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Guidelines for Submission to Thought & Action

Before you submit, please consider that Thought & Action seeks to provide its 180,000-member readership, the largest of any refereed journal in higher education, with both theoretical and practical information on issues in higher education. Please understand that submissions that have nothing to do with higher education or do not follow the guidelines, especially around style, will not be considered nor reviewed.

Length: The review panel prefers short to long. Rarely do they publish manuscripts longer than 4,000 words. You can submit a 10,000-word article but unless it's truly exceptional, it's very unlikely to be accepted.

Style: Contributions should follow the Chicago Manual of Style (14th edition), using the "humanities style" for endnotes and an alphabetic list of works cited. Unfortunately, the journal's editors do not have the resources to convert your MLA or APA citations.

Tone: Unlike most other journals in higher education, Thought & Action seeks manuscripts that are "reader-friendly" or conversational in tone, and are designed to reach a broad audience of faculty and staff. Please understand that our readers do not all belong to any specific field of study.

Types of articles: Thought & Action is interested in good writing, and it may be provided in various forms: Personal essays, practical guides to teaching, research pieces, etc. The review panel also welcomes poetry.

Submission: Authors should email their submissions to the editor in the form of a Word attachment: doc or docx. Do not embed text in the email, attach PDFs, or mail paper copies. If you do not receive confirmation of receipt, receipt has not been made. Please try again.

Deadline: Manuscript submissions are welcome throughout the year.

Review process: Each manuscript, if it meets the guidelines on length, style, audience, etc., is first reviewed by NEA members on Thought & Action's editorial board. Generally, it takes six to eight weeks for those reviews to be completed. If it meets with their approval, the article is then brought to the journal's six-person review panel, which ultimately decides to publish or not.

Current themes of interest to Thought & Action include but are not limited to: issues of teaching and learning; innovative approaches to collective bargaining; partnerships between K-12 and higher education; professional development and teaching tips; education reform; union activism; and online learning.  

Mary Ellen Flannery, Editor
NEA Office of Higher Education
1201 16th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036-3290


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