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Peer Review and Research

Guidance and resources to support the research process for librarians.

Submitting Papers to Peer Reviewed Publications

  • Identify a topic about which you have knowledge and experience.  This will give your content credibility.  Topics of contemporary value may appeal to some publications more than others.
  • Select a publication in which it would make sense that your publication could appear.
  • Read recent back issues of the publication selected to see what types of papers the editorial board has approved.
  • Write a paper that has value to the audience you are targeting, whether it is boots-on-the-ground, motivational, methods, trends, etc.
  • If appropriate to the paper's audience, include a literature review, statistics, bibliography, charts, pictures, graphs, appendixes, etc.
  • Have a trusted colleague review your draft.  Provide them with a copy of the targeted publication's author instructions.
  1. Reviewers of submitted works will evaluate the paper’s appeal based upon the nature and purpose of the publication to which it is being submitted.  Consult the submission guidelines to ensure the paper is compatible with the nature and scope of the publication.
  2. Comply with citation requirements to ensure that use of other author’s works is clearly documented and to ensure that the original work can be verified as such.
  3. Online submission is the overwhelmingly preferred method of submitting scholarly works to publishers.  Ensure that all requirements are followed accurately during the submission process to avoid delays or rejections not related to the work’s content.
  4. Illustrations, tables, photographs, appendices, and other supporting evidence should be easy to read, and simplicity in presentation and content if they are clearly designed and simply presented.  Consider how they will appear when published in the work, and strive to make them easy on the eyes.
  5. There are usually three types of decisions made by the editorial board:  accepted without additional revision, accepted with additional revision, or rejected.  Be prepared to receive any of these answers.  If the editorial board wishes a revision, be sure to clearly understand their suggestions.  If rejected, consider rewriting with significant changes before submitting to another peer reviewed publication; many such publications will not accept a previously submitted and rejected work. 

Author Instructions from Selected Peer Reviewed Publications

This is a select list of library science peer-reviewed publications.  Other titles may be found here.  Not sure about the integrity of a title?  Consult Ulrich's to determine it's background and whether it's indexed in reputable databases.  Go to Columbia's webpage - How do you know if a journal is legitimate?.  Also, consider using Beal's List of Predatory Publishers.