Call for Editor - Journal of Learning Analytics


Editorship of the Journal of Learning Analytics is an important responsibility that helps steer the direction of the field by setting benchmarks and defining quality standards for the publication content. Editors make key contributions towards defining a future-oriented vision of the field and shaping research efforts towards the envisioned goals while also engaging in high-level management to ensure a smooth editorial review process that leads to timely publications.

Members of SoLAR are invited to apply for the position of Editor-in-Chief, to join Professor Rebecca Ferguson (Open University, UK), and Dr Vitomir Kovanovic (University of South Australia, Australia), in leading the Journal of the Learning Analytics.

Expressions of interest should be submitted following the instructions below by April 29th, 2022.  The start of the term will be August - December 2022 (by negotiation). 

Role Responsibilities

The co-Editors-in-Chief share the responsibility for running JLA.  These responsibilities include the operational aspects of journal production, the strategic aspects of journal stewardship and the outreach aspects of community involvement.  Key aspects of these responsibilities are listed below:

  • Journal Production
    • Manage the timely review and processing of manuscripts for each JLA issue (currently three per year)
    • Coordinating the production of each JLA issue (including managing copy- and layout-editor workflow) 
    • Compose an editorial reflecting on the publications of the journal, often in the context of current events or issues affecting the field (currently one editorial per year)
    • Manage the selection of Special Sections and together with invited editors oversee the call, review and production process
    • Maintain contact with the hosting provider (PKP) to assure the operation of the journal site
  • Journal Stewardship
    • Define the direction and vision for JLA in the short- and mid-term
    • Define editorial policies affecting the review process, acceptance criteria and reviewer guidelines for the different sections of JLA
    • Invite, assemble and maintaining an editorial board with members of SoLAR to internally discuss journal management and editorial policies
    • Invite new reviewers and finding ways to incentivize current reviewers
    • Organize an annual Editorial Board meeting to discuss journal progress and vision.
  • Community Involvement
    • Represent JLA to the SoLAR Executive, the SoLAR community and external bodies
    • Prepare an annual report to the SoLAR Executive
    • Organize at least one community-involvement event per year to help in the definition of editorial policies or journal vision

Service Term

The current term duration is 3 years that can be extended once for another term of 3 years. There are significant onboarding costs within the first term as new editors get up to speed on journal processes, so it is desirable for editors to serve two terms, for a total six year duration.

Renewal for the second term is subject to ratification by the SoLAR Executive Board based on the recommendation of the other Editors-in-Chief, with due consideration of the editor’s contribution to the journal to date, ability to continue to contribute to the strategic direction of the journal over a second term, and other strategic concerns.


The application packet should include the following documents:

  • Letter of application that briefly introduces yourself, your qualifications for the position, and your reasons for being interested in the position (max. one page). 
  • Vision statement concerning JLA in the next five years (max. three pages).
  • Abbreviated curriculum vitae (maximum of five pages).
  • Description and documentation of institutional commitment (If possible, obtain a written commitment of support from your department chair or equivalent, in which the type of institutional support which can be provided during your term as co-Editor-in-Chief is specified. Examples of such support may include, but are not limited to: editorial assistance, committee-assignment release, reduction of teaching load, or material support) 

All this information should be sent with the subject “JLA Editor Position Application” to the email by April 29th, 2022 (see full timeline below).


All deadlines are at 23:59 Anywhere on Earth Timezone (GMT-12) 

  • Call opens: November, 2021 
  • Applications due: April 29th, 2022
  • Decision process: May through June 2022
  • Invitations extended: July-August 2022
  • New editors start mentoring period: August-December 2022 start, negotiable

Selection Criteria

In order to be considered for editorship of the Journal of Learning Analytics, the applicant must be a member of SoLAR in good standing, with senior standing in the community and at their institutions. Expressions of interest are expected to address your ability to effectively:

  1. Understand the Learning Analytics field as demonstrated by a strong publication record in well respected journals
  2. Collaboratively shape and enact a vision for ensuring that JLA continues to be the preeminent venue for Learning Analytics research and practice, and also for taking the journal into the future through innovative and creative leadership. This vision should be consistent with the published mission of SoLAR and JLA.
  3. Understand and respect the diversity of styles of research and ensure that the review process remains international, to reflect multiple disciplinary perspectives and global diversity.
  4. Provide clear communication to journal authors, reviewers, readers and the SoLAR Executive board and SoLAR community
  5. Use high level managerial sense to take pragmatic decisions and establish policies and engage in hands-on supervision that ensures a smooth editorial review process leading to timely publication
  6. Make constructive collective decisions, independent of personal or institutional connection, to act without fear or favour in editorial judgements.

Selection will be made with a collective view of the team, with efforts to provide balanced representation of geographic distribution as well as diversity in gender and ethnicity.

Special consideration will be given to:

  • Guest editors of Special Sections of the journal (as this provides clear evidence for items (1) and (2) above)
  • Outstanding and frequent reviewers of JLA (as this provides clear evidence for items (3) and (4) above.

Selection Process

A selection committee consisting of (1) the current co-Editors-in-Chief of JLA; (2) a member of the Solar Executive Board, selected by the Executive Board, (3) a senior member of the community selected from the JLA Editorial Board, will evaluate the applicants. The recommendation of the selection committee will be forwarded to the SoLAR Executive Board for ratification.  


Journal editors’ exits are a minimum of six-months apart so that the editorial team has at least two experienced members at all times. In addition, the incoming editor will be onboarded to have an overlap of 4-6 months with the outgoing editor to ensure a smooth orientation. This helps them observe a complete ongoing publication cycle at close hand. 

The appointee will join Rebecca Ferguson and Vitomir Kovanovic as part of the new JLA editorial team, overlapping with departing EIC Xavier Ochoa for onboarding, between August and December 2022 (open to negotiation).

Additional Benefits

Editors-in-Chief of JLA receive a complementary SoLAR Membership for the duration of their service term.