Highlight Ongoing Clinical Topics and Relevant Research
Special issues and forums provide an excellent opportunity to review an addressed topic, examine previously unaddressed aspects, propose and develop new approaches, exchange perspectives and encourage new lines of research. Four of ASHA’s journals welcome proposals for themed special issues and all five accept proposals for forums.
Why Special Issues and Forums?
The purpose of a special issue or forum is to provide a concentrated focus on a special topic deemed to be of high interest to the readership. Forums are typically smaller than special issues (which must have at least 10 articles) and are often the best means of featuring multiple perspectives on the same topic. Clinical forums consist of empirical studies, scholarly reviews, and/or theoretical perspectives. Research forums contain a series of empirical studies centering on a key aspect of speech, language, or hearing science and/or disorders. Research forums may also comprise a set of scholarly papers presented at a scientific conference. At this time, Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups only accepts proposals for forums.
Putting Together a Special Issue or Forum
The process of putting together a special issue or forum involves a formal application to the journal editor. Once approved by the editor-in-chief, applications for special issue are brought to the Journals Board for approval. Selection of forums will be made by the editor-in-chief, in consultation with the editors, based on the proposal elements requested below.
A proposal for a special issue or forum must be approved for consideration by the journal editor prior to development. To help potential special issue and forum coordinators to prepare a proposal suitable for evaluation by the journal’s Editorial Team, we have provided the instructions below.
The proposal should:
- Provide a summary.
- Outline the probable manuscript titles and author lists.
- State whether a prologue and/or epilogue is planned
- Designate one person, a special issue coordinator, as the point of contact and coordinator of communications with contributing authors.
The editor may contact the Coordinator to suggest that other relevant accepted manuscripts be added to the special issue. If the editor wishes to move forward with the proposal for a special edition, then the proposal is presented to the Journals Board. If the majority of the voting members of the board approve, the special issue is authorized.
All manuscripts submitted for special issues and forums undergo the regular peer-review process and are expected to adhere to the standards of the journal. Inclusion in a group submission does not guarantee that any given manuscript will be accepted. However, when published together in a special issue or forum, the power of the topic and the diverse perspectives and studies contained within is enhanced.
Special issues are published in between regularly scheduled issues after the first such issue of a volume. Research forums and clinical forums will continue to be published within the already-scheduled issues. Articles that are part of a larger group submission are not typically released in the Newly Published collections but instead are released all at once in the form of a special issue or a forum (either a research forum or a clinical forum). Whether to hold articles for release as part of a group is determined by the editor-in-chief of a journal.
Special Issue and Forum Policies
- If a special issue or forum is approved by the editor, each manuscript to be included in the collection must be submitted separately by its corresponding author. All manuscripts must be submitted within 1 week of each other to facilitate timely review and processing. Manuscripts submitted to a special issue or forum should to adhere to mission and scope and contributor guidelines for the ASHA journal’s manuscript submission.
- Pre-approval of a special issue or forum proposal by an editor does not guarantee that any or all manuscripts submitted will be accepted for publication. Only those manuscripts accepted for publication will appear in a journal issue. Please note, for special issues and forums linked to a conference, manuscripts are to be full, regular research papers and should not be seen as a reporting of proceedings.
- The final order for manuscripts accepted for publication in a special issue or forum is determined by the editor. The editor may suggest to the Coordinator the addition of relevant accepted articles as part of the final published collection in an issue. Whether to accept such additions is up to the Coordinator (representing the decision of all original authors in the special issue or forum). In addition, any addition to a special issue or forum must include the assent of the added manuscript’s author(s).