Author Guidelines


Preparing your submission

To avoid confusion, please use the future tense for writing the methods section. Beyond that, there are no strict formatting requirements as long as the style is consistent. We recommend that figures and tables as well as their corresponding captions are embedded in the text of the protocol, rather than at the end of the document or in a separate file.

Protocol structure

Please note that adherence to the elements listed below for preparing and submitting protocols to Lab Track is mandatory and to Repository Track is optional. In the Materials & Downloads section, structured templates are available to assist in creating a protocol.

Title page

The title page must contain a tentative title of the article. Please do not include any form of identification (e.g., authors’ names) on the title page for submissions to the Lab Track as protocols must be anonymized for peer review. Author(s) name(s) and their affiliations, the corresponding author's name, email address, and postal address are entered as you navigate through the online submission system.


An abstract of not more than 300 words must accompany each protocol. The abstract should state what will be done and why, and include hypotheses about the expected outcomes.


Include 3 to 5 keywords relevant to the article. You can include them in your study protocol or enter them as you navigate through the online submission system.


Provide a brief overview of the scope and relevance of the study, especially with regard to previous advancements in related fields.

Materials and methods

Describe the study materials and methods in sufficient detail to facilitate replication of your study. This encompasses the experimental design, including all dependent and independent variables and their conceptualization (if applicable), also the procedure, conditions, randomization plan, etc. Provide an analysis plan consisting of a (numbered) list of all hypotheses and describing in detail how each hypothesis will be analyzed (e.g., which items/variables will be analyzed by which tests). Please state exclusion criteria or other forms of preprocessing data preparation you intend to apply. Include information about the targeted sample size and how it was determined. For further information and helpful resources, e.g., a submission checklist and protocol templates, go to the Materials & Downloads section.

All protocols that are submitted to the Lab Track must include a formal statement declaring that the protocols have been or will be submitted to an ethical review board or committee. PsychLab’s data collection will not begin until ethical approval has been granted.

Submission process

Submit your protocol here. Our online submission system will automatically guide you through the process of entering your metadata and uploading your files. For Lab Track submissions, all correspondence will be stored in your account and additionally sent to you via email.

After acceptance

Accepted submissions are eligible for cost-free data collection by ZPID’s PsychLab online or PsychLab offline. Before the collection of data can begin, the approval of an institutional or independent ethics committee must be obtained. In addition, the material needed for data collection (e.g., a web-based survey or the experimental code for an eye tracking experiment) must be provided by the authors.

PsychLab online: Data collection via an online panel

Once your submission has been accepted and the required materials have been provided, we will match you with a panel provider. ZPID will be responsible for financing your sample and the remaining details of the process will be discussed between you and a project manager working for the panel provider. While each project is unique, for a conventional online survey, the following steps can be expected:

  • The project manager will send you redirect links (e.g., screen-out, quota-full, completed) and request that you include them in your survey. These links redirect panelists back to the panel provider and are important for compensation of participation.
  • The project manager will test the redirect links to ensure that they are working properly. Subsequently, the link to your survey will be sent to a small number of participants (soft launch).
  • If everything is working well, the survey will proceed to full launch.

Generally, collecting data from a sample of 500 to 1,000, panelists, reflecting the German or British population in terms of age, gender, economic status, and education level, takes approximately one or two weeks.

PsychLab offline: Data collection in our lab in Trier

After acceptance of your protocol, we will prepare our lab for carrying out your study. This involves configuring your code (or any experimental program) to run on the local hardware and the recruitment of participants. Once your study has been approved by an ethics committee, we will initiate the data collection. To realistically estimate the time needed to complete data collection, please contact us via PreReg(at) with the details of your proposed study.

After data collection

Authors are responsible for publishing the (anonymized) data collected via PsychLab in PsychArchives either immediately or after an embargo period. Please take this into account when preparing the consent form for your study.