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Child Maltreatment

Child Maltreatment

eISSN: 15526119 | ISSN: 10775595 | Current volume: 29 | Current issue: 2 Frequency: Quarterly

The most current and authoritative resource in the vital and changing field of child abuse and neglect...

An Interdisciplinary Forum

Child Maltreatment answers the urgent need for an interdisciplinary forum disseminating original research, information and technical innovations on child abuse and neglect. The field of child maltreatment is multidisciplinary, embracing diverse professional and cultural identities. Peer-reviewed and written by leading experts, Child Maltreatment provides common ground for practitioners, policy makers and researchers from a variety of disciplines. The journal creates an important synthesis of contributions in science, theory, practice and policy issues. Fields represented include: Law, Social Work, Law Enforcement, Child Protection, Medicine, Psychology, Research, and Prevention.

Accessible and Comprehensive Policy

High quality, original research in the field of child abuse and neglect can have immediate impact on the quality of children’s lives. Child Maltreatment is committed to promoting practice and policy perspectives that are based on the best available empirical scientific evidence.

Special Sections

Occasionally, Child Maltreatment features regular Special Sections and Special Issues dedicated to original research and practice articles dealing with specific topics of pressing concern to the child abuse community. These offer readers broad coverage of focused topics, and present new research and commentary from some of the field's foremost researchers and thinkers.

Put Child Maltreatment in Your Library

Child Maltreatment fills an important gap in research literature and makes a valuable addition to your library’s criminology, psychology, social work or law collection. Free sample copies are available to librarians on request.

This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

Child Maltreatment is the official journal of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC), the nation's largest interdisciplinary child maltreatment professional organization. Child Maltreatment's objective is to foster professional excellence in the field of child abuse and neglect by reporting current and at-issue scientific information and technical innovations in a form immediately useful to practitioners and researchers from mental health, child protection, law, law enforcement, medicine, nursing, and allied disciplines. Child Maltreatment emphasizes perspectives with a rigorous scientific base that are relevant to policy, practice, and research. As a publication of APSAC, we are committed to eliminating racism and implicit bias. We seek to enable people from all backgrounds to contribute to and benefit from research that is balanced, grounded, anti-racist, and promotes a more just society.

Vincent J. Palusci New York University, USA
Founding Editor
Mark Chaffin Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA, USA
Associate Editors
Gia E. Barboza-Salerno University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, USA
Rochelle Hanson Medical University of South Carolina, USA
Kathryn Maguire-Jack University of Michigan, USA
Kristin Valentino University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, USA
Consulting Editors
Lenneke Alink Leiden University, Netherlands
Douglas Barnett Wayne State University, USA
Stephanie D. Block University of Massachusetts, Lowell, USA
Ernestine Briggs Duke University, USA
Derek S. Brown Washington University in St. Louis, USA
Elissa J. Brown St. John's University - NY, USA
Mark Chaffine Georgia State University, USA
Catherine Corr University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA
Theodore P. Cross University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Angela Crossman John Jay College - CUNY
Amy Damashek Western Michigan University, USA
Carla Kmett Danielson Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA
Chris Derauf Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science, USA
David DiLillo University of Nebraska-Lincoln, USA
Louise Dixon Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand
Mary Dozier University of Delaware, USA
Howard Dubowitz University of Maryland, USA
Amy Dworsky Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, USA
Candice Feiring The College of New Jersey, Ewing, NJ, USA
David Finkelhor University of New Hampshire, USA
Julian Ford University of Connecticut, USA
Bridget Freisthler The Ohio State University, USA
Andrea Gonzalez McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada
Damion Grasso University of Connecticut, New Hartford, CT, USA
Kate Guastaferro Pennsylvania State University, USA
Neil B. Guterman New York University, Silver School of Social Work
Jesse J. Helton St. Louis University, USA
Daryl Higgins Institute of Child Protection Studes, Australian Catholic University, Australia
Canan Karatekin University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA
Julia M. Kobulsky Temple University, USA
David J. Kolko University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, USA
Shawna Lee University of Michigan, USA
Oliver Lindhiem University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Thomas McMahon Yale University, USA
Darcey Merritt New York University, USA
Joshua P. Mersky University of Illinois-Chicago, USA
Steven Ondersma Wayne State University, USA
Assaf Oshri University of Georgia, USA
Jodi Quas University of California, Irvine, USA
Ramesh Raghavan Rutgers University, USA
Christina Rodriguez University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA
Joseph P. Ryan University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Shannon Self-Brown Georgia State University, USA
Chad Shenk The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA
Jane F. Silovsky University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Centre, USA
Valerie Simon Wayne State University, USA
Jeff Snarr SUNY, Brockport, NY, USA
Ashwini Tiwari Augusta University, USA
Sheree L. Toth University of Rochester, USA
Frank E. Vandervort University of Michigan, USA
Daniel J. Whitaker, Ph.D. Georgia State University - Atlanta, Georgia
Cathy Spatz Widom John Jay College, City University of New York, USA
Editorial Assistant
Student Reviewer Board
Natalie R. Beltrano University of Windsor, Canada
Karissa A. DiMarzio Florida International University, USA
Brett Greenfield Rutgers University, USA
Jeesoo Jeon Case Western Reserve University, USA
Amy H. Lee Stony Brook University, USA
Elizabeth W. Perry Georgia State University, USA
Doris F. Pu University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA
Xutong Zhang McMaster University, Canada
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  • Child Maltreatment (CM) is the official journal of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC). CM welcomes manuscripts addressing timely and important topics in practice, policy, and theory, including empirical research articles, systematic review articles, and program evaluations that illustrate theoretical issues or new phenomena. This journal is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), and the editors have pledged to abide by its guidelines regarding the submission and publication of articles, including intellectual property and plagiarism. In addition, in support of diversity, equity, inclusion and justice as well as replicability, CM requires submissions to provide details regarding the characteristics of their samples, including justification of the sample characteristics and a discussion of the limitations and generalizability of the approach. Child Maltreatment understands diversity to include all aspects of human differences, such as socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, language, nationality, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, geography, ability, age, and culture. While science seeks knowledge that can be generalized, specific findings may apply to the unique experiences of individuals or groups, and these issues should be addressed in publication.

