Learner Development Journal Concept

Aims, Scope, and Policy for a Learner Development Journal

July 29 2015

Proposed by Tim Ashwell, Andy Barfield and Alison Stewart

Based on responses to the Learner Development Journal Survey (May 2015), discussions at the June 2015 Tokyo get-together, and Skype discussions between Alison, Andy and Tim in July 2015

Journal information

ISSN [to be announced later] (online)

Publication frequency and URL

One issue per year

http:// [to be announced later]

Aims and scope

The Learner Development Journal is the online, open-access journal of the JALT Learner Development SIG. Published once a year, The Learner Development Journal is devoted to practitioner-driven research, reviews and interviews exploring learner development issues in second language education.

The Learner Development Journal represents a commitment to group-based professional development and shared exploration. It provides a forum for members of the SIG and others to explore issues related to specific learner development themes in a collaborative and supportive environment. Contributors to The Learner Development Journal are encouraged to inquire into connections between practice and theory, to problematize, and to raise questions as well as provide answers about the learner development issues that interest them.

Rooted in a commitment to community, collaboration and praxis, each issue of The Learner Development Journal publishes work on a particular learner development theme that the contributors of that issue explore together, under the leadership of two issue co-editors.

Each issue of The Learner Development Journal contains five to seven papers of varying lengths related to the common theme, reviews of key texts, an interview with or a contribution from a key teacher/researcher in the field, and an introduction and conclusion written by the issue editor(s) to provide an overview and context to the whole collection of work.

Authors

The Learner Development Journal is open to all SIG members. It also welcomes contributions from outside the SIG. As The Learner Development Journal is primarily driven by SIG members’ interests, the majority of contributors for any one issue of the journal will be SIG members.

Issue editors

The co-editors are jointly responsible for tendering a proposal for an issue of The Learner Development Journal and bringing together a group of contributors with a shared interest in exploring a particular theme together. The co-editors work with the contributors to develop papers to a point where they can be sent to the Review Network. They continue to work with authors as they engage with the reviewers’ comments, refine their texts, and finalise them for publication. The editors also agree a schedule in advance with the Learner Development Journal Steering Group, to enable the journal to be published online by a regular date each year. The issue co-editors are responsible for identifying and inviting researcher-practitioners from outside the SIG who would be willing to contribute to a particular issue, and for providing an overview of work relevant to the theme, as well as a conclusion raising questions from the body of work in that issue.

Proposals from SIG members who would like to act as issue editors for a particular theme are warmly welcomed. Ideas may be, initially, tentative, but can, through group discussion, collaboration and research, develop over time into a collection of papers around one theme. Ideas could be developed by groups at local get-togethers of the SIG or through online collaboration, for example. Themes could also emerge from forums that the SIG organises at different conferences.

 

Peer review process

Writers for The Learner Development Journal have a choice between blind and open peer review. Contributors who prefer blind review will receive feedback from anonymous reviewers, while those who prefer open review will know who their reviewers are. In the case of open review, reviewers’ names will be included at the end of a published article. The intention in either blind or open review is to offer serious, fair and, above all, supportive feedback to writers to help them to develop as teachers, researchers, and learners.

Review Network

Once papers have been developed between co-editors and writers, they will be passed on to a Review Network for feedback. The Review Network consists of Learner Development SIG members who are both interested in learner development issues in second language education and experienced in providing constructive and supportive feedback to writers. In addition to a core group of individuals, reviewers from outside the SIG may be invited to join the Review Network for a particular issue of the journal. Membership of the Review Network will change periodically as new people become involved in providing feedback to writers.

Journal Steering Group

The Journal Steering Group consists of a minimum of three members of the SIG Publications Committee who monitor the practice, process and production of each issue of the Journal. Membership of the Steering Group will change periodically as new people become involved in running the Journal.

Questions for Discussion

July 29 2015

Proposed by Tim Ashwell, Andy Barfield and Alison Stewart

  1. Is the name – The Learner Development Journal – the one to go with? Although Exploring Learner Development was the most popular choice in the online survey, we feel that “exploring” could fall out of fashion or limit the scope of the journal.
  2. Should the journal be hosted on the new LD website or on a separate stand-alone website? What would be the advantages/disadvantages of either option?
  3. Does the journal require a doi (digital object identifier)? Do individual contributions require a doi name? What would be the advantages/disadvantages of including doi?
  4. The proposed regular format of the journal for each issue is: 5-7 papers, review(s) of key work in the field, interview with a key figure relating to the specific theme of an issue, introduction and conclusion by the issue editors. Is this acceptable? Should individual issues of the journal aim to adhere to this format or be free to vary the format?
  5. It is expected that authors will be mainly SIG members. How might contributions to an issue of the journal be selected? Equally, by what criteria might proposals be rejected?
  6. Should issue editors be able to contribute their own papers too to the issue of the journal that they edit? Why? Why not?
  7. Should members of the Journal Steering Group be able to contribute papers to an issue of the journal, or should they keep a clear separation of interest and activity? Why?
  8. Any other questions that you feel are important to raise and discuss …

Guidelines for Making a Proposal for an Issue of The Learner Development Journal

July 29 2015

Proposed by Tim Ashwell, Andy Barfield and Alison Stewart

*** Send your proposal to —————-@—————— by November 10th 2015 ***

We would like to invite proposals for the first three issues of The Learner Development Journal. If you would like to propose a specific theme for an issue of The Learner Development Journal and are interested in exploring that theme together with others, please follow these guidelines in putting together your proposal. Before making your proposal, please be sure to familiarize yourself with the Aims, Scope and Policy of The Learner Development Journal. Many thanks.

Please note that you do not need to put yourself forward as co-editor in order to make a proposal for an issue of The Learner Development Journal. It may be that you are keenly interested in a particular theme to do with learner development and that you would like to see if your interest is shared by others.

  1. Your name First name: ___________________ Family name: ___________________
  2. Your email address ________________________@________________________
  3. You are a Learner Development SIG member: ___ Yes ___ No
  4. Where you live: ____________________________________________________
  5. Your role in this proposed issue: ___ co-editor ___ contributor ___ undecided

If co-editor, the person you have in mind as the joint editor is:

First name: ___________________ Family name: __________________

If contributor, the person(s) you have in mind as co-editor(s) is/are:

First name: ___________________ Family name: __________________

First name: ___________________ Family name: __________________

  1. Explain in about 300-500 words what the theme is that you are proposing and why this theme would be (a) interesting and (b) important for Learner Development SIG members. Include also example questions, problems or puzzles that you and the other contributors would be interested in exploring, and why.
  2. Explain in about 100-200 words how you imagine the shared exploration by contributors will be realized (for example, face-to-face meetings, local get-together discussions, Skype, email).
  3. Explain in about 200 words how you see the timeline for developing the shared exploration and producing the issue of the journal (from discussing and reading, through to researching and writing).
  4. List the contributors (if known at this point) for particular parts of the issue, namely (a) 5-7 papers, (b) review(s) of key texts, (c) an interview with a key teacher/researcher in the field, and (d) introduction and conclusion written by the issue editor(s) providing an overview and context to the whole collection of work.
  5. If you have any questions or concerns about the practice, process or production of an issue of the journal, please include them in your proposal. Many thanks.