Blog & Resources

Explore interviews, opinion pieces, and other evidence-based resources to help you understand—and surmount—what you're up against in the process of academic peer review, and academia more broadly.

Preparing For a New Academic Year as a Graduate Student | Lex Academic Blog

As a community of veteran academics, we have some thoughts that we’d like to share with you about making the most of the new academic year.

How Sensitivity Readers Can Improve Your Work | Lex Academic Blog

Do sensitivity readers offer vital perspectives that help writers avoid causing offence, or do they represent the creeping tyranny of cancel culture?

A Short History of the Footnote | Lex Academic Blog

Footnotes divide opinion. Noel Coward once said that ‘having to read footnotes resembles having to go downstairs to answer the door while in the midst of making love’. Is the footnote, then, a scholarly facilitator or a self-indulgent textual thwart?

Insider Tips on Getting Published in English-language Journals | Karen Englander, Ph.D. | Lex Academic Blog

When English is your second language (and even when it isn't), passing through a journal's peer review process can be challenging. What is an author to do to improve their prospects of sailing through peer review? We have some ideas.

Insights into independent research: Moving out of traditional academia and how to keep your research engaging | Lex Academic Blog

A level of social stigma exists around independent academic research and researchers. And these biases die hard. Here, we look at the challenges and opportunities that exist within this liminal academic space.

Decoding a Book Proposal Form | Lex Academic Blog

Publishers' book proposal forms can feel broad and vague with not a huge amount of guidance on what each of the questions and sections is asking of you. With that in mind, Liza Thompson of Bloomsbury thought the most useful thing to do would be to work through the main sections of a proposal form and hopefully ‘decode’ them.

‘Coming Out’ as Working Class in Academia | Lex Academic Blog

'Since my "coming out", I’ve been told by middle-class academics I don’t belong in academia. And people I’ve known most of my life have accused me of being a class traitor.' We spoke to Dr Paul Craddock about getting on (and getting along) in academia.

The Necessity of Subject Matter Expertise for Academic Translation | Lex Academic Blog

Mistranslations are often funny...until they're not. Here's our view on why it's worth hiring a subject matter expert to translate your text.

Why a Great Thesis Doesn’t Always Make a Great Book | Lex Academic Blog

One of the most common reasons why publishers reject proposals for PhD-derived monographs is that they give the impression that the author does not understand the difference between a thesis and a book. In this post, we will look at some of the differences.

On Writing ‘I’: The First Person in Academic Prose | Lex Academic Blog

The use of the first person ‘I’ has traditionally been associated with arrogance and poor scholarship. Today, however, the first person appears regularly in academic writing, particularly in the humanities. In this post, we dissect the arguments against writing ‘I’ and suggest occasions where it might be used productively.

Why Research Outputs Should Be Open Access | Lex Academic Blog

Open access publishing is increasingly common and is often perceived as a more positive and inclusive way of disseminating academic research. In this post, we explore types of open access publishing and the benefits of this model.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Open Peer Review | Lex Academic Blog

Concerns about implicit bias in traditional methods of peer review, including double-blind, have prompted some journal publishers such as PLOS and Frontiers to implement an open peer review policy. In this post, we discuss the potential benefits and drawbacks of this system.

Peer Review and Gender | Lex Academic Blog

Male academics outnumber their female counterparts as authors, journal editors and peer reviewers. To what extent is the peer review process responsible for this?

Peer Review Bias: What Is It, and What Causes It? | Lex Academic Blog

Although vital for ensuring the quality of publications, peer review is a far from perfect process. In this post, we discuss the concept of peer review bias, its forms and the ways different peer review processes enable and prevent it.

Viva, Soutenance, Disputation: How PhD Students around the World Defend Their Thesis | Lex Academic Blog

In the UK, it's called a 'viva'. In the US, it's a 'defense'. Have you ever wondered how PhD students around the world defend their thesis?

Levelling the Linguistic Playing Field within Academic Philosophy | Lex Academic Blog

Stylistic norms for writing affect philosophers’ professional prospects in unfair ways, and what one thinks should be done about this may be tied to one’s conception of what philosophy is supposed to do. (This piece first appeared in Daily Nous.)

“Publish or perish”: fact or fiction? | Lex Academic Blog

The perception that scholarly success depends on publishing frequently is pervasive across the disciplines. That this remains the case, despite the fact that there is an increasing body of evidence to suggest that ‘publishing’ can still lead to ‘perishing’, is worthy of investigation.

Should you format your paper for peer review? | Lex Academic Blog

Formatting a paper for peer review can be tedious and time-consuming, especially when there is no certainty that it will be accepted. So, should you bother?

5 Things Publishers Look For in Book Proposals | Lex Academic Blog

Understanding how to present your research in such a light that it appears outstanding from the perspective of a publishing professional is the key to getting noticed (and a contract).

Linguistic Bias in Academic Publishing | Lex Academic Blog

It’s no secret that the peer review process can be biased. Over the past several decades, there has been growing awareness of peer review bias and its effects on the careers of scholars. Efforts have been made to address bias, but it may be even more pervasive than realised.