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Higher Education

Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University's objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide.

Submitting Proposals

An acquisitions editor generally begins discussions with an author on the basis of a prospectus. If you are unsure whether your project fits the current focus of our editorial program, please don’t hesitate to call (416.441.2941) or e-mail us before submitting a prospectus.


A prospectus is comparable to a preface. It should outline the work’s perspective, purpose, and thesis, highlight its distinctive features, and identify its intended readership. Five to ten single-spaced pages should be enough to give reviewers a good idea of what you propose to do.

Points to be covered by the prospectus:

Table of Contents

The contents should be detailed, including not just chapter titles but all projected headings and sub-headings.

The Book

  1. Provide a brief but specific description of the ground to be covered. What points of view will be expressed?
  2. Identify all the book’s distinctive features and expand on the two or three that are the most critical.
  3. Are you the work’s only author ? If not, who are the other contributors, and what arrangements have been made with them?
  4. Size? Estimated number of words? If you are not able to supply a word count, tell us (approximately) how many double-spaced manuscript pages you intend to submit.
  5. What kind of illustrations (photos, line drawings, maps) will be included? How many of each?
  6. Tell us which of the following you plan to include: introduction, chapter objectives, questions, boxed inserts, cases, problems, summaries, conclusion, appendices, bibliography, glossary, index, supplements such as instructor’s manuals, teaching guides, test banks, and so forth?
  7. What are the current competing titles? Provide the title, author(s), publisher, and copyright date. For each, please describe their strengths and weaknesses.
  8. How does your work differ from the competition?
  9. Who are the authorities best qualified to review your material? Where can they be reached? Please provide complete addresses.
  10. What is the current status of the manuscript? When will it be completed? Is it on disk? If so, what software/system are you using?

The Market

  1. For what course(s) is the book intended? Please be specific.
  2. Is it primarily a review of the literature, or does it report a study?
  3. For what level is it intended?
  4. What does it demand from students?
  5. Is it a core resource or a supplemental reading?

Finally, please include a CV/résumé and sample chapters (if available).

If you have a manuscript or proposal you believe OUP should evaluate, please contact an editor.