Sunday, May 22, 2011

Advice on academic publishing

The Spring 2011 CSWEP newsletter includes some short articles giving advice on the academic publishing process. I liked the ones by Robert Moffitt and Patty Anderson the best but all four are useful.

I would emphasize the following points that come up in one or more of the articles:

1. Do not resend a paper that has been rejected at one journal to another journal without revising it in light of the comments received. I can tell you from personal experience that if you get the same reviewer at the second journal, s/he will be really pissed that you have ignored the initial reports. When this happens, it sends a strong signal to the reviewer and to the editor (who is sure to hear about) that you do not care overmuch about the quality of your work.

2. Be sure that the paper you submit is easy to read. Poorly labeled tables, repeated bits of text, typos and such all signal lack of care; you do not want the reviewers and the editor to think that you are similarly careless with the theoretical and empirical substance of your paper.

3. Get some comments from gradual students, friends or colleagues and do an "internal" revision before sending out the paper to a journal. This is less of an issue with co-authored publications, where presumably the two co-authors are reviewing each other's work as the paper is drafted.

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