The following “Quick Tips” provide suggestions and guidance for submitting manuscripts to InSight: A Journal of Scholarly Teaching. InSight is a peer-reviewed publication highlighting the scholarly contributions of postsecondary faculty. The following information provides an overview of the purpose, scope and functioning of InSight so that faculty may better understand the InSight publication process.
Scope & Focus
InSight features theoretical and empirically-based research articles, critical reflection pieces, case studies, and classroom innovations relevant to teaching, learning and assessment. While there are a broad range of acceptable topics, all manuscripts should be supported with theoretical justification, evidence, and/or research (all methods and approaches relevant to qualitative and quantitative research are welcome); all manuscripts should be appropriately grounded in a review of existing literature.
InSight emphasizes the enhancement of post-secondary education through the professional exchange of scholarly approaches and perspectives applicable to the enrichment of teaching and learning. Relevant to this mission, manuscripts should be geared toward post-secondary faculty and administrators; included in this audience are full-time and adjunct faculty; face-to-face, hybrid and online faculty; tenure and non-tenure track instructors; trainers in corporate, military, and professional fields; adult educators; researchers; and other specialists in education, training, and communications. Recognizing the cross-disciplinary readership of InSight, manuscripts should present material generalizable enough to have relevance to post-secondary instructors from a range of disciplines.
All submissions are evaluated by a double-blind, peer-review process. The masked nature of the reviews helps ensure impartial evaluation, feedback and decisions concerning your manuscript.
This review process utilized by InSight mandates that you should keep the following points in mind when preparing your manuscript:
- Your name and other identifying information should only appear on the title page; the remainder of the manuscript should be written in a more generalized fashion that does not directly divulge authorship.
- All information needs to be explained and supported to the extent that an individual not familiar with a particular institution’s mission, vision or structure can still clearly understand the relevance, significance and implications of the article.
Focus of the Review
Prior to dissemination to the reviewers, the InSight Editor will conduct a preliminary appraisal for content, substance, and appropriateness to the journal. If the manuscript is clearly inappropriate, the author will be informed and the manuscript returned. Appropriate manuscripts will be electronically sent to two reviewers for blind evaluation. Although there is an attempt to match manuscripts and reviewers according to content, interests, and topical relevance, the broad focus of the journal dictates that papers be written for applicability to a wide audience. As such, reviewers may not be content experts in a relevant, matching academic discipline.
The manuscript will be reviewed and evaluated according to the following dimensions:
- Relevance – The most important feature of your manuscript is its relevance; the decision to accept or reject a manuscript is typically based on the substantive core of the paper. As such, manuscripts should introduce the substance of the theoretical or research question as quickly as possible and follow the main theme throughout the article in a coherent and explicit manner.
- Significance – Related to relevance, significance refers to the value of your manuscript for substantially impacting the enhancement of post-secondary education relevant to the target topic. Significant manuscripts will clearly highlight the value, importance and worth of a relevant topic within a meaningful context.
- Practical Utility – As highlighted previously, the goal of InSight is to enhance teaching and learning through the exchange of scholarly ideas. With this purpose in mind, all manuscripts should emphasize the practical value, relevance or applicability of information. Manuscripts should go beyond the simple reporting of information to provide InSight into the implications of findings and the application of information into meaningful contexts.
- Originality – The most effective articles are those that inspire other faculty through innovative practices, approaches and techniques or via the thoughtful self-reflection of the purpose, value and function of educational strategies. Thus, manuscripts that highlight original approaches or perspectives will be given priority. Per the nature of published work, all contributions must be the original work of the author or provide explicit credit for citations.
- Scholarship of Teaching – Contributions to the enrichment of teaching and learning should be grounded in relevant theoretical concepts and empirical evidence. As such, articles should be free from flaws in research substance/methodology and theoretical interpretation. All conclusions and recommendations must be substantiated with theoretical or empirical support; personal classroom experiences and critical reflections should be framed within a structure of existing literature.
- Generalizability – The broad goals and varied audience of InSight mandate that manuscripts be written for consumption across a range of disciplines that allows generalizability of findings and implications. Thus, while classroom techniques may be developed, tested and reported for a specific discipline or student population, the manuscript should go on to highlight the implications for other populations.
- Clarity – All manuscripts must be written in a clear, professional manner free from grammatical flaws and errors in writing style. The purpose of the manuscript should be clearly defined, relevant and supported by the evidence provided. All manuscripts should be structured in a manner that promotes a clear, cohesive understanding of the information presented. Be sure that your manuscript is free from organizational, stylistic or “sloppiness” barriers that would prevent effective communication of your work.
Based upon the feedback and recommendations of the two anonymous reviewers, the Editor will make a final publication decision. Decisions fall into the following categories:
- Reject – Rejected manuscripts will not be published and authors will not have the opportunity to resubmit a revised version of the manuscript to InSight. All rejections will be handled in a courteous manner that includes specific reasons for rejection.
- Accept Pending Revisions – A manuscript accepted-pending-revisions meets all the major requirements for publication but may need improvements in substantive, mechanical or methodological issues. Once these issues are adjusted for, the manuscript will receive a “quick review” by the Editor prior to publication. Very rarely is an article accepted with no changes required; as such, most manuscripts are accepted in this category.
- Accept – Accepted manuscripts will be published “as-is” with no further modifications required.
American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
Calfee, R. & Valencia, R. (2001). APA Guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: APA.