Editors reveal: six ways to get your article rejected

After 1300 submissions, the editors of Australian Journal of Education Technology report what they don’t want in submissions.

  • Irrelevance: the journal title is the giveaway. “it constantly surprises us how many papers submitted … do not align with the aims and scope at all”
  • No reason to read:  make it clear up-front what the paper is about, what it adds to existing scholarship,  why it matters – and present evidence. “If there is already a vast literature on the area you are working in, you need to make it very clear what your contribution is.”
  • Too local: write and substantiate arguments for an international audience
  • Explain how it was done: present all the detail needed for a reader to replicate the study in their own context. “The rest of the paper is not going to matter if a reader cannot understand what you did in your research”
  • Out of date processes: the bigger the sample the better, to provide confidence results can be trusted.  Justify survey scales. Users self-reporting experience (“happy sheets”) are not enough. Use current models for themes in qualitative analysis
  • Doesn’t sum: “many manuscripts submitted to AJET commit crimes against statistics”

Definitely worth a read for aspiring authors: A step-by-step guide on how NOT to get published in a high-impact educational technology journal.



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