Submission Preparation Checklist
As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
What is considered frontline in research on learning and instruction?
Generically, frontline research is research that leads the field, being more than just incrementally innovative or original. Such research is viewed as risky, explorative, not having a long-standing tradition and not simply extending previous well-established research. It is expected to provide input for new theoretical, empirical and/or methodological renewal of the research field. Check the About the journal page for more examples.
- The submission described here has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis), nor is it currently under consideration for publication in another journal, nor will it be submitted elsewhere prior to this journal's making an editorial decision. If one of these criteria is violated, an explanation has to be provided in the section 'Comments to the Editor'.
- All authors must have materially participated in the research and/or article preparation.
Both the submission and publication of this manuscript is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out.
- Any person cited as a source of personal communications in the manuscript has approved such citation. Written authorization may be required at the Editor's discretion
- If applicable, any person appearing in the audio-visual material that is incorporated in the manuscript has given his or her consent.
- If accepted, it will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form (or for short articles to a regular/long version of the manuscript), in English or in any other language.
- This manuscript and other material published in Frontline Learning Research represent the opinions of the author(s) and should not be construed to reflect the opinions of the Editor or the Publisher.
The submission file has been prepared in the template as provided by Frontline Learning Research, and has been saved in a docx. file. Please download the FLR manuscript template via the following link http://journals.sfu.ca/flr/public/journals/1/Template_Submission_FLR_2014.docx. The cover page with author details should be uploaded separately (as supplementary file) in order to preserve our blind review procedure. Please download the template cover page via the following link http://journals.sfu.ca/flr/public/journals/1/Template_Cover_Page_FLR_2014.docx
- The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal, i.e. APA style.
- The instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed by the author(s).
BEFORE YOU SUBMIT
1. Type of manuscripts
Frontline Learning Research welcomes different types of contributions.
- Theoretical Contributions. This includes articles seeking to contribute to how certain learning phenomena or research areas within the learning sciences are perceived or conceptualised. For example, articles making the case for a new (or an alternative) line of research or articles elaborating a new conceptual definition of a particular area of research or a learning phenomenon. Review studies and meta-analysis studies will not be accepted for review. It is recommended to submit these type of contributions to Educational Research Review.
- Methodological contributions.This involves articles presenting new or alternative methodological approaches, procedures or instruments that could open new avenues for conducting research in the broader field of the learning sciences. Indicatively, this could include the following type of methodological articles:
- Articles purporting to contribute new insights into open issues or debates that are methodological in nature.
- Articles purporting to advance arguments challenging certain approaches on methodological grounds.
- Articles purporting to propose and document methodological innovations that could either contribute to resolving certain weaknesses of more conventional approaches or expand their affordances.
- Empirical contributions. This concerns studies applying a clearly described methodological design for collecting and processing empirical data, so as to address well-defined research questions. It could include either brief articles (e.g. articles reporting new data that seem to challenge current ways of thinking about certain topics) or regular articles that report on empirical studies within the learning sciences, in a thorough and in-depth manner (e.g. qualitative studies intended to thoroughly describe certain learning phenomena on the basis of rich empirical data). The journal emphasises new approaches, which can relate to:
- Resolving contradictory findings in current literature.
- Providing first empirical findings on some emerging theory.
- Findings that seem to challenge current ways of thinking about certain topics.
- Commentaries/Editorial Column. Commentaries are welcomed, by which a forum is provided to authors for expressing differing viewpoints, criticisms and clarifications of topics in published papers, either in Frontline Learning Research or in other journals. Articles published in this section will be relatively brief (1000-3000 words). This type of contributions includes also brief editorials, either by the editors or by invited scholars within EARLI. These are intended to raise certain issues so as to initiate productive scientific discussion within the wider community of the learning sciences and also to inspire potential authors. All these type of submissions will undergo a similar rigorous evaluation so as to maintain a high-quality standard.
2. Length of manuscripts
Although Frontline Learning Research will aim at publishing relatively short articles, also more lengthy articles are welcomed. There is no difference in the scientific quality of short, regular, and extended articles. The reason to accept an extended article will be contingent on the added value associated with publishing the theoretical or empirical aspects of that article. More specifically, four different lengths of articles are welcomed.
- Short articles (1000-3000 words). This type involves brief articles purporting to make theoretical, methodological, or empirical contributions. Also commentaries are restricted to a word limit up to 3000 words.
- Regular articles (3000-6000 words). This length limit allows for writing extensive, thorough articles. Short and regular articles are reviewed within 3 weeks.
