Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

The following topics are indicative of the journal’s scope:


  • Connections between learning analytics and the learning sciences
  • Personalization and adaptation in the learning process
  • Educational research methods
  • Learner modeling
  • The study of emotion, flow, and affective data


  • Social network analysis
  • Web science, the Semantic Web, and linked data
  • Data mining and machine learning techniques
  • Natural language processing and text mining
  • Recommendation engines


  • Visualization and user experience
  • Data and multimedia literacy
  • Decision-support
  • Organizational dynamics
  • Ethical issues

Research Papers:

Journal of Learning Analytics welcomes papers that either describe original research or offer a review of the state of the art in a particular area of learning analytics. Journal of Learning Analytics welcomes only papers which are neither formally published, nor under review elsewhere. Submissions that extend previously published conference papers are welcome provided that the journal submission has sufficiently been extended (at least 25-30% of new contribution). Submissions that are extensions of previously published conference papers must be accompanied by a cover letter outlining the new contributions. All papers need to have a through coverage of the related literature, a detailed description of research objectives, research method followed, and results accompanied with the discussions on how the obtained results advance the body of knowledge of learning analytics.

Special Section Proposals

To submit a proposal for a special section, guest editors should email jla.editors@gmail.com with a 1-3 page document detailing:

  1. The guest editors
  2. The theme of the special section, and background
  3. The scope and relevant topics for the special section
  4. A proposed timeline for publication

These details will form the basis of the call for papers for the special section. Special section proposals will be reviewed based on their relevance to the learning analytics community, and likely impact.

Hot Spots (Practitioner Track)

This section of the Journal of Learning Analytics is peer-reviewed and covers the application of learning analytics across a diversity of contexts. This section spotlights trends and new or innovative practices; provides new insights and ideas; analyzes the implications of learning analytics on a variety of issues, and presents research on the development of learning analytics applications or the application of learning analytics practice in institutions. Previous papers appearing in this section can be viewed here.

Papers should be between 2500 - 5000 words in length including the abstract, key words, tables/figures, acknowledgements, and reference list and should not be formally published nor under review somewhere. Papers submitted for the Hot Spots section should describe innovative practices, programs, techniques or applications. Authors should be able to provide additional background or supplemental information at the request of interested readers. Articles should address one of the following:

  • implementation, design, or evaluation of learning analytics applications or approaches;
  • efforts to apply learning analytics in pilot projects or in “at scale” implementations;
  • insights into ethical considerations, population selection, distribution of learning analytics results, or models of intervention; or
  • discussion of the challenges for current and potential implementation of analytics including the needs for new models/techniques, effective tactics and strategies, and broader organizational challenges.


Section Policies

Research Papers

  • Arnon Hershkovitz
  • Xavier Ochoa
  • Alyssa Wise
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Hot Spot Papers

  • Simon Knight
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Special section: Dataset Descriptions for Learning Analytics

  • Stefan Dietze
  • Hendrik Drachsler
  • George Siemens
  • Davide Taibi
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Special section: Shape of Educational Data

This special section is per inviation only for the authors who presented their work at at the Shape of Educational Data Meeting held in Fairfax, VA, USA April 7-8, 2016.

  • Colleen Ganley
  • Sara Hart
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Peer Review Process

The review process includes at least two anonymous referees. Once a new paper is submitted, the editors will assign the paper to an associate editor who will check if the submission is relevant for the scope of the journal. The associate editor will also check if the paper is ready for consideration (e.g., adequate coverage of the related peer-reviewed work, description of the research method, or quality of language).


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.



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