    All submissions should include relevant information about the race/ethnicity, sex/gender, and other demographic characteristics of their samples. Information about the context/location of study should also be provided. If addressed, race and ethnicity should be acknowledged as social constructs, rather than as genetic or biological categories with a clear explanation of how race and/or ethnicity were assigned (e.g., self-report, observation by an investigator or other third-party, electronic health record with uncertain method). Use of “other” as a category for race and/or ethnicity should be clearly defined. It is inappropriate to assign missing race and/or ethnicity to an “other” category. The use of racial and/or ethnic categories in statistical analyses should be justified in the Methods section to the extent possible, and the interpretation of results should be consistent with the understanding that race and racism are social constructs. All submissions should also include a statement about the generalizability of results.

    Regular articles should be no more than 35 double-spaced pages, inclusive of title page (auto-generated by the system), abstract, tables, figures, and references. Brief reports also will be accepted, limited to no more than 15 double-spaced pages, inclusive of title page (auto-generated by the system), abstract, tables, figures, and references. Reviews of the literature should be no more than 52 double-spaced pages. Of note, CM is interested primarily in empirical reviews (i.e., meta-analyses, systematic reviews) rather than narrative, descriptive reviews, which are rarely published if not invited. Manuscripts that exceed the page limit may be sent back to authors to be shortened prior to going out for peer review. Authors can include additional materials for online-only publication as supplementary files. There is currently no page limit for online-only supplements. All submissions must include an abstract of approximately 150 words on the first page. Keywords will be requested during the submission process. The authors’ name(s) and affiliation(s) must be listed on a separate Title Page for anonymous review. Authors should mask any other identifying information within the manuscript text prior to submission (e.g. program and IRB names, funding, acknowledgements, references to prior work).

    Authors should use 12 pt. Times New Roman font for the main body text and references. Tables and figures should be included at the end of the document, each on a separate page. Submissions should otherwise be prepared and formatted according to the guidelines in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th edition). Manuscripts that do not meet formatting requirements may be edited by CM staff to determine page length and/or sent back to authors for re-formatting.

    Artificial intelligence (AI) tools cannot take responsibility for the accuracy or integrity of a manuscript and, therefore, do not qualify for authorship. While the use of AI tools is discouraged, if generative AI tools are used in any part of manuscript preparation, from writing to data analysis to image creation, the authors must report it in the Methods and Acknowledgments sections and note use of an AI tool in the cover letter. Identification of AI must include the name and manufacturer of the AI tool and how it was used in relation to the work being submitted. Authors must state in their disclosures that they reviewed and edited the content as needed and take full responsibility for the integrity and accuracy of all material in their manuscript, including any content generated by AI.

    Submission to Child Maltreatment implies that the manuscript has not been published elsewhere and is not under consideration by any other journal. Please include a cover letter with a statement to this effect, information about any papers published using the same dataset, information on how the paper makes a novel contribution to the literature, any recommended reviewers, and any other pertinent information with all submissions.

    Submissions in Microsoft Word format may be uploaded to ScholarOne Manuscripts at

    For any queries regarding the submission process or a manuscript’s appropriateness for CM, please contact:

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