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Journal and Research Writing for the “Compleat Idiot”. Paul R. Milton, Ph.D. Ashland University Anthony Brown, Ph.D. University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Objectives. General RSJ Information/Purpose RSJ Background/Editorial Board RSJ Publication Guidelines & Standards Research Fundamentals

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journal and research writing for the compleat idiot

Journal and Research Writing for the “Compleat Idiot”

Paul R. Milton, Ph.D.

Ashland University

Anthony Brown, Ph.D.

University of Minnesota Twin Cities

  • General RSJ Information/Purpose
  • RSJ Background/Editorial Board
  • RSJ Publication Guidelines & Standards
  • Research Fundamentals
  • Review Process
  • Review an Article
  • Writing Workshop
  • Q & A
general rsj information purpose
General RSJ Information/Purpose
  • Discover/disseminate new knowledge
  • Peer review and critique of quality
  • Hallmark of a profession
  • Scholar-oriented, practitioner-oriented, mixed
  • Tailor the article to submission criteria, and to readership, know thy Journal
rsj background
RSJ Background
  • Founded in 1977 as a refereed trade journal, three issues per year
  • Published semiannually
  • Blind review, expanded Board
  • Format a mix of scholar/practitioner base
  • Funded by the NIRSA Foundation, remains an independent entity

Dr. Paul R. Milton Ashland University (OH)


Dr. Anthony Brown University of Minnesota

Twin Cities

Dr. Suzy Gray University of Texas San


Dr. Tim Miller Baldwin-Wallace College

Dr. Gerald Maas Wyoming Dep’t. of Ed.

Dr. James Turman University of Minnesota

Twin Cities

board continued
Board (continued)

Dr. Gordon Nesbitt Millersville University (PA)

Ms. Sally Derengoski University of Notre Dame

Mr. Colin Turey Holy Trinity Episcopal Acad.

Dr. Sarah Hardin Aurora University (IL)

Dr. Scott Forrester Brock University (Can.)

Dr. Sarah Young Indiana University

Dr. Susan Brown Foster Saint Leo University (FL)

Dr. Steve Kampf* Bowling Green State Univ.

*Appointment effective May 1, 2007

rsj publication guidelines
RSJ Publication Guidelines
  • Format
  • Style Guide
  • Citations
  • Tables and figures
  • Use of statistics
  • Purpose of research
  • Applicability to field
guidelines continued
Guidelines (Continued)
  • Complete name, title, address, phone, fax, e-mail for all authors
  • Word limit in text (3500)/ abstract (150)
  • APA style, consistency
  • Tables and figures limitation
  • Error free manuscript
  • Submit manuscript electronically
manuscript submission
Manuscript Submission
  • Create an account
  • Go into author center
  • Go to submit a manuscript
  • Certain items a must
  • Upload and submit
review process overview
Review Process Overview
  • Blind, peer-review
  • Upon receipt of manuscript
  • Four peer-reviewers
  • Accept with qualifiers, reject with reasons
  • Resubmittal
  • Published
  • Exclusivity of submission
key element
Key Element
  • What is YOUR Interesting research question?
research fundamentals
Research Fundamentals


1) Introduction

2) Literature

3) Methodology

4) Conclusions

5) Future Research

5) References

fundamentals continued
Fundamentals (Continued)
  • Definition of terms
  • Delimitations
  • Research approach

-Quantitative, qualitative, case study,

pilot study, thought piece, expert opinion paper

-Design, experimental, historical, etc.

  • Analysis and Results
additional information
Additional Information
  • Seek out examples
  • Outline
  • Body of manuscript
  • Revisions to manuscript
  • Final draft
  • Edit
format considerations
Format Considerations
  • Title page format
  • Abstract format
  • Text citation format
  • Format for: margins, spacing, pagination, tables, figures, references
how do i begin
How do I Begin?
  • Logical progression
    • Research question/hypotheses
    • Determine your Methodology
    • Literature review
    • Introduction (before data collection)
    • Collect data, how analyze
    • Look at results, write
reviewing an article
Reviewing an Article
  • Consider “A proposed recreation field standard for institutional master planning” by Turman and Brown, 2002.
  • Article accepted in RSJ
  • Author process
  • 2007 Pre-conference Workshop
good writing the writing workshop
Good Writing: The Writing Workshop
  • A Primer on Analytical Writing

-refer to handout in packet with same title

just a few thoughts
Just a few Thoughts
  • You know what you want to say
  • Key is how to say it.
  • Answer questions:

-what are you trying to do?

-what is reader looking for?

-what are some approaches to avoid?

the main business of analytical writing
The Main Business of Analytical Writing
  • The main business is to INFORM
  • Other goals:

-be readable (easy to read)

-cultivate a natural style, consistent

  • Inform, instruct, expose; clearly and unambiguously
  • Easy to understand, instructive
  • Keep your reader in mind, chief interest is in being informed
  • Instructed, not entertained
  • Concern should be:

-did the reader understand what I wrote

  • Not:

-Did the reader enjoy what I wrote

  • Good analysis when all readers interpret what you wrote in the same way.

-does it stand the test?

more details
More details
  • It is concrete
  • It is objective
  • It is external
  • It is material
  • It is realistic
  • It is useful
  • Can be impersonal, doesn’t have to be
  • Appeal to intellect, not emotions
  • Thrive on details
  • Wealth of technical details
  • Emphasize what is important
  • Don’t eliminate minor details

-put them in their proper place

  • Emphasize things and developments rather than people
a few things to avoid
A few things to Avoid
  • Avoid suspense, don’t leave the reader hanging
  • Avoid abstraction and ambiguity
  • Avoid, most of the time, writing as you would speak
  • Avoid the use of jargon, slang words and phrases
  • Avoid incomplete thoughts and sentences
  • Avoid introducing too many thoughts
good writing the writing workshop1
Good Writing: The Writing Workshop
  • A primer on analytical writing (handout)
  • Ten tips for effective writing
  • Clear and concise
  • Avoiding wordiness
  • Good usage
good writing continued
Good Writing (continued)
  • Common Errors
  • Overcoming writer’s block
  • Writing as a process
  • Proofreading