Proceedings of the ACM on Programming Languages (PACMPL)


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Information and Guidelines for Authors

Proceedings of the ACM on Programming Languages does not accept unsolicited submissions. Each issue of the journal has a Principal Editor and is devoted to a particular subject area (broadly construed) within programming languages. Manuscripts for consideration in a future issue of PACMPL should be submitted in response to an appropriate Call for Papers.

The following essential information is common to all issues of PACMPL:

In addition, authors should note any special instructions regarding the preparation of submissions (for example, page limits, anonymization, special paper categories, additional material, or artifact evaluation) and the handling of accepted papers found in the relevant Call for Papers.

Manuscript Preparation

Article Format and Template

Papers are required to use the ACM Master Article (acmart) format with the acmsmall sub-format.

ACM provides technical support for authors using the acmart format. General comments and problems about the acmart format may be communicated through the PACMPL Information Director .

For LaTeX Users

For LaTeX users, the PACMPL package ( is a light-weight package that include only the essential files for an author:

The review option is strongly encouraged, but not required, for submissions. (The review option will add line numbers, which make it easier for reviewers to reference specific parts of the paper in their comments, but should have absolutely no other effect on the typesetting.)

The acmart format is also available from ACM's Master Article page and as a CTAN package (and is distributed with most popular TeX distributions). However, these are heavy-weight packages, including the documented LaTeX (.dtx) file, samples of all of the different sub-formats, and bibliography and image files used by the samples, that most authors won’t want or need. The PACMPL template (acmart-pacmpl-template.tex) is not distributed in the heavy-weight packages; authors are encouraged to use the template if they obtain the acmart format via the heavy-weight packages (or through their TeX distribution).

For Microsoft Word Users

For Microsoft Word users, the acmart format is available from ACM's Master Article page.

Author-Year Citations

Papers are required to use author-year citations.

Author-year citations may be used as either a noun phrase, such as "The lambda calculus was originally conceived by Church [1932]", or a parenthetic phase, such as "The lambda calculus [Church 1932] was intended as a foundation for mathematics". A useful test for correct usage it to make sure that the text still reads correctly when the parenthesized portions of any references are omitted. Take care with prepositions; in the first example above, "by" is more appropriate than "in" because it allows the text to be read correctly as a reference to the author. Sometimes, readability may be improved by putting parenthetic citations at the end of a clause or a sentence, such as "A foundation for mathematics was provided by the lambda calculus [Church 1932]".

In LaTeX, use \citestyle{acmauthoryear} to select author-year citations and then use \citet{Church-1932} for citations as a noun phrase, "Church [1932]", and \citep{Church-1932} for citations as a parenthetic phrase, "[Church 1932]"; for details, see Sections 2.3–2.5 of the natbib documentation.

Grayscale and Color

Papers may use color, but should be understandable when printed or viewed in grayscale.

Although PACMPL is published electronically, authors should be mindful that reviewers and readers may print articles on grayscale printers or view articles on electronic ink devices. Papers that make essential use of colors that are not discriminated when projected to grayscale may be difficult understand. Furthermore, common color visual deficiencies include red-green and blue-yellow, which may make color screen or print versions of an article inaccessible to certain readers, and situational conditions (e.g., bright sunlight on white paper or a mobile screen) may also reduce color discriminability. For more information, please see the ACM Accessibility Recommendations for Publishing in Color.

ACM Computing Classification System (CCS)

Papers should include proper indexing and retrieval information from the ACM Computing Classification System. A web tool can be used to assign CCS concepts and to generate CCS codes as TeX and/or XML fragments for inclusion in manuscripts prepared using both LaTeX and Microsoft Word; more details may be found in the How to Classify Works Using ACM's Computing Classification System document.

Advice on Writing

Accepted papers must be of high-quality in both technical contributions and clarity of exposition; authors should strive to make their papers accessible to a broad audience. Some advice on how to write submissions is provided by the following:

Language Service

ACM has partnered with American Journal Experts (AJE) to provide language editing (and translation) services to ACM authors. AJE has helped thousands of researchers around the world to present their research in polished English suitable for publication in journals such as those published by ACM. Editing is available for manuscripts prepared using both LaTeX and Microsoft Word

To take advantage of this partnership, visit When using this link, you will get a 15% discount for all AJE services. (Editing services are at author expense and do not guarantee publication of a paper.)

Review Process

After the submission deadline, the Principal Editor may reject any papers that do not comply with any common or special instructions regarding the preparation of submissions found in the Call for Papers and will assign each remaining paper to a minimum of three reviewers.

Two rounds of reviewing contribute to the final selection of papers. The first reviewing round assesses the papers according to the quality criteria outlined in the Call for Papers and results in the selection of a subset of submissions that are either accepted as-is or are deemed potentially acceptable. All other papers are rejected in the first round. Authors of potentially acceptable papers are requested to improve specific aspects of the research and the paper. Authors are given a short period of time to perform the revisions and re-submit the paper. The second and final reviewing round has the same reviewers assess how the revision requests have been acted upon by the authors and whether the final paper maintains, or even improves, the level of contribution of the original submission. Revisions that significantly lessen the contribution of the work, or that fail to adequately address the reviewers' original concerns, will lead to the paper's rejection.

