About the Journal
Focus and Scope
Prompt is a biannual, refereed online journal that publishes academic writing prompts (i.e., assignments). We publish prompts directed at both undergraduate and graduate students from all academic disciplines. Our mission is to disseminate a mode of intellectual work that is too rarely circulated in public venues, and we hope to contribute to the scholarly study of writing assignments in the field of writing studies. We also believe that by publishing excellent and innovative writing assignments, we can create both a resource and a site of engagement for faculty who incorporate writing assignments in their teaching. We think such engagement can help to bridge the gap between theory and practice in writing studies.
Prompt also hopes to be valuable resource for Writing Program Administrators (WPAs), especially those engaged in Writing Across the Curriculum or Writing in the Disciplines (WAC/WID) work and curricular design work. WPAs in these positions will benefit from access to excellent, diverse assignments from across the curriculum.
All assignments published by Prompt are accompanied by a reflective essay by their authors, which provides context and insight into the assignment. Please review the journal itself and our "Submissions" page for further information about what we publish.
Prompt is listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), and is a member of the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA).
Peer Review Process
All submissions deemed appropriate for possible publication by the editors are peer reviewed by at least two outside reviewers with appropriate expertise. Reviewers receive manuscripts with author-identifying information removed or redacted. Reviewers are invited, but not required, to disclose their identities to authors.
We strive to move the review process forward in a timely way, seeking to select reviewers as quickly as possible and holding reviewers to reasonable deadlines. After the editors receive reviewers' report, a decision is shared with the author within 2 weeks. When reviewers fail to complete a review in a reasonable amount of time, new reviewers are selected.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Practices
The editorial team of Prompt is committed to publishing a journal that contains writing by a diverse array of authors and making the publishing process one that is supportive to all of those authors. It is core to the founding mission of our journal to publish work by scholars across the disciplines with varied identities, from all types of higher educational institutions, and at all stages of their careers.
We recognize that a number of structural changes are required to achieve this goal, and we are working on making those changes. They include:
Continuing to develop these ongoing practices:
- Undertaking the work of editing with a goal of offering supportive feedback on authors’ work, even if the journal declines to publish that work
- Providing transparency around the editorial process, so that authors understand both its timeline and the expectations our editors and reviewers have
- Setting sustainable expectations for volunteer labor, including that of reviewers, editorial board members, and the journal’s editorial team
- Being open to publishing essays in a variety of styles that correspond with an author’s background and goals
- Utilizing special issues of the journal to support and provide increased visibility for pedagogical work that prioritizes social justice and accessibility
Prioritizing the following additional goals in the near term:
- Creating an editorial board with a composition that represents the diversity of participants in our field
- Providing more explicit guidance to authors about using inclusive language and updating this guidance over time. Being open to dialogue with authors about choices around language and recognizing such topics are often active areas of debate.
- Developing a style guide that is informed by the value of linguistic justice
- Providing specific guidance to reviewers about prioritizing inclusive citation practices and avoiding a default requirement of the citation of canonized scholars whose work authors object to including for substantive reasons
- Seeking out appropriate reviewers for submissions and protecting authors from reviews that are based on exclusionary premises
- Providing authors and reviewers with a means of open dialogue with editors during the editorial process and offering an opportunity for feedback after the process concludes
We recognize this list of goals is not yet comprehensive, and we expect to continue to add to it as our work in this area continues in the years ahead.
Our work in this area is guided by BIPOC editors and scholars who are leading the way on developing transparent approaches to anti-racist editing. We especially thank the authors of the “Anti-Racist Scholarly Reviewing Practices” heuristic, which provides important context and guidance for editors, reviewers, and authors.
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. Authors retain copyright of their published work and may republish without restrictions. Reuse of work published in Prompt must include clear attribution to the original text and be for non-commercial purposes, as specified by Creative Commons BY-NC.
Prompt is a member of the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA).
Prompt is a member of the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
Sources of Support
Prompt is a scholar-run journal and receives no direct external funding for operations.
In June 2023 we joined the WAC Clearinghouse family of journals. As the host for Prompt, the Clearinghouse provides valuable editorial guidance and international reach.
Our journal receives in-kind support for archiving from California Institute of Technology Library
Each issue of Prompt is archived by the Caltech Library in Portico for long-term preservation. Portico is a community-supported preservation archive that safeguards access to e-journals, e-books, and digital collections. Over 1,000 libraries and hundreds of publishers support Portico; it acts as a failsafe archive to ensure that online published content never becomes permanently unavailable even if the original publication stop operating.
Prompt was started in 2016 by founding Co-Editors Jonathan Dueck and Susanne E. Hall. Dr. Dueck served as co-editor from 2016-2018. Dr. Hall will serve as editor, with Holly Ryan as Managing Editor, until issue 7.2. Rick Fisher and Kelly Kinney are the new editors of the journal.