- Extended articles (6000-20000 words). In certain cases, in which there are good reasons to assume that even a word limit of 6000 might still be restrictive (e.g. qualitative studies, studies dealing with certain types of data or studies that report on an extended series of experiments), it will be possible to further extend the article up to 20000 words. However, this requires convincing arguments demonstrating that this extension is indeed necessary for presenting a stronger article. .
The aforementioned word counts include the main body of text, the required key points and possibly any acknowledgements, if applicable. References, tables, figures or other appendices are not included in these word counts. Furthermore, each manuscript is required to include an abstract between 150-250 words, which are not included in the general word counts as listed above.
FLR ask its authors to use the FLR-manuscript template when submitting their manuscript. This manuscript includes the necessary sections and helps you with the lay-out of the manuscript. Please download the FLR-template via the following link
Furthermore, in order to preserve the blind review procedure, also a seperate template for the title page has been organised. Please use this template to inform FLR about all meta data, and upload this as a seperate file to the system. Please download the FLR-titlepage-template via the following link
Finally, each manuscript should be accompanied by a short letter to the editor in which the authors introduces his/her manuscript and states what makes this manuscript ‘frontline’. In other words, the author is kindly asked to clarify to which extent the manuscript fits the scope of FLR. This letter can be organised by means of the ‘comments for the editor’ box, which can be found on the first page of the submission system.
3a. Title page/first page
The first paragraph/page should include the following information
- The name(s) of the author(s)
- A concise and informative title
- The affiliation(s) of all author(s).
- The contact details, including e-mail address, of the corresponding author is requested. Contact details must be kept up to date by the corresponding author.
We have organised a template for authors to use to create this title page (please visit http://journals.sfu.ca/flr/public/journals/1/Template_Cover_Page_FLR_2014.docx). In order to preserve a blind review procedure, we ask you to upload this file separately from your main text file, for which we have created another template (http://journals.sfu.ca/flr/public/journals/1/Template_Submission_FLR_2014.docx).
All manuscripts should be accompanied by an abstract between 150 and 250 words, which are additional to the general word counts of the different types of manuscripts. The abstract should briefly state the purpose of the research, the principal results and major conclusions. Please make sure to avoid undefined abbreviations or unspecified references. Also, references should be avoided, but if essential, the author(s) and year(s) should be cited.
Authors are required to provide 3 to 6 keywords related to their manuscript, that are listed separated by means of semi-colons (keyword 1; keyword 2; keyword 3; …)
3d. Text formatting
Please take into account the following guidelines when formatting your text.
- Articles should be prepared using the Word template as provided by the editorial team (journals.sfu.ca/flr/public/journals/1/template_submission_flr.docx). Articles that are not prepared in this template will be sent back to the corresponding author with the request to revise the document using the word template.
- Articles should be saved in a docx. Format (word 2007 or higher). Pdf formats are not accepted.
- Frontline Learning Research encourages the use of the formatting style of the American Psychological Association (APA).
- Use a normal, plain font (e.g. Times new Roman, 10 points)
- Do not use more than three levels of headings. More information on how to design these heading is provided in the FLR manuscript-template.
- Use tab stops or other commands for indents, not the space bar
- Use the table function to make tables, not spreadsheets. More information on how to design tables, figures or dynamic material is provided in the FLR manuscript-template.
When using abbreviations, please make sure that you define them at their first mention and that you use them consistently thereafter (for example, Frontline Learning Research (FLR), and FLR thereafter). Nevertheless, try to limit to use of abbreviations as much as possible.
Frontline Learning Research does not encourage the use of footnotes. Nevertheless, if needed, they can be used sparingly to provide the reader with some additional information. Please follow the current APA guidelines in this respect. Footnotes should not be used for reference purposes. When inserting footnotes, please make sure that they are consecutively numbered throughout the article, using superscript lower-case Arabic numbers (or asterisks for significance values and other statistical data). The use of the automatic footnote function of many wordprocessors is encouraged. Finally, if applicable, a table of footnotes is requested. That is, please include each footnote in a table with a superscript lower-case letter.
Authors are required to use the referencing style of the American Psychological Association (APA), both for in-text citations and for the reference list. Please do not use footnotes or endnotes for reference purposes. Please make sure that you only cite and, thus, include literature in the reference list that has been published or accepted for publication.