Note that while always conforming to the above guidelines, as well as the principles of the Proceedings of the ACM (PACM) journal series in general, review processes may vary between issues of PACMPL. For example, an issue may or may not employ double-blind review. Similarly, an issue may or may not permit an author-response period during the first reviewing round, to give authors a chance to comment on reviews before the initial decision is made. These review process variations arise from the experience of the community in determining (and experimenting with) what leads to best decisions. The PACMPL Advisory Board considers this dynamism to be a healthy practice that engages the community in continually seeking to improve its editorial processes. The specific review process used will be included in the Call for Papers for and the front-matter of the PACMPL issue.

Post Acceptance

Once a paper is accepted, the authors will be informed and instructed to submit the final version of their paper for transmission to ACM for publication. Authors are expected to submit a "camera-ready" version of their paper, including both source files (LaTeX or Word files, image files, bibliography files, etc.) and generated PDF file; in general, little to no copyeditting is applied to accepted papers. Authors will also be sent information and instructions on electronically filing an ACM rights management form.

As a Gold Open Access journal, PACMPL is committed to making high-quality peer-reviewed scientific research in programming languages free of restrictions on both access and (re-)use. The PACMPL editorial board encourages authors to support open access by licensing their work with the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC-BY) license, which grants readers liberal (re-)use rights. CC-BY is also used by LIPIcs. A reasoned argument for CC-BY is given by the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association.

Authors of accepted papers will be required to choose one of the following publication rights:

  • Author retains copyright, licenses the work with a Creative Commons license, and grants ACM a non-exclusive permission-to-publish license (suggested choice of the PACMPL editorial board)
  • Author retains copyright of the work and grants ACM a non-exclusive permission-to-publish license
  • Author retains copyright of the work and grants ACM an exclusive permssion-to-publish license
  • Author transfers copyright of the work to ACM

For more information, please see ACM Copyright Policy and ACM Author Rights.

To show support for PACMPL's Gold Open Access policy, authors are requested to pay a deeply discounted Article Processing Charge of 400 USD, made possibly by generous financial support from SIGPLAN. In the event that authors are unable to pay this fee, SIGPLAN has agreed to cover those costs to ensure that all articles published in PACMPL are Open Access in the ACM Digital Library. PACMPL and SIGPLAN continue to explore the best models for funding open access, with a particular focus on sustainability.

Third-Party Material

All third-party material in a paper must be appropriately attributed. At a minimum, ownership attribution is required, but the copyright holder or licensing conditions of the included content may require additional attribution or acknowledgment.

Unless stipulated by licensing conditions, authors are required to secure written permission from the copyright holders for the use of any third-party material in their paper. Information and permission regarding all third-party material will be required when completing the ACM rights management form.

See ACM Guidance for Authors on Fair Use and ACM Instructions for Including Third-Party Material for more details.

Additional Online-only Material

Authors of accepted papers may provide additional online-only material, and a brief description thereof, that will be available from the paper's webpage in the ACM Digital Library.

  • Supplemental / Refereed material includes extra content that is reviewed with the submitted paper. For example, a proof that is not included in the paper, but is provided in an appendix. Such content, when properly peer-reviewed, is considered to be an integral part of the paper and part of the published work; as such, an author's chosen publication rights for the paper applies to this material.
  • Auxiliary / Unrefereed material includes extra content that is not reviewed with the submitted paper, but the author supplies as an additional resource for readers. For example, a large data set used in the research or a software artifact developed as part of the research. Such content is not considered to be a part of the published work; as such, an author's chosen publication rights for the paper does not apply to this material. Instead, the author will be required to grant ACM permission to serve the auxiliary materials and to assert that the auxiliary materials abide by ACM terms.

The refereed or unrefereed nature of the material will be clearly designated on the paper's webpage along with a short "readme" file describing its content and requirements for using it.

Authors should contact the Principal Editor for advice regarding the status of additional material submitted with the paper at the time of review. Submission of additional material does not guarantee peer-review of such material.

Post Publication

As a Gold Open Access journal, PACMPL is committed to making high-quality peer-reviewed scientific research in programming languages free of restrictions on both access and (re-)use. Through the generous support of ACM and SIGPLAN, all papers published in PACMPL are guaranteed permanent free online access to the definitive version in the ACM Digital Library.

Authors hold many permanent rights pertaining to works published by ACM, including, but not limited to, the rights: to post the author's version of the work (with a DOI pointer to the definitive version of record) on their home page, in their institutional repository, in repository legally mandated by an agency funding the research on which the work is based, and any non-commercial repository or aggregation that does not duplicate the ACM tables of contents; to generate ACM Author-Izer links to the definitive version of record; to reuse any portion of the work in future works, including books, lectures, and presentations; to create major revisions (i.e., 25% or more of new substantive material) that are considered new works. See ACM Author Rights for more details.

Publication Policies

Authors preparing a paper for submission to and publication in PACMPL should review the following ACM and SIGPLAN documents:

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