Submissions

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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  • The submission file is in Microsoft Word, RTF, or Open Office document file format.
  • Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Style Guide, which is found under the 'Authors' menu.
  • The submission is anonymous in accordance with the instructions for Ensuring a Blind Review. All references to named individuals and/or institutions have been removed.
  • All necessary consent and approval has been granted to ensure that the research was conducted in an ethical and responsible way.

Author Guidelines

Peer Review Process

Authors are requested to submit to JLDHE an anonymous version of their paper, with all biographical details removed for peer review purposes.

PLEASE NOTE: part of our procedure is to post a call for peer reviewers to our regular subscriber mailing lists. We might use anonymised extracts from your submission (normally your manuscript’s title and abstract) for this purpose. If you do not consent to this process you will be prompted to indicate this choice by responding to the acknowledgement email you will receive after posting your submission, and in this case, we will make alternative arrangements can be made to seek peer reviewers.

All submissions will be initially assessed by a member of the journal editorial team. If the submission is considered to be potentially suitable, it will be put forward for peer review, which is intended to be a constructive and supportive process.

Authors are encouraged to respond constructively to reviewers' comments after submission, and resubmit if necessary. All resubmissions should include an explanatory note detailing how and where any recommendations or concerns expressed by reviewers have been addressed.

Please note that authors will normally be restricted to a maximum of two submitted items (papers, case studies etc) in any one year, and one published item in any one edition of the JLDHE. There may be exceptions to this convention if the editorial group agree that work submitted is of exceptional importance.

 

Submission Guidelines

The journal publishes a range of papers, case studies, opinion pieces, reviews and brief communications about learning issues, practices, materials and resources. Contributions are invited from academics and HE professionals in any relevant role involving teaching, research, supporting learning or designing materials and resources.

Papers

Papers will normally be articles between 3,500 and 5,000 words (excluding references) that report recent high-quality research, theoretical advances, and innovative applied work in Learning Development. These are likely to include one or more of the following:

  • Methods and results of an original research work;
  • Findings of current or recent empirical studies;
  • Proposed new initiatives or in-depth studies to support Learning Development;
  • Research studies with potential implications in an international context;
  • High-quality research to inform current practices in higher education beyond the context of the original research;
  • Theoretical analyses of issues pertinent to Learning Development.

Papers will typically include the following components:

  • Title (a clear and succinct statement that adequately represents the paper);
  • Abstract (a summary of the paper’s perspective, purpose and key findings, up to 250 words);
  • Keywords (prioritise specific rather than general keywords, for effective indexing);
  • Introduction (a concise description of the research problem and how it fits within current literature; statement of purpose and contribution; background information); may be followed by a literature review;
  • Methods (a detailed explanation of your procedures);
  • Results (logical presentation of your original research results that are essential for Discussion; supplementary materials can be included in Appendices; this section should not have any references);
  • Discussion (explanation of what the results mean, how they compare to other research, and how they respond to the gaps in literature; discussion of any weaknesses and potential alternative interpretations);
  • Conclusions (explanation of how this research advances knowledge in learning development and where it can be taken next; clarification of the article’s key message and its contribution to the field);
  • References (include only works cited in the article; follow the JLDHE style guide).

Case Studies

Case studies will be approximately 2,000 words (excluding references). They should be reports about work undertaken on a local, national or international basis. They are likely to include the following:

  • Studies that focus on an unusual example or setting of a known research problem and provide new perspectives on it;
  • Explorations that shed light on a previously un(der)explored problem or challenge longstanding assumptions or practices by applying innovative frameworks;
  • Arguments that present the particular case study as a potential solution to a problem or a new direction for research in Learning Development;
  • Research or development work that is at an early stage (the article is signalling that the work is in progress).

