Publishing in an APA journal might seem like an unattainable goal for someone who is still an undergraduate or master student. However, if you have good research, and supervisors who support you, there is a great chance you will achieve your goal. I was lucky enough to perform my final year dissertation with two fantastic supervisors, and it was this research that later went on to become the journal article being published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception & Performance. However, it was a very long road to travel down which I will re – travel with you in the following paragraphs of this post sharing the experiences I had.
How it all began – the project
The project began in October 2010 where the idea for the project was born followed by a phase of initial testing in January 2011. After having handed in my dissertation in July of 2011, I went travelling. Before leaving to go travelling, I had discussed with my supervisors the possibility that the work we had performed would be submitted to a high impact journal. The two experiments that I had performed for my dissertation project had to be rewritten by my supervisor who became the lead author of it and afterwards submitted to the journal. Returning in January 2012, I received correspondence from my supervisors saying that the work had been reviewed and that revisions were required before it could be accepted.
The important question – which journal to choose?
The main thing that I learnt through this process is that writing a paper for a journal is a very long process. Throughout my undergraduate degree I found it agonising to wait for essay marks which generally required the patience to wait for only six weeks. But this is nothing when compared to the patience required to submit to a journal. When your paper is submitted to a journal, it is first assessed by an editor who must decide whether it will fit in with the tone of the journal in question. This is a key point, when looking at which journal to publish in. Moreover, it is incredibly important to look at articles already published in that journal. If your work is much longer, or if you struggle to find an article in the same area of content, then you are unlikely to be published in this journal, since you are not the main group of interest for this journal.
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