and announcements regarding professional opportunities. In terms of accessibility, DSQ will not only offer alternative formats, but will also utilize the best access practices in terms of print readability, language style, and color contrast.

Conflict of Interest Policy

Authors, reviewers, and editors are required to disclose conflicts of interest at the earliest possible opportunity - for example, when a manuscript is submitted or a review assignment is accepted. Conflict of interest is defined as any competing personal, professional, or financial interest that may introduce bias into the publishing process of the journal.

Example conflicts of interest:

  • financial support from commercial enterprises that have a vested interest in the results
  • personal relationships that would compromise objectivity during review or publication
  • professional competition that would prevent objective evaluation of a submitted manuscript

Disclosure of a conflict of interest by an author does not necessarily mean that a manuscript will be denied acceptance to the journal. If an author is found to have a conflict of interest that was not disclosed during the submission and review process, the editor will identify an appropriate remedy, which may include a published correction or a retraction.

(updated April 11, 2016)

Funding, IRB, Informed Consent Policy

We ask that all authors submitting manuscripts to DSQ:

  • State all sources of funding for research and include this information in either the acknowledgments (if appropriate) or as a footnote/endnote.
  • State in the manuscript, if appropriate, that the research protocol employed was approved by the relevant institutional review boards (IRB) or ethics committees for human or animal experiments and that all human subjects provided appropriate informed consent. Again, this information might appear in the acknowledgments (if appropriate) or as a footnote/endnote.

(updated June 4, 2019)

Plagiarism Policy

Journals published by The Ohio State University Libraries' Publishing Program do not accept manuscripts with plagiarized material. For the purposes of this policy, plagiarism is defined as the use of previously authored works - including text, data, and images - of others or self without proper attribution.

Journal editors will respond to plagiarism at their discretion. Actions taken will be based on the severity of the plagiarism attempt, but can include corrections to or retractions of the published article, the author being banned from publishing in the journal, and/or the editor notifying the author's institution or funding agencies. 

(updated April 11, 2016)

Retraction Policy

When errors are discovered in published content, our policy is to follow the guidelines of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). The following language is a brief summary of relevant portions of the guidelines for the benefit of our editors, authors, and readers. The full guidelines should be consulted if questions arise or action is being considered. 

If the editor becomes aware of major errors in, or misconduct related to published work, the editor may issue a retraction, statement of concern, or correction. These actions are meant to maintain the scholarly record and are not meant to be a form of punishment. An author who determines that his or her published article may contain errors should contact the editor promptly so that the journal can determine a path forward. Readers are also invited to contact the editor with concerns about published content.


A retraction is defined as a public disavowal, not an erasure or removal. Retractions will occur if the editors and editorial board find that the main conclusion of the work is undermined or if subsequent information about the work comes to light of which the authors or the editors were not aware at the time of publication.

Statement of Concern

A statement of concern will be issued if there is inconclusive evidence of research misconduct / ethical wrongdoing or there is an ongoing investigation and results are pending.


A correction will be published if the scholarly record is seriously affected (e.g., if accuracy/intended meaning, scientific reproducibility, author reputation, or journal reputation is judged to be compromised). Corrections such as misspellings or grammatical errors will not be published. Published corrections will be added to the original article whenever possible. When that is not possible, the correction will link to and from the original work.


Removal of published content may occur if an article is determined to be defamatory by a court of law, if it infringes on legal rights, or if there is a reasonable expectation that it will be subject to a court order for any reason. The bibliographic information about the work will be retained online, but the work will no longer be available through the journal. A note will be added to indicate that the item was removed for legal reasons.

(updated October 27, 2016)

Copyright Policy

Authors retain all rights to work published by The Ohio State University Libraries' Publishing Program. The specific terms of our author agreements may vary slightly from journal to journal, but they all constitute nonexclusive licenses covering the rights required to publish, index, abstract, and preserve the content. Authors are free to reuse their work and to enter into other agreements as long as they credit the relevant journal as the site of first publication and provide a link to the journal website. 

Beginning with Volume 36, Issue No. 4 (2016), Disability Studies Quarterly is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives license unless otherwise indicated.

While authors retain copyright ownership of their work, this Creative Commons license will allow readers to print, share, re-post, and republish an article, without asking for permission, as long as the work is properly attributed to the author(s), it isn’t used commercially, and it isn’t changed in any way. Read more about the license here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/ or view the full legal text here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/legalcode.

(updated July 17, 2017)

Preservation Policy

This journal participates in the Public Knowledge Project’s Private LOCKSS Network to preserve its contents. https://pkp.sfu.ca/pkp-lockss/

(updated April 11, 2016)