School-University Partnerships Special Issue Guide

A special issue allows a journal to focus on a topic – often in a new or emerging area – and explore it in depth or provide alternative perspectives. Special issues can also collate the best papers presented at a conference. They can even take an interdisciplinary approach, helping to bridge the gap between subject areas.

If you have an idea on a topic relevant for the readers of School-University Partnerships the following steps are a guide to help you through the process.

Getting Started:

  • Initially you should informally discuss your idea with the Editors-in-Chief.
  • If they agree it has potential you would then need to complete a special issue proposal form and send to the Editors-in-Chief.
  • This form will then be evaluated by the Editors and Publisher who will let you know within two weeks if your proposal has been accepted. Guest editors' credentials are checked and approved by the Publisher. Guest Editors' credentials are checked and approved by the Publisher.
  • Once approved, we will let you know the most appropriate journal issue and give advice on the schedule and timeframes.
  • It may be helpful for you to prepare a call for papers and promote the special issue, the maximum period from close of call for papers to complete issue is one year.
  • The publisher will arrange for a slot in the online submission system, ScholarOne Manuscripts, to be opened for authors to submit their work. Only one Guest Editor can act as the manager for the issue in ScholarOne so please do decide this beforehand.

After the call for papers closes:

  • Once submissions start to come in each paper is sent to two or more reviewers for double anonymous peer review.
  • The expected time for reviewers to complete the reviews is 30 days, but it may take longer to find reviewers who are able to give their time to the papers so please keep checking if reviewers have agreed or declined.
  • If there are not enough papers to fill a special issue, we will either process them as standard issue papers and the special issue will not go ahead. However, if one or more papers are accepted, we can consider a special section.
  • The Editors-in-Chief will be monitoring the special issue throughout the review process and will approve final decisions made on Special Issue content. The Editors-in-Chief have control over Special Issue content, ensuring the journal adheres to the consistent standards. 
  • Papers will be uploaded to the EarlyCite section of School-University Partnerships within 30 days of acceptance
  • When there are enough papers ready for the special issue we will confirm the line up and send the issue to production for typesetting.
  • When proofs are returned the final version of the issue will be published online. 

This guide to publishing a special issue is designed to support guest editors as they navigate each stage of the process. 

Publication of a Guest Editor’s own work

Guest Editors are expected to provide an Editorial for their special issue. This can take one of two forms:

  • A regular Editorial comprising either a brief introduction to the theme of the special issue or a short description of each article to be published; or
  • An extended Editorial. This should be over 1000 words, with more than 50% devoted to a theme, rather than a description of the papers published in the special issue. 

The special issue may consider publishing contributions from the Guest Editor to ensure the diversity and inclusiveness of authorship represented in the research topic. However, the number of such contributions will be limited, and any article submitted by a Guest Editor will be handled by the Editors-in-Chief to uphold the quality and integrity of the publication.

If you have any questions about special issues please contact the Publishing Services Manager, Chris Tutill.