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Rough and Tumble: Contributing to the Academic Literature through Formal Peer-Reviewed Publishing


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This is a draft presentation about academic publishing. The updated and interactive version is available on Adobe Spark at

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Rough and Tumble: Contributing to the Academic Literature through Formal Peer-Reviewed Publishing

  2. 2. 4/30/2019 Spark Page ("Typewriter...Author" by Rawpixel on Pixabay) PRESENTATION DESCRIPTION Howdo you position to successfully publish to the academic literature? Howdo you knowwhat you have to contribute and what your own voice is? What are the public and known standards, and what are the hidden ones? What are the known risks in publishing, and how do you mitigate these? Howdo you get out there and contribute, without getting used (too much)? Who are the main players, and what is the state of academic publishing currently? What are the main processes for publishing? Howdo you avoid fatal errors in yourwork? Finally, how do you “benefit” from your publication work? WHY "ROUGH AND TUMBLE?" Requirements: uphold tough rigor and high standards for research be as thorough as possible (reviews of literature, documentation) comprehend and wield abstractions accurately (and with understandings of implications)
  3. 3. 4/30/2019 Spark Page understand a field and its peripheries well...and still be able to offer something innovative andnew solve real-world problems in highly complex spaces stand up on one's own against a constant field of competitors (but achieve "personal bests" as one's own best competitor) stand up under wide potential public scrutiny engage reputational risk design against legal liabilities engage sharp peer critiques as part of publishing process and need to respond substantively to critiques apply multimodal delivery of research information create and share research with "lots of moving parts" (complexity) have implications on others' research work have implications on decision-making and the world An academic publication has to be "novel"; it cannot bea repeat of work that has already been achieved by others. If you contest others' work, you'd better have the research methods and data to back up your assertions. Other POSITIONING TO PUBLISH
  4. 4. 4/30/2019 Spark Page researchers will respond if their work is challenged directly or indirectly. Your research and analytics capabilities, points-of-view, work history, formal and informal and nonformal education, and interests will inform your work. Explore topics that are in the periphery of yourexpertise as well. Explore cross-disciplinary work. Collaborate with colleagues. If you are true to yourself, if you are open to developing your skills and points of view, you will already by default have an original voice. Some known publishing risks include the following: intellectual property (IP) YOUR POTENTIAL CONTRIBUTIONS...AND YOUR VOICE MITIGATING KNOWN RISKS
  5. 5. 4/30/2019 Spark Page plagiarism privacy infringements research standards contraventions contractual commitments loss of competitive advantage reputational risks turf challenges and others Common mitigations include the following: Follow all intellectual property laws scrupulously. Cite all sources scrupulously. Avoidany privacy infringements. Ensure that you have all legal rights to the data andrepresentations of people, etc. Handle data correctly andsecurely. Follow all research standards and ethics. If there is human subjects research, ensure that you've gone through institutional review board training and that you adhere to the proper research oversight. (There are standards also for animal research, and others.) If conducting research abroad, ensure that you're also adhering to the standards of the host country.If working with colleagues abroad, ensure that they're adhering to U.S. research standards. Acquire all legal rights as needed.
