Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

Virginia Libraries is an annual peer-reviewed open access journal published by the Virginia Library Association, featuring insights and best practices from libraries in Virginia. The goals of the journal are to further research in all areas of library and information services, communicate best practices, and explore trends and issues of interest to the library profession. The journal seeks to publish content of interest to all types of libraries. Virginia Libraries has a strong interest in providing support for new authors to establish a voice in the library literature. The journal will consider submissions that report on research studies or scholarly research (research articles), describe innovative initiatives and effective practices (best practice articles), examine a focused scenario in an applied context and with a training or educational purpose (case studies), or discuss trends or issues (essays / commentary). The journal also considers proposals for one to two themed columns per issue.

 

Section Policies

Editorial

Editorials in Virginia Libraries are written by Virginia Libraries Editors or staff. Among other topics, editorials in Virginia Libraries provide volume content summaries, and describe journal policy or practice changes.

Editors
  • Virginia (Ginny) Pannabecker
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Essays / Commentary

Essay or Commentary pieces allow for more subjectivity and expression of a position on a topic or issue of interest to libraries or library employees.  Authors are encouraged to include references, data, illustrations, or information that will aid in understanding the context and issue at hand.  Submissions may be lengthy (3,000-5,000 words), or somewhat brief (under 2,000 words), and are welcomed from all types of libraries and library staff as well as graduate students.

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Themed Columns

Virginia Libraries invites proposals for up to three themed columns each year that will synthesize brief reports on a topic from libraries across the state. To propose a themed column topic, please send a 1 paragraph proposal to the Virginia Libraries Editorial Board at virginialibrariesjournal@googlegroups.com. In your proposal, please include: 

  • Column title
  • Description of column topic
  • Your interest in or experience related to the topic
  • Your plan to talk with representatives from 4 or more libraries from around Virginia to include their perspectives / experiences
We look forward to hearing your ideas!

2018 Theme and Column Authors:

  • Library Contributions to Community Civic Engagement and Civic Participation, Column Authors: 

    Kristen Shuyler, shuyleks@jmu.edu

    Liz Chenevey, chevevet@jmu.edu

    Ryan Winfree, winfrert@jmu.edu

    James Madison University Libraries

     -- How do libraries in Virginia actively, purposely support the civic engagement and civic literacy of their communities?
  • Has your library hosted dialogues on topics of importance to your city? Promoted voter registration? Organized a book display about current issues relevant to civic life? Hosted a forum with politicians or candidates? We’d love to hear about these types of activities and more! 
  • If you want your library’s civic engagement program to be highlighted, please share some information it in this brief online form -- http://jmu.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_aXBhlIR9At6Oq6p --  by Friday, June 1, 2018

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Case Studies

Case Studies are similar to Best Practices articles, in that they address issues that are affecting libraries today. However, Case Studies focus on a more narrow set of circumstances and go into greater detail. They also have a training or educational purpose. Case studies should include a description of the issue in an applied context: through a fictional scenario or an example from the field. This article type should also include references to current trends in the field, current theory, and published works. Case Studies sometimes raise more questions than they answer, and provide much material for professional conversation.  Some examples of case studies include: in-depth coverage of hiring and training student assistants or part-time employees, effectively integrating iPads into library programming, or altering the main floor of a library to reflect the digital nature of the 21st Century. If desired, Case Study authors may include a short list of two to four discussion questions at the end of the piece. Submissions should strive for 2,000-5,000 words and are welcomed from all types of libraries and library staff as well as graduate students.

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Research Articles

Research article submissions report on in-depth original scholarly research and analysis or research studies. Research articles may provide a review of existing literature on a topic; examine theoretical approaches to topics or issues; report on assessment, survey, focus group, or other studies; or describe an issue or challenge in depth (if based on evidence from published research or original data). Submissions should strive for 4,500 - 7,000 words and are welcomed from all types of libraries and library staff as well as graduate students.

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Best Practice Articles

Best Practice articles focus on a collection of both common and unique practices aimed at most effectively handling a given scenario or scenarios. This article type should include solutions to issues that are affecting libraries today. These solutions are most often taken from examples of libraries where problems were solved effectively. Best Practice articles often include references to current trends in the field, current theory, and published works. Some examples include moving to a one-desk reference/circulation service, creating a “commons” area, or creating a digital repository or digital archive. When presenting or describing a successful, innovative project or initiative, include elements that will assist other libraries in adapting it to their context, such as: the project or initiative’s development, implementation, assessment measures, outcomes, and plans for sustaining the project or initiative into the future. Submissions should strive for 4,500-7,000 words and are welcomed from all types of libraries and library staff as well as graduate students.

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Articles

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Peer Review Process

Articles submitted as one of the peer review types will be sent to two reviewers for blind review, with a third reviewer being utilized in the case of substantially differing recommendations. Authors will be notified within 6 weeks of a decision to : accept and publish as submitted (with possible limited editing for style or clarity), accept and publish pending revisions, or not-accepted. Articles submitted as one of the non-peer review article types will be reviewed by the Virginia Libraries Editorial Board. Authors will be notified within 6 weeks of a decision to : accept and publish as submitted (with possible editing for style or clarity), or not-accepted with possible recommendations for revisions to re-submit.

 

Publication Frequency

Articles in Virginia Libraries will be published as soon as they are ready. Volumes collect articles published within a calendar year.

 

Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.

  • The journal does not require authors to pay article processing charges.
  • The journal does not require authors to pay article submission charges.
  • The journal does not charge readers for access.

 

Virginia Libraries issues prior to 2016

Content from Virginia Libraries issues prior to 2016 is archived with Virginia Tech, University Libraries, and available for viewing online. Check the PDF for any full issue to see that issue's policies regarding copyright, submissions, or other areas.