Demystifying the Journal Article

By Victoria Reyes 

Graduate school is professionalization into the academy. One of the most important parts of professionalization is being able to publish your research. I was lucky enough to be in a department that had a yearlong seminar dedicated to just that: conducting research and writing a publishable paper prior to starting the dissertation.

But that was just the first step. Much of what I’ve learned about publishing comes from submitting papers to journals, incorporating reviewer comments, workshopping papers and having conversations with colleagues and mentors.Reyes1

In this essay, I’ll break down and demystify the format of an article for a general journal. Note that I’m a sociologist, so my insights are field-specific. So, too, must I acknowledge that journals, particularly specialty ones, may have their own style of writing, so the articles you read in them may not follow the format I’ll lay out below. One of the things you should always do before submitting a paper is read articles published by the journal to which you are submitting to get a sense of the conversations being had in its pages and to find a model for your own work. Continue reading “Demystifying the Journal Article”