Towards the Development of Alternative Criteria for International Journal Paper Evaluation

| December 28, 2007
Towards the Development of Alternative Criteria for International Journal Paper Evaluation

Keywords: alternative, genre, voice, evaluation criteria

Roger Nunn
The Petroleum Institute, Abu Dhabi, UAE
John Adamson
Shinshu Honan College, Japan

Bio Data
Roger Nunn has worked for over 30 years in seven different countries, including more than 22 in Asia. He is currently working at The Petroleum Institute, a new university in Abu Dhabi, where he teaches communications and research skills. He is also Senior Associate Editor of Asian EFL Journal. He has a Trinity College TEFL Diploma, an MA and Ph.D. in TEFL from the University of Reading, UK. His Ph.D. study was on teaching methodology and curriculum development across cultural boundaries in a Middle East setting. He has published widely on a variety of topics and is particularly interested in international and intercultural perspectives on language teaching.

John Adamson has been teaching in Europe and Asia for more than 20 years and is currently at Shinshu Honan College in Japan. He has an RSA Diploma in TEFLA and an MA and Ed.D. from Leicester University in Applied Linguistics. His doctorate research was in the area of inter-cultural interview communication with Thai learners. He teaches sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, Business and General English at college and company level. His publications focus on interview discourse, learning strategies and Business English methodology. He runs a local teacher research group and edits for various journals including Asian EFL Journal where he is an Associate Editor.

This paper considers the creation of alternative criteria for evaluating journal submissions to the Asian EFL journal taking into consideration the international nature of the journal. While it has always been stated that the Asian EFL Journal (AEJ) has a policy of openness to different styles of writing and to different cultural voices, the huge amount of submissions has led to the perceived need to standardize evaluation criteria. Given the diversity of submissions the need arises to consider whether the strict evaluation criteria laid out in linear fashion do not dictate an inflexible generic review structure to the detriment of promoting different cultural voices linked to (1) the needs of authors who wish to use local varieties of Asian Englishes, (2) the needs of often idiosyncratic voices of expatriates from English speaking countries who would like to share their unique intercultural experiences, (3) the needs of Asian authors who have unique cross-cultural experiences including research, teaching or study in either English-speaking universities or universities outside their own local context, (4) the often diverse expectations regarding written discourse among the reviewers themselves, (5) the intrinsic value of alternative non-standard or non-experimental research and finally (6) the potential practical value of submissions that do not report research.

This paper presents the journal’s review criteria and also considers actual editorial reviews of key extracts from submissions. In addition, data collected specifically from questionnaires distributed among the journal s editors is presented to illustrate the diversity of editorial views towards the review criteria. Conclusions show that various alternative genres of writing submissions have been both positively and negatively evaluated so far in the journal s history and that editors stances towards their roles and responsibilities in reviewing vary enormously. This diversity of findings has led the editorial management team to embark upon a new project to create a review team with the specific objectives of identifying a limited number of alternative submissions for the quarterly issues and for a complete special edition presenting alternative voices .


See pages 206-229

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Category: Main Editions, Volume 9 Issue 4