Guidelines for Contributors and Framework to evaluate potential IAACD website materials

Background and Purpose

The International Alliance of Academies of Childhood Disability (IAACD) is an assembly of academies of childhood disability globally. It aims to capitalize on the efforts of colleagues from around the world (Europe, Americas, Africa, Asia, Pacific) who are leading regional childhood disability clinical and educational initiatives to support the best outcomes for children with child-onset disabilities and their families. The Knowledge Hub of the IAACD will provide professionals and families free access to current and evidence-based information, knowledge and training, at the right time, anywhere in the world.

The Knowledge Hub has been created by members of the IAACD and is envisioned as a resource for people everywhere. The IAACD invites colleagues to propose, for posting on the Hub, material that they have created, or used, or recommended to others as useful. This brief document provides (i) information for potential contributors and (ii) the considerations that will be used by the Knowledge Hub Review and Adjudication Committee to review any proposed materials.

  • Contributions to the IAACD Knowledge Hub may be condition-specific or broad cross-cutting themes such as child development, International Classification of Function Disability and Health (ICF), family-centred service (FCS), measuring outcomes, the lifespan approach, critical appraisal and research methods, service development, advocacy, and so on.
  • Contributions can be any type of resource related to childhood disability that may be helpful for collective knowledge for the global childhood disability community. This may include training presentations, keynotes, webinars, fact sheets, decision-making algorithms, visual resources, videos, guides and more.
  • Resources available on the IAACD Knowledge Hub will all be freely available for download. However, adaptations and additions by people who download these materials can only be made with permission from the corresponding author or institute.
  • All offers of materials should be submitted on a Submission Form (see below) via email to You will receive a confirmation email from the review team with any requests for clarification. After submission, your material will be sent, to two peer reviewers. You can expect to receive a decision response within 2 months of submission. In order to maintain the freshness and currency of materials on the site, all contributions accepted for posting will be reviewed every 3 years, at which time people may be invited to submit an updated version. This is a new process so changes may be made as the site develops and the review team learn through experience so please bear with us!

Content and formatting of presentation

  • Completed Submission Form including the conflict of interest and funding sections.
  • Resources will remain in the format in which they are submitted (with their organizational logos, etc),
  • References (at the end): peer-reviewed references to be in a standard and consistent format.
  • Video files should preferably be submitted via to and will be held in a Vimeo account.
  • File naming and format: Save files in commonly used formats (.docx, .ppt, .pdf) and follow the convention of surname, year, abbreviated title (e.g., Smith_2018_GMFCS introduction).

Style points

  • Language: All submissions must be in English. Translations will be permitted as per approval from the review committee, following standard translation guidelines. For contributors with English as a second language, we would recommend having resources reviewed by an individual proficient in the English language for grammar and spelling.
  • Abbreviations should be kept to a minimum. Everything should be stated in full on the first use with the abbreviation following in brackets. Proprietary products: contributors should use non-proprietary names of drugs or devices unless the trade name is critical (e.g., botulinum toxin rather than Botox ® or Dysport ®). If a proprietary product is cited, details should be included, such as name and location of manufacture.


All the rights for the content will remain with the authors, but they will give license to the Readers. Creative Commons Attribution- Non-Commercial Public License.


Contributors will need to sign the Submission Form confirming the following permissions have been obtained:

  • Legal written consent has been gained for all original images/video files for online and training purposes.
  • All images obtained online are open access and not subject to copyright.
  • Permission has been gained to reproduce copyrighted images such as figures/tables from published sources.

Submission documents

  • Completed and signed Submission Form
  • Resource material

In so far as the IAACD is hosting a website that must be perceived to be a credible go-to site – and because building credibility takes time, and losing it can happen very quickly – a GPEC review committee will have the responsibility to look at all materials proposed for posting on the website, and to assess their suitability according to a set of criteria outlined below.

Material will be reviewed by two reviewers.

Reviewers will be asked to complete a Review Form. This includes a 1-2 sentence introduction about the proposed resource so that people who find it understand how the adjudicators who endorse it are seeing and thinking about it.

As part of the review of submitted materials, the Review Group may engage in some back-and-forth discussion with submitters if issues such as those identified below require clarification.

Issues for consideration for posting

  1. Is the material CREDIBLE?
    • Is there evidence of the validity and reliability of the materials? (It is not enough for materials to ‘look right’ or ‘have potential’ – they need to have been adequately developed and field tested.)
    • Are there references that can be added to whatever is being posted so readers can assess it?
    • Is the material being used in our field of child and youth disability?
  2. Is the material RELEVANT/GENERALIZABLE to communities and programs beyond the places where it was developed?
    • Reviewers will need to assess this criterion, because even the best ideas might be site- or situation-specific. (An example might be a recommendation that every ‘at-risk’ child, or every child with cerebral palsy (CP), should have an MRI scan – something that is challenging even in most western centres in terms of cost and availability.)
    • Is the material known to be relevant to the field of child and youth disability? (Here we are thinking of what might be suitable tools used in adult rehabilitation, that might for many reasons not be applicable to child and youth disability.)
  3. Is the material ACCESSIBLE/AVAILABLE?
    • If the recommended resource is a published paper, is it in the open-access/ public domain so that it can be posted directly, or are there barriers to accessing it? (Most people outside university-based programs will not have access to a library to access and download recommended papers that are not already open access.)
    • Is there a cost to acquire the materials? (For example, many measures are only available at a cost – sometimes quite steep – that prevents people with limited resources from being able to afford it.)
    • Does the recommended resource (e.g., a clinical assessment tool) require training? If so, is that training available and is it free or costly?
    • Are there contact details for the people who submit materials that are posted?
    • Is the material available in other languages?
  4. Is the material ETHICALLY SOUND and ACCEPTABLE across a range of cultures?
    • Many people would have trouble with an assessment or clinical measure that focuses on the negative. (For example, there are so-called quality of life tools for kids and teens that ask about what these young people cannot do, or how badly they feel about their predicament. Such tools should, in the opinion of many of us, be avoided.)
  5. Is there a COMMERCIAL angle to the material?
    • We want to avoid being a site that advertises people’s ‘products’ for commercial gain. (Here we are thinking of ‘therapies’ that are costly – EVEN IF there is some credible evidence of efficacy. We must not ‘endorse’ commercial ventures.)
    • There may be a reasonable cost attached to some validated clinical tools and these will not be excluded
  6. Is the LANGUAGE of the material a potential barrier to its uptake?
    • Currently we want people who propose the material to provide an English version.
  7. Are there known or potential RISKS to the use of the therapy/assessment/product?
    • An example might be the recommendation for MRI scans in children for whom sedation is needed. In this situation people will need, at a minimum, to identify the potential risks and benefits so others can make an informed decision about the issue.
  • Resource title
  • Authors, qualifications, designations
  • Photo of lead author and 100-word biography
  • Corresponding author’s name and email address
  • Name and email of proposer if different from author
  • Conflict of interest statement
  • Funding sources
  • Target audience (general physician, paediatrician, neonatologist, neurologist, orthopaedic surgeon, other medical specialty, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, speech and language therapist/pathologist, audiologist, orthotist/podiatrist, psychologist, social worker, educator, parent, individual with a disability)
  • Level of content (basic, intermediate, advanced)
  • Key learning outcomes (3-5 dot-points, maximum 100 words)
  • Synopsis of resource (maximum 150 words)
  • Broad topic (maximum 50 words)
  • Key words (3-5)
  • Languages available

Send us your submission on