Case studies should offer an in-depth and well-contextualised analysis of the chosen problem and include the following components:

  • Title (a clear and succinct statement that reflects the scope of the study);
  • Abstract (a summary of the paper’s perspective, purpose and key findings, up to 250 words);
  • Keywords (prioritise specific rather than general keywords, for effective indexing);
  • Introduction / Context (a concise presentation of the research problem and its significance, as well as an explanation of how the study will expand our knowledge and understanding of the problem) may be followed by a brief literature review;
  • Appropriate sections (depending on the chosen approach, these may include a Methods section explaining research strategy and a Discussion that interprets key findings);
  • Conclusion / Recommendations (explanation of how these findings differ from previous research and how they address the research problem; reflection on how this new evidence applies to practice);
  • References (include only works cited in the article; follow the JLDHE style guide).

Opinion Pieces

Opinion pieces will be short scholarly articles of up to 2,000 words in length (excluding references) that express an opinion on issues related to the current practices in higher education. These are written with the LD audience in mind and are likely to include one or more of the following:

  • Articles of a speculative nature (nonetheless written in a scholarly way);
  • Proposed new methods of working or new frameworks for thinking;
  • Critical commentaries on some aspects of Learning Development in higher education;
  • Original perspectives on research and theory relevant to LD community;
  • Discussions covering controversial topics or unusual interpretations.

Opinion pieces should convey the author’s position on a selected topic through a clear, evidence-based argument, with appropriate references to relevant literature. The aim is to inspire debate, encourage new interpretations, and stimulate new research. Opinion pieces should include the following components:

  • Title (a clear and succinct statement that adequately represents the opinion piece);
  • Abstract (conveys a focused and clearly defined point of the piece, up to 250 words);
  • Keywords (prioritise specific rather than general keywords, for effective indexing);
  • Introduction / Context (a concise presentation of the issue the author offers an opinion on and the proposed argument; an ‘opening hook’ is recommended to capture readers’ interest);
  • Appropriate sections (subtopics and themes with different levels of meaning; must be grounded in research / relevant literature and include references);
  • Conclusion (a response to the introduced problem and potentially a call to action);
  • References (include only works cited in the article; follow the JLDHE style guide).

Brief Communications

Brief communications are short articles of approximately 500-1,000 words, depending on the chosen form (see below). They are clear in their focus but less formal in nature, and their intention might be to inspire interest, stimulate debate, propose new ideas or even entertain. Brief communications have a distinctive voice and include, but are not limited to, the following forms:

  • Correspondence (letters on a current topic of interest to the LD community);
  • Commentary (a response to a recently published article in JLDHE; must only relate to the most recent Issue);
  • Research preview (presentation of the author’s ongoing study or project; e.g., work in progress that has already shown interesting preliminary findings);
  • Reflection (discussion of the implications of previously conducted studies or unpublished articles);
  • Humanistic essay (innovative academic writing; emancipatory criticism; critical re-readings of texts, theories, and practices; epistemological reflections on ideas drawn from past traditions and the arts)
  • Creative speculation (what-if scenarios with prompts for dialogue);
  • Invention of new words or terms (disruption of existing terminology and ways of thinking);
  • Essay-as-search (for meaning, for dialogue; writing as a process that shapes thinking about LD).

A note on writing brief communications: while their structure is liberated from the constraints of a usual research article and authors are encouraged to be adventurous with titles, to forgo headings, and to share their expert knowledge and experience in a conversational writing style, these submissions are still expected to adhere to the rigorous standards of scholarly criticality.

Reviews

Book reviews will be approximately 1,000 words in length (excluding references). They will likely include:

  • A short summary of the book’s purpose and its main argument or ideas;
  • Evaluation of the main argument or ideas;
  • Evaluation of the evidence used;
  • Discussion of the book’s relationship to the wider scholarship of its subject area (where it agrees or disagrees with other works, for example);
  • An exploration of how the book relates to the practice or theory of Learning Development.

It will likely not include:

  • Excessive quotations from the book itself;
  • A critique based on how the reviewer would have written the book;
  • A full description of the book’s ideas (more focus on evaluation, rather than description).

A review of an edited book will likely include:

  • An overview of the book, its purpose and the connecting themes;
  • An evaluation of how successfully the edited book works as a connected whole (for example, is it too broad or too narrow? Are there any glaring gaps?);
  • An evaluation of some of the outstanding or particularly important chapters (with an explanation of why these were chosen).

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