  6. 6. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Read contracts from beginning to end, and followthe terms to the letter. Do not release data that will result in loss of competitive advantage. Or use up the value in the data before you share it. Be as transparent and professional as possible. Earn your reputation. Follow careful record-keeping and work processes to ensure that all work is defensible. Assure that any false assertions can be factuallyrebutted. Challenge others' turfs when necessary but only with the sufficient evidence. There is space for different voices, so it helps to respect others' voices. However, if a challenge is needed, don't be afraid to raise thatchallenge. GETTING USED...SELECTIVELY
  7. 7. 4/30/2019 Spark Page All publications are effortful to create. They require expensive inputs in research, thinking, funding, human resources, and time, among others. They entail reputational risks. They entail legal risks. (Authors have to indemnify the publishers in case of any related lawsuits.) Publishers pay in "free" digital copies, sometimes...and occasionally print copies (if relevant and available). High-end publishers (with name recognition) confer prestige and social recognition. (Part of their status involves a low acceptance rate, name editors and editorial boards, and broad reach to a wideaudience. Without status, published works do not achieve audience readership or recognition.) Imbalanced Scales (Pixabay)
  8. 8. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Academic publishers count on the work places of the respective researchers to somehow reward productivity in published research. They count on grant funding agencies to recognize the workand potentially fund the researcher's future research projects. (Researchers make similar calculations, too, so they may not look for full "payment" from publishers.) There are dead ends, too, publications which donot make, but which result in lost effort (given the "no multiple submissions" practices in publishing). The so-called "Great Unread" is a problem. Here, a lot of work goes into the research and the writing, but only a limited number sell and are maybe read. Open-shared writings acquire more readers if the topic is engaging, but these can range from about a low of fifty to thousands...of reads (including the counts of automated agents crawling over the public facing readings). When you choose to engage in academic publishing, go with the best publishers first to query. Then work your waydown. (Do not go for the open-access publishing by the university because that has the least track record,the least oversight, and the least prestige.) Red Flags and Dangers about "Getting Used"
  9. 9. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Known researchers invite participation on a research project about which one has had no input, and most of the work is done already. (They just want the name.) An unknown publication "mill" offers to publish any work sight unseen for a low price. (They just want the money.) Aknown publisher invites you to revise a prior work, change 10 - 20% of it, and republish it as an updated Red Flags / Warnings / Alerts (seeding flag from Pixabay)
  10. 10. 4/30/2019 Spark Page one. (They just want the money.) Simply, don't...and no regrets! Two principal investigators (PIs) who were the recipients of the funding grant want their names on a paper from the project because in the sciences even small contributions mean credit should be extended. Simply, just do for political survival and the good of the project. You're alive--no regrets! Youhave a co- authorship credit with powerhouse individuals. Or just know the score. Play your hand differently the next time (tell them about the publication after it has been published). Or, just say no, and offer them a project idea from scratch. Then make sure everyone contributes somewhat equally. MAIN PLAYERS AND STATE OF ACADEMIC PUBLISHING
  11. 11. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Books Published Per Country Per Year Academic book publishers generally will not publish works unless there is a market. Because they do not pay much for a manuscript, they can purchase an "mss" and stock their digital repositories and make back something in the long run. Owl Holding an E-Book Reader (seeding image from Pixabay)
  12. 12. 4/30/2019 Spark Page The average royalties from an academic book published in the U.S. is $1000. The percentage of royalties tends to be 10 - 15%. Most authors are only paid once or twice, in the first year or two, and thereafter, the publisher takes the rest. Self-published authors can put in $2,000 - $5,000 to self- publish, and most of these books do not earn back much (and most authors will end up giving these away). Collecting essays and articles by other authors in a "packaged" textbook is not editing. One Common Scenario: ATypical Researcher- Originated Approach 1. Aresearcher or research team has an idea for research work. 2. They conduct the research. 3. They write it up. 4. They start "shopping" the mss. to respective publishers. 5. Their work is reviewed in a double-blind peer review process. MAIN PROCESSES IN ACADEMIC PUBLISHING
  13. 13. 4/30/2019 Spark Page 6. The editor(s) add in their observations. 7. The workis revised and finalized by the research team. 8. The publishers provide editorial, typography, publishing, and other services. 9. The workis published. 10. The workis publicized. 11. The workfinds some readers. 12. The workis entered into the literature for"forever" archival. Another Common Scenario: ACall forSubmittals 1. Apublisher puts out a call for a special issue... An editor or editorial team puts out a call onelectronic mailing lists... 2. (and then all the steps above) Another Common Scenario: A(Rare) Targeted Invitation 1. Apublisher extends an invitation to an author or authoring team ... to submit a work that will not have to go through peer review... 2. (and then all the steps above except for the double- blind peer review)
