Most useful textbook and academic posts of the week: March 29, 2019
This week’s collection of articles from around the web has a spring-like atmosphere of newness, pruning, and growth. We begin with two questions: “What does academic work look like?” and “Which academics are happy?” We then explore emerging trends in the academic publishing lifecycle, revision processes, and synthesis in a literature review. We close with new ideas on re-reading and technological support for peer review.
Kelly Barnhill once said, “That’s the magic of revisions – every cut is necessary, and every cut hurts, but something new always grows.” Whatever revisions face your writing (or writing practices) this week, find the magic that helps you grow. Happy writing!
Work planning for academics usually starts with an estimate of how they will spend their time to meet expectations, which is then negotiated with employers, with or without the help of a Union. I say this with love, but academics tend to be optimistic time managers who just work over time to accommodate their unrealistic promises.
Over the last eight years, since I started working closely with academics, the number of metrics has only continued to expand, prompting the question from an academic I know well: “Which academics are actually happy in English higher education today?”
The academic publication lifecycle has undergone radical changes over the past several years. These changes have a significant impact on how scholarship will be written, published, promoted, and read in the future.
So, when faced with the two the R and Rs, we had choices – take the papers as they were to other journals, give up on the papers altogether, or try to do enough tweaks to get past the reviewers. Or – we could rethink the papers. Yes, rethink. Go back to the beginning and start over.
At the synthesis stage, we pull together the notes we’ve made and try to make sense of it all. We think inductively to create a holistic explanation of the various fragments we’ve collected from our sources. When we write the methods section of a literature review, we draw from diverse sources to create a coherent analysis of the research tradition.
I knew I wanted to draw on Richardson’s work, and I thought to myself that I should re-read her book. You know what? This is the very first time it has ever occurred to me to re-read an academic book. I have occasionally re-read an academic journal article, but I don’t do that often either. Yet I regularly re-read novels. So why is this?
To better understand the state of the art in technological support these innovations, we’ve collected information from 18 journal management and publishing platforms about support for the suggested changes above, as well as other miscellaneous changes to peer review workflow.