Figures can be inserted to support and visualise your research. Try to make sure that you keep text in these figures as limited as possible but explain all symbols and abbreviations used. Furthermore, please ensure that each illustration or figure is accompanied by a brief title, according to current APA norms. Important is that this title is provided separately and not attached to the figure. Please include your figures already in the manuscript by placing them in the body text. However, you are also requested to upload these figures separately as metadata/appendices to the manuscript. More information on how to refer to these figures is provided in the FLR manuscript-template.
Moreover, tables can be inserted, according to current APA norms. Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Place footnotes to tables below the table body and indicate them with superscript lower-case letters. Avoid vertical rules. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article. Please include your tables already in the manuscript by placing them in the body text. However, you are also requested to upload these tables separately as metadata/appendices to the manuscript. More information on how to refer to these tables is provided in the FLR manuscript-template.
If you would like to acknowledge the contribution of others to your article (i.e. both persons and institutions, in terms of providing language and/or writing assistance, methodological support, practical-organisational support when collecting data, …), you are provided the option to insert acknowledgements in your manuscript. Please insert these acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the manuscript before the references (cfr. FLR manuscript-template).
Authors are requested to list the frontline keypoints of their research. That is, they are asked to provide a list of 3 to 5 bullet points that convey the core features and/or findings of the research that make their research to be on the frontline of learning research (maximum 150 characters, including spaces, per bullet point). These keypoints are added to the FLR manuscript-template.
3l. Audio-visual material, animation sequences or other dynamic illustrations
Frontline Learning Research offers the possibility the incorporate audio-visual material, animation sequences or other dynamic illustrations to support and enhance your scientific research. Authors who have video or animation files they wish to include in their articles are strongly encouraged to include these within the body of the article. This can be done in the same way as a figure or table. That is, both by placing it in the body text and by uploading these data as metadata/appendices to the manuscript. Please supply 'stills' with your files: you can choose any frame from the video or animation or make a separate image. These will be used instead of standard icons and will personalise the link to your video data. All submitted files should be properly labeled so that they directly relate to the video file's content. In order to ensure that your video or animation material is directly usable, please provide the files in one of our recommended file formats. Please be aware that it will take some time to upload large files. Although our system should accept files up to 2GB, it is not advised to upload files of that size. More information on how to refer to this dyanmic material is provided in the FLR manuscript-template.
Please not that tt is the full responsibility of the author(s) to secure informed consent of the persons who play a role in the audio-visual data. Frontline Learning Research cannot be hold responsible for any complaints or problems related to an improper use of audio-visual data and/or of which the persons involved were not aware of it being published online.
Frontline Learning Research would like to point your attention to the following points when incorporating art work in your manuscript
- Make sure that you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
- Save text in illustrations as 'graphics' or enclose the font.
- Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
- Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
- Provide titles or notes to illustrations separately.
- Produce images near to the desired size of the printed version.
- Submit each figure as a separate file.
Regardless of the application used, when your electronic artwork is finalised, please 'save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below): EPS: Vector drawings. Embed the font or save the text as 'graphics'.TIFF: Color or grayscale photographs (halftones): always use a minimum of 300 dpi. TIFF: Bitmapped line drawings: use a minimum of 1000 dpi. TIFF: Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale): a minimum of 500 dpi is required. If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is'
Please make sure not to
- Supply files that are optimised for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); the resolution is too low;
- Supply files that are too low in resolution;
- Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.
3n. Language and language services
Frontline Learning Research encourages the usage of British English. Please be consistent in your usage of language. As the quality of language and writing remains the full responsibility of the authors(s) submitting the manuscript, it is advised to proofread the manuscript before submitting, either yourself or by consulting external proofreading services.
REVIEW POLICY AND PROCEDURE
1. Review policy
Frontline Learning Research adopts a double blind peer reviewing policy. Both the author(s) and reviewers remain to be anonymous throughout the entire review process. Therefore, all identifying features should be removed from the article itself. This does, however, not preclude authors from citing their own work. Instead, authors must cite their works in a manner that does not make explicit their identity, i.e. delete their names from the text, with “Author(s)” and year used in the references and footnotes instead of the actual names, articles, titles etc. Furthermore, when submitting Microsoft Office documents, authors should make sure that they remove the author identification that is automatically included in the properties of the file. That is, File > Save As > Tools (or Options with a Mac) > Security > Remove personal information from file properties on save > Save. The same applies for authors who submit their manuscript using PDF: Please remove authors' names from Document Properties, which can be found under File on Adobe Acrobat's main menu.
2. Review procedure
Expediting the review process is one of the main aims of Frontline Learning Research.
