Volume 16, Issue 3        Editorial:
Academic Exchange Quarterly is in its sixteenth year…..
I recently met my classes for the first time this semester—and more than half of the students had no books. In fact, some of them told me that they would have none. Instead, they had their eBook readers (their Kindles or Nooks), and they were able to download their required textbooks for only a fraction of the cost of the printed versions.
Now that Academic Exchange Quarterly (AEQ) is in its sixteenth year (I have been associated with it for thirteen of them), I am pleased that this journal has been part of this publishing revolution.
The ingenious idea Steve Pec, the publisher, came up with sixteen years ago [1-1997 first issue] was to encourage manuscript submission through e-mail attachments. Peer reviewers, chosen from various disciplines, would serve as evaluators of the submissions, and then publication in print would follow. Thus, Academic Exchange Quarterly is a hybrid composition. It is a print/paper journal created by online submissions evaluated by peer reviewers, and the organization as a whole consists of colleagues who have not met face to face. It is truly a virtual association of educators. [2- 2007 ten years later]
AEQ has published articles from teachers/scholars from every state in the U.S. plus from fifty-four different countries. It provides a print forum for educators to share ideas in pedagogy within multiple disciplines. The best ideas of each issue are offered online as “Editors’ Choice” articles or abstracts and are free to the public as open access publications.
These articles give teachers a voice and empower them in the exchange of classroom ideas. The ideal of teacher/scholar is enhanced by this exchange through our print publication. There really are a number of insightful articles in each issue.
Another important feature of Academic Exchange Quarterly is the speed by which contributors will be notified of the acceptance or rejection of their submissions. There is a web page titled “Track Your Submission” which allows contributors to follow the progress of their articles as they are peer reviewed.
This convenience is a major departure from the traditional publication route of mail submission and then indefinite waiting, sometimes for many months, before being notified of the acceptance or rejection of one’s manuscript. The usual period of time needed between submission and then final determination is approximately nine to twelve weeks, if all procedures are followed, sometimes even within less time. The acceptance rate of articles ranges between eighteen to thirty-two percent, depending on the issue.
Feature Editors are selected on the basis of their conceived topics and expertise. The editors solicit manuscripts from colleagues within their disciplines. Once the manuscripts have been submitted, the peer reviewers objectively assess the quality of the submissions. It is a blind review; all is done anonymously. Should there be a disagreement among the peer reviewers, then the Feature Editor breaks the tie, one way or the other. Once again, this process is a virtual one with no direct contact other than through electronic means. Feature Editors have a listserv through which they discuss with the Chief Editor any administrative questions. AEQ_Editors@Yahoogroups.com
The present state of academic publishing in certainly in flux. Publishing costs have risen to the point where academic presses have slowed publication substantially or have become defunct. Print journals have had to adapt to cut costs, and one of those ways is to embrace technology, much as Academic Exchange Quarterly has done since its inception. Moreover, this journal has provided a more accessible venue for academics who need quicker responses in placing their articles. While subscription prices have soared for many academic journals, the current subscription cost for Academic Exchange Quarterly has continued to be a relatively modest $155 per year, well below the average subscription costs for most other journals. See Springer – Price list.
All this information brings me back to my students and their growing familiarity with the online environment. They obtain their textbooks via their eBooks, they reply to my questions by discussion boards or listservs, and they access websites containing solid information regarding course topics. So too do the authors of articles submitted to Academic Exchange Quarterly: They submit their articles to the journal, they track the progress of their articles toward publication, and they can read selected articles through “Editors’ Choice.” The final product is a print journal which can be subscribed to for a modest annual fee. I am proud to be associated with an academic venue which provides scholars/teachers with an opportunity to share their ideas.
Ben Varner, Chief Editor
University of Northern Colorado