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Title: Peering into the Black Box of Peer Review: From the Perspective of Editors
ABSTRACT CONTEXT The peer review process plays a critical role in ensuring the quality of work published within a field and advancing the knowledge within the research community. However, for many members of the community, the process of peer review largely remains a black box to many scholars, especially those with less experience within the community. Therefore, there is a need to illuminate the peer review process for the research community. PURPOSE OR GOAL To more transparently reveal the contents of the black box around the peer review process, we interviewed editors (associate and deputy editors) for the Journal of Engineering Education (JEE) to provide editor perspectives on the overall peer review process. The goal of this paper is to clearly articulate the behind-the-scenes processes of peer review as well as the expectations and perceptions of the editors with respect to publishing within JEE. By bringing these processes to light, we hope that more members of the field will be aware of the overall process and the associated expectations for contributing to the field. APPROACH OR METHODOLOGY/METHODS To meet the goals of this study, we conducted semi-structured interviews with six editors of JEE who worked in the field of engineering education research (EER), as a part of a larger project exploring the boundaries of the field as expressed within the peer reviews process. The interviewer from the research team followed a protocol but also asked additional questions to elicit more details in some cases. The interviews were recorded, transcribed, and thematically coded using an open-coding process. ACTUAL OR ANTICIPATED OUTCOMES Based on the analysis of the editor interviews, we present three critical aspects of the peer review process: the types of editors, the process that editors typically conduct to identify reviewers, and the types of decisions through the process. Additionally, we highlight considerations and advice from the editors to help members of the EER community develop. CONCLUSIONS/RECOMMENDATIONS/SUMMARY The current study makes the editors’ perspectives and decision-making processes more explicit to readers. These decision-making processes are full of careful considerations and also challenges. By doing so, we hope to help the members of the EER community gain a better understanding of what is going on backstage of the peer review process.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1762436
NSF-PAR ID:
10378440
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Research in Engineering Education Symposium & Australasian Association for Engineering Education Conference
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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