  14. 14. 4/30/2019 Spark Page "Fatal errors" are those that will disallow a draftedwork from being published. These are errors which are irrecoverable, and these can be seen during the review process. Lesser errors can be addressed. These fatal errors include the following: incomplete literature reviews and resulting gaps in understandings cherry-picking data in order to make their own research look relevant repeating prior research done (even some from decades ago), a lack of research novelty failure to follow through on basic research standards research gaps or ignored steps plagiarism the lack of necessary oversight over the research unethical research practices (such as in the treatment of people, the treatment of animals,the handling of data, and others) misunderstandings of statistical analyticspractices illogical applications of research findings politicized research findings and / or other typesof biasing FATAL ERRORS TO AVOID
  15. 15. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Non-fatal errors are those which may be addressed by including additional information, re-running data analyses, rephrasing parts of the writing, conducting additional readings and updating information, re-drawing data visualizations, and so on. These are not fundamental mistakes, if they can be headed off at thepass. Stopwatch (on Pixabay)
  16. 16. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Tick-tock. While a workis being created...and then is considered by is dating out. After a certain point-in-time, a draft manuscript is no longer considered sufficiently timely to be relevant. Good research practices include the following... 1. Do a solid and complete review of the literature. Achieve saturation. Take notes, and keep accurate documentation of the work. 2. Make sure that the research is sufficiently planned and conceived. 3. Ensure that there is appropriate oversight of the research. 4. Conduct the research correctly. 5. Keep accurate records. 6. Analyze the data appropriately with the correct statistical and other analyses. 7. Ensure that the logic is solid in terms of analytics. 8. Write up the research correctly. Use data tables and data visualizations and appropriate textual descriptions to showcase the findings. Cite sources appropriately. 9. Submit the workto only one publisher at a time.Be honest and transparent in representing the work. 10. Read peer reviews closely, and follow the advice closely. If the advice is non-relevant, then be ableto
  17. 17. 4/30/2019 Spark Page set up a logical defense of whythat advice should be ignored or only partially mitigated. Anything that can be counted by computers and in so doing capture meaning...will be done. There are qualifiers to the data, to lessen the weight of people self-citing their own work, in some of the calculations. Bibliometrics (on Wikipedia) BIBLIOMETRICS Ruler (on Pixabay)
  18. 18. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Hirsch number of H-index: author-level metric, author productivity, citation impact of publications Impact factor: periodical-level metric, numbers of citations annually Altmetric: social media conversations around published academic works Webometrics: quant aspects of the Web Researcher IDs: ORCID(for disambiguating authors), Publons (for formal reviewing), Google Scholar (for bibliometrics and linkages), and others Let computational power help collect your respective publications. Make sure that the publications you acknowledge as yours are yours... (Sometimes, algorithms get things wrong.) Keep a complete curriculum vitae (CV) with all of your respective publications listed. Google Scholar uses Citations, h-index, and i10- index for their metrics. SELF AS AUTHOR: BIBLIOMETRIC MEASURES AND SELF-PROMOTION
  19. 19. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Note: There are various integrations between these various tools, with data sharing between the various systems and platforms. Social Network Sites for Research Sharing: University Repositories, ResearchGate, and others Do not share copyrighted copies of works on the social network sites...because such sharing is explicitly disallowed by the mainline academic publishers. Such shares undercut their sales, which are often very thin already. (People do not read much anymore, even when they are supposed to for their studies.) Enjoy the research work, the learning work,and professional collaborations, of course Benefit from publication-related connections with colleagues and peers Include the publications in your CV(and maybe even the résumé) Include the publications in your future grant application letters and other documentation Use your work to bridge to a new project or research BENEFITTING FROM YOUR ACADEMIC RESEARCH PUBLICATIONS
  20. 20. 4/30/2019 Spark Page CHECKLIST: AM I READY? training and education and professional skills psychological strength, drive, and grit oversight and professional "cover" required resources technologies Checklist (seeding image from Pixabay)
  21. 21. 4/30/2019 Spark Page risk-taking follow-through ACTIVITY ABOUT COLLABORATION AND CREDIT Youare an administrator. Aresearch team has approached you to help settle a challenge: In what order should the respective contributors be listed (with the primary author first, and the rest following in descending order from second most important to the so-called least important)? Person 1: co-principal investigator, conceptualizerof the original research design, researcher and data collector Person 2: co-principal investigator, department head, figurehead in terms of the research, funderof some of the research work not covered by the grant Person 3: conductor of the review of the literatureto inform the research design and the instrument design Person 4: designer of the research instrument,pilot- tester of the research instrument, datacollector Person 5: data collector, data analyst,data visualization / illustrator Person 6: main writer
  22. 22. 4/30/2019 Spark Page Person 7: guest statistician for backup on some ofthe data analytics Person 8: graphicdesigner Person 9: owner of several primary datasets used in the research Person 10: grant writer, grant datarecorder Person 11: sharer of equipment used duringthe research Person 12: secretary and support staffhandling travel and other logistics What order do you have the individuals, and why? How would you justify your approach? When does power come to the fore? When does professional role come to the fore? When does contribution come to the fore? And why? What happens in the real world? Should the main authors move some of the contributors to an acknowledgments list and not include some in the bylines? When and why? PRESENTER Dr. Shalin Hai-Jew
  23. 23. 4/30/2019 Spark Page 330371c7a9f2 23/23 ITS, Kansas State University 785-532-5262 CREATED BY Shalin Hai-Jew