The review process is organised in two stages. Firstly, the submitted article will be checked in terms of the required technical standards, formatting style and its fit with the scope of the journal. The authors will be informed within 24 working hours after submission on whether their article will be considered for review on the basis of the aforementioned criteria. Frontline Learning Research aims to provide these more lengthy articles with a decision in maximum 3 months.
The decision of the editor is based on the reviews of all the reviewers involved.
Four decisions can result,
- Accept with Minor Revisions
- Major Revisions are required before this manuscript can be reconsidered for publication
The editor’s decision is final.
After the editor has sent out his/her decision letter, the author is provided with a well-defined revision time. That is, 10 working days for short articles (2 weeks), 15 working days for regular articles (3 weeks), and 20 working days for long articles (1 month). Regardless of these suggested deadlines, if we haven’t received the revised manuscript two months after the decision letter was sent out, the revision will be no longer accepted. As a result, the authors should resubmit their manuscript all over again.
When resubmitting a revised manuscript, authors are asked to add a cover letter in response to the comments of the reviewers. In this cover letter, the authors are asked to respond to the comments of the reviewers and to explain their revisions.
Once the manuscript has been accepted for publication, i.e. after major and/or minor revisions have been organised and the manuscript has been fully approved by the editor in charge, the author will be sent the proofs of his manuscript. FLR will not organise external proofreading. This responsibility for correcting typographical errors rests with the author(s). This proofreading stage is restricted to correcting typographical and layout errors. Changes in terms of the content should be communicated to the editor in charge, who will consider whether they are needed and/or allowed.
OPEN ACCESS PUBLICATION FEE
Publishing in this Open Access journal will be free of charge for EARLI members, as the Executive Commitee of EARLI would like to offer this exclusive advantage to its members. Authors who are not an EARLI member at the time of the submission of the manuscript will be asked to pay an Open Access Publication Fee. However, FLR does not wish to install high Open Access Publication Fees as are generally the case with Open Access Journals.
More specifically, depending on the status of the first author of the manuscript a small fee is charged for the publication in this Open Access Journal. That is, if the first author is …
- an EARLI member at the time of submission, no publication fee will be charged.
- not an EARLI member at the time of submission, a publication fee of 200 euro will be charged. Moreover, the first author has the choice to become a member of EARLI or to renew his/her membership as this will be included in the 200 euro publication fee. However, if the author does not want to become an EARLI member or does not want to renew his/her membership at this point in time, 200 euro will be charged as publication fee without the membership application included. In other words, the standard Open Access Publication Fee for FLR is 200 euro. The choice to become an EARLI member is facultative but included in this 200 euro fee, if wished for by the author.
ADMINISTRATIVE ISSUES DURING SUBMISSION PROCESS
When submitting their manuscript for review, authors will be asked to accept the conditions for publishing in case their manuscript is accepted for publication, i.e. the Creative Common License as chosen by FLR.
Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Editor-in-Chief of Frontline Learning Research is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations. If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included in the manuscript submitted, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article.
2. Conflict of Interest
When submitting their manuscript for review, authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organisations that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work.
3. Submission and publication declaration
When submitting their manuscript to Frontline Learning Research, authors are asked to agree with certain submission and publication conditions. More specifically, submission and/or publication of an article implies that
- the submission described here has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis), nor is it currently under consideration for publication in another journal, nor will it be submitted elsewhere prior to this journal's making an editorial decision. If one of these criteria is violated, an explanation has to be provided in the section 'Comments to the Editor'.
- all authors must have materially participated in the research and/or article preparation.
- both the submission and publication of this manuscript are approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out.
- any person cited as a source of personal communications has approved such citation. Written authorization may be required at the Editor's discretion.
- if applicable, any person appearing in the audio-visual material that is incorporated in the manuscript has given his or her consent.
- if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder.
- this manuscript and other material published in Frontline Learning Research represent the opinions of the author(s) and should not be construed to reflect the opinions of the Editor or the Publisher.
- The submission file has been prepared in the template as provided by Frontline Learning Research and has been saved in a docx. file.
- The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal, i.e. APA stule.
- The instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed by the author(s).
The authors will be asked to approve the conditions for submission and publication, which concerns the above list of criteria. Note: Although criteria 5 (i.e. informed consent) is only applicable to those manuscripts that have incorporated audio-visual material, authors are asked to agree with this standard criteria regardless of whether they incorporated these type of data.
4. Funding body
The author is requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.
FLR adopts the Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs Creative Common License (BY-NC-ND). That is, Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors with, however, first publication rights granted to the journal. By virtue of their appearance in this open access journal, articles are free to use, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings.