Design Educators Community

Announcing the CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS for possible publication in Dialectic’s SIXTH issue

October 30, 2018 / By Michael Gibson

Authors and designers are invited to submit works for possible publication in the SIXTH issue of Dialectic, a biannual journal devoted to the critical and creative examination of issues that affect design education, research, and inquiry. Michigan Publishing, the hub of scholarly publishing at the University of Michigan, is and has been publishing Dialectic on behalf of the AIGA Design Educators Community (DEC) since early 2017.

The sixth issue will be published between July 15 and September 15, 2019. The deadline for full versions of papers and visual narratives written and/or designed that meet Dialectic Issue 06’s categorical descriptions (see below) is: 5:00 pm CDT, January 4, 2019.

Dialectic’s sixth issue will publish pieces that articulate research, scholarly inquiry, surveys, case studies, reviews, opinion/position papers, visual narratives/visual storytelling and criticism that addresses diverse topics located across the increasingly broad and variably contoured landscape that affects and is affected by visual and interactive communications. Authors and designers of visual narratives planning to contribute to our sixth issue are reminded that each submission to Dialectic MUST meet the categorical parameters articulated for ONE of the following submission types, which are described in more detail later in this text:

· original visual essays/visually based narratives/visual storytelling
· research papers
· long-form case study reports/case series reports

· position papers
· criticism of designed artifacts, systems, and processes
· reviews of books, exhibitions, and conferences
· survey papers
· theoretical speculations

Each piece that Dialectic will publish must be based on fundamentally sound scholarship and inquiry, written or designed so that is broadly accessible, and focused on topics relevant to Dialectic’s audiences.

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Dialectic’s web address for submissions:

Submitters are hereby advised to peruse the contents of the entire Dialectic website to ensure that their submissions meet ALL of Dialectic’s criteria for publication BEFORE they submit work for consideration. Reading the rest of this communiqué CAREFULLY and THOROUGHLY is also encouraged, as submissions that fail to meet our criteria for publication will be rejected.

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Dialectic’s inaugural issue/”Issue 01” was released in March 2017.

Dialectic’s second issue/“Issue 02” was released in January 2018.

Dialectic’s third issue/“Issue 03” was released in September 2018.

Dialectic’s fourth issue/“Issue 04” will be released in January of 2019.

Dialectic’s fifth issue/“Issue 05” will be released in April of 2019.

All submissions to Dialectic MUST be made through the “Submittable” website hosted by Michigan Publishing listed above. Please DO NOT attempt to send any type of submission as an e-mail attachment to any of Dialectic’s Editorial Board members, its Producer, its AIGA DEC liaisons, or members of its Advisory Committee. Instructions for formatting ALL types of submissions are embedded (per category) in this submittable website. Submissions that are NOT formatted according to these instructions will be rejected. All submissions must be created in keeping with the editorial policy of Dialectic, which is articulated here:

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Dialectic will publish visual essays/narratives and papers that satisfy the following categorical descriptions (please note that word counts may not be exceeded):

Original visual essays/visually based narratives/visual storytelling: Dialectic invites submissions from designers or teams of designers that are comprised primarily or solely of imagery (photography and/or illustrations), typographic structures, “type-as-image,” or some combination of these that visually communicate one or more types of narrative/storytelling. The logistical criteria specified in the “Illustrations, Graphics, and Photos” section of the “2017-18 Submissions Guidelines for Dialectic” document must be met (re: image resolutions, physical sizes, bleeds, etc.), and submissions that are assessed by the Editorial Board and/or external reviewers to be visually compelling and conceptually provocative will be considered for publication, pending the availability of page space in a given issue.

Research papers (3,000 to 4,500 words): These articles will recount how designers and design teams identified a situation that was problematic, formulated and operated research to understand the various factors, conditions and people involved that were affecting the situation, and then used their analysis of the data gathered from this research to guide design decision-making toward improving this situation. This type of writing should be grounded in evidentiary processes, and should clearly explicate a hypothesis, as well as posit and support a methodology and some form of a measurable data set.

Long-form case study reports or case series reports (3,000 to 4,500 words): These articles will describe how a particular person, group, project, event, experience or situation has been studied and analyzed, using one or more methods, during a specific span of time. These contributions should posit insights that exist as logical subsets of a larger category, and that are at least tangentially generalizable to the category. A case series report collectively describes how a group of individuals have responded to a particular type of treatment, experience or interaction. They can be used to help analyze and assess the responses of a cross-section of individual users to one or more iterations of an interface design, or an environmental graphics or wayfinding system, or a series of data visualizations.

Position papers (2,000 to 3,000 words): These essays will present the readership of Dialectic with an opinion—of the author, or of a specified group of people or organization—about an issue or set of issues in a way or ways that make particular values and the belief systems that guide them known.

Design criticism (as long-form essays of between 2,000 and 3,000 words): The goal of these pieces is to critically analyze design decision-making, and the affects that making and using what has been designed have on the operation and evolution of social, technological, economic, environmental and political systems.

Reviews of books, exhibitions, conferences, etc. (750 to 1,500 words): These shorter articles are written to critically analyze the efficacy of the structure, content, style, and relative merit of their particular subjects in ways that combine the author’s personal reactions and arguments to it with his/her assessment of how effectively it fulfilled or failed in its purpose.

Survey papers (2,000 to 3,000 words): These pieces are written to clearly summarize, organize, and analyze a select, topical grouping of scholarly articles, research papers, or case studies in a way that integrates and adds to the understanding of the work in a given discipline or field of study.

Theoretical speculations (3,000 to 4,500 words): These contributions will consist of attempts by their authors to explain a particular phenomenon, set of circumstances, or situational construct based on their ability to utilize observations rather than hard evidence to fuel speculative thoughts and suppositions. These contributions should be grounded in a viable paradigm, or use theory as a viable justification for what has been observed, and should be internally coherent and advance logical conclusions.

Editorial responses from Dialectic readers (750 to 1,200 words): Dialectic encourages its readers to submit critical responses to specific articles, editorials, or visual pieces that have been published in previous issues. Authors are also welcome to bring any issues that they believe are pertinent to the attention of Dialectic’s readership. Editorial commentary relative to specific published articles and pieces will be sent to their author(s) so they can respond.

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Important dates:

Deadline for full versions of papers written that meet Dialectic Issue 04’s categorical descriptions is: 5:00 pm CST, Friday, January 4, 2018

Initial/Desk reviews of submissions to Dialectic Issue 02 complete: March 8, 2019

External reviews of submission to Dialectic Issue 02 complete: April, 26 2019

Authors responses/revisions to external reviewers’ suggestions re: their manuscripts due: May 31, 2019

Dialectic Issue 06 published: July 15–September 15, 2019

Dialectic’s managing editor:
Keith M. Owens, The University of North Texas

Dialectic’s producer:
Michael R. Gibson, The University of North Texas

Dialectic’s editorial board:
Anne Burdick, Art Center
Heather Corcoran, Washington University at St. Louis
Kenneth FitzGerald, Old Dominion University
Deborah Littlejohn, North Carolina State University
Keith M. Owens, The University of North Texas
Stacie Rohrbach, Carnegie Mellon University

Dialectic’s AIGA Design Educators Community liaisons:
Eric Benson, The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Amy Fidler, Bowling Green State University
Michael R. Gibson, The University of North Texas

Dialectic’s advisory committee:
Kim Erwin, The University of Illinois at Chicago
Brockett Horne, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)
Ann McDonald, Northeastern University
Paul Nini, The Ohio State University
Elizabeth Resnick, Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt)
Holly Willis, The University of Southern California

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