A scholarship of teaching will entail a public account of some or all of the full act of teaching—vision, design, enactment, outcomes, and analysis -- in a manner susceptible to critical review by the teacher's professional peers and amenable to productive employment in future work by members of that same community.
(Lee Shulman, The Course Portfolio , p. 6)
A consensus has formed within growing circles in academia that there is scholarly research to be done on teaching and learning,
that the systematic creation of rigorous knowledge about teaching and learning is a crucial prerequisite to responding to major
challenges facing academia, that this knowledge must be shared publicly and should build cumulatively over time, and that the
explorations of this area should be conducted by academics from all disciplines, not just those with appointments in schools of
(David Pace, " The Amateur in the Operating Room: History and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning ," American Historical Review , 10 9 :2)
Criteria for Review of SoTL Articles
Research articles are first screened by the editor to verify that they demonstrate a scholarship of teaching and learning before being sent for blind review by three members of the Editorial Review Board who will evaluate each manuscript according to the general criteria for any authentic scholarship as described in Scholarship Assessed: Evaluation of the Professoriate by Glassick, Huber and Maeroff (1997).
1. Clear goals
Does the scholar state the basic purposes of his or her work clearly?
Does the scholar define objectives that are realistic and achievable?
Does the scholar identify important questions in the field?
2. Adequate preparation
Does the scholar show an understanding of existing scholarship in the field?
Does the scholar bring the necessary skills to his or her work?
Does the scholar bring together the resources necessary to move the project forward?
3. Appropriate methods
Does the scholar use methods appropriate to the goals?
Does the scholar apply effectively the methods selected?
Does the scholar modify procedures in response to changing circumstances?
4. Significant results
Does the scholar achieve the goals?
Does the scholar's work add consequentially to the field?
Does the scholar's work open additional areas for further exploration?
5. Effective presentation
Does the scholar use a suitable style and effective organization to present his or her work?
Does the scholar use appropriate forums forcommunicating work to its intended audiences?
Does the scholar present his or her message with clarity and integrity?
6. Reflective critique
Does the scholar critically evaluate his or her own work?
Does the scholar bring an appropriate breadth of evidence to his or her critique?
Does the scholar use evaluation to improve the quality of future work?
Process for SoTL Articles
The review process for research articles follows this procedure:
- Editor screens research article submission to be sure it meets the basic criteria for scholarship by being based upon research questions, methods, evidence, assessment, and conclusions.
- Editor sends the Word file of the submission, with identity of the author(s) removed, to three members of the Editorial Review Board.
- Review Board members read the manuscript and indicate their assessment of the article on the electronic review form, based upon the Scholarship Assessed criteria given above and upon the following IJ-SoTL rubric:
Relevance for SoTL
Does the paper focus sufficiently on a SoTL question or inquiry?
Does the paper have a purpose and provide knowledge applicable to the teaching and learning process?
Does the paper give evidence of significant and ethical SoTL research?
Are the paper's conclusions valid based upon the evidence systematically gathered and upon the argumentation provided?
Does the paper provide new knowledge or otherwise advance the scholarship of teaching and learning?
Does the paper have originality of approach or questions pursued, or a unique perspective on familiar approaches or questions?
International Significance & Relevance
Is the paper on a topic that would be of value for an international readership?
Is the paper intellectually accessible for college faculty in various countries and higher education systems?
Does the paper serve to promote international knowledge, conversations or collaborations about the topic, or about SoTL in general?
- Each reviewer will include on the review form specific and narrative comments for the author of the submission about its content, argumentation, research methodologies, data, conclusions, etc. These comments will be given to the author, without identifying the reviewers for the purpose of the giving the author feedback on the article, whether the article is being considered for publication or not.
- Each Reviewer will give a recommendation about publication of a manuscript according to the following list of options:
- Accept: no revision needed
- Accept: minor revisions needed
- Major revision needed: suggest revision & resubmission
- Reject (provide reasons in comments)
- Submission topic or methodology not appropriate for IJ-SoTL
- When all reviews have been received by the editor, a decision will be made regarding publication and authors will be contacted. If the reviews are very different, the editor may ask 1-2 additional Editorial Review Board members to read and evaluate the submission and then, upon receipt of the additional reviews, a final publication decision will be made.
- The response time for articles will normally be 6 – 8 weeks.
Process for Essays on SoTL, Personal Reflections About SoTL, and Readers' Responses
Essay and personal reflection submissions are not normally given to the Review Board for evaluation. The editor will make publication decisions about essay manuscripts, but reserves the option to send any essays to Review Board members for purposes of consultation about their content, accuracy, etc. The essays should manifest some of the relevant Scholarship Assessed qualities and need to be coherent, cohesive expressions of significant ideas or experiences relevant for an international audience.
The response time for essays and reflections will normally be 4 - 5 weeks.