This module introduces the participant to scholarly journals, their characteristics, types of ownership, job titles and roles played in publishing scholarly journals. It discusses the meaning of different editorial titles and roles – Editor, Editor-in-Chief, and Managing Editor — and the qualities of a good editor. The journal editor and the publishing organization are also considered, especially in terms of what they owe each other.
After completing this module, you will be able to:
- Describe the differences between scholarly journals and other academic publications
- Understand the different ownership models of scholarly journals
- Define the different types of editor and their roles
- Explain the qualities needed to be a good editor
- Appreciate the roles and responsibilities of the editor and the journal owners to each other
The journal plays a key role in the existence and direction of modern scholarly and scientific disciplines. The major form of publication for original research work is the refereed journal. Journals provide a system for the registration of the author’s ownership of ideas; maintain quality through peer review, and communicate the findings to its intended audience and the editor is at the centre of the journal publishing process. The editorial role is critical in validating the quality of content of the journal, ensuring that the journal provides for the distribution of scholarly and scientific breakthroughs, and also providing an archival record of the knowledge creation process.
In the following units, we’ll examine the journal in more detail and reflect on its important role in the development of knowledge and our understanding of the world.
- Unit 1: What are Journals?
- Unit 2: Four Functions of the Scholarly Journal
- Unit 3: Types of Journal Ownership
- Unit 4: Standard Structure for Scholarly Articles
- Unit 5: Editorial Titles and Positions
- Unit 6: Qualities of a Good Editor
- Unit 7: The Editor – Adding Value
- Unit 8: Before You Say “I Do” – What Potential Editors Should Know
- Unit 9: Module Quiz
Self-paced courses can be a bit lonely, so to get to know some of the other people that are taking this course, please add a comment below introducing yourself. Provide your name, institution, journal (if you have one yet), and interest in taking the course. If someone has written something you find particularly interesting, post a reply to their comment.
In addition to introducing yourself, please read this article about Professor James Tumwine and why he started African Health Sciences. Why did he start his journal? How did he know it would be successful? Please add your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of this page.