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Now I've never really used Wordpress with more than one author and it's usually been myself so I've followed no editorial process, but with my new site, I'm looking to add a handful of users to the Author role.

I understand there's many roles with different permissions within Wordpress already, but I can't seem to find whether or not there's an option or any documentation about setting WP up so that when Authors submit an article it should go to the Editor group for approval before anything gets published (editors are notified of new pending items via e-mail). Is this possible?

Or does it work like this by default?

As I don't know, I thought I'd ask here.

Thanks for any help in advance

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Yes that's the default behavior. When an "author" writes a post, he cannot publish it, only an "editor" (or higher) can do the publishing action.

As for email notification, there are a couple of plugins for that, here are two :

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