Aims and scope

Journal of Writing Research publishes papers with a broad range of perspectives, unified by a strong commitment to methodological rigour. We provide a forum for both established experts and new talent.


The Journal of Writing Research publishes papers drawing, in any combination, on research and theory in linguistics, psychology, instructional science, and related disciplines that come under the broad umbrella of writing research.


Most papers published in JoWR report original research. We also welcome methods papers and literature reviews.

Papers reporting new empirical studies may use any appropriate data collection methods, and we welcome both quantitative and qualitative methods of analysis.  Papers describing teaching practice are welcome if they also report robust evidence of efficacy, typically provided by a controlled evaluation of effects on writing performance. Papers reporting case studies are considered only where the research question addressed would not have been better answered by alternative methods.

Most papers in JoWR report behavioural data. We also welcome papers that report linguistic analyses where these directly address questions relating to writing process, development, or instruction. We do not publish papers that report analysis of published text.

Research methods articles introduce emerging or new writing-research methods, including approaches to data collection, coding, scoring, and analysis. They may describe a method, instrument, corpus, database, or technique for writing research. Articles typically have three parts. (1) Evidence for the contribution of the method, making clear what kinds of writing-research questions it will help answer. Authors should provide a detailed summary of previous approaches and make clear the gap that the new method will fill. (2) A precise description of the method giving sufficient detail to allow readers to use it in their own research. (3) Illustrative findings from research using the method. Findings must be unpublished, but could be new analysis of already-reported data, and do not necessarily need to test strong hypotheses.

We invite review papers on any topic relevant to our aims and scope. Papers should address clearly specified research questions. These may use any appropriate review methodology but must demonstrate a rigorous approach to surveying the relevant literature. We particularly welcome reviews that provide a critique of existing research and theory and that identify future directions.

Special issues

The Journal of Writing Research will also consider proposals for special issues on a specific theme.


The Journal of Writing Research’s articles are primarily intended for use in the scientific community, but the journal’s interdisciplinary nature also makes it accessible to teacher educators, curriculum developers, communication consultants, and other interested practitioners.